When watching Picard on Prime, I was most excited about seeing old faces from The Next Generation popping up to help Picard on his way. But when I go back and watch episodes from the series, part of the fun is seeing famous faces before they were famous playing some of the profound, delightful and ridiculous supporting characters that make up the Star Trek universe.
Here are 15 memorable cameos from now big-name actors in Star Trek: The Next Generation.
The child actress had already made a name for herself from her role in Interview with the Vampire, but she was far from a household name when she appeared as the alien child Hedril in the episode Dark Page.
The actress made a name for herself in the soap opera Guiding Light, and has since been a prolific guest star on all our favorite shows. She appears in the two-part episode The Best of Both Worlds as an ambitious Lt Commander with her eye on Riker’s job.
Before Lois and Clark and before Desperate Housewives, Teri Hatcher made an appearance as one of the crew members on Picard’s Enterprise in an episode called The Outrageous Okona. She plays an attractive transporter officer that catches the eye of a rogue captain.
A successful actor in independent movies, and a favorite of the Coen Brothers (he is The Big Lebowski) Huddleston plays a holographic character that orients our heroes when they find themselves trapped on the orient express. Seriously, why weren’t holodecks banned for being so dangerous?
The original Jean Gray before Sophie Turner took over the part, a young Famke Janssen played the perfect seductress opposite Captain Picard in the episode The Perfect Mate.
Judd’s first-ever onscreen credit was actually Star Trek! She appeared as Ensign Robin Lefler in two episodes, The Game and Darmok, where she gave Wesley Crusher a run for his geek, and was a sort of love interest for him.
Probably best known today from her turn as Fraiser’s ex-wife on Fraiser, Bebe Neuwirth guest-starred as a nurse that falls for Riker while he is undercover at a mental institution. So many connections there!
David Ogden Stiers
Probably best known for playing Major Charles Winchester on M*A*S*H, Ogden is a prolific voice actor and guest star, he actually gives a memorable and heart-rending turn as Timicin in, a man trying to save his people and follow his heart (even if it is following Lwaxana Troi).
An actor known for playing the bad guy, he did not break character when he appeared on TNG. He played Admiral Eric Pressman on the episode The Pegasus, who is Riker’s ex-captain and has an agenda of his own and won’t let anyone stand in his way.
Kevin Peter Hall
The guy who always plays the tall guy, including the Predator in Predator, also appeared as a tall guy, called Leyor, in the TNG episode called The Price.
Known today from How I Met Your Mother and Mad About You, many of us known Plakson best as the mother of Wharf’s son, K’Ehleyr, in TNG. She gives us a different, less conflicted, version of Wharf’s perspective, being half-Klingon and half-human
Today he is known from Warehouse 13, he also appeared on TNG before he was well-known as the selfish Kivas Fajo in The Most Toys.
This one is probably no surprise as Schiavelli is another actor that pops up all over the place in guest star roles, and always holds his own. In the Arsenal of Freedom he plays a hologram peddling the weapons that destroyed the civilization that created him.
Hollywood star Jean Simmons guests as Admiral Norah Satie, a fairly predictable hardened admiral, who actually turns out to be nuts and the villain of the episode The Drumhead.
Usually known for playing an Italian mobster, in this episode he plays Wharf’s human brother (since Wharf was adopted). Wharf must decide whether to help his brother save his new homeworld, or honor the prime directive.