The Shuttle Pod Crew See Both Sides In ‘Star Trek: Discovery’s Season One Finale

The whole Shuttle Pod crew is back this week to discuss the season one finale of Star Trek: Discovery. So, take our hand (sorry) and dive into this season’s last episode of Shuttle Pod At The Disco.

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Star Trek: Discovery Season 1, Episode 15 – Debuted Sunday February 11th, 2018

Written by Aaron Harberts and Gretchen J. Berg and Akvia Goldsman
Directed by Akvia Goldsman

At The Disco 14: “Will You Take My Hand?”

After a rocky penultimate episode and with so many narrative threads left in the balance, did Discovery pull off a satisfactory conclusion to its inaugural season? The short answer is yes… and no. There really isn’t a short answer, which is why we droned on for an hour and a half dissecting what worked — and what didn’t — in the finale.

Hang on, guys. We’re going in.

In general, many of the pieces that were there were utterly fantastic. As always, the actors brought their A game. The sets on Qo’nos were perhaps some of the best we’ve seen in any Trek TV show, ever. Tilly delighted as always, and her performance was only boosted by the addition of a familiar face who enhanced to a comedic overtone that really worked (plus Tranya).

But, think about this episode too hard, and the foundation — the parts of the storyline meant to tie the season’s arc into a nice bow — starts to crumble. Victory comes much too easy for our heroes, and as an audience, we’re not really convinced of why things worked out the way they did. As Jared so aptly pointed out, “they haven’t earned this.”

What did you think? Have a listen, and let us know in the comments!

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Easy victory is a staple of Trek. Telling the borg a bedtime story. Feds taking over and demanding their cut. Goes on and on

Very true. And this would have made a fine ending to a single episode of TNG, but DSC is a very different kind of Trek, and as the culmination of an entire season, it fell a little flat.

That said, I’ve enjoyed far worse episodes of Star Trek, and it’s overall a minor complaint in the grand scheme of the season, which I’d grade as a solid B. Room to improve, but the foundation for a long running excellent season is there, and that’s what’s most important after a 13 years absence on my tv screen.

Well, even DS9 had examples of seemingly easy solutions that a lot of fans didn’t seem to like, even if I did. The prophets solution to the battle in Sacrifice of Angels and the resolution to the Dominion War are examples. But they made sense from a story perspective. The way a lot of the criticism of the finale reads to me isn’t that fans would have preferred a harder solution, but they wanted to see a big battle. And that, to me, isn’t very Star Trek. I didn’t find the solution to be easy exactly, just non-violent. It took creativity on Burnham’s part, and it could only happen after a season’s growth, learning how to build consensus instead of using the method she used in the premiere, or Lorca’s preferred method of endruns around the Admiralty.

Eric-good perspective

For all the talk about being a thoroughly “modern” show, this is one part of Trek that could need thorough modernization ;-)

Gods I wanted to love to love this, and Discovery as a whole. But no, in the end they just didn’t earn it. Always beautifully produced and well-acted, this show isn’t anything like the worst season of Trek ever produced (after fifty years, that honor still belongs to TOS Season 3), or even the worst first season of Trek ever produced (being clearly superior to the lackluster first years of TNG, Voyager, or Enterprise). But it is the most frustrating and, ultimately, the most disappointing.

Never have I seen a TV show, in any genre, work so hard at crapping all over its best ideas. Ever. It was actually an astonishing thing to witness. The more nuanced treatment of the Klingons we were promised; Michael Burnham’s fascinating background; Jason Isaacs’ textured and layered performance as Lorca; the exploration of Starfleet as a divided organization in wartime; Tyler’s PTSD–all examples of great dramatic assets either underdeveloped or shunted aside in favor of cheap twists to generate clicks and water-cooler conversation. Like the rest of Discovery, the creative misjudgments and lost opportunities on display as the season wore on were just epic.

As for that final twisty-twist–well, the fifteen year-old still inside me who bought his set of Enterprise blueprints back in 1973 naturally loved it. But the tired, more cynical (but still hopeful) middle-aged adult understood that this was just fan service capitalizing on an affection for the franchise as a whole that Discovery hadn’t yet earned, and knew he’d been had. Which is a real shame.

Well said. They had me and then, especially in those last few episodes, they kind of threw it all away.

Lorca was this flawed but seemingly well-meaning person who despite his gruff exterior seemed to bring out the best in others. He was the most interesting captain to me since Kirk. And then they just threw it all away and turned him into just another heavy and it rendered all his kinder moments with Tyler, Burnham and others completely meaningless and fake. It made me feel cheated and his absence in those final episodes was a giant hole that absolutely no one was able to fill.

Tyler had all sorts of interesting backstory to him; the reveal to be Voq (and I’m still not clear if he ever was Voq or only had his memories) was an anticlimax and his final decision made no sense at all and seemed to be completely at odds with who he was trying to be.

The season finale was a dud. You have a Federation crew deep in Klingon territory and there was absolutely no sense of danger or urgency or of the stakes being so high. They were so concerned with the individual character beats that the actual story was utterly neglected (did the scheme and resolution even amount to 15 minutes of screen time?). The episode, like so much of the first season, relied too much on exposition of events rather than actually showing us those events. Georgiou seemed to be there for little more than shock and titilation; and the scene at Federation HQ felt flat and completely unearned.

Maybe it’s just my imagination but I see Kurtzman’s and Goldsman’s fingerprints all over those last few episodes and if I’m right I think they are behind many of these questionable creative decisions. Those guys may be capable executives but as storytellers they absolutely suck.

I’ll be curious to see where Discovery goes with Season 2; and I really hope they just keep it simple and don’t try to be so clever all the time. All they end up doing is outsmarting themselves.

Well, Burnham’s ultimate redemption (and overbearing speech) definitely is reminiscent of Kirk’s godawful leapfrog promotion in Trek 2009, and the onus placed upon Jason Isaacs to mislead his interlocutors for months on end recalls the Cumberbatch/Khan Into Darkness debacle. Both of which involved Alex Kurtzmann, so you may be right.

I do disagree with you regarding Goldman’s direction, which I thought was comparable to the rest of the very solid work done on Discovery this year. Whatever my problems are with the show, they aren’t on the production side.

No, its not reminiscent of Kirk in Trek 09. Not even close.

One was a promotion from cadet to Captain in the span of some months. This was a commander about to be made Captain going back to Commander after having her criminal record wiped clean due to special circumstances.

Those circumstances being her saving the Federation from annihilation, not entirely unlike Kirk being “rewarded” with a captaincy after committing high treason, conspiracy, and grand theft starship.

Is it entirely realistic? Probably not. But neither is a warp drive, transporters, Klingons, and what have you. Does it serve her character arch and make sense in the overall sensibility of the established world? Yes.

More unrealistic is them allowing Mirror Giorgio’s and Tyler Voq to go free. Even within Trek’s universe it doesn’t make sense for them to be given freedom, and in the clear.

I fully suspect (at least hope) that they are not truly in the clear: I would like to see it revealed that a secret deal was made with Section 31 who it turns out negotiated the terms with them, and ultimately recruited them.

I’m not normally a proponent of bringing in stuff like S31 (which always seems cheap in fan theories) but in this case it would make a lot of sense.

SanFranDisco – depends on what the Klingons did. Did they massacre entire Federation worlds? Did they install military governors? Did they execute civilians to ensure compliance (like Errand of Mercy)? Kirk seemed to imply they would have. None of that was even addressed in Discovery, which seems a missed opportunity for great stories. Ash having PTSD was one of the highlights of the series, at least unitl it turned out it was pseudo-PTSD, but whatever.

@Cmd.Bremmon They managed to set out to explore both the background of TOS and weighty, timely themes – and then completely botch it in execution. That is quite a feat!

I must say; I LOVE this explanation! He’s absolutely right: since this is a show with warp, Klingons, etc. anything goes! Neither realism nor continuity is needed or wanted! also: Just like the Klingoffs evolved 2 schweins since we last saw them, I hope Writing God Kurtzman makes the brave choice & also has humans evolve subtly; say maybe, 2 rectums. Just my 0.02!

No. Burnham is not a parallel of Kirk in 2009. You could say it is more like Kirk of The Voyage Home.

Kirk disobeys orders, breaks a person out of jail, steals and destroys the Enterprise, saves Earth, found guilty, and is demoted to the job he wanted and given a new ship.

Burham disobeys orders and does assault a superior officer, and attempts to steal a ship. Found guilty, stripped of rank, and after saving the Federation is restored to her position.

That is an excellent analog. Remember Sulu assaulted Federation officers at Kirk’s command AND he disobeyed the Commander in Chief of Starfleet.

It’s funny how most big popular movies have weak third acts and become fan favorites, critical darlings, and box office successes.

A weak third act of the season does not negate how great the middle of the season was. Sure, it could have been better, and drops the overall grade, but it can’t erase how much I loved episodes 3-12.

And it’s not as if the weaker episodes were bad, just more flawed. I have a feeling this show is going to get better with time and rewatches.

agree. C-A-Bminus gives it a B for the season I think

I don’t think it will get better with rewatches because then you are not wowed/distracted by the twists anymore so problems become more apparent. In many ways the reveal they developed the season backwards from the Enterprise moment is the core of the problem: that is just bad writing and explains why characters and plots are put into the service of twists – like the Abramstrek movies seem to develop their plots and characters around big special effects sequences. The recipe for season 2 is to go the other way round, bottom to top: develop the characters from their core towards the plot and natural stories and themes, and all else will follow.

Yes, they easily could have made this into a half season arc. The entire Starfleet is going to do a desperate End Run on Qu’nos to get the Discovery there. The Discovery is going to hold the entire Klingon Empire hostage. Is there going to be a Klingon civil war? Do the Klingons think that we will drop on A-bomb on them or are we too good? Is the UFP prepared to destroy Qu’nos to save itself? Real ethical issues, real conflict, no easy answers. That is how you make AWESOME Star Trek in my humble opinion. What they did was better than TNG, but meh. My worry is that they came up with the easy solution because they want to go back to being lazy and writing Starship Hotel episodes (i.e. TNG).

It deserved a two-parter at least. BobW was a two-parter for a reason. Pretty much all of the shortcomings of the finale come down to having too little time to realistically and seriously explore the plot resolution.

So I liked Discovery. I’ll watch, even pay. Better than TNG/VOY by far. Not a huge missed opportunity like ENT (which could have easily been better than TOS). Not as good as TOS / TOS movies. The good: Loved the Michael character, loved the pilot episodes the best, loved her need for redemption, loved the Sarek story, etc. The actors were awesome. The overall concept was awesome (mirror universe, awesome, Klingon war, awesome). The 23rd century did come off as more exciting – frontier, Starfleet overwhelmed some with PTSD, mining colonies, Harry Mudd talking about the little guys, shots of the Constitution class USS Enterprise, space dock under construction, etc. Admiral Cornwell taking a leadership role was cool. The Klingon’s allowed to be evil, sneaking an agent in to infiltrate Starfleet, bad guys allowed to be bad, awesome. The Shenzhou and Captain Georgiou awesome. Hearing the TOS bridge effects on a modern day set sounded great, that’s what this series needed more of. After that, well, meh. It felt like the writers were chickening out in some cases and the implementation I think hurt the series post-pilot. The magic mushroom plot was all fake science and sucked. I liked the doomed jump drive arc, but all the mystical voodoo was horrid, boring and one has to wonder if now kids will now think mushrooms are the key to space travel. Why would you have a Klingon war and then not use classic Klingon ships fans want to see in combat? Klingons needing cloaking devices before there should be cloaking devices sucked. Why could that Klingon warship not fire on a jumping Discovery, make no sense? Why could Federation starships not fire on a target they could see? What was the point? Captain Lorca was awesome, a Starfleet Commander pushing ethics and crew to the edge because he has to, oops, wait, nope, just an evil man from the mirror universe. The sets were too big – that bridge looks cool whenever Lorca takes the insane amount of time required to walk away from his chair to look at some computer monitors (defeating the whole purpose of a circular bridge, no?). So basically all that capital went into a chair and a picture of a door. I loved the show but was surprised at how they refused to show any of the Klingon War (isn’t that map showing whole Federation planets under Klingon occupation and starbases destroyed?), no sign of strain on the homeworlds, never got to see a Connie or fleet engage in a real battle with the Klingons, never saw any real D-7s/heard any Klingon TMP style dramatic music. Music for the series better than TNG wall paper music, but was expecting some TOS dramatic music with TOS movie quality.

Cmd-well thought out post. I agree with everything you said positive and negative except this: The magic mushroom plot was all fake science and sucked. This was based on a scientific principle as far fetched as it sounds. I can point out that travelling the speed of light is just as far fetched. There’s no practical way to do it. Therefore there is precedent in SciFi to introduce possibilities based on science no matter how impractical it sounds.

Well said, Michael.

Agreed, great points and analysis. I wanted to love Discovery, enjoyed many of the episodes and the twists but if you let it digest, you will find many problems with how it ended and how they utilized who and what they had going for them.

Agree with your points. We could have had real complexity, struggling to learn how to become what the ideal Star Trek universe would be.

Agreed. But I will go as far as saying TNG season 1 (for me) had more stand-out moments. Someone else made a very thorough comparison about this in terms of the advantages of episodic vs. serialization a few days ago, if you have read it, but basically it boils down to this: if you got one cohesive “book” in one season with each episode being a mere chapter, there won’t be many stand-out episodes if the whole book turns out to be mediocre. Now I won’t say bad – apart from the painful episode where Lorca turned fascist-evil most of the season was entirely watchable, especially after 13 years of Trek absence, as SFD points out above, but I can easily name more than half dozen of TNG season 1 episodes that I instantely loved because they explored a scifi concept or relevant topic in an exciting way and were completely unaffected by the “Code of Honor”‘s of that season because of their standalone nature. I can’t say the same for Discovery where I loved the first episode, the penultimate episode and the finale (despite its shortcomings). Incidentally, these were the more Star Trek like bookends that stand apart from the dark recesses of the season middle, especially the abyss called Mirror Universe…

I think they should rework their format to go from the extremes they are residing in right now (in many ways) to a more balanced middle way. For serialization that means “Enterprise season 4” – the smart way to tie fans to the show who may not like the one or other arc, but get another chance within the same season, same as a saving grace for the writers themselves because when the arc falls flat, it’s not the entire season that is lost (and the respective viewership), but just a few episodes!

Glad you guys didn’t pull any punches in your critique. It wasn’t terrible, but it wasn’t great. Here’s to a better season two!

Overall, I have to say that I have not enjoyed the tone of this podcast. I don’t like know-it-alls who think they know better than a room of a dozen talented screenwriters. Discovery, we were told well in advance was a series-long novel. How many times did I hear people here say whether they liked “the episode”–as though anyone would review chapters of a novel. I think it’s silly to have to of your commenters simply admit they don’t like the Mirror Universe [a TOS creation] at all.

There was a time when Star Trek fans had very very very little to look at, if and when we were lucky enough to get it on VHS. So in the meantime we imagined, we interpreted, and we figured out what some of the illogical and silly stuff “meant.” People wrote fanfic and read comic books. Now that we have an abundance of Star Trek, every conversation is about whether the critic or the viewer’s feelings, what they would have liked. For crying out loud, you guys said it again while I typed it, “what I would have liked.”

The Wrath of Khan show Khan remembering the face of a character not in “The Space Seed” and features a ridiculous, maudlin scene of Scotty bringing his nephew to the Bridge. Is that why we’re here? To hate on Star Trek? Come on.

Next season, you folks should set a different tone. I love you all as Trekker siblings and equals, but after Season One on Trekmovie and Twitter, I don’t care anymore what anyone thinks the writers of Star Trek Discovery should have done.

As I’ve said, one of the cool things about Trek Movie is that you get to see comments by CBS employees.

Only if and when Discovery improves next season should you expect a different tone. Equating opinions to “hate” is simplistic and juvenile.

I’m not talking about opinion, I’m talking about the hater tone. Negative frames get more clicks on the Internet. It’s on this podcast and many other YouTube reviews, this premise that the person who is the most negative, the most critical, whose approval must be earned, is somehow more knowledgeable or sensitive to what makes Star Trek great.

I’d love to read opinions I disagree with that actually, you know, engage with the subject of the show. 99% of the commentary is people using the Internet to have a therapist conversation about where the Discovery producers touched them, but lacking the self-awareness to realize that the writers triggered these emotional conversations about Trek intentionally.

Newsflash for you: we don’t enjoy being critical of Trek. Not in the slightest. It’s a really shitty feeling, actually. What exactly are we supposed to do, pretend Discovery is all puppies and rainbows? It definitely is for some folks, and that’s great. We’re not trying to change anyone’s minds or validate anyone else’s views, here – we’re just expressing our own thoughts. And while there are worthwhile things about the show that we have praised – the cast, production design, FX – there’s plenty to be critical about, mostly in the writing, and we’re not going to ignore that.

We all sincerely hope that Discovery improves next season. We would LOVE to carry on at length about how good it’s become. It makes recording podcasts A LOT more fun.

I shouldn’t think you would enjoy it, no. But the panel falls into ruts of personal disappointment. I’m thinking of the line when one guy says he’s “frustrated” that he didn’t get the “payoff” he wanted on Voq. That’s the tone of 99% of DSC commentary. Everything is compared to what the viewer expected or wanted. Or what she thinks about volcanoes…. or, I just randomly scrolled to a spot in the show, and sure enough, the guy plays a scene from DS9 and says, “I really wanted something like this.” It’s like an addiction, guys. You can’t see your sickness.

If we got payoff with Voq, then the Voq/Tyler story would be over and I don’t think that they want to go there, yet, I have no problem with that.

So much for IDIC.

Or what she thinks about volcanoes
This is not what some random person thinks about Volcanoes. Kayla is a respected scientist in her field of studying Volcanos. There’s nothing subjective about it. She’s discussing the scientific accuracy of the episode. Something Trek has often strived for in the past.

Everything is compared to what the viewer expected or wanted
I don’t understand what could possibly satisfy you then, how can someone discuss something they viewed without talking about their hopes and expectations? it’s all part of analyzing the show, and having a conversational style podcast about it.

You’re clearly generalizing your frustration with all kinds of Internet reviews and media sources like YouTube to our single little podcast. We were actually pretty cautiously optimistic about Discovery early on. I for one held out judging it too harshly until we could see more of the season and see how it unfolded. We all love Trek and want the best for it, so we were disappointed once we got to the end of the season and there were a number of issues still.

Critique is not the same thing as blindly hating a show, we attempt to engage in thoughtful discussion about Discovery.

Scientific accuracy in Trek is a silly idea. Yeah it is nice that the writers normally think about this, so that the show can have some form of internal consistency.
Sometimes they fail, sometimes they succeed.
But what’s really important is the moral of the story and what the elements represent. Trek is not hard sci-fi most of the time. Basically ANYTHING can happen.
Giant amoeba, living space crystals, telepathy, ESP, FTW travel turning you into a lizard, a virus that turns you into a giant spider.
So for Kayla to just go on and on and on about a story detail that is basically science magic and how said technology we know nothing about doesn’t conform to what we know about Earth’s geological make up, is gorram irrelevant. It just doesn’t fit into her field of expertise so we gotta complain about it. Should we also demand Trek throw out Transporter tech because it basically is a murder machine and the person that comes out the other end isn’t you?
I understand that you want your franchise to be believable, heck I engage in a lot of headcanon involving DSC to make the Klingons fit, but at the end of the day, it is a TV show that has to adhere to the limitations and conventions of the medium, and it’s not going to stop the story for 5 minutes to have two characters explain to one another stuff they already should know so the random volcano scientist in the audience won’t take to twitter to tear the details of the plan apart.
The story isn’t about the tech, it’s about the people using the tech.

@Brian Agreed 1000%. Most change to the better in the world does not come from those who are content and happy, but those who see the problems for what they are and are not afraid to voice them!

Did you even bother listening to the whole podcast? They engaged every single subject in the show.

Hater’s one of those words/phrases, like SJW and libtard, that usually mean you’ve already lost the argument.

“…but lacking the self-awareness to realize that the writers triggered these emotional conversations about Trek intentionally.”

And intentional or not, it’s not working. There’s a difference between challenging Trek’s assumptions and shoddy storytelling.

I’m really hoping you’re not involved with the show, because the logic here is weak.

@Fritz “Equating opinions to “hate” is simplistic and juvenile.”

It is also a common (and quite successful) tactic to discredit and mute dissenters, as we can see from raging political debates. Label every critic of the rainbow world a fascist and nazi, because: “Fascists and nazis DON’T have points of view”.

I can see both sides of the argument. We all build up these monstrous expectations because we love Star Trek. The problem with this is that we are all individuals and have different expectations. This should be respected by both sides, but it’s not. To those that are critical of certain aspects of the show but voice your hope for improvement, thank you. But, to those that find nothing redeeming about the show and constantly berate those that like it and repeat your criticism, no thank you. That’s not having an opinion that just being a jerk and most of those are called out and they eventually disappear. I like what Brian Drew said, “It’s a really shitty feeling” to have to be critical. That put’s it in a nut shell. His expectations were not where this show went and all of us should understand how he feels. Let’s hope the writers without the constraints of an arc created by a show runner that left, are able to smooth out their consistency in season 2. Peace

Word, x1000, ‘Canon. Well said.

I’ve watched Star Trek since I was 9 years old. I love them all. I’m happy to have new Trek.

Very much agree. Constantly complaining about the way the show was structured.
As a weekly show I enjoyed all the theory crafting, which could go REALLY off the rails (I remember concocting an idea that Lorca wanted to use the Spore Drive to send Burnham into the past to prevent the war from breaking out so he could save the crew of the Buran, and that his ruthless behavior stemmed from knowing the current timeline would cease to exist if he was successful).
When you binge DSC it has a very different flow to it and frankly is exhilarating to watch.
And thematically the show is very timely and strong.
It might not have been the Star Trek a lot of people wanted, but truly, it is the Star Trek we NEED right now.

Who are you to say this is the Trek we “need”? I’d say the paying subscribers deserves something better than what they got. Wasted opportunities. The plot had promise but what they did with it was a cop out and very week. Nothing “timely” about it except Issacs tipping off a presidents campaign slogan to make his own editiorial. Something that could have still been done had he, or the writers been as clever as they like to believe they are. But aren’t.

Wrath of Khan certainly has its share of nits to pick. But it usually doesn’t come under such scrutiny because the overall movie is so darn good. We can ignore a plot hole of Khan recognizing Chekhov. If the film wasn’t good, that hole becomes something for fans to whine about until the end of time.

Discovery wasn’t very good at all. As evident by how much it is being scrutinized. If it were good, such criticisms would be minimal. Thus far the consensus seems to be great production values. Piss poor execution of the plot.

Interesting take on the finale! Some of the observations, although I may have initially disagreed with them, are very well thought out and make a lot of sense and cause one to rethink parts of the episode. Others are IMO, somewhat myopic. The one major critique I did not think about but in retrospect agree with – L’Rell’s end to the war was a little too rushed and convenient. They could have easily fleshed that out with about 5 mins more of details (i.e. L’Rell and her entire House collectively and elaborately forcing the hands of the other Houses with multiple backup detonators, etc.) and it would have made a lot more sense and less laughable as the podcast thought it was terrible. What I do not agree with is the critique of Sarek. IMO, he, like many parents, treats his children differently – understanding the need for emotions and love when it comes to his human step-daughter while being completely dispassionate when it comes to his own son, because he views him as being Vulcan. As far as his condoning the use of genocide as a weapon of war, one can sadly see the logic in that as the last option – especially after 9 months of trying other failed solutions and you are on the brink of annihilation. Only illogical emotions of compassion and empathy and a understanding of right and wrong, stop that from happening. Anyway, even though I don’t always agree with the observations, overall I really enjoyed the Shuttle Pod Casts and I look forward to more next season. Have a great summer everyone.

Here’s my quick take. It’s ONLY Season 1. Yes, Discovery had its writing issues but so did TNG, DS9, VOY, and ENT of their first few seasons. Despite the problems Discovery suffered during Season 1, It’s a good show. The writers and producers will make the necessary adjustments going forward. Not everyone will be pleased but I have a feeling Disco will be around for a long while.

Would be interested to know how this was encouraged by a room of “a dozen talented screenwriters” – for the sake of the Mirror Universe, Bunrham must rise up and have a big action movie confrontation with Lorca, because darn it, he’s just so genocidal. In case there was any doubt, the show then repeatedly reminds us that Mirror Pippa is just as genocidal. So what does Burnham do? She lets said devious genocidal tyrant loose in THE PRIME UNIVERSE (not for anything resembling story logic, but so they can possibly bring back Yeoh’s tedious, one-dimensional character). And then Burnham collects medals and promotions. #aDozenTalentedScreenwriters

They obviously like Yeoh and are not done with her yet.
Emperor Georgiou can cause a lot of problems.
I am interested to see where they take her.

You can have as many “talented screenwriters” as you want – if they all hail from the same incestuous Hollywood-liberal background beyond their skin-deep superficial differences, and voice the same opinion, you cannot expect to see any nuanced writing. A dozen borg drones are just a collective, not a diverse writing room. I say grow some balls in season 2 and put in a writer from the other side who does not reduce all problems of the universe to race and gender and who understands that even “WoC” need to have believable realistic characterizations and character arcs, and then all else will follow.

I was hoping they’d explore the idea that the mirror universe shows how the Klingons (or any enemy) could be us, if we were in their position. And or it could be a reflection of our politics now. It could be done relatively subtly — showing and not telling.

The writers talk like the storyline actually did that. But I don’t think it is. The Klingons’ motivations, apart from a couple of lines about fighting for survival/fighting against assimilation, weren’t made clear enough.

And the Mirror universe was topsy turvy without nuance or explanation. There’s no reason the Terrans are over-the-top evil (except because they can be) and there’s no reason that the Voq-led resistance out-federations the federation. It’s all black/white.

It didn’t look at what — politically, culturally, psychologically, economically, strategically, whatever — motivates the Terrans to act the way they do. Maybe it’s all about dog eat dog/show of strength — but that’s not particularly interesting, relatable or sustainable ( unless you’re the president of the United States).

It can be done in a few lines or a scene or two. Gosh, I just came out of Black Panther where the villain actually has motivation and his argument makes sense. That’s all established in 2 hours.

Here’s my quick take. It’s ONLY Season 1. Yes, Discovery had its writing issues but so did TNG, DS9, VOY, and ENT of their first few seasons. Despite the problems Discovery suffered during Season 1, It’s a good show. The writers and producers will make the necessary adjustments going forward. Not everyone will be pleased but I have a feeling Disco will be around for a long while.

My personal opinion is that if they had kept more Trek veteran writers like Mr Nicholas Meyer and Joe Menosky on the writing staff and had them involved more heavily, I think we would have had a much more coherent season, but as it stands now, its like the fuel of the car was finished after episode 13. What they need to do for season 2 is to make everything more coherent and make sure not to throw twists in episodes just for twists sake. They need to make everything more earned. Also they need a another actor in the caliber of Jason Isaacs, the show kind of emptied out after he was gone.

Clint Howard was also in DS9 episode Past Tense part 2 when he steals Jadzias combadge and pretends he’s invisible

My biggest problem with the Discovery finale is that it happened back in episode 13, making everything since then a rushed mess. From the moment the season was extended from 13 to 15 episodes I worried that either these last two would be a mess or that there would be some padded-out filler episodes around mid-season, the sort of treading-water stuff that I hate in a 26-episodes-per-season show. Then after the premiere, I thought the show had solved their problems by adding two prologue episodes and moving the start of their story to episode 3. No, instead we had two short episodes trying to tie up storylines (Klingon war, Voq/Tyler, mirror Georgiou) that could have filled a whole second season.

Imagine it: L’rell resolves Tyler/Voq (or does she?), Lorca – the season’s secret Big Bad – is disintegrated, Discovery barely makes it home but 9 months too late, the war is all but lost and… end season. That’s all, right there. It would have been a satisfying finale! Those moments where we see the Discovery crew come together under Saru’s leadership, work in concert with Burnham as a seamless unit and win the day through stirring fights and beautiful starship action were the high point of the season as far as I was concerned. Anything afterwards is just falling action.

And then. And then! There would be so much left to chew on for season two! Will Burnham’s relationship with Tyler survive? We’ll surely take more than a handful of scenes to explore it! Can Stamets find a way to get the spore drive operational again? We’ll have time for something better than handwavey magic terraforming! What is Tyler/Voq’s mental state or identity? Probably gonna get a more nuanced exploration of it than “he’s Tyler all the way but he has Voq’s memories shhhh now”! What will happen with mirror Georgiou now that she’s in the prime universe? They wouldn’t just throw her into command of a starship, right? Not with a whole season for her to lie, charm and seduce her way into power!

That’s not to say that I HATED how Discovery season one ended. I just like my idea more. I’m eager to see what Season two has in store and I loved loved LOVED seeing the Enterprise as the mini-cliffhanger. I still hope that Discovery will build on what they set up in the first season and I definitely want L’rell and Tyler to return.

Guys. . . . I’ll be honest, I just want a whole podcast to talk about the beautiful design of the new Enterprise. With hi-res screenshots and schematics.

There’s an article coming for that :)


I don’t listen to these all that much but was curious to hear what they had to say this time. And it seems they hit on a number of things I was saying in other threads. The Sarek discussion was something that bounced around in my head but never brought up. And I’m glad they did because I agree that Sarek in this series was very different from the Journey to Babel Saerk. Which isn’t so much as a canon inconsistency but a character inconsistency.

Agree with idea that it looked like the producers were patting themselves on their back with that finale. I guess they felt they needed to but the fans sure haven’t been overall.

They said they believed the speech when watching the show but after you think back and go, “hey…” But I sure as hell didn’t buy it as it was happening. But part of that was my attitude towards the show went south immediately after the Lorca reveal. Which I will say again, I heard the rumors before it but dismissed the concept because I didn’t think the writers would do something THAT dumb.

They had the same opinion of the appearance of the Enterprise. It was a crutch. That they should have established themselves for some time first. Agreed. And then the credit music was the same as TOS!!! They said what I said in the other thread. That it felt like the show was so unsure of itself they felt they needed to show Pike’s Enterprise to keep people interested or talking. To remind people of, as they put it, heroes you liked BETTER than these guys.

Since they forced the situation I agree that they HAVE to address the Enterprise appearance. They HJAVE to address this. They can’t just have the ship show up only to have in episode 2.1 them say, “We fixed their deflector dish (or whatever) and are no resuming our journey to Vulcan.” Now they are stick with doing SOMETHING. I actually don’t have a problem with recasting since they have forced this situation. I feel they created this situation and it would be a cheat to avoid seeing anyone from the Enterprise. And one would think that they would arrange for Spock to meet with his adoptive sister. And it would be weird considering Sarek is on Discovery. They’d have to come up with some way for them not to speak to each other. And the only way to do that is for them to avoid each other. The tease at the end was just another bad decision in a series filled with bad decisions.

Hearing some intriguing rumors about groovay Disco Trek explaining the Klingons’ appearance. The look results from a procedure known as the MIw Batlh, undertaken by tlhIngans in response to the Qu’Vat virus. Typical results include macrocephaly, hair loss, nostril bifurcation, and altered skin pigmentation. As for the Klingons of 2267 – 2268, I’m guessing either the MIw Balth has fallen out of fashion, or untreated, human-looking Klingons are deployed to mess with the heads of the Federation. Also earing some intriguing rumors about the flattened appearance of the Enterprise in groovay Disco Trek – this was caused by the hand of Apollo. “It all fits together, baby. Trust me.” – Alex Kurtzman

Reading the rationalizations for Disco Trek is a hoot. But please understand the difference between a hasty, 30 second resolution to a 45 minute episode from a bygone era; and a hasty, 30 second resolution to a 12 hour “premium” story. #NoShortcutsOnOurRighteousPath

Crew of the USS Buzzkill…

Love this Podcast, hope that producers hear that. You guys are trying to protect Trek legacy, so much respect for that.

I had a great time with the first season of DSC.
I was getting really tired of the podcast towards the end though.

Complaining about the lack of action in the finale. Had it been a giant shoot-out/fleet battle, you would have complained DSC is nothing but brainless action.
Instead of seeing how much homage this pays to Treks past by finding a clever Kirk-ish solution to a problem that while not great is still miles better than literal genocide.

Complaining about the Enterprise showing up.
Now the show gets to plant its flag and handle the Enterprise in the room on their terms.
If they never ran into the Enterprise, you’d complain the writers didn’t have the guts to do it.

Complaining about Tyler/Voq not going anywhere, hello did you actually WATCH the episode? His humanity combined with the Klingon perspective makes him truly the Torchbearer for Kahless vision, and the way he acts as a counterpoint to Michael Burnham (Klingon who tried to pass as human, and now is a human with the knowledge of a Klingon/Human who tried to pass as Vulcan and is rediscovering her humanity), perhaps make his character almost a stroke of genius.

While the choice to turn Lorca into a Mirror Universe captain looks at the surface as a cheap plot contrivance, taking this extended trip to the Mirror Universe works tremendously well thematically.
Because the Terran Empire is what humanity might become if we forsake all our ideals and morals.
And that starts when we begin to believe that the outcome can justify the means. Like blowing up the homeworld of your enemy to save your own.

This podcast was one of the many sources of coverage I turned to for Discovery’s first season. In short, I won’t be tuning into this show when Discovery returns. More often than not, I found the tone of this podcast to be unrelentingly negative. While I don’t mind Discovery criticism, I do mind when it’s coming from every member of the panel, with opposing viewpoints unrepresented. Other podcasts did a far better job at providing balanced coverage; it’s those shows I’ll be tuning back into. It’s a shame Kayla, Brian, Jared, and Matt weren’t able to get more out of this show. I hope the four of you have a better experience with Season 2. Cheers.