Warning, spoilers! In episode 4 of the second season “Star Trek: Picard” in 2024, the ex-Enterprise captain (Patrick Stewart) meets a young Guinan (Ito Aghayere) who doesn’t recognize him, although she really shouldn’t – or does she?
The fourth episode of the second season of Star Trek: Picard finally reveals who the Guardian is that Jean-Luc Picard (Patrick Stewart) and his crew are looking for in the past of 2024 to fix their time again. Until then, the Starfleet veteran in the episode has to go through an old acquaintance: In the same bar in Los Angeles where we saw her older version (Whoopi Goldberg) again in episode 1, Picard almost hits 400 years earlier on a young Guinan (played by Ito Aghayere).
The El-Aurian, who was disillusioned with humanity at the time, obviously does not recognize Picard in this encounter, which is not surprising to Picard. However, some fans of the previous series “Starship Enterprise: The Next Century” (aka “Star Trek: The Next Generation”) might object here. Because even if Picard and Guinan only experience adventures together on the Enterprise more than 300 years later, they actually met long before that. But there is a simple explanation for this supposed contradiction…
The first meeting in the 19th century
But first things first: Picard’s current detour to the year 2024 is by no means the first time travel for the famous space explorer. In the “Next Generation” double episode “Danger from the 19th Century” (Season 5, Episode 26 & Season 6, Episode 1) Picard and some of his officers even go to the year 1893, ahead of Android Data (Brent Spiner), who has been there since that year.
In the 19th century, Picard and Co. not only became acquainted with the legendary author Mark Twain but also met a younger Guinan, who was already on Earth at that time. For the very slowly aging El-Aurian, it is her first encounter with Picard, a formative encounter clearly remembered vividly later aboard the Enterprise. But why doesn’t the Guinan of the year 2024 know anything about getting to know each other?
Another episode of Q’s actions
The new Guinan actress Ito Aghayere, who was a big “Next Generation” fan herself as a child, asked herself exactly the same question but did not get a clear answer from “Picard” author Terry Matalas, as she did in an interview with Variety betrayed. However, Matalas then provided an explanation via a representative of the streaming service Paramount+ (where “Picard” is shown in the USA):
“[Guinan] “The reason Picard doesn’t recognize that is because he traveled back from a future where Starfleet doesn’t exist, so the whole thing with Data’s head from 19th Century Menace never happened.” In the dark alternate timeline created by the intervention of Q (John de Lancie), Picard never traveled back to 1893 and thus did not meet Guinan there either, making 2024 encounter her first with Starfleet -Admiral is – although Picard himself (as well as his crewmates) still retain the knowledge and awareness of his original timeline.
The fact that the Guinan from the 21st century does not recognize her old friend is not a continuity error or carelessness on the part of the “Picard” authors, but a consequence of the established time travel logic in the series.
Whether Picard and his cronies can undo Q’s timeline shenanigans (and thus restore the 19th-century Guinan meeting) remains to be seen in the remaining six episodes of Star Trek: Picard’s second season. , always appears on Amazon Prime Video on Friday mornings.