Star Trek dropped its first animated comedy series last summer but fans in the UK have had to wait patiently to get their hands on it.
Fortunately, that wait is almost over as Lower Decks will be available to stream on Amazon Prime Video this weekend, introducing Trekkies to an all-new crew unlike any they have met before.
Ensigns Boimler (The Boys‘ Jack Quaid) and Mariner (Space Force‘s Tawny Newsome) are the two lead characters, doing thankless work aboard the USS Cerritos, comically billed as “one of Starfleet’s least important ships”.
Lower Decks comes from Rick and Morty writer Mike McMahan and shares the sci-fi hits madcap sense of humour, while also integrating familiar elements from across the Star Trek franchise.
The series has already been renewed for a second season which is currently in the works, with production moving ahead briskly despite complications caused by the coronavirus pandemic.
While producing an animated show from home is no small feat, Lower Decks is able to avoid some of the safety risks associated with shooting a live-action production right now.
McMahan revealed to YouTube channel Ketwolski: “I can tell you right now we are so deep in production, not only is it all written, but I’ve got episode 209 to watch this week in animatic form.
“And we’ve already sent the first four episodes to colour. So we are buzzing along. You guys will definitely get a new season [in 2021], God willing.”
Read on for all your essential information about the first season of Star Trek: Lower Decks as it arrives on Amazon Prime Video, including an advance clip from the first episode.
Star Trek: Lower Decks UK release date
Star Trek: Lower Decks will be available to stream on Amazon Prime Video in the UK from Friday 22nd January 2021.
The first season was released quite some time ago in the United States, hitting CBS All Access back in August 2020 to a mixed reception from fans and critics.
Star Trek: Lower Decks cast
The support crew on the U.S.S Cerritos are voiced by Space Force’s Tawny Newsome (Ensign Beckett Mariner), The Boys’ Jack Quaid (Ensign Brad Boimler), Master of None’s Noël Wells (Ensign Tendi) and The Good Place’s Eugene Cordero (Ensign Rutherford).
Other characters are voiced by King of the Hill’s Dawnn Lewis (Captain Carol Freeman), Jerry Maguire’s Jerry O’Connell (Commander Jack Ransom), The Cleveland Show’s Fred Tatasciore (Lieutenant Shaxs) and New Girl’s Gillian Vigman (Doctor T’Ana).
Comedian Paul Scheer also features in a recurring role on the animated series, playing Lieutenant Commander Andy Billups, chief engineer aboard the USS Cerritos.
What is Star Trek: Lower Decks about?
Star Trek: Lower Decks takes place on the USS Cerritos in the year 2380, where a group of aspiring ensigns are relegated to doing thankless work on the lower decks, while the bridge crew take all the glory they can get.
The series will explore the day-to-day lives of our underdog heroes as they get to know each other, while also coming up against galactic threats and sci-fi anomalies.
In a press statement, Alex Kurtzman described McMahan’s initial pitch for the show: “[He] won our hearts with his first sentence: ‘I want to do a show about the people who put the yellow cartridge in the food replicator so a banana can come out the other end.’”
McMahan himself has also said Lower Decks won’t employ a classic Star Trek trope: “I promise not to add an episode at the very end that reveals the whole thing took place in a training program.”
Star Trek: Lower Decks trailer
You can get an idea of the show’s sense of humour from this teaser courtesy of Amazon Prime Video:
If you want a closer look at what you can expect from a typical Lower Decks scene, this clip released by CBS gives some insight into the show’s Ricky and Morty style frantic humour.
Has there been a Star Trek animated series before?
Affirmative – but it wasn’t an outright comedy. In 1973 fans of the original show were treated to Star Trek: The Animated Series, a sequel to the first live-action Star Trek programme that was cancelled in 1969.
If you’re looking for more to watch, head over to our TV Guide.