Star Trek: Wil Wheaton Talks New Shows, Embraces Franchise Role

Wil Wheaton is doing a lot more for the Star Trek franchise than ever before transitioning from his The Next Generation role as Wesley Crusher to embracing his role as a brand ambassador with his CBS All Access web series Ready Room and hosting panels in "Star Trek Day." The actor spoke to Trek Movie about where he fits in. When it comes to the current influx of new Trek television shows, Wheaton scoffs at the idea of franchise fatigue or if fans are ready for the new shows. "I don't care about franchise fatigue," Wheaton said.

"I mean, either you like it or you don't. Either you come and participate in the storytelling or you don't. And it's a giant world with lots of people in it. And if you don't like it, God bless you. Go do something else. That's fine. That's just the way it is. You're never going to be all things to all people. And if you try you end up being beige, which is boring and uninteresting. I think Star Trek is as exciting now as it maybe has ever been. There's just so much wonderful storytelling happening. And there are such great casts bringing such great stories to life right now. It is a wonderful moment to be a Star Trek fan."

LOS ANGELES - JUN 3: Wil Wheaton at the "Changeland" Los Angeles Premiere at the ArcLight Hollywood on June 3, 2019 in Los Angeles, CA (Image: Kathy Hutchins / Shutterstock.com)
LOS ANGELES – JUN 3: Wil Wheaton at the "Changeland" Los Angeles Premiere at the ArcLight Hollywood on June 3, 2019 in Los Angeles, CA (Image: Kathy Hutchins / Shutterstock.com)

When it comes to what Wheaton likes now, the actor's partial to the animated Lower Decks and the TNG sequel series Picard. "I absolutely love Lower Decks," he said. "It is one of the funniest things I've ever seen. And I love the acknowledgment that there are not only other crewmen and women on a starship that are not our bridge crew, but there are also other starships that are not the flagship. So who ends up on the B-team, and what does that look like? And what does that sound like? I interviewed the showrunner and the director, and I've interviewed some of the actors. And we have talked about how if you inverted the A and B stories of Next Generation, then Lower Decks is what you get. And I absolutely love that. In the entirety of Star Trek, the thing that I am crazy about at the moment… I mean Star Trek: Picard is my favorite thing since Next Generation. Nothing comes close."

Wheaton admits he isn't as caught up as he should on the other shows. "…I am actually watching Deep Space Nine for the very first time," he said. "When Deep Space Nine aired, I was very much trapped in a young immature sibling rivalry with the show that no one else was participating in but was very important. And I was like, 'Next Generation, ride or die. F*** you Deep Space Nine!' and I like just never watched it. And that was a huge mistake. And I'm really sad that I didn't experience it at the time because I have been absolutely loving it. I love the stories they tell. I love those characters. It is a freaking great show. And I'm just crazy about it and I'm really really grateful to be discovering it and experiencing it for the first time right now when I'm not lugging around the emotional immature baggage of youth."

To read more on where Wheaton feels Wesley would fit into Lower Decks if Mike McMahan finds a place for him for new Crusher canon, where he feels the legacy of the former ensign, or whether he'll appear in Picard, you can check it out more at Trek Movie. Wheaton is also in the film Rent-A-Pal from IFC Midnight currently available in theaters and on-demand.

About Tom Chang

I'm a follower of pop culture from gaming, comics, sci-fi, fantasy, film, and TV for over 30 years. I grew up reading magazines like Starlog, Mad, and Fangora. As a professional writer for over 10 years, Star Wars was the first sci-fi franchise I fell in love with. I'm a nerd-of-all-trades.

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