Terry Matalas had a dream scene in mind for Seven of Nine’s promotion, one which would have included Admiral Janeway.
At the beginning of Star Trek: Picard in season one, we learn that Seven of Nine (Jeri Ryan) was denied entry into Starfleet even though Admiral Kathyrn Janeway (Kate Mulgrew) lobbied for her. Over twenty years later, Seven of Nine is not only in Starfleet, she is the newly-appointed captain of the new USS Enterprise, being handed her promotion by a famiiar Star Trek: Voyager character, Tuvok (Tim Russ). This came after she received a recommendation from Captain Liam Shaw, the captain of the USS Titan who died while helping Admiral Picard and his friends escape from the Borg.
But, if showrunner Terry Matalas had been able to add one more character to Seven of Nine’s promotion scene, it would have been Admiral Janeway as he said at a recent roundtable interview attended by Slashfilm. In fact, he actually had Janeway’s appearance written into the first script, but the line producer nixed it because of budgetary concerns.
"“We wanted Kate Mulgrew to be part of Seven of Nine’s promotion. These are all things that … they’re all in the first script, and then your line producer says ‘Are you out of your f***in’ mind? You can’t afford these things. You are not ‘Avengers: Endgame.” So they got to go away. And so those are our regrets. But I’m very happy with what we were able to pull off.”"
An Admiral Janeway and Seven of Nine reunion would have been the icing on the cake.
Seven of Nine and Janeway had a rocky start to their relationship, much like Kate Mulgrew and Jeri Ryan did, but tensions eased on both sides eventually. And both the captain of the Voyager and Seven ended up with a grudging respect for one another, proven even more so by Janeway’s recommendation for Seven to be admitted into Starfleet.
Having Janeway be present for Seven of Nine’s promotion would have been a wonderful way to acknowledge how far the former Borg drone had come in distancing herself from the collective and becoming her own person. In actuality, though, thanks to Star Trek: Picard, we got to see her completed journey with her rise from Fenris Ranger to captain. An appearance by Janeway, while certainly welcome, would have only been icing on the cake.
Still, it would have been great to see Kate Mulgrew in live-action again as Janeway. As much as fans love her animated character on Star Trek: Prodigy, we miss the live Janeway on our screens. And perhaps one day down the road, we’ll see the two Starfleet officers face-to-face again…this time on Seven’s bridge.