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‘Star Trek: The Next Generation’: Ranking the Crew, From Picard to Pulaski

A list that includes a robot, a mystical bartender, and a cat.

No Merchandising. Editorial Use Only. No Book Cover Usage.Mandatory Credit: Photo by Paramount Television/Kobal/REX/Shutterstock (5884715x)Brent Spiner, Jonathan Frakes, Patrick Stewart, Gates McFadden, Le Var Burton, Michael Dorn, Marina SirtisStar Trek - The Next Generation - 1987-1994Paramount TelevisionUSATelevision


8. Geordi La Forge

No Merchandising. Editorial Use Only. No Book Cover Usage.Mandatory Credit: Photo by Paramount Television/Kobal/REX/Shutterstock (5884715aa)Le Var BurtonStar Trek - The Next Generation - 1987-1994Paramount TelevisionUSATV Portrait

An important character not just for those excited about African-American representation in science fiction, but also for disability advocates, Geordi was also, you know, cool. imagine him and Riker, out at the clubs. They would be the life of the party, but in the most cool and respectful way.

7. Data

Data’s quest to understand humanity made him, perhaps, one of the show’s most relatable characters. After all, who isn’t confused by the behavior of our fellow men? Plus, he was always so game for everything, making him all the more compelling as he descended into crazier and crazier scenarios. Data might have seemed like a very simple character, after his first introduction. But he proved truly complicated.

6. Worf

The above video, entitled “Worf gets DENIED again and again on Star Trek TNG,” is 15 minutes long, and yes, on “Next Generation,” the first Klingon officer in Starfleet was often the show’s punching bag. But Michael Dorn’s fierce performance made Worf a fan favorite, despite these ritual humiliations, and ensured his lasting legacy. Worf was awesome and only the most dishonorable of fools would deny it.

5. Dr. Beverly Crusher

Pretty much flawless and always one of the smartest people in the room, the ship’s medical officer always had her shit together (except for that time she had sex with a candle) and her perspective was always valuable.

4. Spot

The only problem with Spot is that Spot went through some… changes… from season to season. (Fur tends not to change length dramatically over the course of a cat’s life, not to mention gender.) Otherwise, we join Data in reminding Spot that he/she is a good cat, and a pretty cat, on a regular basis.

3. Guinan

No Merchandising. Editorial Use Only. No Book Cover Usage. Mandatory Credit: Photo by Paramount Television/Kobal/REX/Shutterstock (5884715af) Whoopi Goldberg Star Trek - The Next Generation - 1987-1994 Paramount Television USA Television

Forever a mystery, Guinan was a fascinating character who manned Ten-Forward while also giving advice so good, Oprah would be jealous.

2. Commander William Riker

The choice to pair the reserved Picard with a first officer who had no shortage of swagger ended up being a perfect fit, especially since both men respected each other immensely. Riker had so many delightful quirks to his personality — the love of jazz music, his rugged outdoorism, his love of the ladies — that never detracted from him being a truly fine officer. Best beard in Starfleet, no question.

1. Captain Jean-Luc Picard

No Merchandising. Editorial Use Only. No Book Cover Usage.Mandatory Credit: Photo by Moviestore/REX/Shutterstock (1602497a)Star Trek: The Next Generation , Patrick Stewart, Michael Dorn, Brent Spiner, Marina SirtisFilm and Television

Could another actor have done what Sir Patrick Stewart did with the role of Picard? Probably not. But it also helped that Picard was at the center of rich storytelling. He suffered untold amounts of afflictions from Q, the Cardassians, and the Borg, but at the end of the day, he was without a doubt a fundamentally good man. So many TV characters are described this way, but very few of them actually live up to it. Picard is one of those rare examples.

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