Star Trek: Strange New Worlds Has Found Its Captain Kirk

The second season of Strange New Worlds will bring in Paul Wesley as the legendary Star Trek hero.

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Fascinating, Jim.
Fascinating, Jim.
Image: Paramount

Captain on the bridge!

Paramount+ has confirmed that the second season of Star Trek: Strange New Worlds will feature the return of the iconic captain of the USS Enterprise, James Tiberius Kirk. Paul Wesley, known for his roles in The Vampire Diaries, Amira and Sam, Medal of Honor, and more, will enter the captain’s chair for the currently filming second season of the Star Trek spinoff series.

“Paul is an accomplished actor, an astonishing presence and a welcome key addition to the show,” a statement attributed to Strange New Worlds executive producer Alex Kurtzman and showrunners Akiva Goldsman and Henry Alonso Myers provided via email reads in part. “Like all of us, he is a life-long Star Trek fan and we are excited by his interpretation of this iconic role.”

No further details about Kirk’s involvement in the series were revealed, but from the image above alone—Kirk in a seat of command, and with a captain’s rank insignia on his uniform’s sleeves, it definitely seems that by the end of Strange New Worlds’ debut season, we’ll either be brushing up on Kirk’s own pre-Enterprise command service on other Starfleet vessels, or Anson Mount’s Captain Pike will no longer be helming the Enterprise. If the latter is the case, whether or not there’ll be a timeskip between seasons remains to be seen.

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Pike commanded the Enterprise for 15 years, and from what we know, Strange New Worlds, set just after the events of Star Trek: Discovery’s second season, takes place in 2258, just eight years into that tenure. Of course, we already knew what came after his command—the famous five-year mission that was the purpose behind the original Star Trek TV series. Unless we’re going to start following two Starfleet ships in Strange New Worlds, odds are it seems the earliest days of Kirk’s captaincy of the Enterprise are going to play out on screen, brushing up on the very edges of bringing the original Star Trek back to life.

Star Trek: Strange New Worlds’ first season is set to begin on Paramount+ on May 5.

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