Jean-Luc Fashion Project | Literary Heroes

Hollow Pursuits
Qpid

I can imagine Jean-Luc choosing to play out both these fantasies. Both are adventure stories, both elevate the scrappy commoner at the expense of the complacent aristocracy, both are historic fiction. However, our Captain is forced into these roles against his will. 

In the first case, the Musketeer is a holodeck representation that flatters neither Picard nor the source material. It’s not the worst of Barclay’s faux senior staff: Wesley stuffs his face, Riker is a manic doofus who loses half his height, and Deanna is a sexualized “goddess”. And, unlike Deanna’s drapes, Picard’s musketeer outfit is fun.

But it’s tainted by the creeper aspect. I’d rather he choose to portray a musketeer (Aramis, for sure) in a holonovel himself. 

In the second case, Q kidnaps the senior staff plus Picard’s girlfriend into a Robin Hood fantasy. Jean-Luc enjoys it more than the others – 

–but it’s still not his choice. Q clearly prefers the Errol Flynn version of the legend:

and I agree entirely. Jean-Luc pulls the whole thing off quite well and probably not so secretly wanted to play Robin of Locksley all along. Still doesn’t excuse Q’s shenanigans.

Elementary, Dear Data

In this case Jean-Luc does choose his fantasy dress, though not the fantasy itself: it’s Data’s holodeck program (run amok as holodeck programs are wont to do, especially on the Enterprise-D.) But he does take full advantage of the situation going for full on Victorian including cravat and top hat.

Data as Sherlock is delightful. From his introduction in the pilot, Data has consistently and constantly observed human behavior while simultaneously solving various mysteries with heightened senses and enhanced powers of perception. Of course he relates to Holmes!

Making Geordi Watson is possibly the best ever use of Geordi and casting Moriarty as a self-aware hologram who ultimately just wants to experience ‘life’ is a lovely parallel. Data, Geordi, Pulaski, and Worf all also wear appropriately Victorian attire, but, perhaps due to Patrick Stewart’s inherent British-ness, Jean-Luc really embodies it.

That said, while entering the holodeck to parlay with the nefarious hologram threatening to destroy the ship is a classic Jean-Luc move, this outfit is not a classic Jean-Luc aesthetic. Picard prefers to enact and reflect street level heroes. As we see in “Family”, he has an aristocratic, if folksy, background, and his hobbies – fencing, riding, art history – carry that out. But he’s also a rebel and a champion of the underdog, an Enjolras type.

Les Misérables

Or: Robin Hood. Comparatively, the buttoned up Victorian look is not really that Jean-Luc.

Join the Coffee Nebula and support Anika on Patreon!

Leave a Reply