Star Trek: 10 Best Captain Picard Speeches
These are the words that give us hope, chill the bones, and raise us up when we're feeling low.
Every member of the audience will have their own answer to the question 'Who's the best Captain in Star Trek?' and this list is not aimed at riling everyone up so early in the morning. Rather than taking on that lofty goal, this is instead tasked with listing some of the greatest speeches to come out of the mouth of just one of those captains.
Jean-Luc Picard has quite a reputation as an orator, debator, and teacher. He can be direct, he can be cajoling, and when needs be, he can be emotional in the extreme. One only needs to look at his relationship with his senior staff for proof of all of these.
This list seeks to examine an assortment of these speeches, and though there may be another voice delivering them in the video adaptation of these entries, it doesn't take much imagination to hear Patrick Stewart's voice in your ears, wrapping around your brain and helping you dive into each and every moment therein.
Just try not to imagine he's delivering the First Duty speech to you, and then you'll be just fine.
10. With The First Link, The Chain Is Forged
The Next Generation: The Drumhead (S4, E2)
The Drumhead is often used as an example of how the cool and collected Captain Picard faces down his foes with his words alone. The great Jean Simmons guest stars as Admiral Norah Satie, who has been drafted in to investigate an alleged act of sabotage on the Enterprise.
The story is an example of McCarthy-ism and witch-hunts. With the backdrop of the House UnAmerican Committee hearings, the idea that enemies can be found wherever one cares to look looms heavy over the story.
While Worf is pulled into Satie's hunt, Picard finds himself rapidly seeing events for what they are. Using Satie's own father's words against her, he says that following:
With the first link, the chain is forged. The first speech censured, the first thought forbidden, the first freedom denied, chains us all irrevocably.
Satie's hunt for collaborators on board the flagship leaves one man's career in ruins, but exposes her for the fear-mongerer she really is. Picard, while sitting on trial on his own ship, calmly reminds her of these words, causing her to finally break and lose her cool. As the rest of the courtroom empties around her, she sits there in the knowledge that she has been exposed.
The episode ends on a contemplative note - Picard reminds Worf that there will always be people like Satie out there, clothed in good intentions, ready to invoke fear in the seemingly perfect society of the Federation.