Warning! Below are SPOILERS for the finale of the first season of the series “Star Trek: Prodigy”, “Supernova, part 2”. Read at your own risk!
“Star Trek: The Prodigy” finished the first season on Paramount+, and despite the very depressing penultimate episode, Dal, Gwyn, Rock, Junkom, Murph and Zero all turned out well. No matter how perfect the finale may seem, Prodigy showrunners Kevin and Dan Hageman exclusively told CinemaBlend that the original plan originally assumed how the season should end, there was one key change, and in the end it changed the situation for the better.
I talked to Kevin and Dan Hageman about the Star Trek: Prodigy finale, and while discussing the difference between a “warrant officer in training” and a Starfleet cadet, I learned something interesting. Kevin Hageman explained that in their original proposal for the finale, they wrote that Augment Dahl and his friends were actually accepted into Starfleet Academy:
Initially, yes, they were accepted into Starfleet Academy, and our advisor, David Mack, said, “Wow, wow, wow, let’s talk about it.” You’re right.
As some Star Trek fans may know, getting into Starfleet Academy is not an easy task. There are people who study and wait for admission for years, and only the best of the best are accepted. Dal and the Protostar team certainly showed that they had a big heart, and they successfully operated a Starfleet ship on their own, helping people, but it really wasn’t enough to accelerate their advancement to positions that others had been waiting for for years.
Dan Hageman continued what his brother said and noted that although they couldn’t do what they originally wanted to do with the Star Trek: Prodigy characters, it worked well. Hageman explained how this change actually made the situation better and what the characters who undergo warrant officer training in the second season mean.:
They have yet to climb the hills to get to the place they want, now that they have tried it, they want it. This is really one of the engines of Season 2. As ensigns, it allows us to actually deliver them to the ship, they are almost like consultants, so to speak. I’d say they’re more like trainee cadets, but this isn’t a Starfleet Academy.
While the Star Trek: Prodigy characters will be known as warrant officers in training, they will actually be training to become cadets. Starfleet Academy may one day be the target of Dal and everyone else, but for now they will be learning the basics of Janeway’s next adventure.
And, in the end, it worked out the best way. Kevin Hageman noted that admission to the Starfleet Academy would put the team in a completely different position in the second season and would affect another upcoming Star Trek series:
They’re putting on a Starfleet Academy show, and we didn’t want to get in their way. Also, if you have season 1 with all these amazing adventures on a stolen spaceship, and season 2 is going to be classroom scenes, I think we’ve let our audience down. We had to find ways to get them back there.
We shouldn’t expect these characters to appear in the Starfleet Academy series, which is why Vice Admiral Janeway has confirmed that Dal, Junk, Zero and Murph will join her on her next mission in the second season of Star Trek: Prodigy. As for Gwyn, she refused to join Starfleet, but told her friends that she would receive the Federation’s help in finding her homeworld of Solum. Gwyn said she hopes to find her people, and also to meet her father, the Soothsayer, who is still alive, because this is his younger version, who has not yet returned to the past.
As for what else awaits the 2nd season of “Star Trek: Prodigy“, the Janeway Hologram managed to send Starfleet on its way to an alternate future, where Chekotai is in captivity. Vice Admiral Janeway intends to get to Chekotai as soon as she can. Prodigy showrunners previously confirmed to CinemaBlend that the Janeway and Chekotaya arc will last for two seasons, so it’s safe to say that he may personally appear in the second season.
Otherwise, we can only wait and see. Given some of the wild adventures and enemies Janeway encountered in Star Trek: Voyager, Dal and his friends won’t have a problem with work. Hopefully Starfleet is all they wanted, and eventually they’ll have a chance to reconnect with Gwyn.
Star Trek: Prodigy Season 1 is over, but anyone can enjoy the series right now for their own pleasure on Paramount+ (opens in a new tab). The wait for season 2 continues, but thankfully there’s plenty of Trek in 2023 to keep fans busy in the meantime.