What Else has Been Lost in the Wake of Your Fear?

Star Trek: Picard – Assimilation picks up at the cliffhanger. President Hansen’s husband has boarded the ship with armed security. It’s clear he has suspicions about Seven as well as the rest of the crew. A brawl leads to Picard’s team vaporizing the security detail (and Seven’s husband). Rios’s ship evades the Confederation fleet and, using the Borg Queen, they use a slingshot maneuver to go back in time.

Assimilation- Now is the Only Moment

The team arrives in the 21st century but the ship essentially shuts down and sets a crash course for Earth. In an attempt to land somewhere less overt than Los Angeles, Picard takes the helm and lands them at the future home of Chateau Picard. The ship has little power remaining and Elnor, in sickbay, needs a working Bio Bed. It turns out the Borg Queen is siphoning power to save herself after the jump. Without the Bio-Bed, Elnor succumbs to his wounds and dies. 

Devastated by Elnor’s death, the team regroups to search for the Watcher and learn what Q did to change the future. Raffi, Seven, and Rios plan to go to Los Angeles. Juratti warns them to leave their tech behind and to be sure they avoid hospitals or any type of examination that may find their implants and identify them as from the future. Juratti and Picard stay behind to focus on waking the Borg Queen, so they can go back to the future.

I Believe the Technical Term is “For Sh*t”

On the ship, Juratti plans to “plugin” to the Queen in an attempt to bring her back to their present and repair her damage. This is dangerous because Juratti could be assimilated in the process.  Picard initially does not want to allow Juratti to enter the Queen’s mind, but she is persistent and convinces him. 

Raffi, Seven, and Rios prepare to beam to Los Angeles and scan for alien signals from the Mark Ridge Industrial Tower. The transporters are off, so they will land near one another but cannot be precise. The team does a little 21st century cosplays and beams to Los Angeles. 

It’s Full of Mirrors for Useful Deflection

While Raffi and Seven land in Los Angeles uneventfully, Rios beams about 30 feet above the ground, taking a fall and getting seriously injured. He is taken by paramedics to a clinic (against his protests).

Raffi finds herself in a homeless encampment and is nearly mugged, but she quickly turns the tables and pockets the cash her mugger had on him. 

Back on the ship, Picard is talking with Juratti’s subconscious to ensure she is still okay while exploring the Borg Queen’s mind. It’s clear that Juratti is getting pulled into the Borg Queen and getting closer to assimilation. Picard unplugs Juratti and stops the procedure.

Kevin is not Funner than Me!

Raffi and Seven find their way to the tower and talk their way past the security guard. While Raffi starts scanning, Seven notes that “the future is starting.” She points out that pollution, droughts, and fires are the beginning of the chaos that leads to the Confederation. While scanning, Raffi picks up something near MacArthur Park but it disappears. They also see the blips from Rios’ badge.

In the meantime, Rios wakes up in the clinic where he is getting treated for a concussion and a dislocated hand. The doctor reassures him that she won’t charge him or report him, she just wants to help. She clearly thinks he is an undocumented immigrant. After he is treated, he tries to retrieve his badge from the Doctor’s son who was playing with it. She intervenes and tells him he can collect it when he leaves.

Hello Locutus

Juratti was successful in reviving the Borg Queen. She’s lucid, no manic talk like she had in the future. She demands Picard’s ship and clearly has plans to assimilate her way through this time. She offers a trade, the ship for the location of the Watcher. Juratti wakes up and suggests they deactivate the Queen. It turns out that Juratti took the identity of the Watcher and location of the time divergence from the Queen. 

The clinic treating Rios is raided by ICE. Rios helps the patients escape and then tries to help the Doctor talk her way out of trouble with immigration – unsuccessfully. He and the doctor are arrested by the police. 

Episode Analysis – Assimilation

I have to say that I am enjoying the episodic nature and the character analysis that we are seeing this season. Seven, one of the greatest Star Trek Characters, is exploring what her life would have been like had she never been assimilated by the Borg. Her face is clean, people are not taken aback or frightened by her appearance. When she lands in 21st century Los Angeles, a little girl is quite taken by her, asking if she’s a “superhero.” She is also able to charm her way past the security guard at the Tower. It’s obvious that Seven is exploring even more of what the Borg took from her. 

Raffi is struggling with the death of Elnor, likely as she sees him as a surrogate for the son she lost. In season 1 of Picard, she and her son remain estranged; likely with good reason. That relationship was lost, but her relationship with Elnor was just beginning.

Juratti, who Rios accused of only being able to be “intimate with synthetics” truly gets to explore the mind of the ultimate synthetic – a Borg Queen. She walks around it and comes out unscathed…. Or did she? 


Rios is battling his desire to help damsels in distress, only getting himself further into trouble. 

And of course, Picard. It’s powerful to watch a story in which Picard… can do wrong. Where his crew does not always understand his decisions. Where, at times, his ego gets in the way of his command. It’s humbling to watch the complexities of his character. 

I also appreciate that Star Trek does not hesitate to get political. From the original series through today, Star Trek has delved into the hot social and political topics of the day. They touch on climate change, suggesting it leads to society’s collapse. They have a run-in with a homeless encampment. As a resident of Los Angeles County, I’ve seen firsthand the struggles of homelessness and addiction, as well as the rise of crime. 

We end episode 3, Assimilation, on another cliffhanger. Rios is in custody. Will they learn he is from the future or suspect he is a terrorist? Will their presence be what changes the future? What causes the time divergence? And who is the watcher? Give me your best guess in the comments!