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‘Star Trek: Picard’ Recap: Season 3, Episode 10: Did Jack Manage To Break Free From The Collective?

In the previous episode of “Star Trek: Picard,” the audience learns that Jack, akin to his father, also shares a connection with the Borg Collective. Picard fearing that his son would share his tragic past, decides to send him away, but the latter manages to escape the ship to confront the Borgs himself and understand what he truly is. In the final moments of the episode, the audience is also exposed to the horrifying reality of the Borg’s infiltration of Starfleet. The Collective’s last transmission was revealed to be devastating, eventually turning Starfleet officers against one another and exposing the full scope of the Borg’s sinister plan. 

Spoilers Ahead

A Needle In A Haystack

The episode kicks off with the strained voice of President Anton Checkov filling the Sol System, warning all those who have managed to evade Borg’s mind control to steer clear of Earth. President Checkov reveals that the enemy has infiltrated Starfleet and commandeered their vessels, leaving the once-great space force powerless to combat the Borg’s attacks. Despite their best efforts, Starfleet is at a loss on how to de-assimilate their own fleet and regain control.  As the broadcast ends, the gravity of the situation hits the crew of Enterprise 6 like a ton of bricks. Picard and his team realize they are the only hope for Earth’s survival, standing as the last line of defense against the Borg’s assault.

Enterprise 6 sets course to Jupiter after Commander Data manages to isolate a Borg signal originating from a distant planet and is shocked to learn that the enemy is using Jack Crusher to communicate the signal. As Picard and his team pondered their next move, they knew that their only hope of severing The Collective’s connection to the assimilated fleet lay in destroying the signal beacon projecting the frequency across the solar system. But locating it would be no small feat – it was like trying to find a needle in a haystack.  As the transporter beams dissolve, Picard, Riker, and Worf materialize inside the dark confines of the Borg’s lair and are confronted with a grotesque wasteland of decay, with hundreds of corpses hanging from wires. The Trio decides to split, with Worf and Riker going to look for the signal beacon and Picard going to find and rescue his son. Meanwhile, Raffi and Seven O Nine somehow manage to retake the Titan. 

Time For Sacrifices

After a desperate search, Picard finally discovers his son Jack, but the reunion is far from joyful. Jack has been fully assimilated by the Collective, and his mind is no longer his own. Fueled by his fatherly instincts, Picard pleads with the Borg for a trade, offering himself in exchange for Jack’s freedom. But the emotionless Collective refuses to negotiate, labeling him an ancient tune. As it turns out, the Borg have undergone a terrifying evolution, one that enables them to do what was previously thought impossible – reproduce. This new ability means they can now create more of themselves, amplifying their already formidable power and making them an even greater threat to all who stand in their way. 

To simplify it, the Borg Collective now has the power to create as many “Locutos of Borg” as they desire. Picard is in a pickle, as severing Jack’s connection to the Collective will kill him. Meanwhile, Worf and Riker were able to pinpoint the location of the signal beacon, but to their dismay, it was buried deep within the planet’s core, leaving everyone with no choice but to rely on Data’s flying prowess and gut. Geordi, Data, and Beverly also find themselves caught between a rock and a hard place. Eliminating the signal beacon seems like a good idea at the time, but they quickly learn that doing so would set off a chain reaction that will wipe out the cube and kill everyone on it, including Worf, Riker, Picard, and Jack. On the other hand, if they choose not to fire, the Borg will continue their merciless march toward Earth, leaving humanity at the mercy of revenge-seeking machines.

Did Jack Manage To Break Free From The Collective? 

In a desperate attempt, Picard willingly assimilates himself once again and manages to help Jack break through the Collective’s hold. In reality, Borg has been manipulating Jack all along, plaguing his mind with unexplained visions to weaken his conscious and subjugate him to the Collective. Jack may have thought he was damaged, but his father’s devotion and willingness to sacrifice himself proved to him that he had a purpose beyond playing into the Collective’s hands and aiding them in wiping out humanity. Seeing her plans spiralling out of control, The Collective makes a final attempt to sway Jack back to her side.  She argues that Jack will never truly belong among humans and will always be an outcast. She paints a picture of a life filled with rejection and disdain, where Jack will never find acceptance or purpose. But Jack, reinforced by his father’s unconditional love and selflessness, knows better than that. With mere seconds left, Deanne intervenes and teleports everyone safely back to Enterprise 6, eventually reducing the cube and the Collective to nothing but dust and metal debris. With Collective gone,  every single victim of the Borg’s assimilation was finally free. 

In the weeks that followed,  Starfleet honored the recommendation of the late Captain Shaw and promoted Seven of Nine to the rank of Captain. After her heroic actions in the battle against the Borg, Raffi’s name echoed throughout the galaxy, no longer associated with the label of a traitor. People began to see her as a symbol of courage and selflessness, earning the respect and admiration of many. Most importantly, her family finally saw her in a new light, recognizing her bravery and dedication to a cause greater than herself. As for Jack, he was also welcomed into Starfleet with open arms; after all, he was the second person who managed to break free from the Collective, just like his father, Jean Luc Picard.  


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