Jonathan Frakes Agrees Star Trek: Discovery Ending After Season 5 'Sucks,' Shares Thoughts On Plans For Finale And 32nd Century Timeline
Star Trek: Discovery is confirmed to be ending after Season 5, and there are a number of fans disappointed to see the series come to its conclusion. Readers can count The Next Generation and Picard's Jonathan Frakes among that group as well, as he exclusively shared his thoughts about the series ending with CinemaBlend. Frakes had a lot to say about Discovery's final season and what's yet to come, and shared the fact that the latest news "sucks" just as much for him as anyone else.
I spoke to Jonathan Frakes in regards to his still stellar work on Star Trek: Picard, as well as the upcoming ending of Discovery. Frakes has been a part of Discovery since Season 1, serving as a director, and has spoken fondly in the past about the series that kicked off the most recent influx of streaming Trek fare. As such, I wanted his thoughts on knowing the sci-fi saga is gearing up for its final batch of episodes, and the Trek star wasn't too subtle about his feelings on the situation:
I’m disappointed. In many ways, it was my new home show. When I started on that show in Season 1, it was a return to the Star Trek world for me. So I had a very strong connection [to it]. And Sonequa [Martin-Green] is not just my favorite, but kind of a favorite of anyone who has had the privilege of working with her. Her set is a joy to be a part of. A great cast. Michelle Paradise put together a fascinating series of stories. I felt, you know, I feel the pain. It’s show business, but it still sucks.
Jonathan Frakes is indeed disappointed to see Star Trek: Discovery go, in case anyone thought this plan was conceived and discussed long ago, but still had praise for just about everyone involved in its production. His statements about feeling the "pain" of its ending is certainly interesting to me, as there are questions about how long the creative team has known that the series would end with Season 5.
The silver lining behind Star Trek: Discovery ending is that the cast and crew are getting a production extension to film a proper conclusion to the series, as well as a proper set-up for that conclusion. Jonathan Frakes didn't say one way or the other if he was behind the camera or involved at all with the finale, but did indicate he knows what the plan to wrap up these characters' respective stories. What little he could say already has me hyped for the finale, even if I'm bummed that Discovery is ending. In his words:
I think they’ve got a stunning plan for a very satisfying ending, however.
Jonathan Frakes appears satisfied with the idea in place for Star Trek: Discovery's swan song, so I don't feel too concerned just yet about what's on the way. I'm really hoping this means the series won't get the kind of divisive ending that plagued the immediate aftermath of another spinoff that existed outside of the TOS and TNG timeline: Star Trek: Enterprise.
Unfortunately, there is a bit of potential bad news to deliver. I asked Jonathan Frakes about the possibility of more adventures that are set in Star Trek's 32nd century, and got this pretty surprising response:
I wouldn’t hold my breath.
While the Riker actor likely doesn't know everything coming down the Star Trek franchise pipeline, but he has worked on a number of the current shows, and is very likely more in the know than the average actor/director. If he's not optimistic about there being more Discovery adventures or shows set in the 32nd century, then I think it's possible the odds of a planned spinoff happening in the future are low.
Star Trek: Discovery fans will need to wait until early 2024 to see Season 5 and the reconfigured finale, which means there's plenty of time to hear more franchise cast and crew members sharing their thoughts about the upcoming season. There's also a chance Alex Kurtzman and the powers that be could announce something continuing these characters' adventures. But as Jonathan Frakes said, perhaps we shouldn't hold our breath.
Those with a Paramount+ subscription can stream Star Trek: Discovery's first four seasons right now, as well as the currently airing final season of Picard and other upcoming shows. Here's hoping Discovery is the only unexpected ending that fans hear about from the franchise this year.