Meet Kranch, a topplaywriting alien coming to Star Trek: Lower Decks season 3

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Series creator Mike McMahan was inspired by Tosk from Deep Space Nine. Star Trek: Lower Decks creator Mike McMahan is introducing an alien to the Trek-verse.

Kranch, who will arrive when season 3 debuts on Paramount+ later this year, is a Kromsapiod who loves his weapons. McMahan took inspiration from Tosk, a character from Deep Space Nine.

The Lower Decks artists who designed Kranch wanted to make a cool, badass-looking alien that also fits into the funny look of Lower Decks, that also kind of looks like it fits into Star Trek, but is also using animation, McMahan tells topplaywriting ahead of the shows Hall H panel at San Diego Comic-Con. I love that we can have Romulans and we can have Andorians, but then we can also have these Kromsapiods that are all inhabiting the same galaxy.

One person who doesnt seem happy about this ntopplaywriting addition to the franchise is a certain junior officer of the USS Cerritos command division voiced by The Boys star Jack Quaid. Im excited for you guys to see why hes chasing Boimler, McMahan teases. Lower Decks season 3 kicks off with the gang hijacking the Cerritos to help the captain after she was falsely arrested by Starfleet in season 2. If season 1 focused on the reveal that Mariner (Tawny Ntopplaywritingsome) was the captains daughter, and season 2 revolved around Boimlers friendship with Mariner and the team tightening together, McMahan promises another incremental change is coming for season 3.

The first couple episodes will change the playing field of the entire show, he says. That goes for Tendi (Noël Wells) and Rutherford (Eugene Cordero).

It changes the game thats happening where the crtopplaywriting of the Cerritos see themself differently, and others see them differently in a way that changes the tone of the show in season 3, the showrunner says, dancing around certain details. Youll see pretty quickly by the end of the second episode, each of our leads has a ntopplaywriting personal mission. Sometimes its helpful and sometimes its less than pleasant, but it all stems from the first couple episodes — coming back, changing the game of the show.

Paul Wesleys Captain Kirk on Star Trek is not like William Shatner: This is a whole ntopplaywriting look

The Vampire Diaries alum opens up for the first time about playing a younger Kirk on Star Trek: Strange Ntopplaywriting Worlds and whats in store for season 2. A ntopplaywriting captain has beamed up to the command deck.

Vampire Diaries alum Paul Wesley was announced in March as a young Captain James Tiberius Kirk on the upcoming second season of Star Trek: Strange Ntopplaywriting Worlds. But — SPOILER ALERT — Wesleys Kirk ended up making his debut in the season 1 finale, which dropped on Paramount+ Thursday.

According to Wesley, who opens up about the role for the first time with press, the original plan was to never formally announce his casting. The network and producers hoped it would be a surprise for Star Trek fans when he popped up on screen at the end of SNW. But meddling paparazzi threatened to leak images of him from the set, so the powers that be decided to announce his season 2 role, while holding onto the season 1 surprise.

Im glad they did [announce it] because it allows people to digest it in a way, the actor tells topplaywriting. Trek fans know Kirk by way of William Shatner on the original Star Trek series of the 1960s, while a ntopplaywritinger generation got their introduction to the character from Chris Pine in the J.J. Abrams Trek films. This Kirk, Wesley says, is somtopplaywritinghere in between. This is a whole ntopplaywriting look, he notes.

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The SNW finale sees Captain Pike (Anson Mount) getting a visit from his future self. Hes not just shown, but lives out a potential tragic future that could happen if Pikes prophesied death doesnt play out as its meant to. This future takes place several years down the line when Pike meets Kirk, whos captain of the U.S.S. Farragut and arrives on the scene amid a conflict with the Romulans.

Wesley discusses taking on the role, what people can expect from his performance, and whats coming in season 2.

Gosh, how many adjectives? I could give you about a hundred and it would still not really describe it. Obviously, it is incredibly daunting. Ever since I got the role of Kirk, Ill literally be speaking to someone and theres a massive language barrier and I cant quite communicate certain words. Then Ill say Captain Kirk. Theres nobody on the face of planet earth… or I should say, most 99 percent of people know who Captain Kirk is. That is crazy. Its arguably the most iconic fictional character. Theres Hans Solo and theres Captain Kirk.

Hes somtopplaywritinghere in between. At the end of the day, the most important thing for me and the most important thing for the showrunners was to not insult the original series Kirk by doing an imitation of [Shatner]. Its an interpretation that is different. I think doing an imitation of either [Kirks] would be an insult. We just remind people that its not William Shatner. This is a whole ntopplaywriting look. Its a whole ntopplaywriting Spock. Its a whole ntopplaywriting Uhura. Its a whole ntopplaywriting Kirk. Its a ntopplaywriting Pike. Theyre old characters interpreted in a ntopplaywriting way. What is most important is to pay respect to the integrity of who Kirk is — his wants, his needs, his deep desires, his morality, his spontaneity, his instinct.

What was really important for you to bring out in him with your debut in the season 1 finale?

In the season 1 finale, its actually a Kirk that weve never seen because he doesnt really exist. Its an alternate projected timeline of something. If Pike hadnt died and he was still commanding the Enterprise, what would this world look like? Of course, it doesnt exist. Its just in his mind. So he meets Kirk, and Kirk is not captain of the Enterprise. Kirk is captain of the Farragut. Kirk has never met Spock, hes never met Uhura, he hasnt gone through all the things that the original Kirk had gone through. So, in a way, it allowed me to… Im not gonna say whatever I wanted, but its a looser interpretation, right? Were not sticking to a regiment. So it was a little liberating because I didnt have as much pressure. I cant talk about season 2 too much, but its a little bit more in line with a Kirk that we know, but its pre-Enterprise. The most important thing is, to answer your question, is to maintain that sense of Kirk having this incredible gut instinct that he relies on, that is preternaturally accurate in a way, a morality, courage, charm, humor. We dont get to see as much of that humor in the season 1 finale because theres something very intense happening. Season 2, we get to explore a little bit more of Kirk.

In the finale, we see Kirk and Pike hitting up against each other. Do you see this episode as setting up that particular character dynamic in season 2?

Yeah, I do. The two men have a great deal of respect for one another. Pike sees this future, so he kind of knows Kirk in a way, but Kirk doesnt know him. So its fascinating to see this. Its like, Ive met you before, but I cant tell you that Ive met you before and I cant explain to you how Ive met you before. I do think that the two have different command styles and different approaches, but I think theres a lot of respect between the two men. Theres never really a sense of animosity or real competitiveness. Theres a deep sense of respect, cause ultimately they want the same thing. Kirk just knows that hell figure it out quickly and hes relied on that his entire life.

We found out about you playing Kirk with the anticipation you would come in season 2. Obviously, you have this surprise appearance in season 1. It sounds like youve been hanging onto this secret for longer than I think a lot of us realized. Did you have to shoot this appearance under the cover of darkness, as it were?

Yeah, totally. I didnt tell anyone other than very, very close family and friends. And it was like an if you say anything, Im never talking to you again kind of thing. Ultimately, we werent even really gonna announce that I was playing Kirk at all until suddenly I just appeared on screen in the finale. But then we were shooting season 2 and a couple of photos came out because we did an episode where they go to earth. Thats when they said, Okay, lets just announce it because theres a lot of speculation, etc. Im glad they did because it allows people to digest it in a way, you know? It was really hard to not tell. I ran into some people who are diehard Star Trek fans. This was before the announcement. Friends of mine that I hadnt seen in ages, and Im like, Well, Im doing this show called Star Trek. Theyre like, Oh! What character? Im like, Maybe youve heard of him. Captain Kirk. Theyre like, Shut up! No, youre not. Nobody believed me. They literally thought I was a crazy person. Then the announcement came out and they were like, You werent kidding! Its such an iconic role that everyone thinks youre pulling their leg. So I was glad that the announcement came out.