Saru And His ‘Star Trek: Discovery’ Alien Race Explained

One of the new things about Star Trek: Discovery is the character of science officer Saru played by Doug Jones. We saw him in the trailer, including his memorable line about being able to sense the coming of death, but little is known about the character and his alien species. Today Entertainment Weekly provides a bit more detail.

On Saru’s planet, there’s a dominant predator species that constantly imperils another weaker species called Kelpiens. As part of the latter group, Saru has evolved with heightened survival instincts. Such prey species tend to have a cowardly reputation in the Federation, but Saru should not be underestimated.

Showrunner Aaron Harberts also notes that Saru is the first of his species to join Starfleet. Jones is also quoted in the article, saying:

“[Producers] said Saru is the Spock of the series, he’s the Data of the series — and those are beloved characters that I always connect with whenever I would watch the past incarnations of Star Trek,” said Jones, giving some details about his role for the first time. “On Falling Skies, I played an alien species who came to Earth to help the humans fight back the bad aliens who’d taken over, and I was intelligent, well-spoken, had a lot of answers and science-y smart. Saru is all of those things and then some.”

Saru (Doug Jones) on Star Trek: Discovery

Doug Jones as Saru in Star Trek: Discovery (CBS)


Star Trek: Discovery premieres on September 24th on CBS with all subsequent episodes on CBS All Access in the US. See our Discovery info page for more details.

Keep up with all the Star Trek: Discovery news at TrekMovie.

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

Sounds interesting.

Though, if two races live on the same planet and are technologically advanced to the point of being involved with Star Fleet, wouldnt the aggressor have been able to completely subjugate the weaker or the weaker able to stand on their own?

I don’t think the species being referenced were/are both technological/space faring. Given the references to evolution, I would assume they are referring to the distant past, and that Saru’s sense of impending death is a genetic legacy of his evolution. Saru’s people (the Kelpiens) probably developed tech and then either shot all the predators or left the dang planet.

Hmmm the descriptions reads “there IS a predator species”. But you’re right it, it refers to evolving but mentions Saru specifically. Might be more accurate to say his species evolved.

I guess well find out. It would be weird if he lives on a planet where his people are hunted constantly but are technologically advanced enough to join Star Fleet.

Exactly. Just like our ‘fight or flight’ response. Sabertoothed tigers are no longer hunting us, but we still have the instinctual wiring to respond to the threat.

Could have some fun with that concept – maybe the Klingons (or other advanced predator race) keep them subjugated on a planet to hunt for sport and he is the first to escape? Lots of story options to explain, can’t wait to see what they picked.

I am Tosk. And so is he… kind of.

That was my first thought! They could have done a lot worse. It’s the first brilliant episode of DS9 I remember.

I agree. Really good standalone episode for O’Brien.

He has very big shoes to fill. Spock and Data are such big characters, played brilliantly by Nimoy and Spiner. I though Jeri did a very good job with Seven though.

It sounds as if the actor is excited by the idea of trying to fill those shoes, which means the actor has guts, even if his character doesn’t. :-) I hope he’s successful; I’d LOVE to love another Trek character the way I love Spock.

At the risk of drawing the ire of some here, for continuity’s sake, I hope he is the last of his kind, maybe the last of the ‘weaker species,’ which would make sense. That would explain why we never see his race again in any incarnation of the prime-timeline future.

Anyway, seems like an interesting character.

To be honest, I agree to an extent. I got raked over the coals when I said I’d rather she previously seen aliens then “new” ones because I actually dont like the idea of a Star Wars-like galaxy of millions of species.

In TOS, what made Spock unique was, in fact, he was unique. Why would Spock being the first Vulcan in Star Fleet matter, especially the bigotry, when Star Fleet has been teeming with Aliens for years.

But saying that, Ill always give a pass to something that is good. So hopefully its good.

“I got raked over the coals when I said I’d rather she previously seen aliens then “new” ones because I actually dont like the idea of a Star Wars-like galaxy of millions of species.”

A. Why?

B. But that’s what Star Trek is! Has been since TOS, a galaxy with millions of species. McCoy made that clear in Balance of Terror: “In this galaxy, there’s a mathematical probability of three million Earth-type planets.”

And my guess is the show was originally based on the Drake Equation. I’m sure everyone here has heard of it but just in case it was an equation the astrophysicist Frank Drake who postulated in the 1960s the galaxy could currently have millions of planets where life has evolved high enough to have radio technology like we do. I can’t remember how high he estimated but it was 10s of millions. Of course it could all be wrong but the point is thats what Star Trek based its show around.

And frankly you have a show based on seeking out strange new worlds, it wouldn’t be much of a show if there was just sparse life, especially a TV show that literally finds a new species of life every week. Considering how big the galaxy is, to find so many species even with warp technology would have to imply that are millions of life forms out there.

3 million earth type planets would not create millions of intelligent species.

Okay, let’s not split hairs. The point he was making was that life could be on all those planets which is obviously true. And as I said, how much sense it would make to find SO MUCH life as they find on Star Trek, nearly on a weekly basis IF there wasn’t millions of planets with life forms on it?

If that wasn’t the case I doubt we would even HAVE a Federation because thats made up of 1-200 planets with WARP technology in our sector of space alone. And thats just the ones who decided to be part of it. How many more are out there with warp technology? Think of all the other planets within the Federation that is just at our level of technology or lower which until Voyager and DS9 was where they found most of the life they did. But think of all the species Voyager bumped into the Delta quadrant. They weren’t even looking for other species most of the time, others found them and again we are just talking about warp faring aliens.

Clearly it would have to be millions of species out there. How could it not be?

And you never answered my first question? Why? Its not an attack, I’m just curious why this would bother you? My entire life of watching Star Trek I always just assumed it would be millions of life forms out there for the reasons stated above.


Agreed. As the TV shows and movies showed us the galaxy is clearly teeming with life in the Star Trek universe.

It’s also reasonable to think that some of the alien civilizations with warp technology may not want to get tangled up in the affairs of other civilizations for various reasons.

Until TUP mentioned it it never occurred to me there WOULDN’T be millions of life in the galaxy. How can you have a show with so many civilizations with warp technology if that was the case?

I mean look at planet Earth? How many different species of life is on it? Now how many of them can build and drive cars lol.

I just imagine that’s how the universe is in general, at least in the world of Star Trek. For every one species that is intelligent enough to even get to space and explore it there must be thousands if not millions that are way less developed than that. And to have so many that has warp capable abilities in our area of the galaxy (to be fair the universe is really old ;)) must mean there are a lot of species out there still like us in the present day who is not close to that level yet, in my unscientific opinion of course.

But as I said, Roddenberry based Star Trek on the Drake Equation even if not the actual one, but the basic spirit of it that the universe is teeming with life in abundance.

But not all major players in Trek follow the Prime Directive. Klingons for example might take over a planet whose people could make their way into space via many avenues without ever inventing warp drive.

Wasnt that the general basis for the Kaazon? A stupid species that stole technology?

More importantly, it’s because this is a television series that started out using aliens as allegory for humans. This is why only the most out-there ones actually look alien.

There isnt life on all the planets in our solar system so there cant be life on every single planet. I get what you’re saying but the likelihood of millions of intelligent life is probably smaller than a lot of us hope for. At least *advanced* intelligent life.

No one said every single planet but the problem is we don’t even know how many planets are even out there. Just until 1995 we never even recorded a planet outside our solar system. Now they have recorded thousands but it tells you just how behind we are learning so much of our galaxy.

But of course we have no idea obviously how much life is out there but in the world of Trek there has to be millions of civilizations. And as stated, that’s how Roddenberry saw the show basing it around the Drake Equation which I have since learned he estimated 100 million worlds could support life in our level of technology in this galaxy alone. Again its all conjecture but its amazing that that level of civilizations could really could be out there.

And it also tells you just how big the galaxy truly is. 100 million worlds similar to our own. Imagine the possibility. I guess with Trek we don’t have to.

Watch TNG episode The Chase.

The show’s estimates on the probability of alien life in the galaxy were based on an “equation,” all right, but not the one popularized by Frank Drake (and later Carl Sagan). In Trek’s case, it was a fake one made-up on the fly by Gene Roddenberry to sell the series. It’s a pretty funny story told in The Making of Star Trek.

Well OK but according to Memory Alpha he did base it around the equation, he simply didn’t know the exact components of it (and who would lol) so yes made up his own (sadly no internet or database back then ;)). BUT the point being the idea came from Drake Equation and clearly had in mind the galaxy would have millions of life forms in his stories. Here is the page:

Agreed, I thought TOS UFP concept with five or six well developed and different races (Andorians, Vulcans, Tellerites, Caitians, Deltans) is more exciting than there are 100s of races in the Federation… especially when you think that the Klingon Empire is a threat (how can 1 race with equal tech possibly be a threat to 100s of races?). That being said I think the door is open for 2 or 3 more uh, “major Security Council” races or small “general assembly” planets or factions.

But I don’t think that’s true either. AFAIK the Federation was always made up of a lot of planets, it was just founded with a few of them. By Kirk’s time it was at least dozens of planets not just five or six. Why make such a big deal about it if its only a half dozen planets out of hundreds that had warp capability. It sounds more like NATO than it does the UN or EU.

I think the UFP in TOS was more NATO than UN… with Earth being the USA contributing most of the personnel (remember Spock was only the first Vulcan in Starfleet despite being one of the founding members, Vulcans eventually got their own Connie as opposed to being fully integrated). Looking at Journey to Babel you really only see the big four (humans, Vulcans, Andorians, Tellerites). The UFP looked like that it could indeed be overpowered just by the Klingons + conquests working with the Romulans. Ironically I see this as being more story friendly (like Lord of the Rings – humans, Elves, Dwarfts, limited races but well fleshed out) than aliens, aliens everywhere that all act like humans in costumes, Starfleet a couple of races *trying?*/working together each almost with almost their own separate navies (starships seemed to be dominated by a single race).

OK I get your point but to be honest I really like the Federation being more the UN/EU model. NATO is obviously important but it feels more militaristic than striving for a more progressive unified society like those and how I see the Federation in general but everyone sees this stuff differently.

And remember the Federation might have been stronger later but they were still nearly decimated by both the Borg and the Dominion so its not like they are all powerful. Thats what I love about DS9 actually it proved the Federation can’t work out everything diplomatically or militarily in fell swoop.

But I did like how divided the humans, Vulcans and Andorians were but yet still managed to come together to form the Federation in the first place. That is the spirit of trying to work together and succeeding, even if they all didn’t trust us pink skins. ;)

But in TNG the UFP consists of at least 100 planets and therefore dozends of species. There seem to be standard procedures how a species can apply to join the Federation.

The UFP won’t have developed that big just durinh TNG times. In 100 years only 4 species and in the last 10 years 80…there must have been at least 20 during TOS times already.

And looking at Worf and Nog you even can join Starfleet when you’re planet is not part of the UFP. ;)

I agree. It’s pretty obvious that in the original concept at least, the Enterprise crew (and later Starfleet) was mostly comprised of humans with Spock being the lone exception. Things got a lot more cosmopolitan after The Motion Picture, and reached the point of absurdity in the JJ films with seemingly every fourth extra sporting scales, fur, tentacles, or whatnot. Where did all these folks come from?

My understanding was the idea behind the original series (mainly needed because of the expensive cost of makeup/prosthetics in the 60s) was that Starfleet was composed of MANY different alien species, HOWEVER, the ships were segregated by species because of vast cultural differences between different members of the UFP. Spock was the lone exception because he was half-human and could understand human culture due to his human mother. It also explains why they mention a federation ship with an “all Vulcan crew” being destroyed during TOS. Starfleet later integrated their ships during the late 23rd, early 24th century.

Of course, Enterprise and Discovery seem to ignore that premise.

You’re talking about the realities of a limited 60s TV show vs the fictional canon that was built around it. As someone else said it was mostly just humans during that time because the show had more budget and make up limits compared to when TMP came around and they could just be more creative from the 80s on through later films and spin offs.

Look at The Animated Series as an example. Suddenly there were multiple aliens and recurring characters of the Enterprise like M’Ress and Arex. Why? Because it was animated so they could just have more than humans and more exotic aliens at that. My guess is if the show had more resources it would’ve been a lot more aliens on it from day one. Even Spock himself was suppose to be more alien than just a guy with pointy ears and eyebrows. But they had to simplify it as much as possible just to have ONE ‘alien’ as part of the crew.

Look at the majority of ‘aliens’ on TOS? Most of them were either just human looking or some with minor prosthetic at best. Even now, majority of aliens still look more human but at least there are some really exotic ones from the TOS films on you could never have on TOS.

Why have a show that is not only about exploring alien life but working directly with alien life but everyone either is or looks freaking human?

Its not just the limits of the 60’s show to create a more populous alien world. Their seeming creative intent was that Spock was unique and they showed us bigotry towards that.

The fact there were more aliens by TMP made sense with Spock being a trailblazer.

I do think it loses something when you retcon Star Trek to be teeming with aliens on a level of Star Wars.

Star Trek is about the human condition so the more rare aliens that dont understand us or struggle with their own humanity is what provides insight. if you have a million aliens, it becomes less about the human condition.

As TUC showed us, interestingly, when the human characters are matched by aliens, it starts to diminish the story as a “human” story since that is inherently bigoted.

But I get it. Im ok with it. I just dont want a cantina scene with a million aliens. Because you get too far removed from the present, which Star Trek is an analogy for.

But again we are talking about a show where almost every week they found a new civilization. I don’t get this argument, even in TOS the galaxy was teeming with life. Sure maybe in terms of Starfleet itself there weren’t many aliens in it but its not like life was perceived as ‘rare’ in the galaxy. Just the opposite. There is so much life that humans were going out and corrupting/influencing countless alien worlds and why there was even a need to have a prime directive in the first place.

That’s the difference between Star Trek and shows like Battlestar Galatica where you didn’t see many aliens outside a few here and there. We basically just saw humans vs the Cylons and little else. They didn’t stop off at countless alien worlds or lived in a galaxy that was so full of them they now have trade deals lol.

For *me* thats what made Star Trek so exciting, the fact that there was life everywhere and that we finally found something fast enough to take us there.

But all that said, I never looked at ST as SW in that sense. In SW, yeah its a lot of aliens but thats a galaxy where life really sucks lol. In ST, at least in the Federation life is pretty good, right? Sure obviously humans struggle to understand aliens here and there but by TOS period we learned to live peacefully among most of them. Why we never saw any big wars with anyone. Conflicts yes, but actually very few wars. We know between Enterprise and TOS there was a lot more conflict and then the Dominion in the 24th century but overall Star Trek ISN’T Star Wars because for the most part, the galaxy actually seems pretty peaceful given so many life forms living in it. Of course when you don’t count the Borg lol.

And by the time the events of the Motion Picture unfolded, many of those alien worlds had been digitized and swallowed up whole by V’Ger.

I’d say that Spock was the 1st half-bred Vulcan to do… ANYTHING.

It says that he is the first of his species to join Starfleet. So it doesn’t make much sense that he would also be the last of his kind. But you could imagine that not many of his kind follow in his footsteps especially if there is prejudice against his species in the Federation. Of course, one would hope that such prejudice doesn’t exist in the 23rd century anymore. It’s also possible that his species, having a history of being hunted, just doesn’t care much about getting out into space (where hostile aliens prey on the weak).

…and we’ve seem aliens like Benzites get into Starfleet without being a Fed member.

And Nog.

How did I forget about Nog?????

Sorry I just don’t buy this. Why do we have to have ‘seen’ him later? The galaxy is freaking big, I imagine there will be tons of aliens we never seen before in Starfleet. I have given this example before but look at the Deltans from TMP? AFAIK, Ilia was the only one we were ever introduced to via that film. We know more are part of Starfleet and yet after that movie we never saw them again. I don’t think they were ever mentioned even in passing on TNG, DS9 or Voyager which goes directly to the point. We have a series that set up an entire species but yet never mentioned or seen again in the 24th century. And yet they were created before those shows. So why is it so hard to grasp that just because we don’t hear about earlier species later on doesn’t mean they weren’t involved in Starfleet before?

And I hate prequels. But stuff like this is not a real argument. Starfleet is part of the Federation, we still don’t even know all the members that are part of it after all this time so why is it shocking that we wouldn’t know all the species that serve in Starfleet?

I love it when we get a new alien crew member. I remember falling in love with Dr. Phlox for Enterprise. Neelix from Voyager, not so much LOL

Why did you laugh out loud? And did you really?

Uh oh, someone doesn’t like text speak!

One of the people in my office does that, “lol” after every email or IM. “Really busy up here but will get back to you as soon as I can lol.” Drives me up a wall. LOL


Sorry… Could not resist.

So, he has evolved to sense death. How can that happen – scientifically speaking. What is the sensory input? Dogs can sense cancer in their owner through smell. Touch can reveal much as can sound and sight. How would such a sense work in the vacuum of space. Is Star Trek hard science fiction or just space adventure?

Hopefully Saru is speaking metaphorically in the trailer. He’s not really sensing death in their situation, but is inferring it from the evidence to hand.

Clutches desperately at straws…

I don’t think that’s a desperate straw-clutch at all, but something that actually makes a lot of sense. Why shouldn’t a mindset that’s acutely sensitized to death be especially capable of recognizing circumstances that might lead to lots of it?


“How would such a sense work in the vacuum of space.”

Obviously by detecting the Grim Reaper within 24 light-hours radius!

How does Troi sense people’s emotions? How does Spock meld minds? How do full betazoid read people’s thoughts? How does Q do what he does?

It’s science FICTION.


Most of that is based on extrasensory perception ESP, a well-known phenomenon in the human history. Sensing “the coming of death’ in entirely different matter & come off as science-fantasy.

Having a character that senses death is like having B-9 on the USS Discovery warning: Danger! Danger! Captain Lorca.

@Ahmed – you’re completely wrong. Firstly in the sense this is science fiction. Secondly in the sense of what other people have already stated about animals being able to sense death.

Not to mention the numerous examples of humans with unexplainable fore-knowledge.

I can buy this. Let’s see how the execution is.


I sure hope the character will bring something more to the show beside his cat-like death sense.

I imagine he will. Would be silly to pre judge the entirety of the character based on one line from the teaser. Data was kind of stupid in the first season of TNG and eventually became awesome. Im sure there will be bugs to work out.

You know that ESP is not a real thing, and at best, is theoretical? You know that a mind meld is entirely fictional/fantasy?

If you think telepathy, mind melds, and the Founder’s shape shifting abilities can somehow ne explained by modern-day scientific knowledge, you’re… well, I’m just going to say it… you’re a f%^&ing moron.


At least ESP and shapeshifting are common elements in Star Trek, not this nonsense about sensing the coming of death.

And I’m indeed a moron for feeding a troll like you, not going to happen again. Keep on trolling.

Ahmed… ummm, I think you are the troll in this case.

LOL have to agree with this. Its Star Trek, aliens do all kinds of nutty things…thats what makes them aliens. I mean how can Odo morph into any object he wants, even when the object in question has smaller mass than he does? Where does it all go?

Saru sensing death may sound stupid but no more stupid than what we seen throughout multiple alien characters. Not everything has to be explained, he just can.

Repeating my question from above: Why shouldn’t a mindset that’s acutely sensitized to death be especially capable of recognizing circumstances that might lead to lots of it? Doesn’t seem that farfetched to me.

@Michael Hall

But what if it’s more than that. What if it’s simply an extra sensory perception he gets when someone is close to death. Think of it the way Guinan “just knows” things. That totally works for me.

It’s Star Trek, not Boston Legal.

Okay, but Star Trek avoids ‘magic’ and employs scientific advisors.

Did these ‘scientific advisors’ explain Q, the wormhole aliens, Odo and the countless aliens who do bizarre stuff that no one can explain outside of fiction?

You guys have been watching Star Trek how long? And you are suggesting a guy that can sense death in the same universe as a guy who can literally kill an entire alien species millions of light years away with just his thoughts (TNG: THe Survivors) as ‘too weird’?

What show are you people watching?

Emotions and thoughts are actual things that exists through brain activities, hormones and such. So at least there is something to detect here even if Star Trek doesn’t explain how. There is nothing that let you could detect “death”.


Explain how Guinan has a perception that goes beyond linear time. Explain Q. I’m sure there’s fictional science to explain them (there is no such thing as magic in Trek) but there is NOTHING within our current science that can even theoretically explain much of what we’ve seen in Trek for decades.

People are just trying to find any excuse to hate everything about DSC.

Thank you! Star Trek has plenty of these examples, as if every alien and their abilities can be explained. They do a good job of trying to explain technology but for actual alien abilities it usually comes down to ‘because they can’. I would love to see the day someone explains Q beyond ‘well he’s like omnipotent.’

What about whataboutisms. The thing is it sounds implausible and stupid. The fact that there were other implausible and stupid things in Star Trek before doesn’t change that.

Agreed, perplex, to an extent. If you think all of those things like mind melds, telepathy, q and Guinean are stupid, fair enough.

But others are acting as if Trek doesn’t have a long history of far fetched concepts.

Here’s a plausible theoretic scientific explanation for Saru’s ability, using existing Trek knowledge and existing science fiction theory:

We know that there is an energy signature exhibited by all living things at the quantum level (see: TNG episode “Paralells”) and we as an audience of science fiction acknowledge that there are beings whose perceptions can be non linear and be perfectly scientifically plausible (see: Guinan, see: last years film, “The Arrival”). We have also established that living beings in Trek emit a detectable bio electric field of some sort (see: TNG episode “Heart of Glory.”)

We also know that the future can be predicted to some degree through statistical analysis and balance of probabilities (DS9’s “Statistical Probabilities).

I therefore theorize that this quantum energy signature and bio electrical field in some combination fluctuate through time, particularly at the quantum level, and that Saru’s people can detect fluctuations and ripples in these fields that occur close to the end of a living being’s life on some kind of sub conscious level. In combination perhaps with an innate sense of probability projections that can predict what a person will do with reasonably good odds, Saru can “sense” when a person is going to die.

He may not always be right of course, as even in the real world our senses can deceive us.

So, while some may not like this ability, or find it too fantastical for their tastes, let it not be said that some form of theoretical Trek science couldn’t explain it if you wanted it to.

You just don’t want it to because you don’t like it.

Saru just has a higher count of midichlorians than most people.

Yes Perplex but

A. You’re moaning about something you don’t even know fully about yet.

B. You seem to have gotten over 50 years of aliens doing crazy things without explanations, is a guy sensing death really breaking the camel’s back at this point?

I get it, this is the internet, moaning about stuff is what we all do best here, but if you been watching Star Trek for at least a few decades now, Saru really should be at the far end of the complaint list. But seeing all the complaints about Discovery so far he probably is lol.

Despite perfectly reasonable rationalizations and comparisons, there are just fans who will hate for the sake of hating, and use flimsy excuses to back up there arguments.

Now, Saru’s “ability” may turn out to be lame. But it’s hard to judge without seeing how they execute it. And that seems to be a common thread from these critics: hate and criticize on principle with no logical reason or case behind it.

You just answered your own question, because it’s not in the vacuum of space. Also some species on Trek have abilities that are theoretical at best, entirely fictional at worst.

So what’s the logical problem with this?

Actually dogs is a good example. Some dogs and cats in hospital can somehow sense when a patient is about to die and proceed to lay in bed with them, comforting them. If it can happen in animals there is no reason it can’t happen in aliens.

Wow I never knew any of this about cats and dogs. Man next time my dog lays with me, I’m going to get nervous lol.

Yes. They can literally smell death. Saru can’t smell through the vacuum of space.

How do you know???

This is Star Trek. Last time I check, people can’t just teleport themselves without a machine (or at all in the real world ;)) and yet we have Q who can teleport himself anytime and anywhere with the snap of a finger.

Look, I know as Trek fans we get nit picky, but yes it is always true how we seem to ignore the CONSTANT things out there that kind of disprove our point. If you already have aliens doing crazy things NO ONE can explain, what exactly is one more at this point?

Show me a scene where he’s in the vacuum of space. ALMOST EVERY EPISODE OF EVERY STAR TREK SHOW IS SET IN AN OXYGEN ENVIRONMENT.

Why do I bother responding to such stupid people? It’s like talking to a wall. About as intelligent as one. Dear lord.

From his character explanation it sounds more like he can sense danger but saying he can sense “death” just sounds more dramatic. It would be more along the lines of any number of animals being able to sense danger or a threatening predator that’s near by

You mean the coming of death…it doesn’t get anymore dramatic than that lol.

But yes I’m guessing end of the day thats what it will be, like Peter Parker’s Spider sense. And it would put the writers in a corner if he could sense it at any time so I have a feeling there will be LOTS of limitations to it.

We need a character that can sense bad writing.

We had them, CD. They were called “red shirts” and they died anytime there was bad writing in TOS. All the time!

Kelpiens… Did they evolve from seaweeds?

Well, he’s somewhat pink like Patrick Star from SpongeBob SquarePants…

Reminds me of Kryten from Red Dwarf

So this species defining trait is actually what? Being cautious?
“Captain, I sense the coming of death!” – “I was about to boil some water for a cup of tea, Mr Saru!” – “It is extremely dangerous to do so unsupervised!”

Well, Saru does have pointy ears…..

I don’t really get why a new species is a bad thing for storytelling, as long as they’re interesting (I get the “so why didn’t we see them later, then?” argument but think, and no offense intended, that it’s a little pedantic). Heck, the smartest thing TNG did early on was not go back to the Andorians, Vulcans etc. because it opened up new storytelling possibilities.

And, TNG and after did show myriad different species – they just mostly looked like humans with latex foreheads.

That said, Phlox bugged me, at least at first, on Enterprise. But that was less about a previously-unseen species in a prequel and more annoyance about the actual character/tiredness of the overall Westmore/Blackman/Zimmerman look. Although, he grew on me.

And I really liked all the aliens in the Abrams movies – more non-humanoid aliens in a fictional universe teeming with civilizations makes sense. Plus, they’re just cool. My favourite thing about the Vonda McIntyre movie novelizations was the aliens she put in.

I don’t get why not seeing a species before ‘bugs’ people???? To me that makes the world of Star Trek too small. As if every species has to be seen in Starfleet….although we seem to ignore all the NEW alien species that are introduced to us on every show we learn is part of Starfleet. I guess the logic just confuses me but unless there is some list somewhere that says what species has served in Starfleet before or present why do people assume we have to have seen them before??? Just odd to me.

I agree, Jack, People just want to bitch and moan about every single thing about Discovery. It has annoyed the shit out of me for such a long time since the first announcement. We all knew the storm that was coming. Bring in as many species as you want. TOS certainly didn’t have as many species as the following series’. What’s the big deal?

I wish the internet didn’t exist at this time for this very reason. Sure, reasonable questions and discussions aside. The nitpicking shitfest and endless banging on about OMG they are killing this has not removed my enthusiasm for this show :) I know that many who are hating on it endlessly will watch it, enjoy it, but will then never show their hand in support after.

After all, if you decided after the very first glimpse that it sucks and is not for you, why would you continually come back and bleat on and on and on about it? There is no other reason to come to this site unless you want a bit of news about comics or interviews with past stars etc. Why even post in threads that contain information about a show that you quite vocally ‘don’t care about’?

“but will then never show their hand in support after.”

Meant to read as; will never show their hand after as one of the dissers.

If he’s a prey species, why does he have binocular vision? Shouldn’t his eyes be on each side like a rabbit or a deer?

Because the evolutionary process on his world have him the ability to sense death instead.

Because he wasn’t born on Earth maybe?

Geez, you guys really like to overthink things. Sensing death… did you ever think he maybe gets flashes of the near future. He can be sensitive to impending death that way. Animals can sense death. Vultures will circle around a dying animal. Other animals can sense death in their owners… no, not through smell. Animals can also sense if a person is good or bad. Why is this so far fetched for you people… it is a tv show. It is science FICTION, not science fact. Wow. The biggest threat to Star Trek is it’s “fans.”

“you guys really like to overthink things”. Star Trek fans overthinking things? Really?
Overthinking things is half the point.

evidence please mr trekfan 67

Give me evidence against what he’s saying, James. That’s sort of the point: we haven’t seen the show yet. So over analyzing this sort of thing with such a critical eye is pointless.

Overthinking things is 1/4 of the fun.

So will we get an explanation of why they vanish from all things Star Trek by the time of Kirk?

Well, they wouldn’t know what to do around Kirk, since he’s never experienced death, at least not like this…

Who says they vanish? Why do people act like every alien race has been mentioned on every show? They don’t.

Huh? Have other Trek shows shown EVERY inch of the universe? We’ve only ever been given glimpses of very small corners in a very large universe.

When you saw Ferengi and every other TNG-era alien did you wonder where they had been all those years you never saw them?

Wow I see TM now has a graphic image of Discovery flying over the planet instead of Enterprise. Wow, its really beginning! :)

And I have to say I still abhor the ship but that image makes it look pretty cool!

..the ability to sense immediate mortal peril.

Hrm. That’s…not a thing. “Mortal peril” does not emit unique energy signatures that can be detected with a specialized sense. Having heightened senses beyond the human (or other alien) norm, the ability to detect some other portion of the electromagnetic spectrum or some other fundamental force such as gravity, even an instinctive ability to interpolate fragmentary data from the environment to gain an impression of danger – okay, sure, fine. But “sensing mortal peril” is not something a species in an ostensibly science fiction show should be able to do

He senses what, his own death? Or other people’s?

Other people are dying…like…all the time. So yeah, I can sense death too. Some’s dying right…now. And now. Big whoop. Great superpower. You’re Bono.

If he’s sensing his own death then presumably he’s going to be wrong in every episode except one. Again, that’s a stupid power.

Are you sure? Wouldnt an immediate peril create heightened panic, hormone release etc? And thats something a species could detect. Troi could detect just about anything. Whats the difference.

Unless you think Saru can detect random and surprising deaths. Such as a happy guy singing to himself, strolling down a side walk and Saru can sense he’s about to have a piano dropped on his head.

I dont think thats the intent.

But we’ll have to wait and see.

TUP – the hormone release, panic etc… is all good stuff that could maybe be detected. This presumes that the victim knows of his death though. Like you say, we’ll have to wait and see – Hopefully Saru is speaking metaphorically in the trailer. He’s not really sensing death in their situation, but is inferring it from the evidence to hand.

I’m not trying to put a downer on STD – I cant wait to see it, but like most Trekkies, I cant help but critically analyse what we’ve seen so far. It’s funny what bugs some people doesn’t bother me at all – like the look of the Klingons for example.

Perhaps a being’s quantum signature fluctuates or changes close to the end of its life because at the quantum level it is not bound by the linear constructs of time (before and after). This quantum field can be sensed on a subconscious level by Saru, and he can detect ripples in it, which tells him when a creature is soon to die.

I thought he was introduced as “Lieutenant” Saru, but in that first pic, his delta badge appears to show “lieutenant commander” rank.

I wonder if the Kelpien makeup design was modeled on a background alien we’ve seen before, from TMP onward (or in the Kelvin films). Would be cool if that were true … unless it turns out that Saru is the first and last of his species to join Starfleet. :(

Clearly Doug Jones did such a wonderful job during filming they promoted his character.

Has the makeup design evolved a bit since the first look?

I was beginning to think some laid-off Subaru designers had gotten to close to this. (Yes, you need to be a car geek to get the reference.)