In Star Trek: The Next Generation, the voice of the computer is Majel Barrett, Star Trek creator Gene Roddenberry's wife. The voice of the computer on The Orville is Rachel MacFarlane, The Orville creator Seth MacFarlane's sister.
Episodes mirror one another, sharing the same plot curve as with Star Trek: The Next Generation - Encounter at Far Point, in that Riker joins later in the Episode, so does Kelly Grayson, later in this episode.
In the pilot episode, Seth MacFarlane puts a marble in his mouth thinking it is a mint. He then spits the marble out back into the marble jar perfectly. According to MacFarlanes twitter, it only took him three tries to spit the marble perfectly back into the marble jar.
The ship is named after Orville Wright, one of the Wright brothers. The brothers successfully conducted the first free, controlled flight /of a power-driven airplane on December 17, 1903. There is a small model of the Wright Flyer on Captain Mercer's desk.
Seth MacFarlane previously said that he was interested in reviving Star Trek for television. Now the Orville(2017), a not so subtle Star Trek homage, is premiering the same year as Star Trek: Discovery(2017), a Star Trek television revival.
When Star Trek was first introduced to television in 1966, it was set roughly in the year 2266, adding 300 years to the show's debut. When the first episode of The Orville opens a caption reads the year as being 2418, roughly 400 years added to the season's debut.
Admiral Halsey (Victor Garber) is also the name of an American fleet admiral in the United States Navy. At the start of the World War 2 in the Pacific In 1943 he was made commander of the Third Fleet, the post he held through the rest of the war. Halsey's flagship early in the war was the U.S.S. Enterprise, which became the inspiration for the starship in "Star Trek".
The opening title sequence resembles that of "Star Trek: Voyager", with the Orville passing through similar planetary objects, including a dust cloud and a comet, before entering FTL in the final shot.
When Ed Mercer arrives at his New York City apartment, the lake in the background out the window is Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis Reservoir in Central Park. Mercer's apartment would be at approximately W 56th and 9th Ave.