Star Trek: Picard showrunner Terry Matalas admits the way Captain Kirk died in Star Trek: Generations isn’t how he would have done it.
And almost any fan can agree that Captain James T. Kirk (William Shatner) deserved a more heroic death than what he got in Generations. But what’s done is done…or is it? In a recent episode of Star Trek: Picard, Captain Riker, Captain Worf, and Raffi infiltrated Daystrom Station in an attempt to find a link to the weapon the Changelings had stolen. During the course of their search, the camera panned across an x-ray image with the name Kirk clearly attached to it.
On a podcast episode of Inglorious Treksperts [via Trekmovie], Matalas offered up a reason why we caught a glimpse of Kirk’s body on x-ray.
"“Look, it’s not how I would have sent Kirk off, clearly because I just put his body in Daystrom.”"
But he’s not saying that Star Trek: Picard is going to resurrect the captain.
"“Look, Kirk is dead. We figured, “Is his body really just under a pile of rocks on that planet?” We’re not committed… we’re not saying he is resurrected.”"
Terry Matalas wanted to leave the door open for a Kirk resurrection.
Now that Matalas has placed Kirk’s body at Daystrom, there is an opening for the captain to be brought back to life much like what’s most likely going to happen with Admiral Picard’s human body.
"“Is it a tip of the hat to The Return, which is a wonderful book I recommend to all of you? Maybe. We just leave it open that someday some brilliant writer could do something. That could be an animated thing. That could be anything. It’s just to keep, as my friend Spock is fond of saying: “There are always possibilities.” That was the idea behind that.”"
This opening offers so many possibilities for future Star Trek series. That’s not saying that William Shatner would ever return to the role, but never say never. And at least this doesn’t leave him under a pile of rocks. Though, one does have to wonder how his body was located. Do Starfleet officers have transponders embedded in their skin that activate when the heartbeat ceases, allowing them to be found? I don’t know if that’s something we’ll ever know, but it’s certainly a puzzler…at least for me.