TrekMovie had the chance to chat with some of the cast of Star Trek: Discovery at the Star Trek Las Vegas convention, including actor Anthony Rapp. We talked about the tone of the show in the second season and what’s next for Paul Stamets after the dramatic events impacting him in the last episodes of the first season. We have highlights and full video of the interview below.
Discovery and Stamets emerge from the darkness
Rapp acknowledged that the first season of Discovery had a darker tone than typical Star Trek, but he put that into context:
So much of the darkness was informed by the fact that our captain was from the Mirror Universe. Everything was geared toward telling that story. And how do we reach our ideals, sometimes you have to go through darkness to come out and realize what you really hold up to be true. So, yes it was unfamiliar in some ways, but it was still ultimately steeped in the tenets and beliefs in this universe, always. Going to humanity’s higher purpose. But, yes, it was unusually dark.
And he promised a lighter tone for the second season, led by Anson Mount’s introduction as Captain Pike:
So in [season two] we have moved through this and come out the other side. Pike is sort of an exemplary captain. He is exactly the kind of familiar Starfleet captain you would always want. And I think that alone sets such a different tone. And yes, there is certainly more humor, but there is also this settling that happens after all the craziness of season one and all the massive events. Now, in season two, so much of it gets to settle and we get to deal with it. And there is time and space for all of that, which is really satisfying.
Specifically, regarding his character of Paul Stamets, Rapp said that Stamets will have that time and space to deal with the trauma he went through due to the loss of Hugh Culber in season one:
It’s been really satisfying that it’s not in any way that is cliché or typical. It feels specific and human and true to Stamets, and I’ve been really grateful that the writers have given me that kind of material to work with.
Inspired by Patrick Stewart
Rapp, who considers himself a big fan of Star Trek, talked about what it was like for him to witness the big announcement of a new Jean-Luc Picard Star Trek show :
I was in the room when Sir Patrick Stewart announced … that “Jean-Luc Picard is back,” and that was thrilling, and it was also thrilling to see how moved he was and inspired he was. You know, he has been around the block and had tremendous success and to see someone as accomplished as him still have his heart and soul deeply affected was really meaningful and inspiring.
When asked how he felt being part of the Star Trek family and how it is said that once you join you have work for life, Rapp spoke about the richer benefits of being part of the franchise:
[Work for life as Star Trek celebrity is] a great side benefit, for sure, but if it was for doing something that didn’t have meaning or it was … just cashing in … if it wasn’t linked to something that had meaning and heart and soul, it wouldn’t be such a cool thing after all. It is amazing to be part of something that resonates so powerfully.
Ready to snack on Short Treks
Rapp could not confirm if he was going to appear in any of the four Star Trek: Short Treks mini-episodes, which will start running this fall leading up to the season two premiere of Discovery in early 2019. However, he did offer some thoughts on what they are going to be like:
I do know that there is some really cool stuff. I am personally really excited about it, ’cause I think it’s a great new way to explore the world and the characters. I think it’s the perfect little – like, I don’t know, you know when you go to a nice fancy restaurant and they bring you those little treats before the meal? It’s like that. It’s like a really satisfying thing that doesn’t fill you up, but gets you ready for the meal.
The actor also noted that even though Short Treks are indeed short, they still have a lot of effort put into them, saying:
I think it’s really smart, and it also shows a tremendous commitment on the part of CBS and all the creative team. Even though they are short, they are still a lot of work and take a lot of resources. I think it is tremendous that they are giving so much life and energy and creativity, to telling all these stories.
Watch the full interview with Anthony Rapp
We have a couple more interviews from STLV coming up, so stay tuned. Click here to see all of our STLV coverage to date.