Editorial: 10 Big Picture Takeaways From The ‘Star Trek: Discovery’ Trailer

Saru's relatinship with Michael goes back to the U.S.S. Shenzhou

The new Star Trek: Discovery trailer has been with us for a few days now. We’ve already done our deep-dive analysis, a podcast, and reported on fan and media reactions, and we plan to do even more closer looks at different aspects of it in the future. But today I wanted to take step back from the trees and take a look at the forest. This trailer is a big moment as the first look at what is the return of Star Trek to its natural home on television. There are some big picture takeaways to be had, so here, in no specific order, are 10 that have struck me about Discovery.

1. This is definitely the Michael Burnham show

It’s long been known that Sonequa Martin-Green is the lead in the new series, playing first officer Michael Burnham. For all the talk about Klingons, uniforms and bridge consoles, this notion of having the someone besides the captain take center stage is really the biggest break in Star Trek tradition. Star Trek: Discovery actually has two captains: Michelle Yeoh’s Captain Georgiou and Jason Isaacs’ Captain Lorca, but this trailer really drove home the point that Martin-Green’s Michael Burnham is the emotional heart of the show. The trailer began and ended with her, and made it clear that she’s the star.

This non-captain focus comes from executive producer Bryan Fuller, who was always interested in doing a “Lower Decks” take on Star Trek. Even though he stepped away from the show to focus on American Gods, this original vision remains; it’ll be interesting to see if it perseveres in his absence. As a big fan of The West Wing I remember how it was envisioned as a ‘lower decks’ take on the White House, where the character of the president was not the main focus. But over time, writers gravitated more and more to stories focused on the president, because of the draw of the office. Star Trek’s captain-centric tradition and the draw of the power of the captain’s chair may prove hard to resist to future Discovery writers, who, like us, were raised on very Captain-focused Trek.

Some are speculating that the best way to keep Martin-Green as the lead but also return to Trek tradition would be for her to assume command and get the chair for herself. The trailer even starts off with Georgiou telling Burnham that it’s time for her to get her own command, so perhaps her journey there is pre-destined. But I’m still rooting for Fuller’s ‘lower decks’ concept, and hope the show spends some time exploring Burnham as the first officer.

2. JJ Abrams has nothing everything to do with Discovery

This new Star Trek show is being produced by CBS Studios in conjunction with Alex Kurtzman’s Secret Hideout Productions. J.J. Abrams, who produced the last three Star Trek films, has no involvement at all in this show, nor does Paramount Pictures or Abrams’ Bad Robot production company.

That said, Abrams’ shadow hovers over the trailer. Many observers have come away assuming that this new show is somehow related to the Kelvin universe movies. Why? Because not only does the trailer match the frenetic Abrams style – yes, including lens flares – but also the production design seems more Kelvin-verse than original Star Trek.

CBS is clear that this show is a prequel to the original Star Trek series (TOS), is set specifically in the ‘prime’ timeline, and has nothing to do with the Kelvin-verse. So in terms of continuity, we won’t be hearing about Nero and Ambassador Spock coming back in time, and the planet Vulcan is still in existence. However, CBS is clearly trying to leverage the success of the recent Star Trek films, which have sold tens of millions of tickets and in some ways made it possible for there to be a new series. The stylistic message here, as they reach out to new fans as well as old ones, seems to be “if you liked those movies, you are going to like this too.”

3. Not your father’s (or your grandmother’s) Klingons

When you first heard about how Klingons would feature prominently in the new show, maybe you said to yourself, “Again with the Klingons!” They’ve been the go-to aliens for Star Trek for decades and were shoehorned into almost all of the feature films. But watching the trailer made one thing clear: these Klingons are different.

There’s a lot of buzz about the look of new Klingons, and many fans are struggling to figure out how they fit in with others seen over the years, but let’s face it: Star Trek has a long history of making design changes to the Klingons, along with other races. In this trailer, the difference seems to be more than just cosmetic — it’s not always about the foreheads.

The Klingons on this ‘sarcophagus ship’ led by T’Kuvma seem less like bloodthirsty warriors and more like a religious cult. It has been speculated that they may not even be what we consider contemporary of that era, but some kind of ‘ancient Klingons.’ Star Trek has always reshaped the Klingons to reflect the times–the real times of production, not just the in-story timelines. In the 1960s, they were villainous stand-ins for the Soviet Cold War foes.  When Star Trek: The Next Generation arrived in the era of Glasnost, they were transformed into allies, and later fleshed out to be a sort of cross between Vikings and Samurai. Honor and family were their highest values, and they had the ability to connect with other cultures.

So perhaps these Klingons, too, will reflect our current era. This time they will be morphed to fit with heightened international tensions, or could be there to reflect either the fight against fanatical ideologies or the determination of some to understand those who are so completely alien to us in their way of thinking. Are they enemies? Are they misunderstood? Will they understand our world? A new spin on Klingons for a new era may just work.

4. There is much yet to be Discovered

Even though a handful of episodes of Star Trek: Discovery have been shot, it is pretty clear that all the footage in the trailer comes from the pilot. It is understandable that many viewers, especially fans who haven’t been reading up on every development, think the ship featured in it was the U.S.S. Discovery (when it is actually the U.S.S. Shenzhou) and that the captain on the show will be played by Michelle Yeoh. CBS doesn’t seem to have a problem with creating this false impression for those who don’t dive into the details on sites like this one.

And CBS has made a conscious decision to hold back quite a bit, most notably not revealing the titular U.S.S. Discovery and much of its crew, including Captain Lorca (Jason Isaacs). It is quite possible the Discovery doesn’t feature prominently in the pilot, or maybe it’s not there at all.

After a drought of essentially nothing it seems like a lot was revealed, but really, this trailer is just the tip of the Discovery iceberg.

5. Burnham and Sarek have history

One of the ways the trailer indicated how much the focus is on Sonequa Martin-Green’s Burnham was by including two different exchanges she has with James Frain’s Sarek. It looks like Burnham and Sarek have a long relationship that goes back to her childhood.

Sarek is the only main character that provides continuity from past Star Treks. As an Ambassador, he is an important part of the Federation, and could have a key role in any Star Trek show based on that alone. However, this may go deeper, as Sarek seems to be a sort of mentor to Burnham and can apparently dispense advice via hologram wherever she goes.

The exact nature of their relationship still isn’t clear. Did she grow up on Vulcan? We don’t know yet, but as someone who has known Sarek for decades, it makes sense that she might also know Sarek’s son Spock. So don’t be surprised if you hear Spock’s name get dropped on the show, and maybe they know each other and he’ll send his friend a subspace message. If nothing else, Michael and Spock can commiserate about how Sarek is so darned hard to please.

6. They spent a lot of money on the pilot

Last week we told you that the head of CBS Interactive described Star Trek: Discovery as “cinematic.” He wasn’t kidding! The word “epic”was used by a number of media outlets to describe the trailer. That’s not a word often used when describing other CBS show trailers, or those from other broadcast or even cable networks, and the key to that comes from another word that the head of CBS Interactive used to talk about Discovery: “premium.”

Now spending a lot on a pilot is nothing new for Star Trek, especially due to the need to create so many new sets, costumes and props–essentially, a whole new universe. The budget for the Voyager pilot was the most expensive ever made at the time, a record held until J.J. Abrams beat it with the pilot for Lost a decade later.  But it’s obvious that CBS doesn’t don’t want this show to look or feel like any other on CBS or the CW. They want it to seen as a premium show like you’d expect from their Showtime network (like Twin Peaks ), or something with the production values of HBO’s Westworld, which comes from J.J. Abrams’ Bad Robot production company.

The reason it has to feel like a “premium” show is because they want people to literally pay a premium to watch it on their All Access streaming service. CBS expects Star Trek: Discovery to double their subscriber base of people dropping six bucks a month (or a few bucks more for the commercial-free option) for the service. The pilot will air on the CBS broadcast network and will serve as an elaborate commercial for CBS All Access. They are making it look as good and ‘premium’ as possible, even dropping cash to shoot scenes in Jordan.

We also get a sense that like other premium shows, Star Trek: Discovery will be somewhat serialized. The title card in the trailer notes “there was a discovery,” apparently related to the Klingons and their sarcophagus. All indications are that this storyline will continue well past the pilot. Star Trek has dabbled with story arcs before, but it feels like this time they are really going for it.

So expect the pilot to look great. We can only hope they didn’t spend so much that they end up short-changing the rest of the season, which was just extended to 15 episodes.

7. Humor … it is a difficult concept

Star Trek: Discovery has been described as ‘grittier’ than traditional Star Trek, which was evidenced in the trailer: there wasn’t anything light or humorous to be seen. The message was clear that this Star Trek is deadly serious. We even learned that one character (Doug Jones’ Lt. Saru) is an alien designed for the sole purpose of sensing death. (I bet he’s a lot of fun at parties.)

But humor has always been a part of the franchise, from the original series through the movies and subsequent TV series. While Star Trek has always taken on issues and dealt with serious subjects, it has also tried to not take itself too seriously. Since this show seems to be targeting fans of the new movies, hopefully Discovery producers took note of how those films strove to find a balance between dramatic action and humor. Even a deadly serious show like Game of Thrones – something Discovery also aspires to – finds time to lighten the mood. There are ways to have a little fun without falling into Galaxy Quest parody, so hopefully Discovery doesn’t forget to lighten up once in a while.

But there needs to be some lightness that isn’t just about humor or gags. At its core, Gene Roddenberry’s vision for Star Trek has always been about an optimistic future for humanity. This is part of the reason for Star Trek’s enduring success and appeal. This vision was part of the heart of the original Star Trek, and even in the darkest episodes of Deep Space Nine, there was still that core message of hope. We get a glimpse of that idealism in the trailer when Burnham reminds the captain, “We have come all this way, Captain, it would be irresponsible to leave whatever that is unknown.” Her zeal to explore is part of that optimistic vision. Let’s hope there is more where that came from.

8. Infinitely diverse

While a lot of trailer talk has been about the show having an African-American woman in the lead role, a closer look reveals that there is a lot of diversity in Discovery‘s characters, whether it’s humans of different ethnicity or aliens from distant worlds. This is no accident. From the get-go, former showrunner Bryan Fuller made diversity a priority, and said in a recent interview, “We were very adamant early on about that cast, not just in terms of race but also in terms of gender.”

Diversity is not new to the franchise, and the original series, while looking very white male-centric by today’s standards, was actually revolutionary for its time, and put that “infinite diversity in infinite combinations” message front and center. That tradition continued with The Next Generation, and really amped up even more on Deep Space Nine and Voyager, where we got our first African-American and female leads, along with more inclusion across the board. Then Enterprise took a bit of a step back after that, with just two women in the cast and only one in a proper uniform.

In 2017, though, the stakes are even more elevated. From the choices made in terms of what went into the trailer, it’s clear that CBS is really leaning into this philosophy and is not concerned about the inevitable blowback from those who think that these choices are due to some sort of “political correctness” as opposed to genuine inclusivity. And it also looks like this show will break the cycle and not require any female cast members to wear skimpy mini-skirts or skin-tight catsuits.

9. Conflict is drama

Watch any modern TV series and you’ll see that the main characters don’t always get along. Conflict is always the source of drama. A frequent criticism of on Star Trek, particularly with The Next Generation, was that conflict always had to come from outside the main cast, with various guest star baddies going head-to-head with Picard or Riker–but god forbid Riker and Picard ever clash.

Avoiding this conflict within the crew was one of the tenets of the so-called “Roddenberry Box,” where Star Trek: The Next Generation creator Gene Roddenberry stipulated that there would be harmony within the Federation and especially within our characters. Roddenberry was a genius and his vision must remain part of Star Trek forever, but I am glad to see that this is one element of his will not be carried into Discovery. And of course it still works within canon as the conflict-free Federation was more of a 24th century idea … just ask a certain “pointed-eared hobgoblin” if he ever had conflicts on the bridge of the U.S.S. Enterprise, and you’ll get a pointed earful.

Of course there is much more to drama than having your characters yell at each other, but I suspect the writer/producers for Discovery know that. Perhaps this is a stretch, but I sense a bit of Picard in Georgiou and Kirk in Burnham. You don’t need to to make one character weak or cartoonish to allow for conflict. In this short trailer we get the sense that while Burnham has the trust of her captain, they aren’t afraid to mix it up. And we also see that Bernham is a woman of action, willing to fight for her views, fight for her crew and possibly even take matters into her own hands.

10. Still no seatbelts

Much has been debated about the design of the bridge of the U.S.S. Shenzhou. Fair enough–the bridge is a key location for any Star Trek show.  When I look at the bridge I see an oval shape, a captain’s chair, a couple of consoles behind and ahead of the captain, and a ring of duty stations with most of the crew facing a large viewscreen. To me, all the core elements of a quintessential Star Trek bridge are there, right down to the questionable Starfleet philosophy generally not requiring any seat restraints, even though the inertial dampeners are sure to act up at some point.

If you were to show any casual observer of pop culture scenes from this bridge, they would almost certainly immediately identify it as Star Trek, even if they had no idea that this was from a new TV show. They would also probably accept this as what a science fiction space ship could look like in the 23rd century. And as much as we all still love it, the same could not be said for the TOS bridge. For all the concern about how this “fits” and if they are “retconning” or “re-imagining,” we aren’t seeing something that would fit better with Star Wars, Battlestar Galactica or some other science fiction franchise. It may be a bit dark and the colors may be a bit more muted – certainly compared to other ships of this era – but are lighting levels and color palettes the true definition of Star Trek?

Perhaps some are using production design as a proxy for how the show will approach Star Trek history and continuity. And if the U.S.S. Discovery encounters the Borg, or travels through the Bajoran Wormhole, or even finds some Horta, I will join others with torches and pitchforks. But I just can’t get too worked up over aesthetics as long as they are ‘in the zone.’ I’m sure we can all come up with some ‘headcanon‘ explanation as to how this ship can sit in the same universe at the time with Captain Pike’s U.S.S. Enterprise. I am more looking to see if this show can deliver thoughtful allegorical sci-fi drama mixed with action and a bit of fun. I’m fine with dark ship sets as long as it feels like part of the hopeful future envisioned by Gene Roddenberry. I may not be completely sold on the gold, silver and bronze details on the uniforms, but if the characters wearing them get developed and fleshed out over time I really won’t care.

So in this new trailer I see a new but familiar workspace that has been updated for our time. I see that they have set the stage so that once again a group of characters can band together to face new challenges and yes, to discover strange new worlds and new civilizations. It is yet to be known if they (and those on the U.S.S. Discovery) will be able to delight, inspire and entertain us as the crews of past Star Treks have, but I am looking forward to see where they go.

So after a long wait this trailer still has me excited about Star Trek: Discovery. The whole team at TrekMovie eagerly awaits bringing you every new update between now and launch in the fall, where we will again look at the forest, the trees, the leaves and even the forehead ridges.  


A big thank you to Laurie Ulster for her assistance as my first officer for this editorial.

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Regarding diversity, it seems people forget that DS9 had but ONE white male lead character in Chief O’Brien, and the 3 highest ranked officers on the show represented diversity (Sisko, Kira, & Dax).

Voyager similarly– the top 3 ranked officers were a female captain, a native american first officer, and a black vulcan. Only Paris and the Doctor represented the white male demo. People also often overlook that the Chief Engineer was half hispanic, and played by a hispanic actress.

Even on TNG, which had two white male leads, also had THREE female leads, including a female security chief a female chief medical officer.

A liberal diversity agenda is a Trek tradition, and the criticism in this regard for Discovery truly baffle me.

it is baffling, but not surprising. i remember the backlash at voyager having a (gasp) black vulcan!

Times have changed and half of the people on the internet are now openly racist, that’s why. Let this show be the light in a dark cave for them.

Whats crazy is Voyager had the most diverse crew out of ANY of the shows. As you said a woman Captain, a Latino engineer, Black Vulcan, Native American first officer, Asian ensign and yet people are NOW saying Star Trek is too PC lol. What??? Where have these idiots been? Of course there was a lot of push back against having a woman Captain. Now 20 years later we have a woman Captain AND a woman first officer….20 YEARS later and people are losing their mind over it. I mean c’mon??? This should be old hat for Star Trek fans at this point. We had a character on DS9 that use to be both a man and a woman and they are upset because a character is gay? IN 2017?

And then whats funny is you remind them Star Trek has had very diverse casts in every show (actually Enterprise was one of the least diverse…but still diverse) and they try to make excuses for those lol. Which means in another 10 years when they have another show with diverse characters people will be wailing about how PC Trek has gotten and say Discovery wasn’t really as PC as this new show. I mean Discovery only had one Asian chick, the new show has three!!!! What’s up with that??????

Those were the 90s. Back then, people still believed in diversity; it was still a fresh and different concept. It’s 20 years later and it became glaringly obvious diversity is as much an utopian concept as transporters and warp drives. And people grew tired of that concept; that’s why they complain more than they complained in the 90s.

The majority populace won’t start loving black people and gays just because you shovel them into every TV show and movie they want to watch. If I learned anything from my life in the Soviet bloc, the very opposite is true: the more you push some agenda, the more will people grew tired of it – to the point of refusal and resentment.
There was even a joke about it: “Whenever I open the newspapers: Lenin. Whenever I turn on the radio: Lenin. Whenever I look out of the window: Lenin. It makes me want to drink – but I’m afraid to open the fridge!”
Now replace “Lenin” with “black people” or “gays” and you will see what I mean. :-P

^^This guy is the perfect example of what I’m talking about lol. Its unreal. This is Star Trek man, always has been, always will be. And whats so ironic is Roddenberry put a Russian character on the original show when it was almost as taboo as having an equal black character in the cast with that pesky cold war with the Soviets and all. He was trying to make a point eventually we’ll get over our differences. Of course no one can stop talking about Russia these days so I guess it worked. ;)

And people still believe in diversity man. Have you seen the cast of Discovery?

Paul wasn’t saying diversity is bad, he simply gave a very real account as to how things are often perceived. The more we talk about, and point out, the “diversity”, the more eyes will start to roll. As goes just about anything else as well. Doesn’t mean folks are anti-diversity or racist, it just means we ultimately create that which we seek to cure. Sadly, if we never made any mention of diversity, no one would notice a thing and it would quickly become “normal” to them. Just an unfortunate fact of life.


Re: almost as taboo as having an equal black character in the cast

I think the originally airing years prior to TREK coming onto the scene and then both sharing the same network’s airwaves, Fleming’s THE MAN FROM U.N.C.L.E., with its starring non-secondary contemporary Russian U.N.C.L.E agent and no weekly recurring black character for the 4 years of its entire run, refutes your attempt to equilvalence, almost or otherwise, Roddenberry’s Johnny-come-lately addition of a recurring non-starring Russian character in Trek’s second season to his taboo breaking of having a black cast member from the start.

I’ve been surrounded by heterosexuals all my life with entertainment geared entirely to them until the last decade or so, and I don’t resent them in the least. I managed to be entertained all those years without ever feeling deprived. So, try replacing Lenin with heterosexuals – and please explain why that argument doesn’t hold for me.

The 90s were definitely not the bastion of PC diversity. The top 90s TV series were “Friends,” “Seinfeld,” “Frasier.” All white casts.

Other top prime time family shows in the 90s included Blossom, Full House, Home Improvement, Roseanne, Everybody Loves Raymond, Wings, among others.

There were shows with minority main casts like The Cosby Show and Family Matters, or shows like That 70s show that featured a single, token minority, but the idea of a mixed, diverse ensemble cast on a show aimed at families was almost unheard of outside of Star Trek.

The only shows I can think of are aimed at adults and aired after the watershed; crime dramas like NYPD Blue, Law & Order SVU, ER, etc.

It wasn’t until Will & Grace that TV had its first openly gay character (from its inception), and that and Ellen weren’t without extreme controversy.

And remember when Roseanne kissed a woman? Oh boy. And thats woman on woman which so many people like lol

Even today, how often do the two gay leads on Modern Family kiss? Rarely. And have they ever shared a passionate kiss? Nope, not one time that I recall. Or been shown in bed?

The majority of the human population is not white and never was. Sorry you have problem with white supremacy being dismantled and you no longer get a cheating head start in the race. Must be sad to have been treated as a special snowflake and now see that that is ending. Your emotional reaction to this reality is trite and childlike but also kind of sad. Without your booster chair of racism giving you a leg up you are fearful that you will have to exist as an equal… and you don’t know if you have what it takes. This is coming from a fellow white guy. We are a minority in the human population and TV no longer need to misrepresent humanity by only showing whit male faces in positions of power of competence. Look for a good therapist (or ship’s counselor) to help you with this adjustment. :(

Luke Montgomery,

Re: The majority of the human population is not white and never was.

I’ll even do you one better. There’s no such thing as a “pure” European, “There’s no such thing as a ‘pure’ European—or anyone else” |
By Ann Gibbons | SCIENCE | May. 15, 2017 , 3:00 PM :


”“We can falsify this notion that anyone is pure,” says population geneticist Lynn Jorde of the University of Utah in Salt Lake City. Instead, almost all modern humans “have this incredibly complex history of mixing and mating and migration.””

The thing is Paul and everyone else, if you aren’t a racist or homophobe, these things wouldn’t matter to you. Yes the “diversity” thing is a tired act. People are tired of it being “shoved down their throats” that a cast is diverse. But you know what — if people weren’t racist, they also wouldn’t *care*. And this whole “diversity is old” thing would not be an issue. So sure, I get your point, people are over the whole “diversity” thing because it’s being advertised left and right. But if you still have a beef with it, then that’s racism.

Paul… black people and gays exist. As a black, gay male I can say we’re not some endangered species that you rarely see so PLEASE explain to me how you “shovel” people into tv shows and movies where they should already be? Are you threatened by us? I really, honestly don’t get it.

Perhaps it’s because homosexuals only account for less than 5% of the population of the United States & that there aren’t really gays everywhere. By extension, it’s also why it appears to a LOT of people that the studios/networks are in fact pushing an agenda…one that seeks to desensitize those who are opposed to having a character’s sexuality brazenly displayed. I don’t know about you, but I don’t go around telling the world what I do in the bedroom. It’s none of anyone else’s business.

People who complain about gay people being portrayed on screen are hypocrites. No one complains when straight characters talk about who they’re attracted to or have romantic subplots. If you did not complain about Kirk, about Riker and Troy, etc. then your complaints about gay characters are not about “telling the world about what happens in the bedroom.” It’s about being homophobic and needing an excuse.

You really need to lose the idea that being gay is about the bedroom. Is bring straight about the bedroom? When two characters’ eyes meet and they flirt and then go on a date and have a strong attraction, is that brazenly displaying their sexuality? If it’s two men or two women, how is it any different from when it’s a man and a woman? By your logic, we should never have been forced to see Kirk with Edith Keeler, O’Brien and Keiko, or Tom and B’Elanna, because their sexuality was “brazenly displayed.”

Numenosium please get help with your ignorance. educate yourself & open your mind.

I think diversity is a great asset in media, and I consider myself a liberal, but I am bloody sick of the ‘pat-yourself-on-the-back’ attitude about diversity in media. I cannot believe it’s being used a selling point and I am just as disappointed to see how many well-meaning people fall for it as I am by the pushback.

I don’t believe I’ve heard of the cast of DS9 going out on television and bragging about how many non-white male characters they had – because they didn’t HAVE to brag. The proof was in the pudding!

Its a sign of the times that they must step to the fore and say this show will be diverse. And its a sign of the times with how much racially charged bigoted blowback that gets, even in comments here. Very sad.

Please show me where Discovery’s diverse cast is being used as a selling point.

The diverse cast is a selling feature to a degree, early on anyway. But more so as it relates to gays in trek. But I disagree with the bigots who were critical of Fuller for being a SJW on the issue.

Firstly, if he wants to be a SJW, so be it. Someone can only do what they have the power to do and if Fuller has earned the position and stroke to bring forth his ideas and champion causes close to him, more power to him.

But the questions come from the media because of who Fuller is. Its a relevant question and he answered it. I see no tag line proclaiming Discovery the gayest Trek ever or the most diverse Trek ever.

Its really more of a bone for the bigots, racists, homophobes and complainers to latch on to in their effort to push a silly narrative that Trek is broken and “here’s why”.

As a white male, I want to see more women, more ethnicity, more homosexual representation in media. And it doesnt bother me at all. My goodness, why would it? If the story is good, thats the point. And if they present a story where a character just happens to be black or a woman or gay or whatever, great. Dont make the story about that, make it so that its not a story at all. It just is. because thats the world we live in.

I don’t recall any ads or trailers that play up the diversity. I don’t recall the titles in the trailer saying “An amazing new minority-filled cast!”

Interviews from Moonves and Fuller are not meant to advertise or promote to anyone beyond the hardcore fanbase, and Moonves is really talking to investors and such.

The wider audience– the ones complaining about diversity– simply hated seeing a diverse cast, and it had nothing to do with promoting it– simply that it existed.


Or let it be the story. Why the problem with that, as long as it’s a good story?

You’re as disappointed in self congratulatory diversity as you are with migogyny and racism? Jesus.

Bad spelling.

I think they are doing diversity right. Michelle Yoeh playing an awesome Captain (how I hope she sticks around!!!). The first officer being strong African-American female, able to debate with the Klingon and, shock, maybe even say they need to attack first (Balance of Terror anyone??) – maybe even raised by Vulcans!!. Robots, other alien races, all looking different. An alien actually bred to sense death (how un-human is that?!?!?) – looking forward to exploring that character that seems not just a human in a mask. Klingons that can be Klingons, different and at odds with the Federation. Look at all the DRAMA!!!

I’m white and male, I don’t care if there is a single white male on the ship as long as we get an exciting “wagon train to the stars” adventure on a dangerous frontier that isn’t the crew playing in the holodeck or Young in the Restless in space.

Not only do i not care, if they do it right, I hardly notice. It wasn’t until I sat down to take count that I realized DS9 had only ONE white male lead character, or that Paris and the Doctor were the only two on Voyager.

This in the “Friends” era, mind you.

“I think they are doing diversity right. Michelle Yoeh playing an awesome Captain (how I hope she sticks around!!!).”

You and I seem to have seen a different trailer. Yeoh was one of the least impressive parts of the new show, and that’s coming from someone who LIKES her in action/martial arts roles. She seemed totally out of place as a starship captain and her dialogue sounded wooden and forced to me. I’m glad Jason Issacs will be the “regular” Captain because Yeoh reminded me of the “Genevieve Bujold is Captain Janeway” casting error.

What’s hilariously absurd to me is when Trek fans are the ones who give arguments about diversity. Trek was founded on ideals of diverse crews working together in a future where we’d gotten over our issues of racism and sexism, so of course you’d see lots of females in roles of authority and of course you’d see people of all races with all accents in roles of authority and command. I always felt that I should expect non-Trekkies to complain but it hurts on a different level when I see one of us making a big fuss about it.

Great editorial. Wonderful to read something on this site that is more than just the ranting comments of the angry basement do-nothings who love to complain about things that they have not even seen yet. Looking forward to this new Trek :)

Very thoughtful analysis. All we can do is wait a little longer. Also, as CBS and the creative team state that this is a prequel, as time progresses, we may see uniform and design changes that lean toward the TOS era of familiarity.

I loved the article. It made me feel hopeful, as when all things were new. I’m going to pay for All Access because I’ve loved Star Trek in all its incarnations since I was a little boy, originally catching reruns of TOS at six o’clock while eating dinner with the family. Ten bucks a month is pretty cheap — a movie ticket price, really.

Ed, Like you, I watched TOS in syndication (starting at age 7) – in that late afternoon time slot – some of my best memories from that age involved discovering Star Trek for the first time. The different races/ethnicities of the characters didn’t seem out of place to me – it was a total non-issue. It makes me a little sad for the few people who can’t get beyond this, especially since it’s at the core of what Star Trek is all about. Great stories are great stories regardless of the physical and emotional details of the characters – or whether it’s a prequel or sequel. I’ve seen enough in the trailer to decide to pay for this show on All Access, too. The people who don’t can just troll the comments about something they haven’t seen.

I don’t really care about the diversity aspect as much as I care about having another prequel but this time it doesn’t even look like it’s trying to synchronize with canon. Regular fans may not care but the hardcore should. I’d expect the same reaction from Star Wars fans if they updated the millennium falcons look for the new Han Solo prequel or changed the look of certain things for Rogue One. But no they specifically chose to stick with the late 70s/early 80s grimy type look that the original trilogy had. It’s already been established multiple times, across multiple shows within the Trek universe what the ships of this time period should look like. If you don’t have the balls to recreate a TOS style bridge or flat out don’t want to then choose another time period where you can design whatever your hearts desires (especially post Nemesis). Or don’t do that and have the Kool-aid drinkers defend you while upsetting the hardcore Trekkies which will end up making your show fail. It boggles the mind how illogical these decisions are. Just simply move this 15 years after Nemesis and everything is perfect!

If they moved it to 15 years after Nemesis it might work VISUALLY, but it would screw with canon just as much (if not more) than what they’re doing here. Think.

Well not really because its easy to imagine new uniforms 15 years after Voyager. Hell they changed them 4 times just in 10 years between TNGs 1st season and First Contact. The Shenzhou can simply be a new class of ship. Sure it can also be a class we haven’t seen before in TOS but you have to buy we NEVER saw anything like it between the show through the films.

Thats the difference between presenting something that was suppose to always be there and saying something is just new because time has past, even just a little. Of course you still have to make some leaps but its not really hard. Discovery itself looks like its not a ship that belongs in any of these periods, but neither did the Defiant when it was first introduced. We got a in-universe reason behind it. I’m sure we will get one for Discovery too but again it feels more like a retcon instead of just a natural progression which is the difference between prequels and sequels. When you introduce something new in a sequel no one blinks because its a sequel you naturally expect new things. When you do it in a prequel, and it looks out of place from what we seen, you have to work harder to explain its existence…or just ignore it and pretend no one else will notice, ala Khan in STID.

Never, ever, bring up STID. The mere thought of it gives me PTSD.

Let’s make a deal: we’ll never bring it up so long as you’re willing to change your handle. Heartburn-for-heartburn; that’s only fair. 😊

Again, you’re talking visually. I don’t know why everyone is so hung up on the visuals. From a storytelling perspective, it strikes me they probably found the pre-TOS era more interesting in terms of potential; an era of DISCOVERY, frontier space travel, less technology, more enemies. Earth was more isolated and there were enemies around every corner.

There are people here that would be thrilled if it looked exactly like TOS but sucked story-wise. People get hung up on the weirdest things.

Well I’m not personally hung up on it, I have said the changes is a major plus for me. I’m only speaking about others and why they are so disappointed. I think it would’ve just been better to go ahead to avoid all of this. And while you’e a little right the new show might look a little out of place post Voyager its because we are talking about a show that wasn’t direct designed for that period. CLEARLY if they did make the show for that era they would be much more on target vs what they have for the TOS era.

Hate to argue, but you kind of are hung up on it: I mention how it wouldn’t work post nemesis and your first response is to address the visuals. Not the stories, the characters, or wider mythos/universe, but the costumes and look of the ships and set design…

No, I simply disagree with your assessment lol. Yeah I think it would be fine, or simply much better than where it is now. You don’t, OK, agree to disagree and we can both move on….until the next thread. ;)

You don’t get to tell others what they SHOULD care about. You’re nobody. Also, they didn’t give the Enterprise a pink and blue stripe, so that Star Wars argument doesn’t fly. Star Trek had to change. It’s not 1989 or 2005. Also, they made something you don’t like. That’s ballsy, no? CBS, the owners of the IP, don’t have to do what you want. Sorry to burst your ego bubble. Just kidding. I’m not upset by what I’ve seen, and I’m a hardcore Trekkie. I don’t like Kool-Aid. Bad for the waistline. Star Trek: DSC won’t fail. It’s already paid for because Netflix has deep pockets.

A bit of advice… perfect is ephemeral.

Actually my Star Wars argument certainly is legit. They recreated the millennium falcon damn near perfect. Sorry if that puts a pin in the balloon of your argument. Also if I can’t tell people how to feel or CBS what to do then your condescending self certainly can’t either. Stop being a hypocrite. I mean who the heck are you to say Star Trek needed to change? Btw I’m not a nobody, I’m a fan just like you who has every right to state his opinion. Just because you disagree with it doesn’t make you right. And if you think this show will last without fans like me paying for CBS all access you’re even dumber than your response to me makes you sound. Netflix isn’t footing the whole bill. Enjoy it while it lasts. I’m one of the few Trekkies out there willing to pay for new Trek (in fact I floated that notion online years ago) but if they are going to make me pay they WILL make a show I’m comfortable with or they don’t get my money. Simple as that. Also I can almost guarentee you’re one of those internet trolls who torrents most of his entertainment. I on the other hand put my money where my mouth is.

They recreated the look in TFA and R1 because those visuals, astonishingly, still hold up. Trek’s old aesthetics don’t.

Get over yourself.

“They recreated the look in TFA and R1 because those visuals, astonishingly, still hold up. Trek’s old aesthetics don’t.”

Baloney. Go make a sandwich.

If you think TOS’ cardboard sets with jelly bean buttons hold up, you have baloney for brains.

jonboc you really think candy-colored knobs is more futuristic than a touch screen? And calling pajamas a uniform is professional? It’s outdated and that’s fine. In the 60s they had no idea we’d be able to fit more computing power than the Apollo missions into a palm-sized pocket device in 50 years. Isn’t Trek about forward thinking?

Fashions and styles and technologies change throughout history. The 23rd century could very well look like the 60s and what we think looks futuristic today could look very archaic by then.

Still C.d. the point is TODAY in 2017 that look looks outdated as hell. No one has a clue what the real 23rd century will look like and we know just looking at past movies and shows trying to get ANY future right past 50 years always look hilariously ridiculous in the time period itself. Remember we are all suppose to be driving flying cars and live in the sky while our robots do all our cleaning for us according to most predictions of the 2000’s.

But CBS is just trying to sell a show, one of a PLAUSIBLE future based on Star Trek’s own aesthetics and design. What’s funny is very little of the actual technology has changed. We still have warp drive, communicators, transporters, phasers, view screens, etc. All of that was shown in the original show. All people are mostly complaining about is the package its in. Its the same stuff it just looks cooler and more functional. Thats the weird thing about these arguments, nothing has really changed in terms of actual technology. The ships still go the same speed, its not like they can now go warp 11 (we all know thats salamander territory). I assume it will still be stun and kill for phasers. Computer is the same computer. Its not like its now a walking Android thats connected to it.

Basically its cosmetics that we are arguing about. It just looks way more cooler. I think thats ultimately a good thing. It will get people under 50 to watch the show.

I think the original Cage era aesthetic looks cool and the Abramsverse aesthetic outdated IMO, but to each their own.

Well then you are waaaay in the minority on that. I can’t get anyone in my family under 30 to watch TOS because it looks cheap and cheesy. On the other end they seen the KT films several times now. At least the first two. Thats the issue at place here. CBS wants to attract younger people to this show like they did for the films. Showing something like the Cage would be a total deal breaker for most and while I hate the time period this was definitely the move to go in.


Well, I don’t actively proselytize original or any STAR TREK for that matter, and my experience is quite different. My visiting grandniece and grandnephew, millennials, at separate times each got curious about what I was watching on TV which so happened to be the series that started it all in syndication. Both times, I didn’t make a big deal about it, just told each that it was science-fiction called STAR TREK. And they both enjoyed each of their episodes watched with me. After that, I let them know there’s a wide panoply of Trek out there and let them pursue it or not on their own.

And to this day, after sampling all the rest, the only Trek they like is TOS with exceptions for the DS9 episode, TRIALS AND TRIBBLE-ATIONS and the TOS movies.

TNG, DS9, VOY, ENTERPRISE, and Abrams are all no-goes for them. But what really threw me is they BOTH thought TWOK was the weakest Trek movie of the ones they prefer. And my grandnephew is an avid first-person-shooter video game player! What’s their favorite movie? STAR TREK: THE VOYAGE HOME.

Again thats fine but they are waaaaaay in the minority.


Re: …more futuristic than a touch screen?

TOUCH screens? FUTURISTIC? They’re passe. Even in the 1960s, sf shows were showing gesture based controls. Spock even used gestures to change images at his science station on Pike’s ENTERPRISE in the MENAGERIE episode of the first series and the subsequently aired THE CAGE.

Not so, sad to say. Spock is actually gesturing at a female crewman sitting at his console, but she’s outside the shot in the take they ended up using. You can see the original 2-shot if you look around for it.

Michael Hall,

Re: … Spock is actually gesturing at a female crewman …

The existence of alternate unused takes, that never made it to screen, aren’t really indicative of much of anything.

On screen, there’s absolutely no indication that he’s gesturing to a human.

It appears to us in the audience as summarized by this recapper from a 2012 viewing:


“Back to Spock as he waves his hand over his library computer, causing the screen to shift to a drawing of a planetary system.” — Johnny Pez, Sunday, January 1, 2012

And is consistent with with what its competition was showing civilizations advanced to that of 21st century Earth using and within the capabilities of those same Earthers to easily utilize and manipulate, i.e. via human gestures.

Let’s toss aesthetics out the window for just a second and look at what you said about touchscreens. The very touch screens you probably have on your phone from 2017. Not very futuristic is it? So let’s look at practical functionality and which makes more sense. In a moment of tension…where split decisions count and multi-tasking under pressure needs to be carried out with utmost accuracy…do we want easily identifable color coded user interface with tacticle feedback? Where no visual confirmation is needed to avoid costly mistakes. Or do we want a simple flat touch screen? Put on a blindfold and try to open a specific app on your phone and use it without any problems. Then go heat up some leftovers without being able to see that flat screen on your microwave. Disaster! lol I’m not saying that a touch screen interface isn’t useful. It’s just not any more futuristic than buttons, knobs and switches, and on the bridge of a starship…where mistakes are costly and can’t afford to be made…they are much more practical and effecient.
And the color coding of the “pajamas” is also very efficient…at a glance from long distances on a planet, espcially under adverse conditions, you can immediately identify who is who. An idea used on the decks of modern aircraft carriers as we speak.
Sorry. Can’t get onboard with your line of reasoning. I understand where you’re coming from, but we’ll have to agree to disagree.


Indeed, jonboc. Not to mention, how many times has the show shown rooms filled with vision obscuring smoke and people temporarily blinded by console explosions?

NG, where they supposedly fell in love with these touch screens, has an engineer that can’t even use them if his visor gets knocked off. And its Captain waxes poetic to Data how humans don’t regard something as real unless they can touch it — the sense of tactile feedback being primal to being human, if I catch his drift?

jonboc you seriously want to think about a “realistic” scenario for future technology? There are no humans — AI controls everything. Boom. No TV show. Just a bunch of robots exploring the galaxy. AI is way more powerful than any human, and will probably replace us in a hundred years. You really want a “realistic” 23rd century show? Or do you want to indulge in human drama and stop being a spoil sport?

They aren’t recreating the Enterprise. They are telling a MODERN story within the confines of the parameters they created within THEIR intellectual property. They’ve only mentioned TWO ships, which are new to my knowledge. Your pin is blunted. My balloon flies high.

I didn’t tell anyone how to feel like you. ” Regular fans may not care but the hardcore should”

Star Trek the TV show had to change because it’s not the past nor were they creating a shot for shot remake of a past show. ALL the actors of yesteryear are old. Say these things slow a few times. It might help you comprehend. #PurposefulSarcasm

You are a nobody to me. You ALWAYS will be a nobody to me. I can give you a proper name like Nobody if you need, but only once. Also, I don’t care if you think I’m right. You’re nobody.

Netflix paid for the whole shebang or nearly all of it. 60 million sounds about right — 15 eps at 4 million each. This is peanuts for the ability to say ‘Netflix presents Star Trek Discovery’ everywhere but the US. You know, there is a whole lot of space with other people outside the US. Netflix reaches 190 countries now, right?

Just because you call me a thief doesn’t mean I am one. Project much?

Oh… #StillFloating

The problem with the Star Wars argument is that this show isn’t recreating the USS Enterprise in the prime universe. We’re seeing other ships in the fleet we’ve never seen before. For all we know, the Enterprise looks exactly the way it should.

Yes but I mean look at the uniforms? We know in the Cage they are pretty close to the rest of TOS, just a different color and fabric. Here its a complete turn around. And I like these uniforms better but his point is valid, there are things we know that suppose to exist right now they have avoided copying, not just the ships or technology.

I always laugh though how the communicators always makes it in lol. Those are so small and basic no one cares you keep making those the same.

I bet we eventually see some Cage era uniforms.

You’re not wrong, they are clearly going a different way with it and yes I agree about Star Wars. Rogue One was as close as they can get to the OT where Discovery is going the direction of the KT films and just basically do their own thing while throwing in some references to remind you its part of the same universe but its really its own thing visually.

I watch Trekyards on Youtube and those guys are very detailed and they have come up with a lot examples how it technically fits but they admit it basically belongs in either another universe or just a different time period. They really should’ve gone with the latter. Everything I predicted was going to happen happened. I knew it was going to be a reboot. I knew it would look too advanced for TOS. And I knew it was going to bother a lot of fans. None of this was unseen.

So yes in that sense I’m disappointed too. I’m actually OK with it looking more advanced but I think its disappointing its kind of erasing the old canon in a way. Its funny with all these prequels they are all there to heighten TOS but all they are doing is just rewriting it. Franklin to the NX-01 Enterprise to the Kelvin to Discovery to the KT Enterprise fits like a glove in so many ways. That really makes sense. Both Discovery and KT Enterprise easily looks like they can fit into the 24th century without batting an eye. Its only when you add in TOS itself the rest of this stuff looks out of place. I mean this is suppose to be happening during the Cage period, its no way this show is comparable to that lol. Not even close. But if you pretend like the Cage don’t exist and just think of it post Kelvin, again it works perfectly in this timeline.

So yes I think it was a BIG mistake to place this show in this time period. It will be too distracting for people like yourself and all the people I see yelling about it in multiple places online. Now for me, I will be fine with it personally. I just accept its a reboot and thats all you can do really. End of the day people will either accept that or they won’t. My feeling is if its good they will accept it in time. If they hate it like they hated Enterprise and many hated the KT films then yeah its going to cause a lot of problems.

Lets just hope its good at least, for many reasons.

Oh I mean the Shenzhou! I keep forgetting we haven’t seen Discovery yet. But yes if its anything like the Shenzhou (and its actually rumored to be a MORE advance ship in this period) then I suspect it will look pretty out of place. The exterior alone tells us that.

There’s no way to accurately portray what the 24th century will ACTUALLY look like, because there’s no way to know. And even if we guessed realistically, it would be so alien that it would not make for interesting television.

People seem to forget that while they want to tell good sci-fi stories, they also NEED TO ATTRACT AN AUDIENCE.

So they need visuals that TODAY’S audiences can connect with– futuristic technology that TODAY’S viewers can understand. Not yesterdays, not tomorrows.

And when you look at the totality of Star Trek from Enterprise to Nemesis, the limited visual looks we get from the trailer work. The one glaring thing throughout the 50 years is TOS looks like it was made in the 60’s, NOT that Discovery looks too advanced.

Im not advocating for having the Enterprise appear and look completely different. But I’d love to see the Enterprise created using today’s SFX and stage building with the gritty more realistic detailed look.

That includes that “iconic” bridge which actually looked better in The Cage than in TOS. Flat screens. Control panels that arent just little coloured light bulbs.

They can easily show us a very familiar TOS bridge and ship that is updated with today’s sensibilities.

I believe someone online created a TOS bridge with updated flat screens and that alone made a big difference without really altering the spirit of what we were seeing.

I think you mean the 23rd century.

True. But still, the 23rd century is still 200 years away. Ask someone from 1817 what they think technology would look like in 200 years and they’d be WAAAAY off.

I agree! In fact I said this in this very thread a day ago:

“No one has a clue what the real 23rd century will look like and we know just looking at past movies and shows trying to get ANY future right past 50 years always look hilariously ridiculous in the time period itself. Remember we are all suppose to be driving flying cars and live in the sky while our robots do all our cleaning for us according to most predictions of the 2000’s.”

So we are 100% on that and why you always have to update the look with every generation to begin with. It just makes sense.

And that’s another reason why Star Wars can work, and Trek can’t: SW is not the future of our world. So some tech that doesn’t feel so futuristic is not an issue.


And yet, I’m tickled by the notion that if a steam scientist or engineer from 1817 somehow time travelled into the middle of a 2017 Steam Punk Convention, they’d likely not feel too out of sorts.

The reason Netflix got the rest of the world is CBS’s safety net. Netflix may not be footing the whole bill, but I would bet my shuttlepod (if I had one) they paid for a big chunk. So yes, I think the show can survive without you paying for it. And frankly, I hope it does. You’re no Star Trek fan, you’re a flashy sci-fi perfectionist fan. Go cling to the consistency of your other universes, I would rather have fans around that care more about the ideals Star Trek demonstrates than what it looks like while doing it.

The way Star Wars survives with its particular brand of visuals is because its in a galaxy far, far away. We accept that that is what tech looks like in that fictional universe. Star Trek is not only a fictional universe based on us, it IS us. The idea of tech of the future is very different now than it was in the 60s, so the visuals have to keep up.

This must be the “Prime” Kelvin-verse.

Cool. I am not ready to afford the CBS All Access subscription, but am looking forward to the premiere episode on CBS itself and do hope CBS Home Entertainment would release the complete first season on DVD, Blu-ray, Digital HD, and 4K Ultra HD. I also hope the next small-screen incarnation of “Star Trek” after “Discovery” would broadcast on CBS–not just streaming on CBS All Access–and take place sometime after the events of 2002’s “Nemesis.” Who agrees with me?

Streaming is the now/future. Might as well get used to it. DVDs… lol

I can’t even remember the last time I watched a DVD. Had to be 5 years ago if a day. The very idea of physical media to watch a movie seems so antiquated to me, now.

DVD is out. But Bluray in most cases has a much better sound quality than streaming. And I want to buy a film/series only one time and watch it whenever I want. I doubt that you will be able to watch your streamed (and payed) films in 10 or 20 years. They often have a time limited licence.

Physical media still matters (books, LPs). I don’t like streaming or downloads. I will wait until Discovery is published on Bluray/UHD-BD.

When I say “DVD” I mean a physical disc. Seriously, the last time I used physical media was to transfer it to my computer.

@Torchwood thats interesting. I remember thinking I would never give up CD’s because I liked having my collection. But its all MP3’s now.

Im a bit of a cinematophile and have a large Blu Ray collection and I now feel like Ill never give it up because I like having my display of films/tv shows. But realistically, if I can have that entire collection stored on my computer or cloud and be able to surf through it and watch it whenever I want to on any device I want to, isnt that better/

I was like that once. Couldn’t imagine ever going digital. But now, the very concept of getting up, opening a case, removing a physical disc, inserting it into a player, flipping through on-screen menus, to watch a movie– seems so outdated to me.

There’s just too many ways for me to watch a film streaming for me to ever go back to physical media. I suppose if a show I absolutely adored and wanted to watch repeatedly but was not available in any other way, I might consider it.

But even then, i’d probably just Redbox it and rip it to my computer for future watching digitally off a hard drive!

@Don — There are only 15 episodes. That’s about 3-4 months worth of a subscription fee. You likely spend more than that in a week on Starbucks. So you cancel your membership after you’ve seen the last episode, assuming you haven’t discovered that CBS-A offers you something worth subscribing. That way you’ve seen the show first-run, supported it, and have the option to decide whether you want to spend considerably more and buy it on physical media, assuming CBS even decides to offer it on those platforms.

Yes and as been stated before if you are that hesitant about spending $6 a month for a whopping 4 months then simply wait for the show to end and binge watch it in one month. Thats the beauty of streaming vs cable. Can you imagine trying to get HBO for just a month to watch every season of GOT and then cancelling? Well now you CAN do that with their streaming site. People here are still so hesitant to streaming but its the future for a reason. Not only because more and more people watch stuff on their computer, they like having real choices and options. You have the freedom to watch AA as long as you want. If you want to watch it all year you pay for it all year. Just one month, you can do that too and come back the next season.

I’m already subscribed to AA and it still has its bugs for sure but its definitely improving. So for people who are still hesitant about it, you get a week free. Try it out. If its for you sign up when the show premieres. If not, again wait until its over and just binge watch it. Simple.

Nice editorial, Anthony! I agree with all that you said! Looking forward to seeing where this all, hopefully, boldly goes!! I’ll be doing a panel at Phoenix Comicon on Sunday discussing all this! Dr. Dave

I think the only little nitpick I have is why do these new Trek shows always insist on introducing some new alien race we’ve never seen?

Out of the literally hundreds upon hundreds of alien races that pre-exist in Trek lore, they needed this new alien? Couldn’t they, at the very least, cherry pick some background alien and further develop them?

My only hope is that this guy Doug Jones plays is an existing race that’s been mentioned but never seen.

Other than that (and admittedly it’s a minor nitpick), i am very excited by the trailer.

I also wish the design for Saru wasn’t so…blahhh, really not a fan

I don’t know if it’s because of the resolution, but I can’t help but see a rubber mask. His make-up doesn’t have a natural feel to me.

That’s not my problem with it at all. It looks no better or worse than a lot of what is out there.

I thought it looked real enough, but I just am not impressed with the design. Not saying I could do better, just not that inspired by what they came up with.

Wow. It never even occurred to me that this time period would overlap with a Pike-commanded Enterprise, toting a certain science officer of the pointy-eared persuasion. There’s a carrot to dangle, ratings-wise. If this show makes it a few seasons, it’ll be interesting to see how that plays out.

I can’t wait until there’s an episode with Pike and the Enterprise, and they retcon the look of the Prime Universe’s 1701! Fans will lose their minds, and I will love the taste of their sweet sweet tears!

You’re so mean! LOL!

In all seriousness though, I can’t wait for them to run into the Enterprise. I mean, COME ON– how can they not pass up the opportunity for a ratings extravaganza at some point?!

Its not a matter of if, but when. The only reason why they set it in this area so they can trout out as much TOS as they can get away with without it feeling like a blatant commercial.

My guess is the Enterprise will make an appearance at some point. They may wait until the finale or even next season but they are going to work it in. We already have Sarek, Spock’s dad, as part of the show who shares a REALLY close relationship with Burnham and yes Spock is actually on the Enterprise in this timeline right now….believe me that connection is coming.

It will be ineresting to see if they keep Pike’s timeline intact… or perhaps make Discovery a part of the incident during which he got injured by moving it up a few years… ?

from Memory Alpha:
After a long tour as captain of the Enterprise (eleven years, four months, and five days of which were spent with junior science officer Spock as a loyal member of his crew) Pike was promoted to fleet captain in the mid-2260s, at which point James T. Kirk took command. Only a few years thereafter, Pike was aboard a training vessel, an old class J starship, when a baffle plate ruptured and exposed many helpless trainees and cadets to delta-particle radiation. Pike dragged many cadets from the danger but, in the process, was hopelessly crippled by the rays. The disfigured Pike was put on a form of advanced life support which sustained his withered body and life functions, but he was too weak and incapacitated to ever move or respond to physical stimuli again. A wheelchair that was tuned to his brain could use blinking light signals to respond to simple queries in the affirmative (one flash) or negative (two flashes), but that was the extent to which he could communicate. (TOS: “The Menagerie, Part I”)

Torchwood, “retcon” is not a real word. Stop using it.

I’d love to see some thoughtful creative effort and showing us the Enterprise as it was in so-called “SD” updated to this new “HD” (and I dont mean those terms in the normal sense). It can be done.

And cast Bruce Greenwood as PIKE!

Retroactive Continuity is very much a real thing, with it’s first use in the 1973 book The Theology of Wolfhart Pannenberg. It’s first use as “retcon” was in the 1988.

But because you don’t like it, I will use it in every post from now on, just for you. In fact, if there were an edit button, I would retcon all my old posts.


(in a film, television series, or other fictional work) a piece of new information that imposes a different interpretation on previously described events, typically used to facilitate a dramatic plot shift or account for an inconsistency.
“we’re given a retcon for Wilf’s absence from Donna’s wedding in ‘The Runaway Bride’: he had Spanish Flu”
revise (an aspect of a fictional work) retrospectively, typically by introducing a piece of new information that imposes a different interpretation on previously described events.
“I think fans get more upset when characters act blatantly out of established type, or when things get retconned”

Anyone else think that the distorted, Star Wars-y hologram teleconference is actually a clever way to insert CGI-rendered TOS characters into DSC? Im not advocating it, and it would need to be done carefully… but hell it would be cool it they called up Chris Pike, or even, as Anthony suggests, Mr Spock.

I don’t think that’s why. It’s more likely a way of updating a very outdated idea of video conferencing, something we do on our phones today. I think it’s a way to retcon the idea of video calling and make it seem “futuristic” to modern audiences.

However, what you’re referring to could be an added benefit for sure.

A few of the filming techniques are the only things that recall Kelvin Universe to me. What is actually being filmed and is actually there, does not. Abrams did not invent lens flares, angled camera shots or rapid camera moves.

The blue color filtering of many of the bridge scenes in the trailer, recall the color filters used on the ENTERPRISE TV series—especially the bridge and engineering shots in the TV show;

The uniforms clearly look like the ENTERPRISE TV series uniforms with silver, gold and bronze added, changed from one piece to two piece uniforms, and the blue darkened a bit;

The darkness of the bridge is clearly NOT the Kelvin Universe. It’s the direct opposite of the over-lite, Apple store Kelvin ENTERPRISE bridge; the look of the bridge looks ENTERPRISE to me, only the bridge is larger. The closed in, claustrophobic feel recalls ENTERPRISE also;

There is a dark contrast filming technique used in several bridge shots in the trailer that recall to me the bridge and engineering sets and shots of the ENTERPRISE TV series;

The exterior space walk uniform looked generic and has been used in most space suits I’ve seen in sci-fi productions, but it did recall ones I saw on the TV series ENTERPRISE;

The new Klingon design don’t recall Kelvin Universe Klingons overall, they actually recall the Xindi of the ENTERPRISE TV series and may be the model, even though that race had nothing to do with Klingons;

The first image of the trailer that a large number of people said recalled Star Wars, clearly recalled desert scenes and sequences from the ENTERPRISE TV series that I saw a few times on the show;

The uniforms and head wrappings of that same desert scene, recalls the ENTERPRISE TV series not Star Wars;

The focus on Vulcans in the trailer—especially the main female lead and Sarak— recall the ENTERPRISE TV series, which focused on Vulcans and was BEFORE Abrams films;

From what I can tell, from what I saw, the ship in the trailer looked very similar to the NX class ships from the ENTERPRISE TV series, not the ENTERPRISE in Abrams’ films;

The outer details on the hull of the ship in the trailer, recalls the outer details of the hull on the Enterprise of the ENTERPRISE TV series also;

There have been many ship hallways in TREK history, but the hallways in this trailer look more like the ENTERPRISE TV series than any other; they definitely do not look like the hallways in Abrams films;

In my opinion the producers did exactly what they should have done. They used ENTERPRISE—which timeframe is before every STAR TREK TV series and movie series, to model Discovery from. Not Abrams films!!!

Not sure what trailer people saw, but it wasn’t the one I did. I guess the old adage people see what they want to see, is true. That includes me as well.

Totally agree. I loved Enterprise, btw.


I’ve loved ALL incarnations of Trek since 1971. Some more than others, for sure. I have a feeling that Discovery will be the one that’s the closest to my heart, though. We’re going to meet Lt. Stamets, someone I can REALLY identify with. So, you could say I know exactly how those “white guys” that are upset feel. #zing

CBS could settle all this hand-wringing by issuing a statment that either 1. There will be a canon explanation for the differences between DSC and Pike’s Enterprise; 2. There is a new canon that keeps established history and facts, but they’re giving themselves free license to reimagine Star Trek visually; or 3. This is a complete reimagining of the Prime universe. But the pinheads at CBS probably view all this anxiety, arguing, and hyperventilating as evidence of “consumer interest.”

Why would they ever want to address whiney nitpicking fans’ complaints? You don’t you don’t dignify inane critics with a response.

I don’t particularly consider myself a “nitpicky fan” or “inane”. But I would like to know the reason for the differences in visual direction when canon has been pounded so rigidly the last 50 years. Viewers have been trained (from childhood in my case) to expect canonical continuity. Ridgeless Klingons required retconning in ENT to satisfy canon; when the TOS era was visited in DS9 and ENT, they went to great pains to keep the visual elements canonical. If the policy has changed, that’s news.

The reason is pretty clear: the old look is outdated and needs to be retconned and updated for 2017. It’s not rocket science.

Ridgless Klingons did NOT require an explanation: we were all fine before those episodes aired, but the producers at the time were too reliant on pleasing inane whiners.

While I loved those episodes, I wish they’d never explained the change. I was perfectly happy imagining they had ridges in TOS but they just didn’t have the budget to show them.

I agree with the “ignore the TOS Klingons” thing, Torchwood. Enterprise crafted a clever story but it was not needed. Same with DS9, they should have just acted like the TOS Klingons looked like the TNG Klingons.

@Tai — the retcon of the Klingon ridges was one of the biggest mistakes they made. That was pure fan pandering, to a specic kind of fan, and only cemented this fixation on visual canon which has led to this kind of debate now.

Curious Cadet,

Wasn’t every inch of this “pandering” route paved by Roddenberry, Paramount, et al when they reached out and endorsed the creation of a formally defined Klingon language over all the other languages produced in STAR TREK’s fiction? I mean, by then it was already too late to complain about that pandering at the time when they produced that ridges retcon, and it certainly seems, given that, futile now.

I think the language thing was probably less about retconning as it was about just making it consistent moving forward on-screen.


I remind you that, unlike the Vulcan language, not a word of it was spoken in the first series only the word “Klingonese” as a name for it had been introduced in THE TROUBLE WITH TRIBBLES.

And besides that, we were addressing pandering which even if it wasn’t a retcon, of introducing a formal lexicon to a languange only named in TOS, it most certainly was pandering in making the Klingons a special case for that tending, and by that, adjusting, and thus ripe for retconning to service that “consistency” aim to this day.

Yep, Heard cbs was considering a short documentary before the episode to address all those concerns. Moonves was adamant this be addressed. Said he will spend whatever is necessary to get in front of this issue.

I have *never* heard this before. Your source?

@Scott, pretty sure Markm is joking, but it’s hard to be sure.

I would love to see that documentary lol. Moonves in front of the camera and the first words out of his mouth, “Get a life you people.” Documentary over.

Fan film necessary!

“1. There will be a canon explanation for the differences between DSC and Pike’s Enterprise;”

How about the fact that they’re two different ships? I don’t know where some fans got the idea that only one style of ship was produced at a time?

There is a difference between something not being established as canon and something established as not canon.

Come on, man. In the series, from ship to ship the uniforms in each era are the same, and the bridges look closely kindred (in TNG, the Okudagrams were your first clue). This is what we’ve been consistently brought up to expect. If that changes, you’re naturally going to want to know why.

Yes. There is consistency among the few ships we saw. We know the Enterprise was in service at that time. And nothing else! We don’t know how many ships were in Star Fleet. We don’t know how many designs. Because of budgetary restrictions we only saw ships that looked just like the Enterprise until the second movie. The dialogue in the original series certainly implied there were a large number of ships of different designs. We have no idea what they looked like. Until now.

If this doesn’t match what you expected, change your expectations.

We do know there were very FEW ships. They often didn’t come back. Please read the adaptions, and novelizations from the 1970s. We do know!

Adaptations and novelizations are moot. Period. YOu cant complain about canon and then point to books. Books arent canon.

And also, how do you know an “Enterprise” appearing in Discovery wont look more like the aesthetics of what we saw in the trailer? Someone else put it like the difference between SD and 4K. TOS is SD, this is 4K. if they choose to show the Enterprise it might be the same ship…in 4K…if you know what I mean.

I don’t agree. I’ve never felt the need to know why ever detail is retconned. A major change might make me raise an eyebrow, but I don’t need my hand held. If I require an explanation, I can invent my own easily enough.

Them using TOS era communicators and tricorders and beaming up to a ship that looks realistic and functional (not Apple Bridge) makes sense to me. They are saying the technology is essentially canon but the look isnt because the ideas were relevant in the 60’s, they just didnt have the tech to pull it off.

It really makes a lot of sense.

@Tai — actually that’s not true. We saw CAGE uniforms regularly in early episodes of TOS, mixed in with the other standard unforms, most notably from the other presumably older ships in the fleet. “Charlie X” in particular shows us a completely different ship than the Enterprise in the remastered episode. Note it has the same copper-colored nacelles that the Enterprise had during “The Cage” era, presumably before it’s first nacelle retrofit. No apply both the same concept to 10 years prior — older ships, wearing older uniforms that are different from the new flagship design, which look closer to the ENTERPRISE uniforms and ships which came before it, than the newer designs we became used to in TOS. No need for anybody to spoon feed the explanation — the logic is intuitive based on what we’ve already seen.


While its registry would seem to argue against it it, maybe DISCOVERY is some sort of lost cutting edge experimental ship of Vulcan design?

Maybe that’s what Georgiou and Burnham discover on the desert planet?

Its seems likely Burnham’s Vulcan training is going to play a pivotal role in her getting a command?

Canon. Sheesh. No one screams when Bond goes back to being a rookie… or Batman begins… again… and Spider-Man seems stuck in origin-mode forever. Superman finally learns to wear his underwear… under… and, after some gnashing of teeth, the Earth continues to spin. So, WHY are we so fixated on trying to make Trek one smooth continuity? It’s the philosophy that holds it together. If the onscreen toys and in-universe don’t jib with eps from 51 years ago, get over it! Let’s just see whether this show is good!!!!

‘in-universe history’ that is.

Probably because we have a lot of decent continuity between 5 other TV shows.

YEs I have said this as well. BUT I will say however whenever they rebooted those they actually made it clear it was a reboot from the old timeline. In other words Batman Begins has no bearing on Michael Keaton’s Batman or George Clooney’s Batman or Ben Aff…you get it. In others words a completely new universe. Although now I think about it most of those Batmans did share the same universe but again they were SEQUELS and not prequels and why people had less of a problem with the changes.

Thats the thing plenty of franchises do reboots and plenty do prequels to existing timelines but its rare when they both happen and why fans are having problems with it. I don’t personally but yes why it should be a SEQUEL to TOS and not a prequel. They could’ve even set it around TUC era and I think people would feel somewhat better about it and then it could be far enough from the TOS films but still not in the TNG era but you can at least believe why the technology looks the way it does. But sure I agree people just have to accept its a reboot. And I think because no one has just come out and said that (because I think they are afraid they will scare people away) it feels like a con to some people.

But thats what it is, a REBOOT, something new in an old universe. Its not trying to mimic what came before it, its giving it a new direction. Its more Man of Steel than Superman Returns but CBS don’t want to admit that.

Big difference between Star Trek and those other franchises. I’ve seen it compared to James Bond a few times. But part of the legacy and mythology of the Bond franchise is the changing of the guard every few years.

The comparison would work if, for TMP, they re-cast Kirk, Spock etc. And then again a few years later.

From TOS onward, there was an acceptance that everything was happening in the same universe. And “Kirk” aged and died. And was not replaced. And when he was finally replaced, it was in the past with a plot contrivance that did not actually replace the Kirk we knew.

Star Trek is constrained, somewhat, by the enormity of its mythology. Even JJ knew you couldnt just “re boot” Star Trek without alienating a lot of people. So they created the time travel scenario to have their cake and eat it too…and still never made it work completely.

Whereas, Batman has had many different looks and actors etc. Its accepted. Had Michael Keaton taken on the role when he was very young and played the role until his late 60’s, you might have some push back from Batman fans who didnt want a re-boot.

I always felt the JJ films would have worked better had they not done the alternate universe. Could still do the time travel with Spock, but rather then say this is a new universe, simply have us, as the viewer not return to the future with Spock…we go back…and stay back to watch these voyages. And ofcourse that means better writing and more commitment to a familiar look (rather then the ridiculous giant Enterprise and Apple Bridge).

That could also undo the Kirk death by having Spock Prime, before he goes back, simply take Kirk aside and tell him that while he cannot divulge anything about the future, there is ONE thing he feels he must…

Anthony – One quibble, and it’s not really about your analysis of Discovery (at least not directly). It’s about The West Wing…

“But over time, writers gravitated more and more to stories focused on the president, because of the draw of the office.”

I’ve often thought that the gravitation shift in WW was less because of the “draw of the office” and more about the draw of the ACTOR. From the pilot episode, Martin Sheen’s President Bartlet dominated almost every scene he was in.

And if that’s the case, then when it comes to Discovery the producers and writers will have to be careful to keep Jason Isaacs’ Captain Lorca somewhat muted, lest he overshadow Sam Seab… um.. I mean Commander Burnham

Big West Wing fan and I believe the narrative change was attributed to that first pilot and they knew right there that Sheen was the star.

I actually think the aesthetic of the show fits nicely with TMP, and the rest of the TOS movies. The communicators look similar, the ship design looks similar, and even the bridge looks similar.

No one is ever going to produce a new Star Trek with sets that look like the 60’s TV show. Those were made on a shoe-string budget, with very obvious 60’s design elements. It would look cheesy. Comparing to Star Wars which kept the same design elements, which came out in the late 70’s, isn’t fair. Compare it to what they did with the first Trek movies and I think this fits in fine.

That was my thought as well. The aesthetic actually flows nicely into the first six movies (which didn’t match the aesthetic of TOS itself). TMP is supposed to take place just a couple of years after TOS (while TWOK takes place over a decade later). So, yeah, it works.

I’m coming around to that perspective also. I remember watching TNG and always assuming that the visuals of TOS were not “really” how things looked. But then in the episode “Relics” we see the classic bridge and of course there was a complete doubling down on the aesthetic in “Trials and Tribbleations.” And again later in “In a Mirror, Darkley.” So, then I convinced myself that the “cheesy” sets were a true representation of the era and it was just a design fad for that period. Now, however, I’m going to have to go back to assuming that nothing about that period is visually accurate to the rest of the universe and will just imagine TOS, and the later tribute episodes from TNG, DS9 and ENT, looking more like what we are seeing in Discovery. I just hope the storyline follows continuity! If not, then I may have to fall into the reboot camp :-)

P.S. nice analysis Anthony!

If you actually take TOS out of the mix and look at the franchise from Enterprise to Nemesis, the little we have seen looks like it fits more or less (even acknowledging that TNG was clearly a product of the 80’s).

I love TOS. I love the classic look. And we have the continuity of seeing that bridge in TNG, seeing it in Enterprise, seeing it in DS9. But the reality is, it’s TOS that is out of place.

@danno — those episodes unwittingly did a lot of damage to the franchise, despite how much I love them; they’re some of my favorites. But they’re my favorites from a nostalgia perspective. These episodes were straight up fan pandering. They were brilliant, but I think have to be viewed in a vacuum. How else could they have done Trials and Tribulations without inferring some kind of visual canon? They shouldn’t have spent so much time commenting on the visuals in my opinion — they should have left the Klingon appearance unmentioned, as well as everything else. That’s how you know for sure it was fan pandering — they had the characters talking like Trek conventioneers debating the visual minutia. Instead of just focusing on the story and the special treat of putting the new characters into the same footage as the old, the inadvertently cemented the look of TOS as being as essential to canon as the events by hanging a lantern on it — and the two things aren’t even really in the same ballpark — in other words, the look of the stadium may change, but the way the game’s played isn’t, and that’s canon in a nutshell.

Curious Cadet,

One thing that I always found odd about those episodes is they slavishly recreated the ship’s sets interiors while “reimagining” the exteriors.

Dax’s line about the women wearing less clothes in TOS was particularly awful. And that line would be blasted today.

Yup. Im the biggest canon junkie but if your choice is to look like TOS or look like you fit into every other aspect of the franchise, they made the right choice. And clearly they are aware of canon and have tried to respect it in many aspects, including the props.

They’re doing their best to maintain consistency more in spirit than in detail, and are willing to retcon whatever they must to attract an audience. If they alienate a few whiney fans along the way, I don’t think it’s any skin off their back.

It’s going to be hilarious when we finally see the bridge of the Discovery (rather then the Shenzhou) and it’s an updated replica of the TOS bridge.

If it is, it better be updated to look interesting. Well, that’s how i’d prefer it, anyway. End of the day i’m far more concerned with the stories than the visuals.

If they go with cheap 60s looking designs though it will be hard for me to take seriously. It’s one of the reasons I find TOS impossible to sit through.


Re: If it is, it better be updated to look interesting.

The end product for which STAR TREK had originally been produced was for display on 1960s’ RCA Color TVs. It was distributed to the affiliates on 16mm film reels.

The prequel is being made with an eye to future-proofing its end product with a resolution roughly 10x that. To my mind, that gives the art department 10x the real estate to introduce changes to update it interestingly in HD while preserving its original look-and-feel for the purists compulsed to watch it in SD.

“JJ Abrams has everything to do with Discovery”

Are you trying to turn people off of the show before they’ve even seen it?

Kayla, Brian, Jared and Matt had a much smarter take on this point in their podcast, when they framed JJ’s influence on DSC as limited to certain aesthetics and thus largely superficial in the literal sense.

Smarter because uniforms, lens flares and frenetic photography are not “everything” about a TV show. And more diplomatic, because a lot of people would lose interest if JJ Abrams really had “everything” do to with DSC.

My issues with the JJ films were far more about the content and heart of it, the writing and story ideas and acting, in some cases. They were good looking films. And Im not sure CBS has made a conscious decision to look like the JJ films rather they made a conscious decision to look expensive and slick and cinematic. And I can dig that.

I can’t crap on the show. I havent seen it yet. Im hopeful. And if it sucks, Ill say so. After I’ve seen it.

To be fair to Tony, I think you’re missing the strikethrough of the word “nothing”, it’s kind of a snarky/sarcastic thing that changes the overall meaning.

Matt Wright

Even if the intended tone is snarky hyperbole, I think that my second point is still valid. Do you remember how many people expressed misgivings when it was first announced that Alex Kurtzman would be executive producing the new Trek TV series? Even people with ambivalent feelings about the Bad Robot movies expressed disappointment, couched in a wait-and-see position. DSC was supposed to be the show for those of us who found the BR movies unsatisfying. Do you remember Kayla and Brian talking about how CBS was very keen on making DSC appeal to the portion of the fan base that the BR movies basically ignored? How they told us all not to worry, that CBS wasn’t going to dismiss us and our concerns (like Paramount had)? Posting the sub-head “JJ Abrams has everything to do with Discovery” does not inspire confidence in those of us willing to give DSC a chance in spite of Alex Kurtzman’s high-level involvement.

P.S. And for those of us who remember how this site went into full-on promotion mode for all things Bad Robot in the days following the release of ST09, the return of that sort of promotion undermines the credibility of this site.

Then please, just go away then if their ‘credibility’ is on the line.

And man, DON’T speak for all of us. I’m an old school Trekkie like most here and no I didn’t love the KT films but I was never as bothered by them as some of you people. I would’ve been fine if the new show took place in that universe. I would’ve been fine if Abrams and Bad Robot produced it. I think people here gets too caught up in branding when at the end of the day its going to come down to the people who run the show. It doesnt really matter what universe or time period it actually takes place in, it simply comes down to the people who writes it.

I have made it clear I’m not big on prequels but I made it MORE clear that its not a deal breaker either. I just want a good show. I don’t care whose name is on it nor do I care if it looks too much like another show or films. I only care that its GOOD. And you don’t know that either way. No one knows that. You saw the trailer, it looked too ‘Nu-Trek’ for you so now you have decided its going to be bad. It doesn’t look like the show you had in your head for 12 years. Boo-hoo.

I swear I don’t even understand why they KEEP making Star Trek??? You people just drive anyone away who attempts to do anything with it. Trust me, if Discovery fails that will be it for a long long time, especially if the Abrams films are done.

Bang on cue with the mandates to conform from the JJ-lovers.

You remind me of this South Park bit: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6fZZqDJXOVg

I have no interest in speaking for you, so you needn’t worry about that. I would have thought it clear from my phrasing that “those of us” does not imply you. Are you following my reasoning? I named a condition that doesn’t necessarily apply to you. And, if it doesn’t apply to you, then I’m not speaking on your behalf. You foller?

Ok that clip is hilarious lol. But no, I’m NOT saying that and you can’t even follow your own analogy. First off where is there a ‘mandate’ to conform to anything? Secondly why your analogy is so flawed is because you HAVEN’T seen the show yet man. You are basing it on a 2 minute trailer and YET you already assuming its going to be like the Abrams films. Look at you whining over something you still know very little about but yet have convinced yourself you know all about it.

I’m not saying you can’t have an opinion, I just find it crazy people have determined something will suck over a few minutes of footage. In this case because it looks too much of movies you don’t like. Even if thats true does that mean the stories and tone will be similar? Or that it will be heavier on action than other shows? Again no one KNOWS.

And what was insulting to me is you attacked this website because they promoted movies you don’t like. Seriously? Man, did you forget why this site even exists??? Do you know why its called “Trekmovie”? It was named that for a specific reason, to update and promote the first original Abrams film and yet here you are, EIGHT years later, whining it ‘undermines the credibility of this site’? Genius the website only existed BECAUSE of those movies lol. Its a FAN site, its not suppose to be objective, its suppose to celebrate Star Trek and specifically those films. Its not censoring anyone who doesn’t like them however and say what they want about them, so whats the problem?

Thats what I meant by go away. If you haven’t understood that this whole time then yeah you are on the wrong site, wouldn’t you agree? As far as you not addressing your thoughts to me, OK, fair enough. THats a fair point. But the rest is over dramatic, off point and the usual whining. Again TM was made with the idea of being positive for these films. This isn’t 60 Minutes, its a fan site. Don’t get mad at them if you just figured this out.

Tiger 2

You’re telling me to get out if I have a problem with the pro-DSC promotion here.


You’re ascribing a bunch of positions to me that aren’t my positions.

…you HAVEN’T seen the show yet man. You are basing it on a 2 minute trailer and YET you already assuming its going to be like the Abrams films.

No. I’ve been trying very hard to assume that DSC is NOT going to be like the Abrams films. Which is why it’s troubling to see a sub-head saying “JJ Abrams has EVERYTHING to do with DSC.” Further, my comments have all been about the effectiveness of THE PROMOTIONAL MATERIALS. You won’t find me to have given any opinion about the show, because, as you correctly pointed out, the show hasn’t been released yet. I’ve said this a bunch of times, but I’ll repeat it again just for you: I WANT TO LIKE DSC. I WANT TO FEEL EXCITED ABOUT IT. AND, TO THAT END, I’M PROVIDING SUGGESTIONS REGARDING THE PROMOTIONAL MATERIALS THAT WOULD MAKE THE SHOW SEEM MORE COMPELLING AT THIS STAGE, AND THEREBY INSPIRE MORE PEOPLE—MOST CERTAINLY, MYSELF—-TO SPEND THEIR MONEY ON CBS ALL ACCESS. Clear?


Where you are losing me, is this article is very clearly labelled an editorial, and so, is not claiming to be impartial or anything more than an opinion piece.

I would be shocked, quite frankly, if Anthony, in an opinion piece, didn’t try to prop up Abrams’ Trek –it’s not as if he’s tried to keep his support of it some dark hidden forbidden secret.– in some way.

Frankly, I personally think it’s a cause doomed to be as lost in the regime change currently underway at VIACOM/PARAMOUNT as DeLine/Jendresen’s vision was in the regime change that ushered Abrams’ take in.

But as long as he keeps it on the editorial side of things, I’m fine with it.

As opinions go, you are free to express how offensive it is to you, but I think you went a bit overboard intimating AP’s mere editorial is signalling a dedication of this site to a full promotion of Abrams’ Trek vision to the new Paramount regime.


Well, that’s actually quite easy to explain.

Firstly, I don’t know whether or the degree to which this site is receiving kickbacks or compensation of some kind from the companies whose products it promotes. Regarding the issue credibility, sites like this influence consumers. And businesses obviously know that. Definitionally, you are correct that an article labeled “editorial” is different from one being put forth as objective reporting. However, if the site publishing the editorial is being compensated by the companies whose products are being promoted in the editorial, knowledge of this fact would cast the editorial in a new light: you couldn’t really know to what degree the thoughts being expressed about the product are genuine reactions vs. motivated by compensation. So, for example is the writer really that excited about a movie trailer that shows you basically nothing substantial about a show? Is he excited to some degree, but representing his excitement as greater than he actually feels because he’s being compensated to do so? Etc….


P.S. There’s nothing inherently wrong about being compensated to promote products, so long as you’re up front about being compensated. When you’re reading an article from a source acting in a promotional capacity for a company or companies, you judge the article differently, as it carries different implications, than when you’re reading an article from a source presumed to be independent.


Re: I don’t know whether or the degree to which this site is receiving kickbacks or compensation of some kind…

Well let’s review:

On September 1 of 2005 AP had possession of this site and was, near as I can tell, toying around with starting a blog of some sort:


On July 15th 2006:


he gave it the name of “The Trek XI Report” after Paramount announced a 5 year deal with Abrams with the eleventh Trek film as JJ’s first project, giving the indication of which I previously mentioned in my prior comment to you.

Here you see the first indication the owner does receive some small compensation:


in return for the clickthrus of the ads that appear on this site which, no doubt, helps with his paying the costs of making this website available, BFWIW I recall he said that it in no way covers all the expenses.

However this makes it clear:

“The community here on the TrekMovie comment boards is like this living organism that no one intended to create. YOU GUYS are the ones who, over its 10 year history, have made TrekMovie such a vibrant place to be, and the staff here value your contributions. This website is a volunteer effort. We are passionate about Trek, and it continues to be our absolute pleasure to bring you the news. So, thanks to all of our readers, old and new!” — By: TrekMovie.com Staff | April 29, 2016 |

that this site is being maintained by individuals who receive no compensation.

I’m still not sure of what more you want? Or maybe I should ask, what you suspect?


You really want to talk about all this? All I can do is give you my honest reactions. Just let me be absolutely clear at the outset that I’m not trying to stretch out this topic, nor to put forth any kind of agenda—-I’m simply not dodging your questions. Having said that, “click-thru’s” are not necessarily the issue. And I don’t see that excerpt of AP advising about buying the book cheap on Amazon as necessarily indicating that he was being compensated to promote the book. I’ve likewise advised people here that they can buy a certain Trek book cheap on Amazon, and it should be clear that I’m not being compensated. Secondly, AP was on leave during the time of the 2016 quote that you posted. And, I don’t doubt what that quote says.

What made me suspicious, back before he went on leave, was the combination of three things. Firstly, the torrent of promotion for all things Bad Robot. Secondly, the lack of any real criticism or critical analysis about ST09 in the posted articles—-they all had an appearance of loyalty about promoting the movie. And, thirdly, when the first article critical of BR Trek was finally posted here (in the wake of poor fan reception of STID), Bob Orci’s outraged reaction seemed to indicate that he felt that an agreement of some sort, whether official or not, had been breached. That was my take on that incident. I’ve heard your take, and I disagree with it. To me it read like there had been, at least, some mutual backscratching going on—-for example, you give us good press, and I’ll make sure you get scoops, interviews, access, promotion for your site, which brings ad buys, any or all of the above. That was my honest, unadulterated reaction. And it was shortly after that incident that AP left, not that they were necessarily related.

So the issue isnt whether the site receives any sort of compensation but whether they should admit it or not?

I agree there are some clues that make it seem possible. But clearly there is no censoring of comments from people who hated the Bad Robot films. So either way, it makes little difference.

Orci did seem personally offended but he also went on rants attacking individual posters here too. It just seems his way.


Re: You really want to talk about all this?

Oh, so you aren’t hung up about some sort of payola, which I thought would be ridiculous given the obvious lack of funds available to advance this site? You are concerned about the obvious quid pro quo AP and his site gets in access which grants him scoops over other more professionally run journalistic endeavors?

Well, I certainly doubt any formal agreement exists –again, or else I’d expect it to be reflected in this site being far better off.

And if Paramount is manipulating AP towards its ends I doubt it is through any conscious effort on his part to willingly be manipulated, but more likely a function of Paramount being far more experienced and adept at doing so with far more senior and professional reviewers, i.e. whisking them away to exotic locales for screenings, etc.

I’d probably be more concerned about if I thought there was any chance the as-yet-to-be-hired new Paramount production chairman would take a chance on another expensive-for-the-returns Abrams’ style TREK, but, so far, the only thing that’s been puzzling me is there have been no official announcement of headless Paramount production picking up new films not already in the former Grey queue but a lot of leaking by others that someone over at Paramount has resumed green-lighting new films. I have no evidence, but the only person I can think of over there that could be doing this is Marc Evans which could be a cause for your concern.


Yeah, basically we’re on the same page. I don’t disagree with anything that you said.

To put it simply, having an influencer site say “rah! rah!” for anything with a “Star Trek” label, just for the privilege of being able to do so, doesn’t do the actual Star Trek franchise (and certainly not its longtime fans) good in the long run. The lack of critical analysis and review only lowers standards for quality of content. If you’re running a site like this, the presumption is that you have some special ability to discern, analyze, perceive, reflect upon and communicate about the products that you’re posting about. And just saying “rah! rah!” for every new product because it gets you access to be able to do more of the same ain’t the aforesaid, but rather, it’s simply acting in an operational capacity for various corporate marketing departments—-hawking the wares of CBS, Paramount, Bad Robot, etc.

(sorry, I meant *trailer*, not movie trailer.)

Inspiring editorial! Thanks for taking the high road.

Very hard to read it with those gifs rotating. Please, just don’t. It’s a nice review, after managing to read it, though.

Totally agree. I’ve noticed this trend and its so hard to read with motion everywhere. Don’t do this!

I’m old enough where I watched ORIGINAL BROADCAST of TOS when I was a kid on a black & white little TV in my bedroom. I didn’t quite understand it, but I knew I dug it.

Having said that, I really don’t care about continuity. Just give me the best-looking Star Trek that you can give me RIGHT NOW, and I’m good with it. Like Austin Powers said about time-travel, if you think about it too much, “you’ll go cross-eyed”.

Remember, Voyager was created to be the big show on a brand new network, UPN. CBS is doing the same thing here with their start-up streaming service. As for price, I spend more than 10 dollars a month on beer, so it doesn’t bother me. Still don’t know if I can get their streaming on my TV, will find out. Silly me, I like to watch TV shows on my hi-def TV.

Bring it on. The haters can hate, but chances are I’m going to be rocking and blasting this thing on my TV at loud volume and enjoying every second of it.

Here, here! Well written and completely encapsulates my feelings of excitement for the new show.

Am I missing something but this trailer was awful! This looks like a cheap fan film

Yes, you are definitely missing something if you think that the trailer looked like a fan film. A hell of a lot.

“Oh, but Axanar, that was great cinema! Shame the suits shut it down!” Groan…


Re: Shame the suits shut it down!

I agree. A good tailor would’ve done wonders for AXANAR.

A competent person behind the project would have done more wonders!

Looks good, and I like this article. I really liked TNG “Lower Decks” — a good episode. The group of lower ranked officers would have made a good sub-cast for the show. I always wondered if they could have been featured regularly. And now an opportunity to see how something like that could play out. In the new show, the captain may be the wise oracle that the main character gets sage advice from. A mentor type relationship perhaps. I look forward to seeing how this change in structure works out. But I also think it’s possible (not a given) that Michael Burnham will assume command on some dramatic season finale. Probably a sad one where the character of the wise captain, beloved by both the crew of the ship and the fans at home, (even though not the main character of the show) tragically dies and Burnham takes command. Or they may wait until the series finale for something like that.

Great trailer, great article, looks like it’s going to be a great show.

Would it really be a betrayal of this show’s new vision for Star Trek to…

a) Put red nacelle caps on all Federation starships, as befits a TOS-prequel?


b) Put beards, ‘taches and hair on all the male Klingons?

I can live with the visual update to everything else.

I think what happens is you hire creative people. And even if they are Trek fans, they get excited about their own creativity so inevitably there is change. And the studio doesnt mind because they want to sell NEW items.

I think there was a better chance of TOS-era uniforms if the new movies hadn’t happened. If you’re deliberately creating a series that does not conform to the JJ films, there is a risk in rehashing those uniforms. Same with the visual look of the ships/sets. (the filming technique might be reminiscent but really only in a larger budget cinematic way, the sets look different)

If its me, I’d have done a few more things to make it look like TOS, even if they are small like red nacelle caps or the deflector dish. But I suspect we will see other familiar things as the series progresses.

And if we see a Constitution Class ship, I would assume it would largely resemble the TOS era but have a more detailed, gritty, realistic look. The point is, these ships etc are not counter to TOS, but that TOS, filmed in the 60’s are counter to the look of that era now.

I personally think that would be a very cool thing to see.

One way to look at the “nacelle problem” is to consider between the NX-01 and Kirk’s Enterprise, is there were a lot of engineering and development going on. Look at the Klingon and Romulan ships for instance. It’s not a huge leap to think that the Federation would have been trying various things. Consider just the “Enterprise Incident” where the Federation steals technology from the enemy — they likely didn’t just stick that on a shelf satisfied that they had it. So ships without glowing red nacelle caps likely existed. Indeed we know they existed. Just take a look at “The Cage” pilot episode. There are a lot of people complaining that this should look just like “The Cage” in terms of design. However, if that’s true, then guess what? No red nacelle caps.


A few thoughts… *clears throat*

Although many fans have been invested in an ‘overall continuity’ of the whole STAR TREK ‘franchise’ over the years, I myself prefer to imagine that the ‘prime TOS universe’ consists of ONLY the ‘Shatner’-starring episodes and TOS movies, and concludes onscreen with ‘The Undiscovered Country’ movie…period!

Unlike a ‘franchise’ like the BOND movies for instance, the STAR TREK concept easily lends itself to the notion of ‘alternate, parallel universes’ – and if it bothers anyone enough, then this notion makes it simple for anyone to MAKE UP their own ‘personal canon’ for themselves…no matter what the ‘official canon’ of the ‘franchise’ supposedly is, and despite whatever anyone else thinks.

Not many in the viewing audience will be bothered about this kind of thing, of course…so I realise I’m in a picky minority. And I’m very comfortable with that. :)

So while I already have quite a few reservations about various elements seen in the trailer for STAR TREK DISCOVERY, I’m certainly looking forward to seeing what it’s storyline brings to the concept. However, it’s ‘re-imagined’ production design and stylings (and overall ‘tone’ most likely) are far too removed from the actual classic ‘prime TOS universe’ for me to ever take it seriously as a ‘true prequel’ to that…but that’s OKAY…as I WILL enjoy the hell out of it, as long as it turns out to be an entertaining watch overall.

However, this latest STAR TREK-centric show will never negatively impact on my own preferred version of the ‘prime TOS universe’…as no matter whatever ‘stardates’ are mentioned in it, I will just merely look on it as being set in a totally separate ‘alternate, parallel universe’ to the classic TREK show and movies…in the exact same way I choose to look on ‘The Cage’ pilot episode, the non-TOS TREK shows and movies (including the STAR TREK GENERATIONS movie), and of course J.J.’s ‘re-imagined’ KELVIN-verse.

I much prefer the notion of looking on this as just YET ANOTHER ‘alternate, parallel universe’ to my own ideal TOS ‘prime universe’, and one that is possibly where J.J.’s 2009 STAR TREK movie ‘split off’ from in the first place.

Currently, I curious about two specific things about this show –

1. Will these particular ‘alternated, parallel universe’-Klingons be portrayed as full-blown ‘religious fundamentalist extremists’ who hate everyone (and every ‘thing’) else who don’t believe in the exact same credo as they do? – which means they will be almost impossible to reason with…

2. Also, Will this show turn out to have a terrific ‘Main Theme’ and great incidental music throughout, or not?

Whatever, I am content to embrace this forthcoming show by thinking of it as being the ‘prime J.J.-VERSE universe’ where an alternate ‘Spock’ originated from in the 2009 movie…and some of you might be too.

In addition…

3. As this DISCOVERY crew’s uniforms seem very still and formal, I’m also now curious if the show will feature some…ahem..less-formally-attired ‘alternate, parallel universe’ Orion females in this incarnation of the show… Fingers crossed. ;)

…that of course should have said very STIFF and formal.

It’s just a tv show. If it’s good I’ll like and watch it, if not, I won’t. Anything beyond that is getting worked up for nothing.

Ill agree with you on that Harry, although your even keeled response contradicts your very worked up remarks about William Shatner on a regular basis lol

People are losing their minds. And contorting themselves into odd shapes to push the narrative that fits the opinion they held before they saw the trailer or knew anything about it.

I will admit my feelings on Shatner are not necessarily logical. I realize I need to keep them to myself around here but I know from being a long time Trek fan and talking to other Trek fans on other sites and in person that I am far from alone.

Perhaps, but to many he is the hero of the franchise. And regardless of your opinion he IS an acclaimed actor who has very many friends in the business who support him.

My thing about his former co-stars criticizing him was that if he was such an ass who wanted to limit them, he could have had them fired any time he wanted. And when there was a film that was written and directed by him, he made sure everyone had something to do. So I think the criticism is over blown.

It could be that Shatner rubs people the wrong way and doesnt realize it. Who knows. I’ve never met him. But I do hope he returns to Star Trek eventually.

Well put, TUP.

It is from political correctness and we all know it.

This is no retcon– Trek has been what you call “PC” since its inception. The most diverse casts in the 60s, 80s, and 90s.

DS9 only had 1 white male character, their top 4 ranked officers were a black man, a woman, a transgender alien woman, and a klingon portayed by a black actor. Voyager had a female captain, a native american first officer, a black vulcan, a korean ensign, a half-hispanic chief engineer, and a female borg.

Diversity is the most consistent thing you can find in ALL Trek series.

Like the PeeCee casting of a black woman, an Asian, a Scot, and a Russian? Is that what we all know?

Not exactly a member of Mensa are ya?

This article seems like nothing more than someone twisting themselves into a pretzel trying to justify how blatantly non-Star Trek this show is.

@Jack – except you’re claim it’s “non-Star Trek” is incorrect.

It doesn’t take much after to explain the retcons, or to get excited about a clearly exciting trailer. But then again, all of these things are subjective. If you don’t like it, that’s certainly you’re right.

Looks lame as hell, it’s difficult to know what to hate the most.

I would like to say what an outstanding job Anthony did in breaking down the points that stood out and providing rational and positive opinions. I enjoyed it very much

As a white male, I’m disgusted by other white men who whine about the leads of the show being women and not white. Poor babies. Fun Fact: The overwhelming population of the planet is NOT WHITE. Almost 51% of the human population is made up of WOMEN. When you whine about the cast representing what people from earth ACTUALLY LOOK LIKE and cry that it’s “PC” what you are really upset about is the fact that as white men (a minority of the population with the majority of economic and social power due to their employing racism to maintain their unjust dominate and advantage) you no longer have your booster chair, your cheatsheet, your sports doping giving you a representation (which is a mathematical MIS-repersenation of the human population) advantage on one less TV show. Awww. Boo hoo. Reality check: The world was never a majority white or male. Ever. Sorry that you are having a hard time coping with being treated fairly and not given an unfair advantage. It’s like whining about not getting a head start in a race. You just look sad and silly.

Also, whining about Start Trek being “too PC” makes one think that you never watched this show about a seemingly socialist no-money interracial and inter-species future. This is Star Trek we are talking about… infinite diversity in infinite combinations. Captain Kirk was the original Social Justice Warrior freeing people from injustice across the galaxy.

Do something constructive with your grief that you are no longer being treated as a special snowflake just for being white and male and save your white guy tears to water some flowers. :)

Well said, Luke.

Star Trek is not to PC. It is still about greedy studios trying to make money from fans.

You figured out the conspiracy – studios, executives, shareholders, actors, producers, directors – everyone is trying to make as much money as possible. I know it can be shocking but that’s how capitalism works.

God forbid a business try to make money from fans!

Pretty good article overall, my primary disagreement being with the assertion that DSC owes its visual style in any significant way to the KT films. Other than a few lens flares and the odd camera angle, I’m just not seeing it.

The filming doesn’t seem nearly as frenetic as the JJ films. I think it’s just so different from what we’ve seen from TV trek (very plain camera work and staging), with loose camera movements, shots with fluidity and more interesting composition that the closest comparison in Trek is the last three movies.

Given that they’re both in space, both Trek, it’s a natural comparison to draw, but I don’t think they’re the same at all. Hard to tell though from 2 minutes.

People are confusing the effort to appear expensive and cinematic with “JJ films”.

Yep. The bridge of the Shrnzhou, for example, is nothing at all like the Enterprise iBridge.

It’s worth mentioning that the more mundane cinematography seen on 90s Trek was likely the result of a) the 4:3 format that limited staging and shot-for-shot action, and b) the crunch to produce 26 episodes in 6-8 months.

Directors had to quickly and efficiently put together 45 minute episodes, and surely that limited their options on these small sets. Best just to keep it simple.

Now, with streaming, no deadline to hit, a smaller run of episodes and a much bigger budget, combined with location shooting, the camera work and directing can be more varied, open, and cinematic.

I think its great that they don’t have to restrict themselves tightly into a 43 or 44 minute slot. They can tell the stories more naturally and bring those episodes to an end, more naturally. A lot of ‘Old ‘Trek episodes’ just seem to rush everything to a conclusion within the last 10 minutes, just to meet a strict deadline of 43 or 44 minutes.

Agreed, by having a more cinematic look and feel, like the movies, it makes Discovery more visually interesting than any previous Trek show that used the standard straight shot of the bridge and it’s crew talking and occasionally pretending to be hit by enemy fire while the camera shakes. I don’t think a Trek show in 2017 will work with the look and camera angles of a 90’s show. All the popular shows film with this more cinematic look and feel and TPTB rightfully so are doing the same.

Harry Plinkett,

Re: … Trek show that used the standard straight shot of the bridge and it’s crew talking and occasionally pretending to be hit by enemy fire …

Me? I think I’ll wait until stagily presented STAR TREK eventually makes it to the Broadway stage, and we know that it will –likely shortly after Brooks turns SPACEBALLS boffo there–, before I try to decide which style of STAR TREK story presentation, if any, transcends all others.

They lost me at death sniffer.

@bassmaster22 — I kind of did a double take at that myself. What an odd character to inject into Trek — almost as odd as Troi in TNG, except far more useful. I can’t wait to see how they justify such a character, and how they intend to use him.

….and, how he never appeared in the Trek universe ever again, since we’re doing a prequel. Is he the last of his kind? That’s the only way to explain that one away.

He popped over to the Babylon 5 Universe, got a bit of a do-over, and became a Soul Eater. Who by the way was played by W Morgan Sheppard, aka Rura Penthe’s Warden in TUC. For people who get chuckles out of trivial connections like myself.,,

And anyone who has a problem with B5 has a problem with me! :D After all, what other sci-fi series not directly Roddenberry-related, from the time of TOS onward, was willing to cast Majel Roddenberry for a role – both a tribute and an obvious attempt to lure some Trek fans over for a look at B5…

No problems here. It was a great show (or it touched greatness from time to time, at least), and paved the way for the kind of long-form storytelling that is the basis for today’s “second golden age of TV,” as well as inspiring still better SF series like the rebooted Galactica and The Expanse. Not a bad legacy at all.

Martin Sheen played one, too.


Re: ….and, how he never appeared in the Trek universe ever again…

OK, maybe his head does explode:


Re: I can’t wait to see how they justify such a character, and how they intend to use him.

While I believe this is meant to build on the fact that the Trek universe is one filled with katras, telepathy, telekinesis and time travel, I can’t wait for the explanation as to why this character’s mind won’t explode when confronted with the resurrections and retrograde time travel to come.

“2. JJ Abrams has nothing everything to do with Discovery”

I know, and I hate that. I want this to be special. I was hoping they’d really be brave and do what Star Trek used to do. Take the high road and be unique, the smartest and original. Again, we’ll see, but I’m not exactly thrilled.

I don’t get all the talk about how this show will be “different” from the other Star Trek shows because it “doesn’t revolve around the captain and the Captain is not the lead”. Last time I checked, the Captain HASN’T been the “star” of the show since the original series, so Jason Issacs having a supporting role instead of being the “star” of Discovery is nothing new. TNG presented the same premise 30 years ago: Picard would more of a hands off captain that appears every week in a father-figure role, whereas “Number One”, first officer Commander Riker, would have more of a Kirk-like role as the swaggering action hero who leads the crew on away missions. That’s not quite how it turned out, but TNG, DS9, VOY, and ENT were all ensemble shows where the entire cast had episodes that revolved around them and moments to shine. If the premise here is that the Captain will be seen now and then giving orders while the first officer is the heart and soul of the series, that’s not a groundbreaking concept for Star Trek nor a “progressive” new direction for the franchise. It’s actually a step backwards towards something they attempted 30 years ago.

I’m sorry, but this is going to be crap. Pure crap. I was initially intrigued by the Ralph McQuarrie-esque starship design, but it now appears that may have even morphed into something else. The uniforms are awful. The Bridge? Looks as though it was designed a couple hundred years after TOS, not before. The Klingons should all, or mostly, look like they did in the TOS episodes (since they didn’t start sprouting genetic mutation head ridges until season four of Enterprise, and Enterprise had them wrong also!), not like they appear in the latest “Discovery” trailer. Agggh! Paramount/CBS just doesn’t get it!

Set the show on THE Enterprise (“no bloody A, B, C, or D”) with Captain April in the center seat. Midway through the series, April gets relieved by Pike, and eventually familiar characters begin boarding as crew (Spock, Scott, Sulu). The stories could have even been told from the perspective of “Number One”, since they seemed so determined to have it that way.

I’m not interested enough to watch it on “free” TV. Certainly not interested enough to pay extra to watch it.

For starters, we didnt see the Discovery in the trailer. Secondly, we sure hope it morphed into something better than that Commodore 64-prduced ship they showed us last year. Thirdly, if you expected to see 60’s SFX on this show then the issue is you, not them. Fourthly, they were using TOS-era props and sound effects so relax.

And ultimately, since you’re not interested and not watching, thank you for your remarks and have a great life.

You put a long bushy, hairy wig on T’Kuvma, and he’ll look similar to the latter TV Trek-era Klingons, just with darker skin. The sarcophagus seems to show one of those more familiar-type Klingons as well. They will answer these questions, as Trek Klingon continuity is something the franchise has invested in already.

‘young minds, fresh ideas, be tolerant’

“And if the U.S.S. Discovery encounters the Borg, or travels through the Bajoran Wormhole, or even finds some Horta, I will join others with torches and pitchforks.”

Great line. I’m with you. That’s why I find this prequel idea to be so unwise. I remember when talks of this show first started, and they said it would take place after TUC – I thought that was a great idea. Ten years pre-TOS? Not so much.

I also liked the TUC idea. I would have made it Enterprise B right after Kirk’s “death”.

I alos like a Robert April show on a brand new Enterprise. But imagine the outcry when they “updated” the Enterprise…?

I actually like the gold, silver, and bronze details on the uniforms. For me, they evoke the color scheme of the original uniforms on TOS in “Where No Man Has Gone Before” where, instead of red, operations was in a tan color. So bronze goes to tan, gold stays gold, and silver goes blue (taking the core color of Discovery’s uniforms).

I agree. I wasn’t sure what I was looking at with the original uniform sneak peak, but the gold/silver/bronze works surprisingly well, and are recognizable as their other series division counterparts. I don’t like that the arrowhead looks like it changes with the division color scheme, though.

It’s hard to know if this has been discussed yet, Anthony, however I’d like to add an observation to your editorial.

If Discovery’s visual style has everything to do with JJ Abrams, then I believe that the story narrative will have everything to do with “The Walking Dead” and “Game of Thrones”. I feel this way because of the news of the “Talk Trek” show that was announced and that mirrors “The Talking Dead”.

I’m not feeling this is a flippant observation as it would make logical (read: money making) sense. The story format of long-narrative, multiple character-based arcs seem to be in vogue with some of the most successful television properties today. CBS certainly wishes to make money and to ignore the modern TV audience’s tastes would be to their folly.

Therefore, it would seem to me that DIS will be much less “planet/alien of the week” TOS/TNG-style and much more similar to DS9 or ENT Xindi Arc in it’s storytelling.

The point about avoiding a West Wing situation is spot on. If you look at the first few episodes of Voyager, Tom Paris is surprisingly prominent. One could argue that he was the central character, or at least co-star with Janeway. The first scene with Janeway is her recruiting him, he’s the one character who is neither Starfleet nor Maquis, he’s nominated as a field medic to justify using him on every away mission like “Time & Again” (Sudden planetary disaster? I’ll take my engineer, security officer and pilot down to the surface), etc. That all went away went the writers decided that they didn’t care about the Maquis, the character, or continuity.

Similarly, you could easily make the argument that TNG was initially about Riker. The pilot had the ship picking up the new first officer, not Picard taking command, and Picard’s role is largely limited to the Q story which (while the focus of the episode as aired) was added in after the initial draft to increase the show’s running time to feature length. Then there’s the Troi situation.

So there’s a good reason to worry that a character who was designed as the focus of the show might lose out to the character with real power, or one that the writers just find more interesting. On the other hand, one reason why it was so easy for writers to change the premise of the earlier shows was a lack of serialized storytelling, so Martin-Green has a leg up here.

Voyager made the stupid decision that even though they set up all these inter-personal issues in the pilot, that nothing would matter from episode to episode. Sad, really.

@Mario — Maybe Roddenberry did have that in mind with TNG. But they paid the cast from the Capt. Down, meaning Stewart got paid the most (as did Mulgrew). Regardless, if Riker was supposed to be the focus, perhaps Frakes poor acting skills led to the shift to Stewart who ran circles around most of the cast. Not sure what you mean by the Troi “situation”. She was a useless character played by a substandard actor who made a weird choice of dialect, who arguably looked good in a tight fitting bodysuit which would get her thrown off a United flight if she wore that today. But one has to wonder why Roddenberry didn’t make Riker the strong female character he envisioned in THE CAGE. That would have been much more interesting. Indeed, I think I would have killed off Frakes (as well as Denise Crosby) and brought in a new female Number One, once the show’s future was secured (assuming that was a problem).

Here’s my thought– we know the studio wanted a handsome young Captain for TNG– a Kirk 2.0– so when Roddenberry insisted on an older, wiser, lead, he may have offered up Riker as a compromise, and that may have influenced who was the more prominent character in that first season.


Re:…Roddenberry insisted on an older, wiser, lead…

Roddenberry did no such thing! He fought the casting of Stewart. I recall Justman believed he was most hung up on his baldness, which I found odd given the female lead he created for TMP.


“We met at Gene Roddenberry’s house, Patrick pulled up in his rental car and we spent about 45 minutes together, talking. We watched Patrick drive away in his rental car to go to the airport and Gene closed the door, turned around, faced me and said, and I [Justman] quote, ‘I won’t have him.’

He wouldn’t have him and he wouldn’t tell me why. But I know why. I knew why. I knew that he had conceived of a Frenchman. And, you know, who was masculine, virile, and had a lot of hair. And Patrick didn’t fit that at all. Patrick was not so handsome, he was distinctive, and he was quite bald. Quite bald.

I was hot to trot. I was very, very enthused about Patrick playing the role. And I kept after Gene and Gene kept fighting me off until one day we had a new producer come on the scene, and that was Rick [Berman]. Rick saw Patrick’s film and fell in love with him. As did our casting director. So the three of us were allied in the fight to get Patrick as the captain. And Gene was allied in his own fight not to have him at all. So finally I realised that the more I pushed, the more he dug his heels in.

I made an announcement, one day, in a meeting when the subject was brought up and I said I don’t want to hear the name Patrick Stewart ever again. It’s over with Patrick Stewart, forget him. I did that on purpose to make Gene think that I’d given up.

And every time anyone mentioned Patrick Stewart’s name to me, I would explode and say ‘I don’t want to hear that. Don’t tell me Patrick Stewart any more’. Finally our last possible candidate came to audition for us. And the guy, whoever he was, read for us and talked with us and he left the room, the door closed and we were all silent. There was not a sound to be heard. And finally Gene Roddenberry heaved a big sigh. He said ‘All right, I’ll go with Patrick’” — Bob Justman

I just meant that Riker & Troi had an unresolved romantic history.

It’s interesting how they managed to solve most of TNG’s cast problems with Voyager. A major exception being Chakotay, not just that they dropped the Maquis story, but that they neutered the role of the first officer by sending Janeway on away missions. If Chakotay had been first officer/something else, he would have been a far more successful character. Science officer is obvious, given that the ship, like the D, never bothered with the role (yet DS9, which shouldn’t have needed a science officer, had one), but it didn’t fit the character anyway. Tactical officer would have worked, but they we’d have missed out on Batman Tuvok, which was one of the show’s underappreciated highs, and I wouldn’t have wanted a Vulcan science officer.

I think its great that Anthony pulled off the bandaid on speculation that Spock might some way some how be in Discovery. According to my math Burnham would have been around 6 years old when Spock was born. Check out my podcast on the trailer.