In Star Trek: Picard – Mercy, the cold open is of a boy, running in the woods terrified. He trips and is confronted by two Vulcans. We then flash to Picard and Guinan in a room with the agent who arrested them at the end of the last episode. He asks them directly if they are extraterrestrials. Guinan laughs hysterically and Picard tells him that he most assuredly is not. The agent tells them that he believes that, given they have attended various events for NASA, they are here to sabotage the Europa mission. 

After All, I’m Only Human

Seven and Raffi report back to Rios that they have tracked Juratti to a dive bar and are on her trail. They tell Rios to stay on La Sirena to finish inspecting the ship for Borg sabotage while they follow the trail. They talk to the bar owner who tells them that she left with a man and points them in her direction.

Back in the FBI interrogation, the agent shows Picard and Guinan more evidence of their involvement with Europa. He leaves and Picard shares with Guinan that if they believe they have sabotaged the Europa mission, they will scrub it – and Q will need to do nothing.

In Dr. Soong’s lab, Kore continues to investigate her father’s work. She puts on a pair of AR glasses and Q appears to her as a “living program” to talk with her. He shows her that her “father” created her as an experiment and gives her a “cure” for her genetic abnormalities — a vial labeled “freedom.”

On the path to find Juratti, Raffi and Seven stumble upon the man she left with, who is now dead. Seven explains that Juratti is seeking a “connection” and killed him out of frustration when she couldn’t assimilate him. They learn that Juratti took the cell phone battery out of his phone because Lithium-Ion serves as a stabilizer during the assimilation process. They quickly stumble upon Agnes who is digging out car parts, looking for more stabilizing metals. Juratti attacks them both and nearly kills Raffi, but Agnes asserts her power over the Borg Queen and stops her before she does.

Humans, They’re All Trapped in the Past

Back in the interrogation room, the agent returns with more evidence against them, implicating Rios and the Doctor. He also shares Rios’s statement about being a time traveler. He then shows them a com badge that he knows is not from Earth. 

On La Sirena, Rios continues to diagnose the ship while the Doctor and her son play. He gets them some food from the replicator. While her son eats cake, the Doctor continues to get to know Rios and the two of them finally kiss.

Back in the interrogation room, Guinan and Picard are separated and the agent continues to grill Picard about the Europa mission. He tells them that if they don’t confess to him, other agents will torture him for more information. Guinan is greeted by a new agent, agent Q. He’s livid that she summoned him. She tells him that she felt emptiness and fear when the ritual stalled and that she can tell he is dying. It’s why he couldn’t just appear during the summoning. Q tells her that he didn’t bring Picard to the past and that his “trap” is immaterial and that the escape is what’s important. 

Adam Soong attempts to apologize to his daughter, but she tells him she knows that he would never allow her to leave and accuses him of having a God complex. He tells her the mechanics of how she was created but says that he loves her. But Kore pushes back and tells him that he loves his work, not her. Adam becomes irate and tells her that she exists because he willed it to happen but then tries to reaffirm that he does love her. She walks out the door. She took Q’s cure and isn’t harmed by the sunlight. Soong threatens her, to keep her there. But she just leaves him. 

Seven and Raffi recover from their fight with Agnes. Seven tells Raffi that “mercy is not a Borg quality,” and they determine that Juratti is still in there somewhere. Her next step is to use the metals she absorbed to begin assimilating others – albeit imperfectly. 

Back at Adam’s home, Juratti walks in on Adam getting drunk alone.

The Monster in the Dark

In the interrogation room, Guinan sends Picard a psychic message that “all humans are stuck in the past.” Picard realizes that the agent is driven by more than his sense of civic duty. It turns out that he was the child we saw in the opening scene. He stumbled on a pair of Vulcan researchers. They attempted to erase his memory with a mind-meld but fail. Picard explains to him what happened – validating the agent’s experience. Picard then tells him that he is a human, but came from the 25th century to save Earth and the Galaxy.

Guinan and Picard reunite and Guinan tells him about her experience with Q. She tells him that Q seemed crazy and she couldn’t reason what he told her. The agent comes back in and explains that he was just fired. He lied about them to his superiors and let them go. 

Juratti is working on Adam’s computers and explains to him that he is at a crossroads. If he takes one path, he will be forgotten. On the other path, he brings humanity back from the edge of extinction and he will be deemed the father of the future. Apparently, Renee Picard’s discovery on the Europa mission renders Soong’s research obsolete. To start, he needs to kill Jean-Luc Picard and provide her with the resources she needs. 

Raffi and Seven find Picard and explain that the Borg Queen has blocked their transporter and that she plans to get a jump-start on assimilating the Galaxy by using La Sirena. 

In addition to the “raw materials” that Juratti needs, Soong hires a group of mercenaries. Agnes approaches one of the soldiers and begins to assimilate him while Adam looks on, horrified. 

Star Trek: Picard – Mercy Episode Analysis

While last week we explored Picard and his history, this week we are moving the plot forward once again. First, on the trail for Juratti, we learn that Agnes is still there… while the Borg Queen is running the show, Agnes was able to step in and stop her from killing Raffi. This lends more credence to the theory that Juratti is ultimately the Borg Queen that appears to Picard during episode one. 

Raffi and Seven explore their relationship a little more. Seven is dealing with the weight of having been Borg, which seems painful after she experienced the freedom of living without Borg implants. And Raffi has to come to terms with the fact that while she has thrown away her drugs, she hasn’t gotten rid of her manipulative tactics. The guilt she feels for Elnor’s death is heavy. 

Rios has decided to throw caution (and the laws of time travel) to the wind and make out with a hottie from the 21st century. This is clearly not going to end well and I truly am not a fan of this relationship. Why risk the future for a woman you hardly know? Why bring her and her child onto your ship and show them all of your fancy gadgets? 

Q’s further degradation is also alarming. Why is he dying? Guinan was right that we have seen Q kill other Q, but there seems to be no rhyme nor reason to why Q himself has become mortal. And why is he (for lack of a better term) crazy? Is it his illness or the time shift? He does seem to hint that Picard can set it all right when he returns to the future. 

To me, the most interesting development is with Adam Soong. Juratti made no mistake in playing on his ego. All Soong’s have a healthy one. He also has very few ethical lines that he will not cross. However, when she began the assimilation process on the soldiers, he was clearly disturbed by it (some amazing acting by Brent Spiner). It’s an interesting look at the Soong dynasty as it seems to be their first introduction to cybernetics. 

So what will happen next week? Will we learn why Q is dying? Will the Europa mission succeed? And what will happen with Kore? Put your predictions in the comments below!

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