Patrick Stewart To Return As Captain Picard In New 'Star Trek' Series

Those who know me know I don't watch a lot of TV, and there are very few shows I truly cherish. Star Trek: The Next Generation is one of them.  It's the Star Trek I grew up on (I kinda dig Deep Space Nine, too), and Patrick Stewart will forever be Captain Jean-Luc Picard. So today's news has made me smile wider than I have in weeks, because Stewart is coming back to Star Trek in a brand new series.

CBS has made it official that Patrick Stewart will return as Jean-Luc Picard in a new Star Trek series on the CBS All Access digital platform. The show will be exec-produced by Alex Kurtzman, current showrunner on Star Trek: Discovery, but that's all we know right now. Here's Kurtzman's statement:

With overwhelming joy, it’s a privilege to welcome Sir Patrick Stewart back to the Star Trek fold. For over 20 years, fans have hoped for the return of Captain Jean-Luc Picard and that day is finally here. We can’t wait to forge new ground, surprise people, and honor generations both new and old.

And of course, Stewart had a few thoughts of his own, tweeting that he never thought something like this would happen, but that he's ready to take the Captain's chair again.  Make it so!!

I will always be very proud to have been a part of Star Trek: The Next Generation, but when we wrapped that final movie in the spring of 2002, I truly felt my time with Star Trek had run its natural course. It is, therefore, an unexpected but delightful surprise to find myself excited and invigorated to be returning to Jean-Luc Picard and to explore new dimensions within him. Seeking out new life for him, when I thought that life was over.

During these past years, it has been humbling to hear many stories about how The Next Generation brought people comfort, saw them through difficult periods in their lives or how the example of Jean-Luc inspired so many to follow in his footsteps, pursuing science, exploration and leadership. I feel I’m ready to return to him for the same reason — to research and experience what comforting and reforming light he might shine on these often very dark times. I look forward to working with our brilliant creative team as we endeavor to bring a fresh, unexpected and pertinent story to life once more.

After starring as Picard from 1987 to 1994, Stewart last played the role in 2002's Star Trek: Nemesis, which was pretty terrible. Of the four Star Trek movies the Next Generation crew were in, it might be the lousiest.

Finally I have a reason to subscribe to CBS All Access.  For how long will depend whether this new series is an ongoing or a miniseries event.