Star Trek

Who Is Jack Crusher? How Picard Season 3's New Character Fits Into Star Trek Canon

Here’s what the latest Crusher is all about.

Originally Published: 
Ed Speelers as Jack Crusher in 'Star Trek: Picard'

There’s a new Crusher in town. But the latest character reveal in Star Trek: Picard Season 3 has a familiar name: Jack. The new guy — played by Ed Speleers — is the second Jack Crusher to pop up in Trek canon. How does he fit in? And when in the Star Trek timeline was he even born? Spoilers ahead for Star Trek: Picard Season 3, Episode 2, “Disengage.”

Who is Jack Crusher?

In Picard Season 3, Jack Crusher is a kind of Robin Hood in space, working with his mother, Beverly Crusher (Gates McFadden), delivering medical supplies and humanitarian aid to planets outside the scope of the Federation. He’s also the biological son of Beverly Crusher and Jean-Luc Picard, though as we see in “Disengage,” Picard didn’t know about Jack. In the previous episode, “The Next Generation,” Riker and Jean-Luc talk about the mystery of why Beverly Crusher stopped speaking to everyone from the old Enterprise crew over 20 years before the events of the new season. Jack Crusher is the answer.

Jack Crusher (Ed Speleers) and the life-pod containing his mother, Beverly Crusher, in Picard Season 3, Episode 2, “Disengage.”


When was Jack Crusher born?

Showrunner Terry Matalas tells Inverse that Jack Crusher was born “around the timeframe of Nemesis.” This means that sometime shortly after that film, in 2379 or 2380, Beverly realized she was pregnant with Jack and ditched Picard and the rest of the Enterprise-E crew. Star Trek: Picard Season 3 takes place in 2402, making Jack either 22 or 23, give or take a few months.

Actor Ed Speleers is 34, but this is the 25th century, and people don’t always look the way we think they should. In fact, Jean-Luc Picard, born in 2305, is 97 years old. In real life, Patrick Stewart is 82, practically a spring chicken by Trek standards.

Is Jack Crusher a clone?

A 2019 comic book featuring Jean-Luc Picard and Jack Crusher Sr. on the Stargazer way before the Enterprise-D.

IDW Comics/Paramount/CBS

One odd fan theory that made the rounds after Picard Season 3 Episode 1 was the idea that this new Jack Crusher is a clone of Beverly’s ex-husband, also named Jack Crusher. In The Next Generation, we learn that Beverly’s husband, Jack, was killed in a mission while Picard was in command of the USS Stargazer.

In TNG canon, the first Jack Crusher (played by Doug Wert) was the father of Wesley Crusher. We only saw this Jack twice, once as a holographic message to Wesley in the TNG episode “Family,” and then as a corpse within a flashback in “Violations.” As we learned in the TNG episode “Attached,” Jean-Luc was in love with Beverly Crusher back in the day, but Jack was his best friend, so he never acted on his feelings. Jack’s death pre-TNG enabled Beverly and Jean-Luc’s on-again, off-again romance. Various comics and novels explored Jack and Jean-Luc’s days on the Stargazer, including the book Reunion and the excellent one-shot 2019 comic book, IDW 20/20 Star Trek: TNG, which also featured a much younger Beverly Crusher.

So, no, the new Jack Crusher is not a clone. He’s his own man, named after Beverly’s first husband, Wesley’s dad, and Jean-Luc Picard’s old best friend. This also makes the new Jack half-brothers with Wesley Crusher.

On the Star Trek aftershow The Ready Room, Wil Wheaton and Ed Speelers both said they hoped that someday, somehow, Jack and Wesley could meet. (Wesley, if you’ve forgotten, is a Star Trek Time Lord right now.) For now, fans will have to wait and see how Jean-Luc and Jack’s relationship shakes out in the rest of Picard Season 3.

Star Trek: Picard airs new episodes on Thursdays on Paramount+.

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