Sep. 26, 1987
60 min.
Syndicated TV Network

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Star Trek: The Next Generation

Settled in the 24th century and 78 years after the adventures of the original crew of the starship Enterprise, under the command of Captain Jean-Luc Picard the all new Enterprise NCC 1701-D travels out to distant planets to seek out new life and to boldly go where no one has gone before.

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Commander William T. Riker Star Trek: The Next Generation
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Commander William T. Riker

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  Played by:
Jonathan FrakesJonathan Frakes
Jonathan Frakes was born August 19, 1952, in the small town of Bellefonte, in central Pennsylvania. ...

Character Bio

Commander William T. Riker photo
William Thomas Riker was best known for his long time as first officer under Captain Jean-Luc Picard aboard the USS Enterprise-D, and later the USS Enterprise-E. In 2379, he finally accepted a promotion to captain and was assigned to the USS Titan.

Early Career

The Pegasus

Seven months after graduation, Ensign William Riker's first posting was to the USS Pegasus under the command of Erik Pressman. He was the ship's conn officer, and his youthful appearance earned him the nickname "Ensign Babyface," coined by fellow crewmember Lieutenant Boylen. Phil Wallace was another of Riker's friends aboard the Pegasus.

On Betazed

Riker was stationed on planet Betazed. While there, he met Deanna Troi. The two began a relationship which lasted several years.

Sometime during his early career, Riker needed to wear a feathered costume while on a diplomatic mission to Armus IX. Similarly, he wore furs to meet with the leadership council on Kabatris.

The Potemkin

2361 Promoted to lieutenant and assigned to the USS Potemkin. There he developed a tactic which involved using a planet's magnetic pole and shutting down all ship's systems to confuse an enemy vessel's sensors.

Later in 2361, Riker led an away team to Nervala IV to rescue stranded researchers. He was the last to beam out. Atmospheric distortions threatened to dissipate his pattern, so the Potemkin transporter chief compensated by creating a second confinement beam. Only one beam was needed for Riker to rematerialize, so the second beam was shut down. The Potemkin crew did not realize that the second beam had been duplicated and reflected back to the planet's surface, materializing another William Riker. This duplicate remained stranded on the surface for the next eight years. The nature of the transporter accident created a unique situation: both Rikers had an equal claim to being the 'real' William T. Riker, as they are both genetically the same person. This version took the name Thomas and recommenced his Star Fleet career for a while.

The Hood

Promoted to lieutenant commander for "exceptional valor" during that mission and quickly posted to the USS Hood as first officer. His service was exemplary, despite refusing to allow Captain DeSoto to transport into a hostile situation on planet Altair III.

Offered his own command he declined in favour of the Enterprise.

Episode Screenshots

02x07 - Unnatural Selection
Season 2, Episode 07
07x13 - Homeward
Season 7, Episode 13
06x01 - Time's Arrow, Part II
Season 6, Episode 01
07x16 - Thine Own Self
Season 7, Episode 16
[More Episodes]

Commander William T. Riker Photos

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