The big return of Star Trek: Picard was the Enterprise-D.
The Enterprise-D was a major return for Star Trek: Picard. It rivaled, if not surpassed any of the other returning characters or actors that the show has brought back across its three seasons. It was thought gone, forever, after the events of 1994’s Star Trek Generations. Thanks to Terry Matalas, however, the ship is back 29 years later.
Unlike the rest of its crewmates (as the ship is part of the cast), who all returned mostly intact, the Enterprise-D did not. In fact, the entire ship was rebuilt from top to bottom for its debut in Picard. Save for one piece in particular.
According to several of the show’s behind-the-scenes crewmembers, the entire ship had to be remade, except for the dedication plague, seen in The Next Generation. Somehow that plague not only survived over the years but was in someone’s care that allowed it to be used on the show.
In fact, it was such a vaunted piece of production, it was even locked away at night just so no one felt the desire to steal it.
Bringing back an actual piece of The Next Generation set was a nice touch
I’m a stickler for not only practical effects and real sets, but for reusing pieces from older sets as well. And not in the Scooby Doo of it all, where sets get re-used to save money. No, in the sense that the creator is trying to tie their work with the work that came before.
It’s a nod to the past that is fitting and very touching.
Not only that, but re-using parts of the set is very Star Trek. By now many people may know that the transporter room in The Next Generation was just the one used in the original series, but upside down.
It’s cool little trivia nuggets like that which keep the show forever unique.