The Star Trek: Discovery panel at San Diego-Comic con twelve days ago confirmed that the iconic character of Spock would appear in the second season of the series. Spock was not seen, but he was discussed in the first look trailer released at Comic-Con, and it was subsequently revealed the an actor has already been cast as Trek’s most famous Vulcan. In a series of additional interviews, cast and crew of Discovery are talking more about the return of Spock and what it means for the series, along with offering some more tidbits of what is coming.
A different Spock
Speaking to SyFy, Discovery co-creator Alex Kurtzman outlined how the Spock we see in season two is not the Spock we know from the original Star Trek and beyond, saying:
Alex Kurtzman: The Spock that we meet is ten years [before Star Trek: The Original Series]. So, he is not formed in the same way that he is formed by the time you get to TOS. What we will learn is a lot of what made him the Spock that he was and what will make him the Spock he is, has to do with his family and his sister.
The executive producer and showrunner expands on this with TV Guide, adding:
Alex Kurtzman: There’s a lot of story about who Spock was before he becomes the Spock that is the yin-yang to Kirk. What I’m so excited about is that we have an opportunity to present a version of Spock that’s both totally consistent with the Spock everyone knows but very, very different. And it’s all gonna tie to how we sync up with canon.
Ensign Tilly actress Mary Wiseman spoke enthusiastically about Discovery’s approach to the character as well, telling Syfy:
Mary Wiseman: I think it is going to be so exciting for the fanbase. Spock is such a beloved character. It really captures the imagination of all people, not just hardcore Trek fans. I think it is going to be really fun, and really root the show. How we approach that is going to be, as ever, unique and with our very particular point of view.
And Dr. Culber actor Wilson Cruz added:
Wilson Cruz: I think he comes in with some mystery. I think we are going to learn some things about Spock, that we didn’t necessarily know before.
As for Anson Mount, who plays Captain Pike in season two, a tweet he sent out yesterday hinted that the actor cast to play Spock out-handsomes Mount himself.
You ain’t seen the guy playing Spock yet. Invest in a novelty ear company NOW (and save a pair for yourself and the missus). https://t.co/AsgqAtTCiS
— Anson Mount (@ansonmount) July 31, 2018
The Spock family dynamic will play a “huge” part of season two
Apparently a big aspect of Spock’s inclusion on Discovery will deal with his relationship with Michael Burnham, who was adopted by Spock’s parents, Sarek and Amanda, at a young age. Speaking to TV Guide, Discovery executive producer Heather Kadin spoke more about how the show will focus on the Burnham/Spock relationship:
Heather Kadin: We’re gonna be exploring those family dynamics. We’re gonna see a lot between them. I think that like any brother or sister, there’s love. There’s deep wells of stuff. That’s what’s so great about exploring that relationship, is there’s a lot of tricky stuff that we get to dig into.
And speaking to Syfy, Kadin added more about how this will play out, saying:
Heather Kadin: Dig into it before we meet him, after we meet him. It is a brother and sister in a unique way, that we can only do on Star Trek.
Also speaking to Syfy, Michael Burnham actress Sonequa Martin-Green said:
Sonequa Martin-Green: I can tell you that it is a huge deal. We are going to be really digging into that relationship, and digging into a lot of family dynamics in season two. And not just in that family between Burnham and Spock and Sarek and Amanda, but also with the entire crew.
Shazad Latif, who plays Burnham’s human lover Ash Tyler who turned out to also be the Klingon Voq, also spoke to Syfy about how the show is dealing with the Spock/Michael relationship:
Shazad Latif: It is going to add a whole extra layer, especially for Burnham, this whole family exploration she is going to have to go through. That is going to affect her other relationships, because it is going to be something on her mind.
More canon connections and characters in season 2?
In addition to Spock, the second season features two characters from Star Trek’s “The Cage,” Anson Mount playing Captain Christopher Pike and Rebecca Romijn playing Number One. But there could be more connections to canon. Speaking to TV Insider Kurtzman hinted we may see even more characters from Star Trek:
Alex Kurtzman: We are 10 years before [The Original Series]. But we are consistent with Pike and that journey. Obviously, characters that existed would probably still exist in our timeline. So, any number of people on that ship could show up this year.
He also talked more about how the second season into the canon timeline when speaking to SyFy Wire:
Alex Kurtzman: There are a lot of things that have been mentioned over time [in Star Trek], that are alluded to, but they are grey areas. There is a lot of detail missing. We are going to – like we did last season with the Klingon War – get to explore an area that hasn’t been explored.
Culber’s return thanks to the power of shrooms
While the return of Wilson Cruz as Dr. Culber has been made very clear, even as far back as when the character was killed off in season one, it hasn’t been revealed yet how he will come back from the dead. In his TrekMovie SDCC interview Cruz did say it was something unique for Star Trek and season one did show that some part of Culber still existed in the Mycelial Network, which is a new element the show has used. And Speaking to TV Insider actor Anthony Rapp offered a strong indication that Culber’s return will be thanks to this new element, saying:
Anthony Rapp: You know about the real Paul Stamets, the real mycologist that my character is inspired by. He works with mushrooms and fungus and mycelium. His actual science is part of what leads the possibility of Culber coming back into our world.
And just earlier today, Cruz shared a photo of the text “Dr. Culber” on Instagram from Toronto, where the show is currently in production.
L’Rell goes glam
One last tidbit from the new interviews comes from actress Mary Chieffo, speaking to TV Insider about her wardrobe for season two:
Mary Chieffo: This is definitely a little different from my L’Rell aesthetic. Although I can tease that now that L’Rell is the chancellor, she does have to spruce herself up a little bit. So, you should be expecting some fun, glamorous chancellor looks, that I enjoy very much.
Star Trek: Discovery is available exclusively in the USA on CBS All Access. It airs in Canada on Space and streams on CraveTV. It is available on Netflix everywhere else.
Keep up with all the Star Trek: Discovery news at TrekMovie.
I feel like a media superstar now. First Anson Mount retweets and replies to me; then the tweet is featured on Trekmovie. What a time to be alive! 😉
That’s Pretty Cool, once I had Anthony Rapp Like my Twitter post. It felt weird, I never expected him to respond.
I had an exchange with Leonard Nimoy in the early days of twitter, suggesting some sort of artistic collaboration between him and Leonard Cohen and their amazing voices. Over the course of it he said if I could somehow organise it he’d be up for it. Made my decade!!! I still have a screenshot of it somewhere.
That’s really great. Makes me wish I didn’t leave twitter. My account is long gone now.
It’s mostly venom and nastiness there; by and large you’re missing nothing
Yeah, that’s why I left. I got an email from twitter just before I left telling me that I may have been in talking to Russian trolls. I’m like “Tell me something I don’t know twitter”.
The Star Trek threads are pretty nice. Fannish without nastiness.
Marja – True. But don’t go to a Star Trek youtube video comment section without a hazmat suit.
Both Anthony and Wilson are very responsive to fans. I dig that and have had the pleasure of having small interactions with a few. They really seem to gravitate towards being open and having a dialogue with fans.
Dude I checked my twitter followers and Obama is one of 55. Why….I cannot figure out why but all I have on twitter are trek veterans.
Wait Obama is following you???? That’s pretty amazing!
Some people make their id’s as close to the real thing as possible, but if it has a blue check after it, it’s the real deal.
Remember that in The Cage, Spock was smiling and looked happy when he was touching those flowers that made sounds. So maybe something happened after that to make him colder, or be able to control his emotions better.
Sybok emailed him a funny joke just before that mission.
Sounds like that happened after he got married. ;)
But what about Sybok? j/k
You’d better not check out my twitter exchange with Brian Drew today so… sybok May have been involved
Might Sybok appear? Has that been said? Am I missing something?
You haven’t heard Luke? Captain Sybok will be introduced at the end of the season
The adventures of Captain Sybok and his first officer the 3-breasted cat lady Kirk threw into the pool table!
Doubtless it’d synch with canon at some point
That is some Emmy Gold, there.
So excited to get more Spock!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
This has the potential to be awesome, or horrible, and is bound to be controversial with fans no matter how it’s handled. I thought the tie-in to Spock’s family history was really well done in “Lethe”–probably my choice for Season 1’s best episode–but subsequent developments make me less hopeful that the producers will do this justice. We’ll see.
I’m super optimistic. I’m a life-long obsessive fan and Disco has turned out to be my favorite of the franchise. It has a depth and realness.
I agree. Lethe was my choice for the best episode as well. I have my doubts about season 2 as well. And yes, going with Spock so deeply is bound to be controversial. But something tells me they would like that. It could lead to more subscribers. I don’t think they got the eyeballs they would have liked in S1 and that is the reason for the Spcok circus.
Spock never had a girlfriend. Makes you think…..
He had a fiancée.
And him and Kirk schemed to get him out of it. Makes you think………
T’Pring, Uhura, Leila Kalomi?
He was experimenting.
So, by the formation of Spock, I’m assuming it won’t be an extended cut of Sarek and Amanda getting busy….
I’m fairly certain its STAR TREK canon that Spock couldn’t have been produced that way because of the differences between the two species of humanoids. It took a little help in the lab to accomplish it. Perhaps, even some of the Earth research that lead to Khan?
This is not to say that Sarek and Amanda didn’t aggressively give it the old college try.
@Disinvited — I bet Les Moonves insisted on it ;-}
LOL. Speaking of Les, I wonder how long it will take TrekMovie to realize that because of Les Moonves’ strong public ties to the new STAR TREK initiatives that there’s a very real possibility that he’ll take STAR TREK down with him when his inevitable ouster comes?
Luckily TrekMovie doesn’t live in a fantasy world. So they don’t have to worry about nonsense.
Yeah, I hope it’s unlikely.
I am curious to see how it might affect the Viacom-CBS merger though. My impression was that Moonves was the major obstacle to Shari Redstone
I expect Shari can only ultimately prevail, and it is absurd to expect her to lovingly preserve any project that she perceives rightly or wrongly as spawning from a corrupt Moonves inspiration.
Marja – Once he’s out the merger will happen.
It’s not a fantasy. When a regime changes in Hollywood due to scandal, all projects deemed to have even a whiff of a scent of the prior regime are often shelved to show “We are an entirely new regime who won’t do things THAT way!”
Its largely absurdist kabuki theater to which you are wise to be skeptical (For example: why didn’t all of this emerge, earlier, in the supposedly thorough internal investigation of CBS in regards to Charlie Rose?) of any expectation of real change to emerge but nevertheless, if only for the supposed pr value of the exercise, it’s how things are done in this town.
In a pediatricians office somewhere on Vulcan……sorry, guys, but the Vulcan mule is sterile. With any luck, maybe he’ll make a good warehouse worker at the Space Amazon facility some day. If those jobs aren’t outsourced to some godd**ned android first….
A different Spock? Maybe he will get angry and try to beat someone to death. That would be something new…
Yeah let’s make him relatable by having him angsty and emotional.
So any clues on who is playing Spock? I bet he’s British.
Rowan Atkinson is pretty hot…
He would be perfect if he was younger. I watched him as Black Adder as a kid. No wonder I’m so screwed up.
I heard someone suggest Taylor Lautner, but have no idea.
We’re talking television executives here so I’m expecting some star from a boy band. The next breakout teen idol, they hope.
The guy from Star Trek Continues was okay.
BrandonStacey from ST Phase II [Mind Sifter] was okay too, and I think he was Quinto’s stand-in for the films. Sure looks like him, but dunno if he can act very well. The whole Spock story in Mind Sifter seemed to be that he missed Kirk and was real sad … in a way some fanfic writers insisted on
This is also another reason why it was never going to be Quinto. Other than trying to keep the movie and TV universe separate as possible, they want a Spock who could just be his own version and mold him how they like. If Quinto’s Spock showed up people would just expect him to be like the one in the films. Sure he could play it a little differently but I think people will still see him as the same version as the Kelvin films.
This makes a lot more sense. Honestly I can completely do without Spock but if they are going to do it, then show a different side to him. Give us another reason why he’s there outside of the obvious one.
I’ve got a bad feeling about this…
Well Spock in The Cage, was quiet different from the Spock in most of TOS. This isn’t surprising to say the least.
Only in that the character was not really developed at all. It feels like they are hooking their wagon to that smile from “The Cage”. To me that is like trying to explain away the R on Kirk’s tombstone from WNMHGB. Just let it slide. No on really knew who or what Spock was at the time. It’s not a big deal.
This is Discovery, not TOS. They covered Spock with Journey to Babel, The Cage, Amok Time, and All Our Yesterdays, among others, including Yesteryear on TAS. They should work on Burnham, she’s the lead. Get her straight before micro-analyzing Spock. All of sudden this is TOS redux. This seems like a way to capitalize on “Star Trek’s most popular character” — just like they said on the AMT kit box. These “new formative explorations of your favorite characters” rarely play out well. Sometimes they do, but rarely.
I think it’s out of necessity, really. Discovery is CAA’s highest rated series but it’s not pulling in the kind of numbers Netflix is seeing with “Stranger Things” or “Handmaid’s Tale” on Hulu. Mention Spock, Pike and the Enterprise and it piques the interest of casual fans and viewers who may be willing to sample the show when they’re aware of something familiar returning to Star Trek.
CBSAA is still new and doesn’t have to pull in the same amount of views like Netflix. Remember CBS is a huge company, they’re not some fresh behind the ear start up that just came out of nowhere.
Meh. If the show was good enough it wouldn’t need gimmicks. Past Treks never did and they did just fine ratings wise, even Enterprise, which had ratings most shows would kill for now when it was cancelled.
Once again, El Chup. Fully agreed. If the show was good enough they would not feel the need to do this. If it were getting the subscribers they hoped for I doubt they would be doing this either.
It is out of necessity, I agree. Not 100% sure embracing TOS characters is the way to go. It might work better than it did on Enterprise. They couldn’t embrace TOS characters (being 150 years before) but they did severely lay down some ground for the Trek universe we saw on TOS. Most fans seemed to like that direction but it did not lead to better ratings overall. Perhaps using characters will work better for them? Not so sure. People could just tune their TV’s to UPN. To get CBSAA they need to activate accounts and many need to add equipment.
Just imo, of course, but Discovery doesn’t deserve anywhere near the kind of numbers Stranger Things and Handmaid’s Tale are bringing in. You used two excellent shows as an example, there.
Well, perhaps. I just hope it’s not hackwork. They did well with Michael and Sarek in “Lethe” though, so I have hopes.
And Stranger Things S2 was a disappointment, at least to me.
CBS made a mistake with the AA thing, methinks, but I do enjoy “The Good Fight” in addition to “Discovery”.
I DON’T disagree with you in the slightest and yes this was my biggest fear the second we heard it took place so close to TOS. It was one of the biggest reasons why I wanted to go forward. Even if its not post Voyager then have it take place after the TOS films. That would’ve been a great era to cover.
But they clearly want to capitalize on fan service so they can bring in every TOS character thats around. I just don’t get it, if you wanted to have an excuse to bring TOS characters but didn’t want to step on the Kelvin films then they should’ve just did a Pike show from the beginning.
For the record, I am excited about Pike and the story line. I’m curious to see how they handle Spock. But it just makes the universe feels smaller and redundant. I want Trek to take chances again. They did it multiple times before and it worked. Not sure why it wouldn’t now?
This ^. Exactly, Tiger.
Yup, that pretty much nails it.
Well … perhaps they’re busy refining Disco’s ability to travel in time.
Yes Kev. That. They need to work at making Burnham interesting. She’s the lead and was amazingly boring. Going to Pike and starting the Spock circus just distracts us from THEIR OWN SHOW!
Again, I think it obvious they did not get the subscribers they wanted and felt like they needed to fully latch on to TOS to gram more. That has got to be by far the biggest reason behind this.
I do not understand how Burnham is boring. I really don’t. Her evolution in S1 was great, and Martin-Green is an excellent actor.
YMMV I suppose.
Marja – She’s a woman. If Burnham was a white male none of these guys would have a problem with the character.
Marja, we (the viewers) were sold on her being a human raised by Vulcans. We were told that she felt like she was personally responsible for an entire war and she would have to grapple with that. Well, seems she grappled with that for perhaps 1 or two episodes. Then it was nowhere. We had pretty much one episode that dived into her human-vulcan situation. Turned out it was the best episode of the season. There was little else to show how she was able to deal with the conflicts she HAD to of had. She was well adjusted already. Nothing about her said, “This is an interesting character and this is why you should care about her”. I honestly cannot tell if he is a good actress or not. This is the only role I’ve seen her in and she wasn’t given anything to work with by the writers.
“…a version of Spock that’s both totally consistent with the Spock everyone knows but very, very different. And it’s all gonna tie to how we sync up with canon.”
That’s the response to pretty much everything related to this series.
They screwed themselves over with doing another prequel. Fans/viewers are ready for the Star Trek story to advance. Good lord, they could take the novels written over recent years and turn any of those into a show or miniseries. I have no idea what this fascination is with prequels. It screams “corporate groupthink” rather than creativity.
Post Nemesis presented a blank slate and everything we’ve seen in Discovery would have fit neatly in a post Nemesis storyline: The spore drive, an unintended war after first contact, a mirror universe and so on.
Let. It. Go. That starship has sailed :)
Setting a Star Trek series in the future is a ship that has sailed? I’ve heard it all now.
I think he means that DIS itself is set in the 23rd century and won’t change, which is probably true.
All STAR TREK series that have ever been took place in the future – it’s a given. It’s semantical nonsense that any STAR TREK that takes place in another STAR TREK’s “future” will automatically be artistically superior because it’s easier. The easy way out is rarely worth the doing.
Making a prequel show that is relied heavily on established settings and characters is the easy way.
Re: Making a prequel show … is the easy way.
If so, then how do you account for the behind the scenes talent churn before, during, and after DISCOVERY’s production?
And I think it would be fair to ask you to compare and contrast it to ORVILLE’S lack of same during roughly a similar production period?
It’s threading a needle, Ahmed, which is not easy. It’s the same challenge “Enterprise” had with not altering “future history.”
I think it’s kind of silly they set it so close to TOS.
Marja – I don’t know about that. TOS is the real blank slate. Does anyone know that was going on during that time on Earth or Starfleet? Klingons looking like burned out band roadies notwithstanding.
I agree. Prequels are easy on one sense, but difficult in another.
Discovery’s production problems had nothing to do with the show being a prequel but rather with the fact that they hired Fuller, a showrunner who was already involved with another new major show. Then they hired his inexperienced lieutenants and made it worse.
Both ENT & Caprica were prequel shows and neither witnessed the same upheaval that ‘Discovery’ went through.
My main point that in term of creativity; making a prequel show is a lot easier since they’re working with an established framework whereas creating a whole new future setting requires more work.
The former ‘Discovery’ co-showrunner Aaron Harberts pretty much said so:
“‘I’m glad that it is [a prequel] because it set up parameters for us. Let’s say we set it 100 years after Voyager, the canvas is so broad. To try to contemplate, you’re creating a whole new mythology really.”
That reads to me as showrunners content with playing with already established “parameters” & too lazy to come up with fresh and interesting ideas of their own.
Exactly, they aren’t forced to think outside of the box they same way people who made TNG, DS9 and VOY were. All those shows also had familiar frameworks existing in the same period but they actually created premises that forced them to come up with new ideas. That’s why I’m not as hard on Berman as others. He did try hard for each show to have its own setting, aliens, conflicts, mythology etc. Even Enterprise thought outside the box with ideas like the TCW and the Xindi. And in fact people complained about that show because there wasn’t ENOUGH TOS canon shown.
But DIS so far hasn’t tried to do anything new on its own. All the stories, alien conflicts and concepts with the exception of the spore drive has all been done before, and a lot of cases, better.
But Fuller was the one who decided to make it a prequel. You can’t divorce the two. His hire, bad or not, is an essence of his conception of a Trek prequel actually not being as easy as he thought.
I wanted to compare its problems to a non-prequel SF production contemporary to it that also drew on TREK, but if you want to bring up the past:
How do you account for Berman demanding “Star Trek” be kept out of the title of your “easy” STAR TREK prequel, ENTERPRISE? And as I recall, Berman, for whatever reason, was reluctant to do ENTERPRISE in the first place. I see no way to paint a “reluctant” production as an “easy” one. And as scurrilous as I believe his invention of “franchise fatigue” to be, his constant contention that he was battling this windmill is evidence that this prequel was anything but “easy” for him. And do I really have to drag out the quotes of Drexler, Mandel, and Bonchune to remind you just how “easy” the “easy prequel” seeking producers were NOT making it to tow the “easy” canon line?
And as for the “easy” CAPRICA, wasn’t SyFy so appalled by Moore’s prequel concept that it ended up in development hell? Didn’t SYFY’s Mark Stern say its pilot was a “LONG-anticipated project?” And its prequel, not to mention prehistorical, setting was so clear and “easy” to establish that the NYT had to issue the following correction in its otherwise favorable review”:
“Correction: January 26, 2010
A television review and a headline on Friday about “Caprica,” on the Syfy channel, misstated the time frame of that series and its predecessor, “Battlestar Galactica.” The events take place in the distant past, not the future, and the colonizers of the planet Caprica are ancestors of present-day humans, not their descendants.”
To be fair to Berman, he wasn’t reluctant to do Enterprise so much as he was arguing (as others did at the time) that they should take a few years off after Voyager before introducing another show. But he was over ruled for obvious reason$.
And UPN wanted to go farther in the future, Berman felt they didn’t have anymore ideas to make it more different from before and came up with the idea of doing a show before the Federation formed. That was his idea, the network just wanted to continue what Voyager did basically. I really didn’t like the idea but I understood the reason for doing it because it was different and it was feeling stale for someone who had already done fifteen years straight of 24th century stories.
And Singer’s ORIGINAL idea was to make it an anthology show taking place in multiple eras. We know he had planned for each new season to take place in a different time period and even go farther than TNG era. He was just over ruled and decided to build on what was planned first season. I can’t blame CBS for overruling that idea because it would be pretty expensive to basically overhaul everything every time the show jumped fifty years in the future but I would’ve been curious to see how he did it.
For what it’s worth, I actually liked the idea of an anthology series. With a whole new story arc, characters and even a different time setting each season. But I also understand CBS’s reluctance and their reasons.
Yeah I can’t blame CBS too much in this instance. Trek is already expensive enough. But it does prove Fuller was thinking much bigger, sadly more than what we are getting with DIS right now.
“Reluctant” was Berman’s actual word used – not mine. And he latched onto Nemecek’s “franchise fatigue” [I think his “producer fatigue” was far more on target.] after the fact to explain the many difficulties that prequel series had for him. Such as:
“It [ENTERPRISE] was a quality show, but the ratings weren’t really what they should be. And I don’t think the network – the new regime – I don’t think they treated the show with the tender loving care that it needed to thrive.” — Brannon Braga
“Our relationship with the [UPN] network was distant. And it wasn’t embracing and warm and…a sense of working together that had existed in all the years before.” — Rick Berman
And Singer’s seasonal “anthology” concept doesn’t change the fact that it was his idea for its entire first one to be a prequel which is an issue germane to the topic at hand.
What I’m saying is I don’t think it would’ve actually mattered WHAT show it was, he wasn’t sure if it was simply a good idea to make another one so soon after Voyager. As you said, he was citing franchise fatigue as a reason, which is the point that I’m making. But this wasn’t rocket science at the time because both DS9 and VOY were losing ratings. People were just tuning in less. Now they were both still strong shows rating wise (or there wouldn’t have been another Trek show after them) but it was clear less were watching, not more.
But as I said the network didn’t want the prequel, it was HIS idea. So that’s why if he was that reluctant, he wouldn’t have went that direction at all and followed what the studio wanted which was another 24th or 25th century show.
And that quote from Braga and Berman proves that point as well, the new guys didn’t really get Star Trek and they didn’t think the idea of Enterprise as a worthy show so they were butting heads with it since they came in.
As for Singer, he had no issue making a prequel, I agree with you, I’m only saying that wasn’t his first idea but he was clearly on board once his first idea was turned down. I’m not even sure the anthology idea was something he was that gung ho for, but would’ve fun to see different angles of Trek.
And all I’m saying, is Berman chose a prequel because, given that the network was ordering another one, he believed it was the easier for him to do creatively, i.e. the one with a wealth of creative ideas that he couldn’t muster for another bythebook sequel. I’m just pointing out it didn’t turn out that way, for him. It wasn’t as easy as he expected or thought regardless of what excuses he made, and his reluctant mindset going in didn’t help.
Mirab, with sails unfurled!
Yeah Nemesis was such a great Star Trek movie. How much money that that mess make again?
The quality of Nemesis is totally irrelevant to any Trek set in the years after it.
In case you have forgotten, Trek 09 is partially set after it.
Its such a dumb argument. One bad movie bombed so that now means you can’t tell stories in that period anymore, ever? What about the other movies that made money for years in that same period? What about all the TV shows that went on for 10+ years in that same period and still has millions of loyal fans today watching them?
With that logic, how come they are still trying to make another Kelvin film after Beyond bombed? Doesn’t that prove no one cares about that universe now if you want to play that silly game? And that was considered a good movie people should’ve wanted to see and yet so few did.
“One bad movie bombed so that now means you can’t tell stories in that period anymore, ever?”
Pretty much. That movie was so bad Paramount started destroying the sets before the movie was even released. Nemesis was garbage, and you don’t build your house on top of garbage.
Not on screen it isn’t. On screen, it is totally set in a universe far, far, away.
A post nemesis show will get canceled because no one would watch it. I know I wouldn’t.
If CBS listened to Trek fans like you, the show would look like a lame youtube fan movie.
Another agreement Denny C. Hell, they could have done the show post TUC and STILL covered everything they wanted.
Absolutely. Even Sarek, if they felt they had to.
Yep! Hopefully we will get a post-Nemesis show but I think a post TUC would’ve went a long way too for a lot of people.
You won’t get it. Thank God you won’t get it.
No. We want Star Trek in its purest form. The last thing we need is more diluted Trek set hundreds and hundreds of years in the future with people sipping tea and telling the same stories over and over. That’s the reason Trek started die during the Voyager era. Enterprise was an attempt to fix the problem, but by then it was too late.
The issue wasnt the fact that Trek was moving further in to the 24th century, it was the formula was becoming increasingly stale. Plot lines were recycled on Voyager from TNG which then ended up recycled again on Enterprise. It was tired and it needed to be rested.
Re: It was tired and it needed to be rested.
STAR TREK is NOT a living thing but mere human artifice and as such required no such thing. It was certain very living long-in-the-tooth writer/producers who were tired and needed to be rested via retirement – especially the one who invented that “tired franchise” nonsense just to cover his uninspired arse staying in control.
You don’t want Trek in it’s purest form. All you ever bang the drum for is wham, bam, action ma’am Trek. You’ve insulted every Trek to come before the JJ films, including TOS.
You haven’t got a clue what Trek is at it’s purest. Well, unless all the criticising of past Treks is deliberate trolling. *shrug*
You sound angry. What to talk about it?
Prequels allow you to mine the familiar. To rehash the things from peoples’ childhoods. That’s why Star Wars is doing it with their spin off movies and it’s why Trek is going down the same path.
It’s painfully lazy, low brow and superficial. But a lot the audience still laps it up. So really Hollywood is just giving them what they want. Until the audience demands more than just that we haven’t got a chance of seeing something truly special.
I agree completely on this. I mean DIS didn’t do anything remotely different than every other Trek show before it. It was 15 episodes and we got a year long war theme (done both on DS9 and ENT) and a MU arc (once again done on DS9 and ENT). Now it FEELS different for sure but the stories are all the same stuff we seen in Trek time and time again. Even my favorite episode, Sanest Man, was the same recycle plot line of living time over again TNG did well over 20 years ago now.
I mean I get what people say when they say the older shows followed a certain formula but ALL the Trek shows follows a certain formula. The difference with TNG/VOY/ENT was that they were made by roughly the same people and it was 500+ episodes made in literally eighteen straight years. No one is going to sit here and tell me that you’re not going to repeat the same stuff when you are producing so much content in the same span of time. If DIS manages to make 150+ episodes trust me its going to start feeling the same no matter what they do after awhile. I didn’t include DS9 because while it too recycled a lot of stuff it did feel different from those just by being on a station and telling a multi year story arc no Trek show has ever done before or sadly since!
As far as DIS, I mean its ALREADY rehashing stuff we are all VERY familiar with: Klingons, MU, Section 31, Enterprise etc, etc. Other than the look of the show, what exactly felt all that different story wise? What was the most original thing DIS did all season? Even the Vulcan story line, Lithe, was cool but still had elements we had seen in Enterprise (Vulcan extremist group, Vulcans using mind meld at great distances BOTH done on Enterprise). When you have so many episodes already it’s really hard to do something completely original at this point.
One of the things that excites me about season 2 is the Spock story line look original and sci fi based but my guess it’s still going to end up being something we already seen before, just in a different package. But I have hope it will be something cool.
See, this is why I actually liked Star Wars The Last Jedi more than other people, other people wanted more of the same like The Force Awakens, but The Last Jedi tried to go in a completely different direction (whether it was successful or not can always be up for debate) but I admire their guts to take the characters in a different direction. I actually want something similar from Star Trek, but within the formula of Star Trek of course, because if you look at it Trek is at best when its science fiction morality plays, but I believe you can still make newer and more creative episodes or movies within this framework without getting too far away from the space exploration formula.
I liked it too, but I’m not devoted to the SWars verse, so I didn’t mind the ending.
I still think they should have mined some of the post-SWars novels. Barbara Hambly wrote a terrific one.
Yeah I liked TLJ as well ALTHOUGH the film did have some story and plot issues for sure. But I didn’t mind he tried to do something different from TFA and had the characters go in a different direction. I think the problem for most fans is that it felt like there is no real plan for the trilogy and they are obviously correct lol.
But yes I was fine with doing something different, I guess it would’ve been easier if he wrote the first one though and not the second.
As for Star Trek, we all like familiar elements and tropes. I’m certainly not immune. I get excited like everyone when we hear an old character is showing up or bringing back a foe like the Borg. The problem with DIS is that it feels more of a crutch, that they feel they have to use these characters to even get people to watch the show and not just a fun story to do on its own like when Scotty showed up on TNG.
I was completely on board when Nimoy decided to play Spock in the Kelvin films and it was a clever idea how they used him to set up that universe. But if they felt they needed him in every movie after that because they were afraid old fanboys wouldn’t watch then you’re not giving your audience enough credit.
Then again, Beyond did bomb and that was the only one he wasn’t in. So coincidence, who knows lol.
I’d say the spore drive is the most original thing in STD. But that feels like it belongs in a post Nem show.
And regarding been there done that? Spock being called away to some spacey phenomena sounds like TMP to me.
PS… If STD manages to reach 150 episodes that would mean it would have at least 12 seasons!
I agree about the spore drive and WHY I really like it, because its at least a new concept DIS alone can say they done. The idea itself has sort of been done in Voyager but clearly the concept of the mycelial network is something that is unique to DIS. So they get major credit for that even if a lot of fans hate the idea.
But that is more of a plot device instead of building on new mythology. I’m thinking about Enterprise first season which actually tried to give us new concepts like the Suliban and the TCW. They didn’t just rest on Klingon and Vulcan stories, that show still tried to give its audience completely new concepts and mythology we never heard of before even if it was a prequel. In fact, DIS is probably the first spin off Trek show that didn’t try to create any major concepts on its own. TNG, DS9, definitely VOY lol and ENT first seasons all tried hard to build on new species, conflicts and ideas. No they didn’t all work (looking at the TNG’s Ferengies ;)) but they TRIED to build new mythologies for themselves out of the gate.
DIS did not do that, at all! But I guess because it dealt with the Klingon war and there are fewer episodes maybe they felt there was no time to create new things. Fine, but this is a show that literally only introduced one new planet in an entire season. What??? And it really bothered me as well it felt like the galaxy was filled with nothing but Klingons and Vulcans most of the season. At least show more familiar aliens if you’re not going to show anyone new outside of Saru.
But its early, I’m not suggesting they can’t do something new. But then what do we know about season two so far: More Klingons, Section 31, Spock and Pike. This is literally all we know. I’m excited for most of this but its still relying on the familiar to market to people and not forging ahead with any new ideas on their own. But maybe they will surprise us?
Think outside the box a little, please!
Tiger2, Humans write Star Trek. Humans are only so innovative. Star Trek is a “universe” with laws and a “world” already built. So they have quite a challenge coming up with new stories. I am amazed all the Treks were able to come up with as many as they did, even though 1/4 of them, probably, are Star Dreck.
Yes, there are many tropes, and the more shows, the more tropes. So you’re saying that over 500 episodes, they should not have repeated a story or a trope?
Perhaps I’m oversimplifying. But the 15 episodes of DSC seemed fresh to me, and I’ve been watching Star Trek, off and on, for 41 years. I wasn’t crazy about another delve into the MU, but they did a fresh take on it, and it wasn’t campy as it was on DS9.
No, I’m *not* getting on their case for it. Just the opposite. I’m defending why the later shows recycled a lot of the same ideas because as you said, people are only human and there is only so many concepts you can come up with. So when people say Trek became stale because it followed the same formula, I don’t disagree too much, but after you hit 100+ episodes of something, its going to be hard to do a lot of things out of the box.
Ron Moore and others spoke on it directly that they had such a hard time coming up with ideas for TNG last season because they had done everything lol. They even said they were doing more relative stories because it was a way to try to come up with a new angle for the characters. But its still a TV show, if Paramount wanted 26 episodes a season, then its your job to fill that plate. And I think for the most part all the shows did pretty well telling interesting stories on their own but yeah when you have SO many productions all running at the same time for years, stuff is going to cross over after awhile.
And I’m not getting on DIS case either. But what I’m saying is end of the day they are just relying on stuff OTHER writers came up with decades ago to help propel their stories today. They came up with new characters, plot lines, etc but they haven’t come up with their own version of Klingons in terms of introducing a new formidable species the same way TNG did with the Borg, DS9 with the Dominion, etc. They went with the tried and familiar. The mirror universe has become a cool thing so they went back to that instead of coming up with something original on their own to create their own mythology with.
And I’m not saying these are bad things, I LOVED that they went back to the MU for example, but I just think its funny DIS is considered ‘innovative’ when the major story lines has been stuff that has been used by others for decades now. If DIS for example ended up in another galaxy or a pocket of unknown space, then that’s forging ahead to something new and unfamiliar just like what Enterprise did when it entered the Expanse to find the Xindi. But so far DIS is just relying on concepts created by other people. OF COURSE we want to see familiar things, but it being a prequel its sort of an excuse just to redo things we already know about, hence why Pike is showing up and not some new character.
I just want to see DIS do a completely cool unique idea and so far that’s only been the spore drive and why I like it. But that’s still just a cool plot device, its not something like the temporal cold war, Species 8472 or the wormhole aliens, ie, stories that builds on its own separate mythology like all the previous shows did. At least not yet.
Hopefully season 2 will prove me wrong in that aspect!
Marja – Discovery brought me back to Star Trek. If the show was just a copy of TNG and Voy I would never watch it.
Well…there is that version of Spock that a lot of fans pretend doesn’t exist. The smiling Spock from The Cage and Where No Man Has Gone Before. Granted, as long as he yells “Check the circuits” I suppose I’ll be happy enough with this Spock…
Hello! I think they should explore why Spock picks logic over exploring his emotional side and somehow this season will give him a reason to go the course even over family. In the Cage it seems he was imitating his crew with emotional outbursts and came off cocky.
I just feel this is so lazy. It’s like JJ Trek. Going back and mining TOS.
The show has a new crew and a new ship and yet we’re only 13 episodes in and they have to draw in the Enterprise and TOS characters. This is not Trek boldy going where no one has gone before. It’s Trek boldy going backwards and hoping nostalgia will placate easily pleased viewers. It’s like they have no confidence in their own characters.
This is the correct take.
Agree. I’m excited about Pike/Number One but I don’t want a whole show of it. One episode is enough. I wish they would flesh out their own characters and species instead. Doing more Klingons feels like we’re beating a dead horse.
I was truly excited about the idea of seeing Pike when I thought he would be in 1-2 episodes. Once they said he’s basically in the whole season my excitement waned.
Agreed. But this is also Alex Kurtzman fully in charge. He not only brought us Khan when no one wanted it in STID, he’s now thinking about giving that guy his own TV show.
DIS should at least stand on its own before we are introduced everyone in TOS by season 3.
Its too much nostalgia. At the VERY least if DIS is going to just be an excuse to bring in TOS characters then love of god try something innovative with the other 34 shows they are working on. Not EVERYTHING has to be 23rd century or orientate around TOS.
Well, recall that in the 2nd season of the first series they tried to introduce a spinoff so these sort of moves aren’t exactly without precedent.
And if one of Kurtzman’s spinoffs is possibly something along the lines of WB’s KRYPTON (SyFy) for the planet Vulcan, it would make sense to introduce Spock to give a potential new audience a Vulcan “101” course. Also would be a good way to signal to the existing fanbase the tack he plans to take. Done well, it certainly could make amends for blowing it up?
I don’t mind a spin off but at least try and do something original with it. A TNG spin off could’ve went the easy route for example and gave us the U.S.S Pacific with Will Riker now Captain with his spunky new crew…and Data, but instead they gave us Deep Space Nine which was completely different from TNG in every imaginable way.
And while they did give us a familiar character on the show with O’Brien, he wasn’t the star or barely a supporting character on TNG either. Nor was he made the star of DS9. They went with a completely new character. Worf was bought in later but the show was completely its own by then.
I haven’t seen Kyrpton but I know a little about it and I would say if they did something like that where a show was a planet based Vulcan show, that’s actually something original and different. But unless Khan is on it, I just don’t see it happening.
The proposed shows so far all sound like stuff we already been there and done that with. Most people want the Picard one because it would at least be post-Nemesis (and of course seeing Picard again) which would be great! But I would be fine if they did it sans Stewart. It just seems like they are afraid to just do something without some connection to other characters. Again Enterprise wasn’t perfect but it was nice no one felt the need to make Archer a descendant of Khan or Trip an ancestor of Bones to hook in viewers. Give us fans more credit! We watched all the shows without the contrived built in fan stuff for nearly two decades, we can do it again.
Stop making Trek nothing more than a nostalgia piece for old fanboys!
I agree that Trek needs to be more, but I’m not sure it can achieve that if people keep insisting on total amnesia that because of Paramount’s lack of vision for the property they dealt largely in nothing but nostalgia (reruns et al) for 10 years after its first cancellation and those old fans, in their youth, still made it an economically viable product for them.
I don’t believe it’s a question of either or, but rather, one of achieving a delicate balance. As JFK said, “We do these things not because they are easy, but because they ARE hard.”
Yes Star Trek has always relied on nostalgia to some degree but its far proven itself it can work with new ideas and concepts too. Sadly I don’t think we’ll ever get another DS9 but the love of that show proves fans can accept new things since that show seemed loved by both old and new fans. It just didn’t get the ratings TNG did at the time, but no show has. I doubt DIS is getting anywhere near what DS9 got in its lowest season viewer wise because its on a platform most people don’t even have or want.
And I guess that’s why they are going the fan service route even harder. I just look for a day we can just have more original Trek again, in whatever form that is.
I agree, DS9 definitely achieved this delicate balance. It’s proof that it CAN be done.
But Tiger, the old ‘fanboys’ hate DSC. At least the self-titled “true fans”
You’re not too wrong Marja which is also funny they seem to try so hard with the fan service with the Kelvin movies and now DIS and it only seems to make the older fans hate these projects if they don’t get it right in their minds. Which is why its so odd they are trying so hard to attract them.
Marja and Tiger2,
I think the issue and its conflicts stem from the fact that fans like Kurtzman see themselves as “old” fanboys because of the span of much time but they are, in reality, too young to be actual “old” fanboys and thus mistakenly believe they are of the same mind on various things when there’s actually a (generation?) gap that needs to be hurdled to truly grasp their concerns and priorities.
“he’s now thinking about giving that guy his own TV show. ”
Wasn’t it Meyer who wanted the Khan miniseries?
Maybe but in reality Meyer has no real clout to make anything on his own, that’s obvious. If he really was involved in making one, its only because someone like Kurtzman was interested in it in the first place. Meyer might have suggested it and someone said yes but someone like Kurtzman is the one who is making the decisions of what gets developed and what doesn’t.
Tiger 2, I don’t think he was the ONLY one behind the Khan debacle. My impression over millions of words on TrekMovie after STID was that Lindelof had a lot to do with that, and I imagine Goldsman was in the background enthusiastically saying, “Yeah! Make it Khan! Everybody loves Khan!” [The same excitable boy who said, “Heheh Klingons have two peens! Klingons have two peens!”]
No he certainly wasn’t and IIRC it was actually Damon Lindeloff who was the one who pushed it the most. I’m only saying GIVEN alllllll the grief those guys got over Khan in STID, it seem like your instinct would be to stay far away from doing more Khan. Instead it sounds like he is going all in lol.
Now of course I’m sure he learned his lesson after STID, mostly to just cast the right freakin actor to play the role, but NO ONE seems to care that much about Khan. That’s what is weird. Khan was in two stories, both good stories, but there has never been a push to see him again because I think the mythos of Khan was strong enough not no one wanted to wreck that if they show too much of him. Most fans didn’t want him in STID and they don’t seem that interested now and yet this rumor of him appearing again hasn’t died. Maybe he wants to redeem himself over STID, who knows?
How about you give the new series a chance before you complain about a plotline you’ve not seen yet?
I gave the last season “a chance”. I don’t like how it finished and I don’t care for the direction the show is going in. How many chances do I need to give it before you will graciously allow me to have an opinion?
If Pike is really their new Captain for good then it’s not mining at all but the way to bring him in. TNG had to have a moment between Data and McKoy *that really wasn’t needed at all* and think about all the TOS reference in season one and then guest appearances after. Once Discovery really hits its mark and gets a few seasons behind it, I’m sure it will really take off as its own thing. But it still does have to live in the Trek sandbox so it also makes sense.
McCoy’s appearance was short and more as passing the torch moment. There were no guest appearances from TOS characters on TNG until the last part of season 3 with Sarek and then in season 5 (Spock) and season 6 (Scott). That’s vastly different from what ‘Discovery’ is doing. From the very beginning they relied on TOS’s characters and familiar aliens from that era. You’ve a lead character that is connected to Sarek & Amanda, and then you have Mudd.
Now with this second season, they’re bringing in even more TOS characters.
And think about how many episodes in it was before Sarek showed up compared to episode 16 for Pike.
Also what was great about it Ahmed is they didn’t feel the need to give these guys recurring roles where Spock and Scotty showed up every season after that. Sarek was in two episodes, but the second was to basically kill him off and give a connection to Spock. But the others they found a way to bring them on to please fans but didn’t rely on them for ratings or anything. Same for all the spin off shows. DS9 actually had the most TOS characters but never included the main cast members. VOY had Sulu in one episode and that was mostly for the 30th anniversary.
DIS is different because these characters don’t just make an appearance and leave, they basically become part of the show. I’m actually shocked Mudd won’t be in more episodes (not counting the short Trek thing) but then again who knows? He may have a three episode story line at the end of the season.
McCoy was just a fun short cameo that was never advertised. You didn’t even know about it until after the episode aired. And what was so memorable about it because it was so short but so well done. THAT’s a great way to do this stuff.
That’s VERY different from making Pike the star of someone else’s show for a season and advertising the hell out of it.
What I liked about TNG is that we didn’t get a real TOS guest spot until third season and it always no more than maybe one episode a season after that. They wanted TNG to have its own identity and for people to love those characters befor Kirk and Spock showed up.
It only makes sense for DIS because of how close the timeline is, oh and Burnham is Spock’s sister. But even then they could do the show without other TOS characters around every other episode.
What happened to Kurtzman stating a few months ago that he would never recast such an iconic character for Discovery save as a child actor?
Well that’s simple: he’s a liar.
To be fair I think the former show runners said that, but once they got the boot and he was left in charge it sounded like that all changed.
But then again its clear the story line was always going to be about finding Spock, so yeah, I don’t get it either unless they really did plan to resolve it without showing the adult version.
So we’ve seen Prime Spock’s childhood, Pike era, Kirk era, death, resurrection, ambassador era, and Prime Spock in alternate universe era. We’ve met Prime Spock’s father, mother, fiancée, half brother, and foster sister. We’ve also seen Alternate Spock’s birth, childhood, academy era, and Kirk era. We’ve met Alternate Spock’s mother and father. We’ve had Prime Spock meet Alternate Spock and Alternate Spock react to Prime Spock’s death. We’re also still getting Alternate Spock stories.
I mean, I like Spock but do we really need to see more of him?
No, GQMF. No we do not. Boldly Going,
Nah. This is awesome.
lol. That’s a great summary of what’s been done with Spock. I think you left out mirror universe Spock and his mirror universe father
I completely forgot about Mirror Spock and Mirror father. I also left out Alternate pre-Academy era Spock (Vulcan Science Institute application), Pike era Alternate Spock and ponfar Prime Spock, including Vulcan ceremony ponfar and first post-resurrection ponfar .
You really have to wonder how they could see potential to add more to his story.
Exactly. We’ve seen enough of Spock. His story as largely been told already. There is little more they can show about Spock that we really need to see. I’d like to see a little more Kirk or McCoy background. But that would not bring in the subscribers like Spock might. So that is the direction they go. It’s a business decision. Not a creative one.
It’s interesting that we have never actually seen Tarsus IV or McCoy’s daughter.
I recall (think it was Dorthy Fontana) saying there was a script for a 4th season that involved McCoy’s daughter and Kirk getting a little enamored with her. Something that would strain the friendship.
I like Burnham’s character, but I hate that she’s Spock’s “foster sister” and Sarek’s “foster daughter.” I just haven’t been able to accept it. It’s a plot element that feels enormously forced, and out of place. There’s no reason for it. And, when they eventually give an explanation for why we’ve never heard of her before, I know that explanation is going to feel very forced, as well.
Also, why does Spock need to be “very different” from the Spock we know? I don’t like the sound of that, either.
Nah. It’s awesome. Loving it.
You remind me of some fans on my college football team forum who would use every opportunity to tell us things were going great during our worst season in 20 years. We called them sunshine pumpers (we didn’t use the term trolling so much back then). Thankfully we got a new coach the next year and started winning again. It made them a lot more tolerable. Here is hoping Trek starts “winning” again for the same reason.
Every team, good or bad, needs cheerleaders, Philk…
The show is garbage on a conceptual level. The only things that make it worthwhile are the look and the acting.
Well aren’t you a little ray of sunshine? Insulting Alex Kurtzman for no reason and now calling his show garbage? Ever thought about NOT being a troll?
At least you like the look and the acting [which are both super, but I do wish they’d warm the lighting a tad bit from the blue spectrum].
It was done to create a link from Discovery to TOS. Even in the conception stage the show was afraid to stand completely on its own.
Well, it was the stanchion of an all-new network, so yuh. “It’s show business, not show FRIEND.”
All the more reason to make something new and original. That stands up on it’s own. Sure, use the ST brand to try to get subscribers. But keep them with something they haven’t seen before.
I did feel initially that bringing in Sarek was a mistake, but liked what they did with it. He could have been another Vulcan parent though. [shrug] “Brand Recognition” probably.
SYBOK IS NOT A JOKE. SYBOK IS SERIOUS BUSINESS. SYBOK IS CANON. GROK SYBOK.
Jeff Goldblum for Sybok
So they are going to end up saying that Scottie or Sulu or Uhura served under Captain Pike. It seems to me that the only one of those three who could have served under Pike 10 years before TOS is Scottie because he would have been old enough to but to be honest with you I don’t even like that idea. I always imagined that the only one of the 7 main TOS characters to serve under both Pike and Kirk was Spock. But that’s just me.
@Joe — that’s a good point. I don’t think Sulu, Chekov, or Uhura could come on board until much closer to Kirk taking command if at all. Scotty could come on board at some point, but probably not as the chief engineer, which would help explain why he’s not also a major figure in The Menagerie. That said, it’s really almost impossible to have any other crew of Kirk’s era serve under Pike without them playing even a small role in Menagerie. But, that doesn’t mean they couldn’t show up on a discovery at some point!
Scotty was a merchant mariner before he joined Starfleet, IIR.
It takes over 400 people to man the ENTERPRISE under any one captain, Pike or Kirk, and you are only going to allow for one single crewman to overlap? How realistic is THAT? Kirk somehow only finds value in ONE set of experienced hands?
I don’t know. It might be interesting to see a confident, competent, tough as nails Ben Finney serving a tour under Pike before transferring out to serve with a not yet captain Kirk.
And Security Chief Giotto
Who cares? We’ve already seen Spock, young Spock, super young Spock, old Spock, and very old Spock. LEARN TO WRITE NEW STORIES AND NEW CHARACTERS.
And mirror Spock! I love it. More Spock please!
Have you even been watching Discovery? You making it sound like Spock is taking over the show. No one was complaining when Spock showed up on TNG.
LOL I just realize we have seen Spock at every age at this point. The guy has been in TOS, TAS, TOS movies, TNG, Kelvin movies (two versions of that one) and now DIS. OMG, how much MORE do we need to learn about him at this point?
We won’t learn anything about Spock. Spock won’t be in this show; some other character who they’re calling Spock will be.
You could be right but as someone who DIDN’T want characters like Sarek and Mudd on DIS I have to admit I honestly liked how they were done. Sarek was pretty close to the original IMO, with some differences.
Now Mudd basically was a completely different character than the original but I ended up liking him more than the original as well (who I never loved). And everyone seems really positive over the portrayal of Pike. Obviously its only a trailer but he comes off pretty likable at least.
So yes it could be a disaster but then they could get it completely right. I just prefer we didn’t have to know one way or the other. ;)
I’m curious but how did you feel about Sarek and Mudd? Now if you hated their portrayal then OK I can see why you feel that way. But if you liked them, I think giving them the benefit of the doubt is in order at least.
(It’s funny how I’m always completely on the fence with this show. I can’t bring myself to completely hating it, but I can’t completely love it either. ;))
Actually I didn’t like Discovery’s version of Sarek that much. I thought Frain was acting it in a too shallow manner, I didn’t really see that dignified calmness of Mark Lenard and to a smaller extent Ben Cross. Frain seemed to have difficulty with the American accent. Now this could be a story decision as the Sarek we see in Discovery is 10 years earlier than the one we see first in TOS, so he might a little more emotional and unsure of himself at this point. Perhaps this is intentional. In any case, I wasn’t impressed with Sarek in Discovery.
OK that’s fair enough. Honestly I didn’t have any issues with his accent but if others were well OK.
I found myself liking the reimagined Mudd much better than reimagined Sarek. I thought Riann Wilson brought a sense of menace to the character which was interesting and welcome. As for Frain’s Sarek, I agree with alphantrion, very shallow and pretty weak portrayal. Frain is no Mark Lenard.
I was torn on Mudd. He was played very different, I’ll give you that. So I guess it is just if you liked that version of him. I, Mudd pretty much turned him into a comedic adversary. That is the version of him I think works best. As such was not a huge fan of how Wilson presented him. Obviously YMMV.
Yeah I honestly loved Wilson’s take on Mudd. He was an extremely disgusting character in so many ways but was funny and had his own charm. It surprised me how much I liked him. That said I don’t have to ever see him again but if they brought him back I would be fine with it.
Sarek I thought was fine. No he’s not Mark Lenard but for me I don’t have any issues with different interpretations, I welcome it. But it doesn’t mean it worked for everyone either. And some can just go too far to the point you literally don’t recognize the character at all, ie Khan in STID.
But I thought his Sarek was interesting and he and Burnham have good chemistry. But if I never saw him again, it wouldn’t bother me either.
Indeed, Bryant. Indeed. And going a little further, since I’m considering this whole show taking place in an alternate universe (I KNOW what the showrunners say to contrary), I’m just going to sit back and see what they’re trying to sell. Just seems sad to me they seem to have so little faith in their new (mostly flat) characters, they have to recycle classic Trek characters to bring new viewers in. This show could have been something really groundbreaking – the budget is clearly there – but to go backwards into the future, bad idea, imo.
Still curious what you thought about Mudd and Sarek!
I’m a little queasy about all this. Cautiously optimistic, but queasy. I liked the Pike angle. Grownup Spock Number 3? Not sold yet.
Part of art (even pop art) is asking questions, not giving answers. I’m a little concerned about all of the forthcoming answers via the ret-conning (“pre-conning”?) of Spock.
I don’t know that it strengthens the franchise to, say, spell out why TOS Spock studiously avoids family talk. And if certain things are spelled out, leaving other things out could really irk fanboys (and maybe even kind of me, too). Where is Burnham when a resurrected Spock comes home to retrain his marbles? I mean, death and resurrection is a pretty big deal. Maybe she’d say hello, or maybe Amanda would make some passing reference. Is she herself dead? Is it her own sacrifice for her crew (say, in DISCO season 7) that Spock thinks of as he pauses in his chair in TWOK before leaving the bridge? If so, is the franchise richer for that sort of fill-in-the-gap-that-wasn’t-there?
Anyway, there’s my ramblings. YMMV, LLAP, IDIC, etc.
I don’t think anyone is considering modern entertainment as art anymore. If they had we would have more original stuff that weren’t paint by the numbers and that took risks instead of the tried and true way. I also think it cheapens the franchise in a way and makes it less smart. I wouldn’t want everything spelled out for me, I want to make some of my own conclusions too using my imagination. It seems as though with all these prequels and the need to explain stuff people are forgetting how to use their imaginations and as a result creativity dies.
This is why I maintain that Trek hasn’t really been around since 2005. At least Berman Trek, even when it was weak, still tried to make the audience think. Sometimes it worked. Sometimes it didn’t. JJ Trek never even tried. It’s just the TOS characters transposed into action adventure movies. Discovery, with thirteen episodes a season and a new ship and crew and the prime timeline had a chance to get back to what Trek does best. There were the briefest of hints in Season One that maybe, just maybe we were going in the right direction. Then the second half hit with episodes of flat out dumbed won garbage.
Fan service is all well and good, but it should be something that is occasional and is supplementary to good writing and strong characters. When TNG, DS9, etc did it they left it a good few years before relying on nostalgia, and when they did it was brief and supplementary to the meat and potatoes stories, which were the dramas, the ethical dilemmas and the human commentary.Discovery has done absolutely nothing in this regard. Most of the characters are still underdeveloped and they have not given us any intelligent storytelling or good quality dilemmas. They have given us barely any social commentary because they seemingly think diverse casting is all it takes and they have flat out insulted our intelligence with moustache twirling villains and stupid plots about sending space Hitler to blow up the Klingon homeworld. That’s not good Star Trek. It’s dumb trash. They’re not even exploring strange new worlds (ya know, “discovering”!).
I am one of those who moans about this being promoted as prime timeline but facing a visual reboot. But, do you know what, I have always said that I could reluctantly tolerate it if the stories were top notch. Good stories are paramount over everything else. But we’re just not getting it. We’re getting dumb scripts and TOS mining. It’s insult, and it’s said that this show seems to have gotten a little band of followers who think these intellectually vacant scripts are top quality Trek and aren’t interested in better.
This is just wrong. There are so many original shows with good stories. TV was never ever art before. Consider Twin Peaks: The Return. More art than most can handle!
True, Café. The list of ‘modern’ (say, 05 – now) great quality television shows is very long, and I would certainly call some of them forms of art.
I kinda feel like Burnham needs to be completely gone and out of the picture by the time Kirk commands Spock. Be it death or unexplained disappearance. Something. I get that Spock never speaks about his family unless it is relevant to do so. But come on….
So Spock’s backstory fill-in will be much like Discovery’s place in the timeline: shoved-into it sideways and we’ll see what sticks (“we’ll explore just how different he was 10 years before TOS!” i.e. when he smiled at flowers and Nimoy shouted his lines in “The Cage”). Anyone who wasn’t previously anxious about canonic pitfalls can now quietly panic. Or not, I suppose. Just make sure DC Fontana gets an invite to check out the additions to the backstory, as she literally wrote what we already have (This Side of Paradise, Journey to Babel, Yesteryear, etc.). Kurtzman and Orci did an OK job with his childhood in ST09. Let’s hope we see something worthy of what already exists (and I’ll take a reference to Sybok, as long as it’s hilarious).
@AJinMoscow — I don’t think there’s anything to panic about. Spock is a truly rich tapestry from which there’s so much still to learn, especially about this era of his life. I guess it all depends on how well you liked the Burnham/Sarek backstory — I thought it was brilliant, but others do not. That gives me great confidence that the writers are going to tell a fantastic story about Spock, and that unlike the superficial SOLO, we’re going to get a story worth watching, and gain another dimension to Spock.YMMV
They made a whole movie about party cups??? Where have I been?!
Thanks for those replies. I don’t post often so I really appreciate the thoughtful conversation.
Well, you know the problem with those DISNEY STAR WARS’ Solos:
They just don’t stack up!
-Just make sure DC Fontana gets an invite to check out the additions to the backstory […] –
That I second, what a great idea.
I recall Nimoy opined he wouldn’t have performed Spock shouting and laughing in The Cage if he knew more about the character at that time. Since Discovery is going to show full scenes with this WIP Spock, the team needs to find truths based on an actor’s mistake. Given the reveal of the trailer, and how it ties into the season’s narrative arc, they are all-in. I hope they have been researching and using at least some of the process that Nimoy went through.
Trek in a Cafe,
What actor’s mistake? They tested red makeup on Nimoy because Spock was supposed to be a Martian with a tail. Which is why in my head canon Amanda met Sarek while she was teaching and residing at Earth’s Mars Colony.
Spock in the Cage isn’t really a completely worked out character. Nimoy had to refigure it out in relation to the new crew, etc. And that took at least half the first season as far as Nimoy has related. So I am wondering if a lot of the story that will appear in Discovery is an attempt to “explain” something that doesn’t need to be explained.
Yep. I think they saw Spock smile in The Cage and thought, “Hey, he’s a different guy then. Let’s run with that.” Not really thinking it was something that was begging to be explained canonically. It was just an actor in a pilot not knowing the full truth of what the character was to become. It really is as simple as that. It is less needed than explaining away the change in the Klingon look like they did on Enterprise. I thought it a fun joke on DS9’s Trials and Trilbbleations. And nothing more. I don’t think many fans were demanding an in story explanation of what was obviously a higher production change.
Yes and yet the smile is also the most tantalizing twist in Trek history. I and every fan writer has wanted to connect that one smile to every logic/emotion conversation leading up to v’Ger. This is is perhaps the Mona Lisa Smile of Star Trek. And from the trailer, that’s where we are heading. Could be great! Could make us all mad.
I don’t remotely care about it. The actor simply played the character differently. And it happened over 50 years ago. No one ever felt the need to ‘connect it’ when Nimoy was actually around and played the character for decades since, so why do they need to now? Not every little thing has to be tied up or explained.
“Not every little thing has to be tied up or explained.”
Especially something from the very first pilot where next to nothing about the characters were established just yet. I think for STD producers to hitch their wagons to that ONE moment from the PILOT show as if it is some sort of weird character thing that must be explained is a major mistake on their part.
Again, we do not KNOW that is what they are doing, but it feels like they might given what we have been told thus far.
Yes another issue with prequels. They feel they have to explain every little nuance from decades ago that was clearly just a production issue at the time. I can really care less Spock smiled in the Cage because it was from a pilot that was never even suppose to be shown. When they made another one, he changed the character and that’s the Spock we know now, end of story.
But I guess what’s funny is if they never put the pilot in The Menagerie, I doubt anyone would know or care about Pike today. He’s become famous and part of Trek lore because of that decision.
It IS funny. The smile is canon!
Canon or no canon, I DON’T care. It’s just fan minutiae based off a pilot from 50 years ago. I’m more interested in what DISCOVERY will actually be up to next season and those characters development. I don’t need to know how different Spock was at the Science Academy and how it affected him later in TWOK. It’s just more background development on a character that has had decades of it. More nostalgia pieces doesn’t make the show itself any stronger. Are we going to actually learn most about Airiam or characters the show is supposed to be based around? That would be something.
@Trek in a Cafe — Spock smiled all through TOS, and in the first season, often considerably more emotional than he was in the later seasons, but even then he would let an emotional outburst break through. Regardless, Spock is a complicated character, and Nimoy’s contributions toward the evolution aside, the character was always half-human, and therefore subject to such exploration. This is all perfectly in line with canon.
Bear in mind that Sarek, Spock’s full Vulcan father, has smiled on screen far more often and easily than his son.
So, they both smiled at times then. Great, mystery solved!
I’m watching Star Trek: Enterprise for the first time. It’s quite good. If Discovery ever goes into re-run syndication I will probably watch it. Pay for a channel to watch one show? Not me.
Oh Steve, don’t even get me started on that….:)
I’m sure someday Discovery will be available somewhere else, without the “CBSAA Exclusive” jazz.
And I agree, especially considering what has come since, I have also gained a late appreciation for Enterprise.
Re: I’m sure someday Discovery will be available somewhere else
It already is. Anywhere on the planet BUT within the US’ borders. The real question is will NETFLIX likely release it on disc for retail sale before CBS, and thus force US fans to import?
In fact, as NETFLIX can’t get delivery of its video streams to every inch of the planet, quite yet, I wouldn’t be surprised that it’s already got the series on disc for rental only in those unstreamable sections of the planet.
Where to begin?
I guess first there is this little bit, ” And it’s all gonna tie to how we sync up with canon.” This tells me they are aware of their canon shortcomings and are hoping to correct at least some of them.
But the bigger thing for me is the “all about Spock” vibe I’m getting. OK. I get it. They feel they NEED to bring in beloved characters because theirs aren’t resonating like they hoped. And yes, I get it. Spock is probably the most loved and well known character in the Trek universe. So naturally they would want to use him as their crutch. It’s just that I’m very torn here. First, I’d like to see the Discovery crew stand on their own before seeking out the more beloved characters. Next, I feel like Spock has been done to death. (pun intended) I feel like there really is not much one can squeeze out of the Spock character. We know enough about his early days that this doesn’t feel necessary. For me, I’d rater see some other character whose background was NOT fleshed out as much as Spock’s was. How about McCoy? Next to nothing has been done regarding his pre-Enterprise days. Yes, yes, I know. No one will subscribe to see McCoy’s background like they would for Spock. I get it. It’s just a little frustrating to keep revisiting a character who doesn’t have much left to offer.
Regarding the “Meanwhile on Kro’nos” B story… Not sure I really care. It feels more like a vehicle to keep two actors involved with the show more than anything else at this point.
And finally, since they said it was a “different” Spock that is more reason to think of the show as a reboot.
I have very low expectations from this group now. So it will not be tough for them to surprise me and do something mildly interesting. We shall see in 5+ months.
You just encapsulated the last three comments I’ve made on two different threads, ML. Well put, all of it. As I said above, it just seems sad to me they seem to have so little faith in their new (mostly flat) characters, they have to recycle classic Trek characters to bring new viewers in. This show could have been something really groundbreaking – the budget is clearly there – but to go backwards into the future, bad idea, imo. Like you said, we’ll see what comes of it next year. For me, there’s plenty of truly outstanding programming out there to keep me occupied until then.
Well I am officially not looking forward to a season of Trek. Way to screw this up guys. Im done defending this show. Its not prime and it never will be. Just call it its own timeline like it is and be done.
if they want discovery to be a success they need to realize this isn’t game of thrones for 1.adding more action, less thinking and adding a cool song for the soundtrack didn’t do anything for beyond.if anything it further proved that your just not wining anyone over that doesn’t like star trek to begin with so you might as well cater the holy hell out of the core audience because those are the people that will make or break the shows success.tbh im timid to give this show another go around,i feel like the enterprise,pike and spock are just a shiney lure to get the core trek base back but its just going to be more of the same mindless nonsense from season 1.i think ill sit this one out and wait to see what the reviews are after the season finishes!
Let’s see… here is what we know of Spock
Spock was born to Sarek of Vulcan, and Mother Amanda of Earth making him half-vulcan/half-human. He was basically treated like a half-breed growing up because Vulcans are even worse racists than humans. I mean, even Sarek was like “Ewww, he’s so human” when Amanda gave birth (STV).
Spock had a half-brother named Sybok – Some bastard child that Sarek had before marrying Amanda. Spock never talked about Sybok though – not even to his closest friends, Kirk & McCoy, which kind of ended up as a WTF moment at Nimbus III. Like we’re talking 22 years of friendship and never once mentioned he had a brother – but seriously, watch The Final Frontier and if I was Spock I wouldn’t be going around and being like “Hey, I got a half brother” so you cant blame him.
Anyway, back to Spock’s childhood. Since he wasn’t fully Vulcan, his little Vulcan schoolmates were little crap-heads to him growing up. They beat the **** outta him any chance they got, throwing them into their little school pits getting Green blood all over the floor.
When Spock was older he decided to join starfleet instead of the Vulcan Science Academy, cause the admission people were racist jerks and basically called him disabled for being half human. Sarek got all pissy and was like, Dude? I pulled a bunch of strings for you. Spock was like, meh.
Then Spock got a job on the Enterprise under Captain Pike. Starfleet thought that whole crew sucked after a few years and replaced everyone but Spock which is why in the Cage he smiles and behaves different than he does in TOS… He’s a bit mad that he’s still chugging away on the Enterprise for at least another 5 years. Basically tried to act like he had no emotions and also avoided acknowledging his human side.
Oh but wait, some little Human chick gets brought home by Sarek named Michael. They were pretty puzzled as to why some little girl was named Michael. But Spock didn’t want to talk about her either to Kirk and McCoy. Like not even at Nimbus III when he revealed he had a brother.
Anyway, now here we are….
Back to Discovery. Spock is hanging out with Pike until he decides to say F*** this s*** and throw his papers in the air. Watch the Cage – seriously, they use paper during that time frame — anyway, Pike is like “Hey, Discovery, i need your ship even though mine is better” so He and Burnham can be like “lets go find spock – he has something to do with these lights”
There. If you didn’t know spock, now you do.
Spock definitely experienced prejudice. But I’m not entirely sure being prejudiced against someone because they relied on in vitro fertilization to come into being can quite be categorized as “racist” in this Federation? I think it would be more like what Bashir experienced, i.e. an irrationality based on a well established fear in this civilization of genetic manipulation in general?
And since Spock was originally supposed be Martian, I suppose Amanda of Earth must have been a resident citizen of Earth’s Mars Colony by the time she ran into Sarek?
Spock’s …formation? Hmmmmmmmmm
In STAR TREK, Human/Vulcan hybrids don’t occur in nature. It takes a little lab assist to get the resultant embryo formed and viable.
Really? Did that come from Enterprise (thinking of T’pol and Trip’s baby) or was that always canon? I honestly never heard that until now lol.
They did do that on Enterprise. But Phlox came out and mentioned that there was no biological reason a human and vulcan could not produce a child.
The concept was put out during the 1st series. I don’t recall a hard canon source for it prior to the 3 episodes covering it in ENTERPRISE, but I have recollection of it as a Roddenberry nod during the NBC run to an insistent science advisor that such a hybrid could not come about easily. It may have been Sagan, himself, who I recall repeatedly saying that humans would find it easier to crossbreed with a dandelion before they could produce a viable offspring with a being from the exo-planet, Vulcan.
From the ENTERPRISE episode, E2:
“T’POL: These chromosomes are human.
PHLOX: That’s correct. They came from his father.
T’POL: That’s impossible. Vulcans and humans have never been able to reproduce.
PHLOX: According to Lorian [Archer’s great-granddaughter from the future], I discovered, or rather I will discover, a method of successfully combining human and Vulcan genomes.” — Michael Sussman
Alright thank you. I do remember something about it from Enterprise but I couldn’t remember the exact details. And I don’t remember anything about it on TOS, which is why I was surprised if the canon came from there.
And if Sagan said that, that obviously makes sense scientifically but Star Trek has been doing inter-species breeding for awhile now so that boat has long sailed.
“Such crossings are about as reasonable as the mating of a man and a petunia.” – Carl Sagan, ‘The Cosmic Connection: An Extraterrestrial Perspective’, DELL, 1973
Am I reading that right? Is Kurtzman saying Spock will be the Spock “we” know because of Burnham? So far, I’ve been getting two messages from Discovery. 1) That it can’t stand on its own without the aid of the original series’ characters/ship. 2) That the characters from the original series (or the Discovery itself) cannot stand on their own without the aid of Burnham. Okay, I understand the original intent was to see the show through the eyes of one character…I think. That doesn’t mean you make the respective universe revolve around said character.
“has to do with his family and his sister.”
Spock was Spock because of his condition as a human/vulcan hybrid into an environment that made him think was a defective vulcan b/c of his human side.
Irony is the ‘real Spock’ mentioned here was hiding his real self below what he thought was being a good vulcan. To think that what we saw in the series was the final result is limiting b/c that was just the beginning of a journey, not the destination.
From a writing perspective, Gene saw Spock as a representation of mixed kids struggling to be accepted by a society that considered them only ‘half’ of something. Like many aspects, his character too had the influence of the cultural context of the time.
Concepts like ‘white passing’, and mixed kids having to choose only one part of their identity to fit in a society, were the norm when writing mixed people. Nowadays, it would be an outdated parallel. In fact, his portrayal in the reboot is more contemporary for this reason too.
That trek is a reboot and another reality, though, where the writers were allowed to add a slightly different context. He finds love – which further compels him to embrace his feelings, he loses his planet, he has a different relationship with Sarek because the latter is more honest with him about the fact he has feelings too. The kelvin timeline is a ‘what if’, not a retcon.