How Lonɡ Wаs Cаptаin Kirk In Stаr Trek Generаtions’ Nexus?

Captain James T. Kirk found himself in the Nexus in Star Trek Generations but how long he was there can be answered in a couple of different ways.



  • Captain Kirk technically died twice in Star Trek Generations, first when he vanished in the Nexus and again when he sacrificed his life to foil Dr. Tolian Soran’s plans.
  • Kirk was in the Nexus for about 10 minutes, arriving just before Captain Picard, but another way to look at it is that he was in the Nexus for 78 years since the prologue was set in 2293 and the present day in 2371.
  • Captain Picard spent a little longer in the Nexus than Kirk, about 17 minutes, and was confronted with a warm, loving family celebration that he denied himself in his dedication to Starfleet.

How long was Captain James T. Kirk (William Shatner) in the Nexus in Star Trek Generations? The answers are a bit complicated. Star Trek Generations was the first movie starring the cast of Star Trek: The Next Generation, but Captain Kirk, Scotty (James Doohan), and Pavel Chekov (Walter Koenig) appeared in the film’s prologue as a passing of the torch of sorts to the TNG crew. Star Trek Generations‘ big draw was the team-up of Kirk and Captain Jean-Luc Picard (Patrick Stewart), capped off by Kirk’s canonical death.

Captain Kirk technically died twice in Star Trek Generations. In the late 23rd century, Kirk is presumed dead when he vanishes while trying to save the USS Enterprise-B from the Nexus. A temporal energy ribbon that travels across space, the Nexus is some sort of gateway into a different reality that’s described by Guinan (Whoopi Goldberg) as like “being inside joy.” Time has no meaning in the Nexus, and it’s supposed to be a paradise that fulfills a person’s desires. Returning to the Nexus is the goal of Star Trek Generations‘ villain, Dr. Tolian Soran (Malcolm McDowell), and he has no qualms about destroying the populated world of Veridian III in order to regain his lost paradise. Captains Kirk and Picard foil Soran after both return to Veridian III from the Nexus, at the cost of Kirk’s life.

How Long Was Kirk In The Nexus In Star Trek Generations?

There are a couple of ways to answer this Kirk Nexus question.

Captain Kirk was in the Nexus for about 10 minutes, the length of his scenes with Captain Picard in Star Trek Generations. Since time has no meaning in the Nexus, Kirk arrived in the space ribbon’s reality just before Picard did, even though Jean-Luc left in the 24th century. As Kirk told Picard, one moment he was aboard the USS Enterprise-B’s Deflector Control Room and the next thing Jim knew, he was outside his rustic former home on Earth chopping wood before Picard appeared. However, another way to look at it is thaKirk was in the Nexus for 78 yearsStar Trek Generations‘ prologue where Kirk was lost from the Enterprise-B was set in 2293, and Star Trek Generations‘ ‘present day’ is 2371.

Although Picard calculated that Kirk had been presumed dead for “80 years”, the Captain of the USS Enterprise-D was rounding up for convenience’s sake.

As for Captain Picard, he spent a little longer in the Nexus than Kirk did – about 17 minutes. Picard was swept into the Nexus when Dr. Soran successfully diverted the space ribbon into Veridian III, destroying the planet and the USS Enterprise-D. Jean-Luc emerged inside the Nexus where he was confronted with the warm, loving family celebrating Christmas that Picard denied himself by dedicating his life to Starfleet as Captain of the Enterprise. Picard shook off the intoxicating elements of its alt-reality easily, and the Captain resumed his mission to stop Soran by returning to just before the El Aurian madman was able to destroy the Veridian star, with Captain Kirk by his side. Picard only spent about 7 minutes in his ‘perfect reality’ vs Kirk’s 10 minutes.

Star Trek Generations Reveals More Of Kirk’s Timeline

Kirk fills in some blanks from the Star Trek: The Original Series movies.

Kirk, Scott, and Chekov aboard the Enterprise B

While speaking to Picard and sorting out for himself that the Nexus “isn’t real,” Captain Kirk answered a few questions about his timeline in the Star Trek: The Original Series movies. Kirk told Picard he sold his house “years ago” and his dog Butler had been “dead seven years.” Jim then realized he was experiencing his own past – “nine years ago” – the day he told his lost love, Antonia, that he was going back to Starfleet.

Since as far as Kirk knew, it was still 2293 just moments ago, then 9 years prior, in 2284, Jim decided that retirement no longer suited him, and he broke up with Antonia and returned to Starfleet as Admiral James T. Kirk. Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan took place in 2285, so James’ memories of leaving Antonia were of a year before Spock’s (Leonard Nimoy) death and resurrection in Star Trek III: The Search for Spock. Kirk’s dog, Butler, then died in 2286, the same year as Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home when Jim was demoted back to being Captain of the USS Enterprise-A. The temporal Nexus was a problematic storytelling device in Star Trek Generations, but it does fill in some blanks about Captain James T. Kirk’s later life.

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