Sonequa Martin-Green On How ‘Star Trek: Discovery’ Can Tell Its Own Story In Season 3

The second season finale of Star Trek: Discovery jumped the show into a new time and place. In a couple of post-finale interviews, series star Sonequa Martin-Green (Michael Burnham) talks about what this means for the show.

Happy to see it finally all fit together

As the guest on The Ready Room, Sonequa Martin-Green spoke about the implications of “Such Sweet Sorrow, Part 2” and how it delivered on the promise they have been giving from the beginning that the show would find a way to fit into Star Trek canon:

We have to have our relationship – us who are telling the story of Trek and those who are receiving it into their hearts – we have to have trust in this relationship. We were very different from the very beginning…we were going to be different in all these ways and we needed the trust of the audience and we have had such an overwhelmingly beautiful and positive response, which we are so grateful for. But part of it is understand that we are going to link up with the canon. We are exploring what we can in the ten years before TOS, but we will link back up to the canon. And for a long time we had to just tell people that, saying, “Trust us, we will answer all of these questions. So to have that last puzzle piece put in place, very, very happy to do that. It was sort of a “see, see you guys?”

She described watching the final scene on board the USS Enterprise and how that fulfilled this promise of canon sync:

It was so palpable. Tears came to my eyes when I saw that moment. And I know everyone would be so happy to see that. It is such a gesture and hug to the audience. Here we are returning to what you remember. We are linking right back up with the canon, which is what we have always said we would do.

Speaking to startrek.com, Martin-Green said more about this concept of syncing the show as it jumped forward to a new era:

Oh my gosh, all of the puzzle pieces fit together, I think, very beautifully. And very comprehensively, very completely, courageously, yet respectfully. I appreciated how everything you’ve seen, especially over season two, but certainly over season one, as well played a part. I love how all these story points came together, all of these people came together, and I love that it was ultimately to save all of sentient life and save the future. I love that even though we’re going to do that and we’re going boldly where nobody has gone before — I mean, can you believe that we are actually doing that? — we’re doing it as a family. We’re going to land 950 years in the future as a real, solidified and unified crew.

Rebecca Romijn as Number One in season two finale

Why jumping to the future was the perfect choice for Discovery

On The Ready Room, the Michael Burnham actress talked about what the decision to jump the show into the future means for Discovery:

If feel it is the most genius decision for Star Trek: Discovery. I’m so proud of our producers and writers for doing this, Alex Kurtzman and Michelle Paradise and Jenny Lumet, who did an amazing job writing the finale. Them and the other writers deciding to take us to the future. Now we get to tell our own stories because we are going boldly where no other Star Trek has gone before. But at the same time we still who we are. We are still connected to the canon in the way that we are. We cannot help where we started. We cannot help that I am in the family of Sarek and Amanda and Spock. We will always have that, but now we can take who we are to this future we have never seen before and tell our story and see what the future holds and what has happened with everyone. I just could not believe what an awesome choice it was. I am beaming with pride, because I thought it was the perfect thing for us.

Martin-Green later reiterated that where the show is going is a totally new place and time:

Clearly, we are in the future. And we are in a space that none of us have seen before – literally in a space that no one has seen before – and telling our own stories. I think it is going to be dope.

She also talked about how these changes mean that they are given more of a blank slate when it comes to Star Trek canon:

There have certainly been things we have contributed to the canon, and every time that happens on set we say: “Oh my gosh, this is about to become canon, let’s make sure it’s perfect.” But now, everything will be canon. Every single thing we do will be canon because we have never seen this future. It is the epitome of innovation, which is the very spirit of Star Trek. So, we are honored to do this.

Sonequa Martin-Green in “Through the Valley of Shadows”

Finding balance for Michael in the 33rd century

In her interview with startrek.com, Martin-Green talked about what she hopes to see for the character of Michael in season 3:

Well, in a perfect world, I’m hoping for a balance; that very same balance we saw Spock find, that Saru’s trying to find, that all the other characters are trying to find.

I’m very excited for it because when you pick up with Michael Burnham, [she’s] this Vulcan-Human. I have this image I have built up, and it is made of diamonds. It’s almost impenetrable, these defenses I’ve put up as I’ve been overcompensating and seeking absolution. [I’m] being driven by shame and guilt and needing to prove myself. That’s where you picked up with me, at the beginning of this show. So, what I love is that you see this outpouring of emotion in season two, because the pendulum has swung the other way. Now I’ve really connected with my humanity like never before. So now it’s time for us to swing, and swing, and swing, and swing until it gets to the middle and we find this balance.

That balance is something I’m going to be working on for some time to come, and that’s what I’m really excited to find. I’m excited for the freedom that is to come for Michael Burnham, as well, now that I’m not driven by shame. All these things have been plucked out and uprooted, so now I have the freedom to be who I am.

Sonequa Martin-Green as Burnham in season two finale

Sad to say goodbye to the 23rd-century cast and characters

One of the consequences of the time jump for the show was leaving a number of characters behind. Martin-Green talked about the tearful goodbyes this involved:

We say goodbye to a lot of people. Of course we have to say goodbye to Anson (Mount) and Ethan (Peck) who are Pike and Spock, because we had to link back up with TOS, and of course Rebecca (Romijn, Number One) as well, because she was linked up with TOS as well. But then we had to say goodbye to a lot of people we started out with: Mary Chieffo (L’Rell), Shazad Latif (Tyler), Mia Kirshner (Amanda), James Frain (Sarek) – people who were there from the very beginning. We had to say to Jayne Brook, who was Admiral Cornwell, also Alan Van Sprang who was Leland, also Hannah Spear (Siranna) whose character was able to rise up in that way. And those last moments with Liam (Hughes, Young Spock) and Arista (Arhin, Young Michael) as well. There were so many goodbyes, I could cry talking about it now…We were leaving all these people who have made such a contribution to our show, it was very, very sad.

Shazad Latif as Tyler; Mary Chieffo as L’Rell in season two finale

Watch the full video where Martin-Green goes into detail on the shooting of the finale, the “epic” development the Red Angel suit, feeling like a superhero, the cast coming together as a family and more.

 


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.

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Professor Spock

Star Trek: Discovery is finally free from the shackles of canon. It finally has the freedom to tell new stories without canon getting in the way. This show should’ve been in 33rd century all along. It shouldn’t be in the 23rd century. They fixed that mistake!

Jan

I think it’s an illusion that they are free of canon. They are still in the same galaxy. So unless all species died, they have to address what happened to all these civilisations. They will have changed– but how, how much and why? They have to define that in a way that makes sense. You basically have to explain 1,000 years of history while also telling your story next season. But, okay, maybe they just shroud that in mystery too keep things simple.

But what’s even worse: They have to come up with technology that is 1,000 years more advanced. I think that’s an impossible task. Just think about the difference in technology between years 2019 and 1019. And technological progress has already accelerated a lot and will continue to do so. How do you want to depict a believable technological advancement that is still understandable and relatable? What is more advanced than an almost perfect Android like Data for example? Or Airiam? How can a Holodeck be improved in 1,000 years and what will that mean? How do you improve Replicators, that can make anything just from Energy and what consequences does that have? And so on and so on.

Unless they hit a radical reset button (everyone died, all civilisations ended or are in ruins, all technology is lost) they have way more canon explaining to do than before…

Wheelie

I don’t think they have to fill in that entire gap in canon, only make occasional references to something that happened in that time. Just as TNG did with its time jump from TOS.

Or think about The Time Machine. Wells didn’t have to fill in the entire history leading up to the world of the Eloi and Morlocks to tell that story in the far future.

Corinthian7

Spot on Wheelie. In many ways they have much more leeway than TNG did in terms of referencing the past as TOS movies were still in production at that time so in the early years they were pretty much under instruction not to mention these characters. Discovery will have a lot of freedom in terms of linking back to the TOS/Berman years and a casual cryptic mention of an event we haven’t seen could stir up excitement amongst fans for something we might get to watch unfold on other shows. Technically we can’t say for sure at this stage that they’re even in the Prime timeline. For example many of us have speculated based on the Calypso short that the Federation might not even exist in this timeline. For all we know they might find themselves in the 33rd century and determine that they have to find a way back in time to prevent whatever terrible conditions they’ve landed in and season 4 could be set in the 28th century or wherever preventing those events – there’s just so many different directions they could choose to take the franchise. The producers have said they enjoy playing in the nooks and crannies of canon and I believe them. For all the criticism that’s been levied against them this series has had more canon references than any show that’s preceded it and they’ve made some decisions that have genuinely enhanced the narrative e.g finding out why Sarek was so upset with Spock for joining Starfleet in Lethe. This gives me some degree of optimism that they’ll still be consistent with old canon when carving out the future history of Star Trek.

Ashley

Well, you’ve certainly mentioned some of the big problems with going forward in the prime timeline. 24th century tech was already at the point where most problems could be solved by rewiring the deflector or throwing some tachyons around. Another problem is, the farther ahead you go and the further the Federation expands, the less anthropocentric the stories become. Which, is fine from the viewpoint of #diversity and from an in-universe perspective. However, for the audience, it will literally be alienating. Then there will be an element of tokenism regarding humanity. See Farscape as a pretty blatant example of this. However, like what ended up happening in Farscape, you can just humanize the aliens, which is a bit of a cop-out. It’s like how 20th/21st century culture keeps getting referenced in the 22nd+ centuries. It shows a lack of imagination and willingness to do the heavy lifting of fleshing out the unknown. And inevitably, that’s how it goes, whether due to time/budget constraints or lack of creativity.

But like you said, there’s always the reset button, and there are certainly ways to impede future progress or even send it backwards, which is what will most likely happen.

DaveCGN

” They have to come up with technology that is 1,000 years more advanced. I think that’s an impossible task.” I think it depends from the point of view. They will not only be far away in the future, but also far away in the galaxy. Unless the whole galaxy is connected, they could be in a part which isn’t that advanced.

Jemini

You got a point here..

Going so far in the future gives them a huge responsibility because they have to tell us how everything ended, basically, and if they are too over the top like they had already been so far (is it me or this creative team is a bit megalomaniac? Lol), they might once again make fans angry.
However, I think 900 years is a long time so if they aren’t too over the top, it should be a safe time that won’t step on other series.

I still think the fact discovery went into the future isn’t enough as explanation why the technology isn’t used anymore or no one can mention michael&Co. That’s silly because they didn’t cancel the memory of those people and the ship. Spock&Co may not be allowed to talk about where discovery and Michael went, but the universe cannot pretend Michael and the others never existed so they can talk about them still. Sarek and Amanda still adopted her, Spock still had a sister, it isn’t like Michael is a no one in Starfleet.
Honestly, this season was a convulted mess of some of the most forced story lines up to date. I always hated people comparing trek to star wars but this show really seems like more the ‘magical’ mystical plot devices of that franchise and a space opera, and less the science, the more rational, the exploration stuff you see in Star trek. They truly went too far. I still can’t believe they used time crystals and made Pike see his future and legit told him he has no free will. And don’t even let me star about the red angel.. sure, it wasn’t a real mystical figure but honestly, I liked it better when I thought it was a mysterious alien race.

Brian Critchley

Of course discovery could have just been it’s own TV show without the star trek name if they didn’t wanna be “shackled” by canon. but then they’d have to get people to watch the show based on it’s own mertis rather then ride on the coat tails of those beloved shows in the past that where “shackling them” they CHOOSE to make a spin off series. This gives the advantage of a built in audiance, but yes it also means there are disadvantages to it too

Wheelie

For next season, I’m calling it now: a resurrected Control vs. future Borg. The battle of the centuries! Buy your tickets now! Sunday, Sunday, Sunday!

I mean Thursday.

Professor Spock

Maybe the Borg will show up in the next season. Control is destroyed. Nice theory by the way.

Wheelie

Nothing is ever really dead in science fiction. They’d figure out a way to bring Control back if they wanted.

Greenhagen

Maybe the Disco crew needs to resurrect Control to battle the Borg. ;)

Wheelie

Yep, I could see that happening. Sadly. ;)

That idea makes me very sad.

Vulcan Soul

Wheelie, I would laugh if I couldn’t see this happen exactly, with the current people at the helm ;)

Suluisnotajapanesename

Conrol IS (will be) The Borg.

Promey

SMG is such an energetic, joyful person and dhe seems so happy to be doing it. It’s almost a joy to watch all by itself.

TG47

If Burnham were actually written as compellingly and as great a leader as SMG is in reality…

…then Trek fans would be putting her in their top captains list.

How many times does it happen that the hero on the page doesn’t live up to the actor rather than vice versa?

Steven

She is not a captain. The concept of the series was the captain was a secondary character.

Vulcan Soul

“The concept of the series was the captain was a secondary character.”

And they failed at executing that concept miserably because in a believable real world chain of command the captain, the central authority and, if we believe in meritocracy, the most experienced person on the ship, cannot be “secondary” and submit to whoever the writers decides is more worthy this week – Burnham in general, Tilly occasionally and last week, even some 17 year old lass who is not just the queen of her planet and the sole inventor of recrystalizing dilithium but also saves the Enterprise and the universe by clueing in Pike on the shield thing he completely missed or bothered to check (doesn’t he look daft in those moments?) You see the pattern. The writers have railed so much against perfect characters but can it get any more perfect than this? I guess its okay as long as those characters have the right gender because then it’s a “positive agenda” ;)

Brian Critchley

Was that last one real? a 17 year old princess who was smarter and betetr then all the career officers? jesus was her name mary sue?!

TG47

True, she’s not captain, but it is her mission …

More to the point, Kurtzman and Paradise are saying that Burnham’s completed her journey of personal growth and they are following her now into the future….

Problem is, I and many fans aren’t seeing or feeling this kind of ‘we’ll follow you through fire’ leadership in Burnham.

Jenny

Michael Burnham was a character who was floored. Could of been captain, however, she needed to regain her humanity, that is the most important part of the story. Her character is great simply because time and again she has to learn to survive heartache. Just before she goes, the man she loves tell her he’s not coming, then her brother is unable to make the trip big body blows.

Live long and prosper Michael Burnham and friends.

J

TG47

Jenny It’s good to know that some of the audience can still feel for Burnham….

But please understand that there are many of us who were invested in the character and found her compelling…

And then we’re turned right off…

For me, it happened with the switch in writing teams at midseason. The interactions with Spock worked well, but after that her self-absorption killed her resonance as a character…

Her desire to save Airiam and her mother just seemed selfish, all about her, and in a way disrespected the incredible self-sacrifice Airiam was making …

Because Nhan, an officer in under her leadership was for all anyone knew dying behind her, but she was too wrapped up refusing to let Airiam die, in rejecting Airiam’s sacrifice to care about the other member of her team.

Likewise, she was too caught up in her own desire to keep her mother with her to enable her to destroy the sphere data.

The emotional beating is horrendous, and the writers keep beating on their character (I am thinking of a nasty term for fan fiction wherein the writers just make their heros suffer, suffer, and again suffer..)

…but she’s not being written to show the emotional strength and principled self-control that Pike showed picking up that time crystal. And that has lost me.

So, I’m sad to say that, in contrast to season 1 or the first half of season 2, when Burnham was emoting through her last goodbyes to Tyler or Spock, I was impatient and feeling ‘enough already.’

Especially, as she’d already asked Amanda and Sarek to look after Spock after she was gone.

Sundiver

Her wonderful story and journey boldly continues into the unknown future, anchored by the love of her parents and brother, accompanied by her stalwart loyal crewmates — friends and companions and, yes, family. To boldly go where no one has gone before…to explore and seek out new life…

I’m ready to witness the next chapter of Michael’s destiny aboard the starship Discovery.

Sundiver

I find Michael Burnham to be compelling and complex. Indeed, SMG carries that role quite well. And the camaraderie with her new extended family in the this new frontier looks to be fun.

I think SMG is great, and I wish she had a better-written role; but I just don’t see Burnham as a leader, personally. A top-notch science officer or something like that, yes; a captain, not really. I have a feeling that’s where season three is going, and sure, fine by me — I just don’t think she’s got a chance of being up there with my favorites (Kirk, Picard, and Janeway), even if the show’s writing magically becomes better.

blackmocco

Yeah, I agree. I love her. She’s so vivacious and invested. Feel bad the show hasn’t played to her strengths. Even as badly-written as Burnham has been, and beyond a quick mention in the pilot that doesn’t mean anything anymore, there’s nothing in the character so far that makes me think she has the hunger for the captain’s chair. Besides, if she’s in charge, who’s she going to interrupt every episode with the solution no-one else on a ship full of Starfleet’s greatest scientists could come up with? Just think- if she’s captain, no-one else will ever get to speak! “Coming to CBS All Access in September 2020 – STAR TREK: BURNHAM!”

Captain Neill

The actress is lovely but the character is infuriating.

Dave

Discovery could tell their own story at any time since it’s creation. Going to the future may release the shackles of canon, but it also eliminates the ability to exploit TOS tropes. It’s a double-edged sword.

Professor Spock

Dave I disagree. Discovery didn’t fit in the 23rd Century. Too advanced for TOS standards. Doing this is for their best interest. Exploiting TOS tropes is not good storytelling. Going to the future is the best option for Discovery and Star Trek. It opens up new possibilities and new stories to explore without canon becoming an issue.

Trellium G

Pushing Star Trek further and further into the future won’t be sustainable as it becomes more and more disconnected from the original. Eventually canon will need to be refreshed to keep a link to modern audiences that were originally drawn to the possibilities of where humanity could go in the nearer term. The further out you go the more it slips into the fantasy genre.

Vulcan Soul

I agree Trellium. I can see the show falling into the same trap as Andromeda which also ended up as a forgettable fantasy show circling around its lead character. Especially if they go for the same “Fallen Federation” concept. Which if you think about is more likely than not (how much more perfect and advanced can an interstellar post-scarcity Federation become in 1000 years when they already established tech as omnipotent and magical in the 23rd century?)

It’s basically a fantasy show now. Trek has always been pseudo-science, but they used to at least do a bit of legwork to make it seem plausible to those willing to squint their way past the problems. I don’t think much effort of any kind is put into that anymore, so really, what’s the difference between this and fantasy?

Agreed. Case in point: Time crystals. No scientific explanation as to how or why they work… just touch it and see your future, take it and seal your fate. End of story.

Pretty sure that’s the definition of fantasy.

Tiger2

Agree PS,

DIS only fit the TOS era in name only. They know it was a mistake to have it there it was just too advanced.

And I also think the REAL reason we are going so far in the future is because they don’t want to hold back on technology. That was the biggest problem. They put the show in a primitive era, but then created spore drives and time travel suits. It just doesn’t gel with that era. Can you imagine what they said no to lol.

They could’ve put the show in the 26th century and do what they wanted. But they want the freedom to do anything their hearts desire and no one can get on their case about it.

They should’ve put the show in another century on day one.

Vulcan Soul

“And I also think the REAL reason we are going so far in the future is because they don’t want to hold back on technology. That was the biggest problem.”

And I don’t see how going THAT far into the future solves that problem. There’s no contradiction about being against prequels AND jumping THAT far out. We discussed at length how they could credibly set apart Picard from Discovery, ONLY 150 years in their (old) future, now that Discovery introduced most 24th century tech already (eg full on hardware replicators in the last episode, if there was any doubt), plus some straight fanasy gizmos to boot (time crystal). The answer is probably, not much – just all that secretive Section 31 and experimental science ship stuff is common place by then (plus it seems Picard is in the opposite situation now – NOT at the cutting edge of Starfleet anymore but some garbage scow run by mercenaries.

But how can they even begin to think they can credibly portray any evolution of tech EIGHT HUNDRED more years into the future? Let alone any other sort of evolution. How could the humans they encounter still be any more relatable to us than peasants from the dark ages? To me is literally forces the Fallen Federation concept as a way out (also to do something that has never been done to Trek, plus it seems particularly suited to these showrunners who revel in mayhem and darkness) but I may also just be overthinking it and they think its okay to add a little bit more flash and magic. But how can a show set that far apart not be pure fantasy from our point of view? How can this not be completely unrelatable or unbelievable? Either way (I’m NOT fond of Fallen Federarion) it is most unfortunate.

Tiger2

VS,

We actually don’t disagree. As I said they can pretty much do whatever they wanted in any century pass the 25th, so to go so much higher than that is a head scratcher obviously. But I didn’t mean they put it that far JUST to have crazy fantasy tech (which as you said they already do) but probably also has some really crazy story line cooking up that they want it to be far enough and doesn’t feel like it will effect the rest of the timeline. Obviously you pointed at one of the possibilities and that is the fall of the Federation. We already know its alive and well through at least the 29th century. So thats definitely possible if they put in a century far enough where we don’t know what’s happening with it. I’m not for that either but you would be crazy to rule it out.

Or it could even be darker than that. The Federation finally lost to the Borg and the entire alpha quadrant (or most of it) has been borgified. Or maybe the Dominion showed up again but bigger, badder and stronger. You can’t go that big in the 25th century because there is still enough canon to tell us otherwise.

OR maybe its something a lot less dark and they gone the direction of Foundation and the Federation actually inhabits every part of the galaxy now from the Delta to the Gamma quadrant. So it doesn’t necessarily mean just doom and gloom, but just expanding things that would seem far fetched even a few centuries later.

I always hear about the ‘unrelatable humans’ argument when people use to talk about having another show in the 25th century (that seems almost child’s play now ;)) but I don’t really but it that much. And here’s WHY! Something no one really talks or thinks about (but I guess because Star Trek tries to avoid it) but Starfleet are supposedly meeting species that are not only biologically different from us, but has evolved much longer than us, some by millions of years longer. Have you ever felt, ever, ANY of these species being ‘unrelatable’? Maybe you might pick 1 or 2 but the VAST number of species we see and meet are rarely that different regardless of biology or age. There has been some like the wormhole aliens but those are a very rare exception.

Take another famous alien from DS9 and the Dax symbiont. It’s literally centuries older by everyone by the time it’s in Jadzia. Does anyone feel its ‘too evolved’ to interact with everyone from Bashir to Quark? I’m going to say no. No one thinks about it or cares but Dax shouldn’t be relating to anyone the way it does considering all those life times.

So if we’re bumping into highly advances aliens on a weekly basis that is suppose to be more evolved on a much higher level I don’t think humans, even at 1000 years in the future is going to feel all that different. MAYBE its suppose to but since no one EVER questions it for actual aliens I don’t see why they would for humans. My thought anyway.

It is funny though thinking about all these arguments about why we can’t forward and DIS was in the ‘grounded’ period of Star Trek and NOTHING about this show feels grounded to me. Nothing. So maybe now it can just be the really crazy magical show they obviously want it to be.

Again maybe placing it 1000 years isn’t necessary but it was the right move to put it permanently in a more advance century where the writers don’t have to feel shackled. Clearly the 23rd century was just too limiting for them.

Dave

Discovery didn’t have to be advanced beyond TOS standards. It didn’t have to exploit TOS troops. And what perhaps is the most contrived and unearned moment in Star Trek history, it certainly did not have to wedge Michael Burnham into Spock’s origin, ultimately attempting to make her the mother of all things Trek.

They wrote themselves into a box that they were not creative enough to write themselves out of without a soft reset and Mary Sue-ism.

Tiger2

Yes, the show essentially gave the show a soft reset. But one that probably WAS needed because the guy who came up with all those ideas of giving Spock a sister and etc left before they even started shooting. They supposedly kept Fuller’s roadmap in season one and then found a way to retcon a lot of it in season 2. In season 3 its just them basically falling on their swords completely.

Maybe if Fuller stayed in charge it would be a different show and the ideas it presented early on more realized. But I think for the people in charge now it was feeling like more of a burden so they got rid of it the best way they could.

Tiger2

I meant the show runners gave the show….

Trellium G

Since they are off far in the future to do their own thing, I hope they don’t try and fill in past history and create those imaginary “shackles” for future writers of other Trek shows. Keep your show completely out of the way of future Trek projects please.

Vulcan Soul

That’s another thing that points to a “dark age” – only lost knowledge/forgotten history would allow them to be truly “free of canon” in the sense of not having to establish a back story for the last millennium. And didnt the short trek Calypso alluded to that, with the “V’draysh” ?

DaveCGN

“V’draysh”? Sounds like FeDeRATIOn…

Assuming the show is in the Beta Quadrant on the planet where “New Eden” was set, I will speculate that the third season will involve that society having become technological and corrupt as the result of the events of Discovery visiting in their long-distant past. They’ll have formed some sort of an evil organization calling themselves the V’draysh, and Discovery will have to fight them and bring their values in line with the real Federation’s. Aldis Hodge will show up, and it will be a marginally better show in which way too much time is spent in argument over whether Saru, Burnham, or Georgiou will be the ship’s new captain.

And somehow Harry Mudd will show up and annoy everyone greatly.

alastair87

Apart from the brief moment where she commandeers the Shenzhou in the pilot I don’t think we’ve ever actually seen Burnham in command, not even on watch. That’s kind of odd writing given she’s meant to be the 2nd officer in the second season and someone we might accept as the captain later.

alastair87

V’draysh is a syncope (corruption) of Federation. Michael Chabon has said as much.

I can’t help but think it’s partly an homage to V’ger.

David Ryan

Maybe as the Federation expanded it eventually split and once faction became the V’draysh. Like what happened with Rome or many other empires. Perhaps season 3 will follow a similar route to Andromeda(another Roddenberry concept) with them trying to rebuild the Federation and unite these various factions.

Fred Javelina

Clever. Like V’ger. And the Yangs and Kohms. Eed Pebnista…

Keith

I’d be quite happy to waive USS Discovery goodbye and follow the adventures of Pike on the Enterprise. They struck gold with Anson Mount and his Pike interpretation, you can only catch lightning in a bottle so many times. Michael Burnham and Saru are not characters to get excited about. I suspect the producers know this.

Arathorn

Sadly I agree, as I really wanted to like Discovery. But the characters and narrative have fallen flat.

Saru bores me to tears, despite the fact that I love Doug Jones. I just wish they hadn’t taken that guy and basically buried his head inside a flexible flower pot. There’s a reason why the old shows typically showed as much of the actors’ faces as possible.

jpaq68

Saru is, by far, the most annoying character in the history of Star Trek. At the very least Wil Wheaton can sleep better at night knowing that his Wesley Crusher no longer holds that distinction

KhanNoonianSingh

It will be interesting to see where they go with it for a season3 for sure. As they are now 900 and some years in the future which means their ship and tech are going to be woefully out of date against any threats they come across.

Ale

Probably the planets in the beta quadrant are less technologically advanced then the ones in the alfa quadrant.

alastair87

It would make sense given Earth and the Klingon Empire are already established as being near or in the Beta Quadrant but near the Alpha Quadrant to imagine that the Federation and/or humanity had got out that far by then, even if they’d then collapsed.

Vulcan Soul

I know I’m one of the people who have railed against the prequel setting for two years but after seeing how season 2 ultimately ended (one step forward, several back), I realize the problem was never with the prequel (even though I’d prefer some forward going stories after 20 years) but with these particular writers and showrunners. That prequel and canon can be done right and satisfactory is clearly visible in some production design such as the Enterprise exterior, interior and uniforms. They just didn’t *want* to.

And that’s the crux. These writers lack the basic discipline to write coherent, realistic and meaningful science fiction (not to speak about Star Trek even!) They have a “thrill ride” mentality to twist the plot and characters to serve whatever clickbait-worthy headline it is they want to deliver, right since the beginning.

And that’s why I have such a headache with going forward an entire millennium. As Kurtzman explained, the entire point is to free themselves of canon and any sort of narrative limits, so this jump is a narrative device same as the alternate timeline in the Abrams movies. However, the technology went from improbable to downright fantastical and more befitting of Marvel or Star Wars in two years of prequel setting already (all this time crystal nonsense). Writing within defined limits is good to some extent, to ground the show and make it relatable. I’m pretty sure without any defined back setting, the show will fully go off the rails and become a full fledged fantasy show which is not just inconsistent with science and previous Trek canon, but also with itself, with most “tech” serving as plot devices to do whatever the writers need to do this week, instead of having scientifically grounded technology and scifi concepts, earned character development, meaningful plots and real consequences. And that’s not just not science fiction. That’s lazy writing.

kmart

I’m thinking this is going to be like seaQuest to the nth power in terms of absurdity. And that show went far off the rails even before its s3 time-jump, probably during their time-travel episodes in s2, which I deliberately misremember with the sub’s temporal event triggering when it hits 88 knots.

Trellium G

The season 3 retooling of SeaQuest was way off the rails and guaranteed the death of the show. How absurd Quasi-Trek: Discovery will be, remains to be seen. But I am at a loss why so many want to run away from the original concept of Star Trek at slipstream speed. Can’t touch it, revisit it, dig deeper into it, visually update it. Nope. Never. The original will forever be stuck in the 1960s and untouchable.

Yes I am bitter.

Professor Spock

Vulcan Soul the time crystals do sound dumb alright. At least the spore drive made some scientific sense. I’m glad the show is in the future next season. The show needs to tell a new story without canon issues. Marvel and Star Wars are not science fiction like Star Trek.

Professor Spock

Vulcan Soul the time crystals do sound dumb alright. At least the spore drive made some scientific sense. This show needs to tell a story without canon issues. I’m glad the show goes into the future this season. It needs it. Marvel and Star Wars are not science fiction like Star Trek.

Vulcan Soul

“Marvel and Star Wars are not science fiction like Star Trek.”

Then by your logic, Discovery is not Star Trek because it is closer to the former than the latter now. The constant evoking of DESTINY, endless pew pew fighter space battles, Skywalkeresque family soap operas, magic substances and all.

UFP Public Affairs

Time crystals are no more implausible that dilithium crystals. Both are magic inventions of writers to break the established scientific rules of time and space.

Yes, but nobody ever used dilithium crystals as a major plot point for an entire season. Nobody ever used them as a magical device that allowed an infant to grow to full adulthood in a couple of weeks so as to “enhance” a sopa-operaesque subplot.

Dilithium crystals were designed to make it plausible that the ship could travel faster enough than light to plausible reach and interact with a new civilization each week. So that the episodes could tell actual stories with actual meaning behind them. Remember when Star Trek did that? Remember when Star Trek was actually about something?

Dilithium crystals were just a bit of background detail designed to get us to where we were going so we could tell those stories.

Time crystals, on the other hand, enable massive plot holes, unearned emotion, and lies about canon.

kmart

Yeah, and the crystals weren’t magical beyond the ability to warp — it was like having a different name for coal if the show was set in the 19th century. From what i read of this season, the time crystals are more akin to Jack’s ‘magic beans.’

Vulcan Soul

Time crystals are no more implausible that dilithium crystals.”

This is not true. Time crystals as portrayed are the definition of a fantasy element – there are no scientific underpinnings and the crystals does whatever the writers want them to do this week – jump people into the future, grow babies into adults or show visions of the future. This is pure magic, no science involved. Dilithium crystals are a very defined part of the matter/antimatter power generation and not even necessary for the actual warp propulsion (eg Romulans use a quantum singularity for that). Granted, its properties of withstanding antimatter seem farfetched to us NOW but it was never shown to he anything beyond this purpose and as such is not more farfetched than various exotic particles Trek has introduced – they are fictitious, but work within the framework of science AND the show. Dilithium is the coal of M/AM propulsion. Time crystals are fantasy magic.

Captain_neill

Agreed there was more verisimilitude to past tech and with dilithium crystals.

Disinvited

Vulcan Soul,

The properties, as portrayed, are fantastical given that, unlike dilithium crystals, time crystals do actually exist, and no such properties have been observed to date:

https://www.popularmechanics.com/science/a24957/time-crystals/

Vulcan Soul

“time crystals do actually exist, and no such properties have been observed to date”

That’s an understatement. They co-opted the name to sound science-y and fool gullible people who know as much about science as they do (nothing), but these fantasy crystals are an insult to science. They belong into the realm of Marvel magic and Star Wars force ghosts.

GarySeven

Vulcan soul I agree completely. It seems to me that Discovery is made by writers typical of our time. Interested in the “thrill-ride” mentality, choosing fantasy ver science fiction, and a “click-bait” mentality. My theory is these people were raised on Star Wars, Harry Potter, Avengers, etc. movies and we are getting Star Trek distilled from these influences. A far cry from TOS and its science fiction writers- Harlan Ellison, Theodore Sturgeon, Norman Spinrad, and so many others. TNG also still very much valued the science and science fiction heritage of Star Trek, and it’s philosophical underpinnings. Now we have JJ, who almost bragged he was not smart enough as his Star Trek friends growing up and preferred Star Wars, and Kurtzman, who worked with him.
Once Star Trek was both of its time and yet also ahead of its time. Now it’s just a reflection of our time.
It’s not easy being green. This is the crowd that both makes and watches Star Trek now, the Star Wars, Harry Potter, Marvel comics etc. crowd. I don’t fit in as well with today’s Star Trek, and many others don’t. And I don’t say that as self-criticism. I say it with sadness for what has been lost, in Star Trek and in society, because now they are mirrors are of each other.

Blech.

TG47

The sad thing is that the writers actually think that they are being disciplined…

…one gets the sense that they believe their own spin…

I’m beginning to wonder if some of the conflict in the writers room involved the previous showrunners, whatever their other faults, trying to reign in the tendency to run off thoughtlessly in 5 directions at once.

At any rate, it’s ironic that the current crop of Trek-lit principal writers David Mack, Dayton Ward, Una MacCormick, Christopher L. Bennett and John Jackson Miller can write full length novels and maintain consistency and coherence across the franchise, but those together in a writers room cannot.

Seeing Trek authors comment on Keith R.A. DeCandido’s Discovery episode reviews for TOR demonstrates that even the best Trek authors find it hard to put a good face on imagining their way out of the plot holes and character incoherence in Discovery.

Maltz

“Lazy writing…” Agreed. That’s the problem with Discovery. If anyone is not convinced, compare it to the quality of DS9’s writing, et voila…

Tiger2

Well this officially settles it, the show is permanently staying in the 33rd century and I couldn’t be more happier about it! This is a great moment for Trek, to boldly go in a new era!

I don’t know if they needed to go a thousand years but now they can tell their own stories and introduce entirely new species and concepts. And they still have the spore drive too!

I will actually miss a lot of the old characters like L’rell and Tyler but they may pop up on a short Trek or Section 31. Tyler will definitely be on that show now.

And they are not saying goodbye to the 23rd century forever. As said there is Section 31 in a few years and maybe a Pike show down the line. And maybe one of the cartoons will take place in this era too although I’m hoping one fills in the time gap between the 25th and 33rd century.

But for now it’s a return to going forward again…. FINALLY! Picard and the TNG era will be boldly going into the 25h century soon and Discovery will be filling in the 33rd century for years to come!!

Wow it’s a great time to be a Star Trek fan!

Professor Spock

Tiger2 Discovery can go two thousand years in the future and that could still work. Discovery never made sense in the 23rd century. They never fit in. It was too alien for them. What were they thinking! The 33rd century makes a lot of sense for Discovery. They will fit right in.

AJinMoscow

If the 33rd century is still ships filled with humanoids from various empires firing colored lasers and torpedoes at each other, Trek will lose that ‘believability edge’ that it’s always had as a foreseeable future. Gene Roddenberry always had the idea that transporter tech would supplant the need for spaceships (JJ used something like it in ST09), so assuming the Milky Way Association of Humanoid Bipeds is still doing its thing in 1000 years, it would make sense that they’ve moved way beyond the need for ships and space battles. Of course, the cop-out would be that humanity was wiped out at some point in time, and everyone lives a “Mad Max in Space” existence. Or everyone is Borg except Discovery (and Leland is the Queen).

Vulcan Soul

“it would make sense that they’ve moved way beyond the need for ships and space battles..”

Please excuse my scepticism, but after this finale in particular, do you really think *these* writers are ever going to move past (and beyond) PEW PEW PEW? I have come to understand that Kurtzman Trek (same as Abramstrek) rests upon two core tenets: EMOTE and EXPLODE ;)

blackmocco

They can’t even do PEW PEW right.

Vulcan Soul

They can’t even do PEW PEW right.”

Can they? In terms of money for dramatic impact, this was one of the worst space battles in Trek. It must have cost a fortune but honestly I couldnt even tell you if the looped the same 2 minutes over the course of an hour. You don’t need to blow a lot of money and explosions to create a space battle with human drama. Kirk against Khan (the original one, not the fake!) was infinitely more poignant and dramatic and both technically and financially probably several magnitudes more easy to accomplish. NOT in the writing department, obviously. As someone quipped, if only Discovery had as competent writers as FX animators …

blackmocco

Again: They CAN’T even do PEW PEW right. The FX looked great – as always – but essentially the ships all sat in one place like idiots. I mean, it was ridiculous. How long before someone even mentioned… oh I don’t know… evasive tactics, maybe?

GarySeven

It was boring, wasn’t it? “Full of sound and fury, signifying nothing.”

Professor Spock

Star Trek won’t end up like Mad Max in 1000 years. Star Trek is like a “Game of Thrones in space” existence. The Federation has fallen. Chaos is rampant. The utopian dream is dead.

Trellium G

@Professor Spock – Or the Federation has broken up into warring factions consisting of an evil galactic empire and freedom fighting rebels. Star Trek Discovery: A New Hope

Maybe they took some of the Enterprise’s repair droids with them.

Vulcan Soul

Trellium, given Kurtzman’s obvious penchant for all things Star Wars (he truly is JJ’s padawan), from destiny to space opera family sagas and as massive as meaningless (tie) fighter battles, I can totally see this coming! In the 33rd century, the makeover of Star Trek into Star Wars will be complete.

Trellium G

I wouldn’t be surprised at all, Vulcan Soul. I am sure the suits at both Paramount and CBS have asked how they can make Star Trek more like Star Wars many times.

Picard, Jean Luc

For Star Trek: Discovery to be considered good Star Trek, let alone good TV it needs to start learning lessons from The Orville and from prior Star Trek TV series and not just TOS. It has to stop being so self-important and so preachy. it needs to stop being driven by spectacle and over blown CGI, instead, It needs to begin to embrace stories that are character driven and episodic storytelling that focus on the exploration of new worlds, new civilisations.

The series so far has been utterly convoluted and contrived nonsense and while there are some truly brilliant actors and characters on Discovery, they have been swamped by pointless spectacle, poorly conceived plots and rushed conclusions.

The other thing is this; I think Martin-Green is a brilliant actress but the character of Michael Burnham is by far the weakest link in this show and to have her as the lead is killing the show. This series (and Star Trek) works best when it is an ensemble, Horatio Hornblower in space. Lets see Burnham as simply a science officer having to work together with her shipmates.

Finally; It wouldn’t hurt Star Trek: Discovery by having previous Trek writers, directors and producers who’ve worked on TNG, DS9, VOY, ENT back to steer the series in a direction that ties it thematically into what Star Trek is still loved for being. If Discovery is to be fully included into the Star Trek family, it needs to accept the universe it is a part of rather than try to force change upon a franchise that has already proven itself to be successful well before Discovery.

It was the right idea to take this show into the fictional Star Trek future, but this should of been the shows premise from the beginning. Instead of being a new Star Trek with a fresh perspective set hundreds of years away from Voyager and Nemesis, detached from established canon, it ran into the same issues as Enterprise, redesigning the past to be more visually relevant to audiences and trying to shoe-horn itself into canon. Ultimately it hasn’t paid off.

I’ve been a Star Trek fan since 1994. A short time when 50 plus years is considered, I thought I could accept that each Star Trek was a show about the era in which it was conceived. But for the first time I am more impressed with how The Orville has done more to respect the ideas and philosophy Gene Roddenberry had when he first had the idea for Star Trek.

GarySeven

Well said, Jean-Luc. I agree completely.

Boxker

I think it’s a copout. Having go to the future so everyone can stop whining about messing up canon is saying that they can’t EVER tell Pike’s complete story; or (if they ever wanted to) tell the complete story of Kirk’s five year mission. Or the Enterprise time period before Pike.

Personally, before any series set in a time period after TNG, I’ve want to see Pike’s Years; and Kirk’s years after the Refit and before TWOK, and most definitely a Captain Sulu’s years. But other people wouldn’t have us do it because, it might mess up TNG’s canon. They act as if the series that have didn’t have any continuity issues of their own.

And the complaints about the visual look of Discovery really kills me. Star Trek is my all-time favorite IP. If I was a produce and was given the opportunity to produce and retell TOS every stories, the first thing I would do is update the look. I would do it in a heartbeat. It would be ridiculous to say in 2019 we have touch screens but in 23rd century we have gigantic bubbly buttons. It would be ridiculous to say that in 2019 we have thin monitors but in the future we go back to bulky crts. And it would be ridiculous to have, in 2019, computer assistants with humanly voices but in the 23rd century we have computers with monotone, robotic voices.

If we could send our VFX technology back to Gene in the 60’s and said, “Hey, we can make the Enterprise look like this (The Discovery style) or this (the 60’s style), they would choose the Discovery look. Or put it this way, if the Discovery Enterprise came first and then they tried to switch the 60s version, people would explode. Their voices would be all high pitched, saying “What the hell is this.” The Discovery Enterprise, inside and out, is 10 times better than the TOS version.

jimkirk

overall, Discovery was at best, entertaining and had it’s moments, at it’s worse, there was a lot of bad story telling. I didn’t like season one’s Spore Drive, and I didn’t care much for the Red Angel/Time suit in season two. Just tell good stories. I also felt at times, the stories tried to push the ideas of love/loyalty/teamwork/trust too much and it felt fake, like the writers were telling us this was the case instead of showing us. A few times, it did feel real.

Now they could have told stories effectively without muddling things by making Burnham, Spock’s half sister, and then having to explain why she is never mentioned in TOS.

I am hopeful of Season Three, but so far Discovery is not a program I am anxiously awaiting to see.

On the other hand, Anson Mount as Pike, that was done well, and he killed it in the role, so I would love to see a Pike series and because of that bridge of the Enterprise. It’s looks appropriately modern for today’s TV viewing standard with a nod to a lot of what we saw on the TOS bridge..

TG47

jimkirk I agree!

Telling rather than showing is a lot of the problem.

More often than not we don’t see the process of teamwork or ‘working the problem’ which are fundamental to Trek.

The writers don’t seem to know understand that working a problem is a back and forth process, not just going around the room and the genius de jour saying, ‘I’ve got it’ and everyone running after them without input or a peer challenge function.

TNG and Voyager managed to convey this in a way that rang true for those of us who actually work this way.

Even Jake and Nog on DS9 did it more authentically.

Kevin

Another complaint that kills is that Spock never mentioned Michael. There were 79 episodes plus “the Cage” and Spock was in 2 TNG episodes as well as 8 films. So, yeah in all that time there’s no mention because as Spock explains in STAR TREK V he wasn’t inclined to talk about personal stuff…also, he could’ve mentioned her off camera. These characters have lives we don’t see on screen and you know what DSC was the first time on screen we found out that Spock had a sister…sure it took over 50 years. The backstories of characters aren’t set in stone from the series bible.

Professor Spock

Discovery can prove itself in season three. Season two made it good enough to be Star Trek. I want to experience what life is like one thousand years from now. Will Starfleet and the Federation still exist? Is the galaxy still the same? What happens to the Klingons and other questions? It opens the door to amazing possibilities. I want to see a Pike series. Discovery sets up a Pike show perfectly.

blackmocco

Well, I guess someone had to come out and polish the turd. Just a shame it has to be SMG, who deserves far better for her work on the show than the scripts she’s been given. I’d say that for all the cast actually, and I’ll also throw the fx crew in there, who’ve made the show look absolutely spectacular over two seasons. Just sucks all their hard work has been undermined by ghastly, ghastly writing. Honestly, if any of the cast or fx crews had submitted work as subpar as the scripts, they’d have been Airiam’d out the airlock faster than you could say “make it so”.

Please stop telling me that this season synced “Discovery” up with canon. It surely did not. You expect me to believe that for the entirety of TOS and the movies and his subsequent appearance, Spock was simply withholding mention of Michael Burnham’s existence? That’s not plausible for a fraction of a second, and don’t come at me all like “BUT SYBOK,” because that plotline also was dumb. But at least in that case, Sybok was pitched as a family scandal that Spock might plausibly have wished to keep secret even from his best comrades.

This silliness on “Discovery”? No ma’am. I shall not accept it, and I resent it being continually forced on me. I know we live in an era where the idea is that if you just lie loudly and frequently enough, that lie becomes the truth, but while I might have to put up with that from my politicians, I expect NOT to have to put up with from my entertainment.

So kindly cut that out, please. Maybe the third season will give you the opportunity to not be in that position anymore.

CaptainSheridan

…. we had characters never talk about their families at all in the show, but that does not mean they don’t exist.

Jemini

I can’t help but think it is a bit of a failure that they had to jump into the future. It’s like they realized they had painted themselves into a corner making it a prequel so they need to get out of this situation now. The question is why didn’t they make it a sequel from the start? Why not make it another reality? (How can we know they didn’t jump into another reality in the end, btw? Hello quantum mechanics? ) It seems like they used the old characters to make their show more valid and this is the only reason it was a prequel. Was it necessary? Did they really need Spock, Pike, Sarek?
I have a feeling if someone will start to watch it from season 3, they won’t necessarily have to watch the other two too. This effectively is a reboot of their reboot.

I’m the guy always hollering about how this show simply doesn’t work with established canon, but I’d have been 100% behind the series being a top-to-bottom reboot. That’s what I myself would have done if I didn’t want to go into the post-TNG timeline (which would have been my first actual choice in this magical scenario where I got to make such decisions) — I’d have said we were reimagining Star Trek with an eye toward doing what we felt Gene Roddenberry would have done if he had been born in the year 1972 instead of the year 1921.

An approach like that would have had its detractors, but if a good show was the result, they’d have all been onboard by the end of the first season.

Ah, well.

Tiger2

I been hollerig they should’ve rebooted it from the start and NONE of this needed to happen. But they really, really, really want to keep DIS in the prime timeline, the solution just being make it far enough where nothing else is touched by it.

But whats done is done now! We basically getting a different show, same characters but totally different setting.

Tiger2

In reality they are but saying putting Discovery where they did was a HUGE mistake if their explanation is that they are thrown out of the 23rd century and no one talks about them ever again. I mean if thats the ONLY way to ‘resolve’ canon then its basically saying they should’ve just not bothered in the first place. I still don’t understand what Starfleet accomplishes by not saying Burnham’s name other than the obvious that it never was mentioned in TOS.

At this point you just have to shrug. And I think they just want to un-do the premise and ideas Fuller had with this show and basically start over in season 3. You can spin it until the cows come home but its pretty obvious they know it was a mistake to make such a huge left turn. No Star Trek show has ever attempted like this until now.

And my guess is you probably won’t need to watch the other two seasons at all outside of just wanting to know the characters more. But the show itself is basically being rebooted.

Jemini

“At this point you just have to shrug.”
Precisely, lol. How long it’s going to last is uncertain.
Past examples, both trek and other franchises, suggest me that this might be the calm before storm for this team because once the hype will die down, the internet will start to analyze this show like anything else and question A LOT of things…

Michael C

I doubt I will watch season 3. Even after 2 seasons I don’t feel any connection to Discovery or it’s crew. It feels like I still don’t really know them or care where they end up. Don’t get me wrong I enjoyed the show overall certainly not a “hater” but I just don’t care. The Pike/Spock angle kept my interest but that is due to my familiarity with them. I was pleased when Discovery went into the wormhole as my reaction was Good they’ve gone, rather than oh no what’s going to happen to them? It’s really hard to explain.

Dr C

I’m interested in watching s3 after this story development.

If done well, the potential to develop an entirely new astropolitical landscape in the Alpha Quadrant is quite exciting.

Will the disco’s tech from the 23rd be obsolete or state of the art in the 33rd? (Please, Spock, don’t say it’s “fascinating”. No, doctor, but it is interesting).

Hat Rick

While moving the show to the 33d Century does free up most of the constraints of canon, it doesn’t move the events of the series away from the potential interference of god-like beings such as Q. There are various other transcendental beings as well that could survive to the 33d Century, including the Organians, for example, or the Prophets of Bajor.

Indeed, we could see a guest starring role for Avery Brooks in his noncorporeal form.

As well, the Department of Temporal Investigations could very well play a part in a future plotline (no pun intended).

Interestingly, the idea of time-traveling races finds its culmination in the Temporal Cold War (ST:ENT), and although that series hasn’t been mentioned prominently in the news lately, we know that at least one of the species depicted in the TCW arc figures into the 29th Century.

All in all, in combination with what are likely to be occasional flashbacks to the 23d and 24th Centuries, I suspect we haven’t seen the last of canon yet.

The last time we saw stories about a ship stranded in a setting far from home, it was in ST:VOY — part of its very premise. That might be instructive as to what we might expect.

It’s all very exciting, I must say.

Lostrod

Still confused. How many people now make up the crew of Discovery?

blackmocco

Like you’re ever going to be introduced to any of them on this show…

Marc Henson

I really hope they do something about the characters. I would seriously like to see some better character development….I think they truly lack it. It’s extremely important that they address this matter.

Also, I’m tired of them being in space all the time. Can we actually see a planet? An interesting one? I would like to see futuristic tech on planets, like hovercars and aircars and stuff like that, that we haven’t seen much of in Trek due to the budget. I’m really tired of seeing space all the time…it’s always the same old boring sets or redressed sets…that gets freaking old. I don’t know…I was really hoping, and I still am hoping for a better and more polished version of Star Trek, but it’s really not that different from what we’ve seen before.

I know most people complain that it’s too different, my problem is the opposite, I don’t think it’s different enough. We need to see new stuff we haven’t seen before in Star Trek…I guess they had those repair-bots the DOT-7s or whatever they were…that was neat…stuff like that would be great, but make it make sense. That battle made little sense to me…and I didn’t understand why they jumped to the future when Control was already defeated. Only thing I can think of is they didn’t want to risk a copy of Control locating Discovery’s Sphere Data…but it was established toward the end of the episode that all copies of Control were destroyed…I believe…so…an explanation as to why they still had to go to the future is a must.

I don’t know…I was one of the most optimistic people about this show, constantly defending her honor so to speak, my issue was never with the perceived canon problems, but at this point I realize that the show is in need of serious help. These writers need to look to other shows for inspiration, like The Walking Dead, or maybe even…like…Deep Space Nine? Seriously there are ways to improve the show but the characters need help.

I have a hard time caring about the characters at all, very little is earned. Also, they have a real problem with doing basic TV stories…what I mean is, it’s no different than the stuff that I’ve seen on the CW. It’s a little cliche, and is in desperate need of some more spice. The thing about CW shows and just most non-cable television shows in general, is that they build you up, and then let you down. I really was excited when watching the finale, but it was a downright silly episode, and after really thinking about it, it fell short on many levels.

The problem is they were spending too much time trying to free themselves from the setting that Bryan Burk or whatever the original showrunners name was put the show in…the 23rd century. They decided it was too difficult to write a show in that setting, so they decided to use season 2 to free them from it.

Meanwhile…the rest of the show, the more important stuff, like the characters and all that…tremendously suffered…the character stories were not that great, it was no more superior than any of the DC Comics shows on the CW. This is a premium show…we need the characters to be very deep, I wanna see The Walking Dead-level characters, I wanna cry when they die. I didn’t cry when Airiam died…that episode was rediculous…they finally do something with her and then kill her in the same episode…bad writing!!

It was a little sadder with Admiral Cornwall, because we kind of got to know her, but I didn’t cry…and that whole scene seemed forced…If I was writing it, she would have stunned Pike with a phaser and dragged him out and then shut the blast door. To me Pike wouldn’t have let her do that…he’s a gentleman in my mind. Anyway, so many other things made little sense about the story…if they are so worried about canon being an issue so as to please fans, a good way to please fans would be to stay consistent with their own canon, and things they had already established, instead of just discarding them…

Professor Spock

Happy Easter!

TG47

To you too PS.

David Hutchinson

The Borg seems to have started out in the Delta Quadrant, far away enough to put some distance between Earth and the Borg. Perhaps the Discovery will meet a repentant “Q” in the far future that would offer some insight into the Borg. There have been several Time Travellers to engage with from Enterprises 30th century incursions to Next Generation incursions to Voyager incursions. Perhaps they will come into contact with the race that took over Barclay and gave him vast knowledge. Or the unresolved takeover of Starfleet by those tiny tardigrades that had to breathe from small portholes in necks of those humans taken over. They could meet up with Data cast adrift with immediate history info. Maybe Discovery landed in the Delta quadrant. So many possibilities.Folks might have been preserved in the buffer pattern of the transporter and clones could have been reproduced or the folks themselves reproduced. Let’s hope they are not in an alternate universe where they might run into themselves with alternate solutions to current problems. So many roads to choose.

David Hutchinson

By that time has Earth become a Kardishev 2 or Kardishev 3 civilization? There was a Dyson Sphere episode with Scotty in the Next Generation. Hopefully that Dyson Sphere doesn’t become the beginning of the Borg. Or any Dyson Sphere story.

JonBuck

One wrinkle is that there were temporal transporters by the 29th century, as seen on Voyager. Plus whatever tech Daniels was using in the Temporal Cold War arc on Enterprise. So they’re going to have to decide why that isn’t available to the Discovery crew. Possibly the Temporal Prime Directive. That is, assuming the Federation or an analogue even still exists.

David Hutchinson

Perhaps existence would be like the solution for Moriarty existing in a small computer generating infinite timelines forever or until the power goes down when the memory gets buffered and saved. They could combine transporter and advanced AI to get folks into a holodeck type experience into the device. Just a thought.

CDRArch

I am such a cannon geek, I was just happy to see the Enterprise finally firing blue phasers from port and and starboard phaser banks on top of the primary hull! Sounds silly but that made me happy. Also Enterprise fired photon torps from on top pf primary hull the only place they could be located. Fixing 51 years on “cannon”!

Luke Montgomery

Sonequa is amazing. Just love her and love her portrayal of Michael. Great casting. Looking forward to the new season. They didn’t have to “sync with cannon” as Spoke never spoke of Sybock his brother, T’Pring his fiancé or his parents one of whom was the Vulcan Ambassador. Kirk was his best friend and he never knew about any of them. Why the freakout about his sister????

JonBuck

Worldbuilding is funny like that, isn’t it? It’s as if it’s all just made up as they go along. I honestly don’t stress too much about in-universe explanations–the “why didn’t see know about this [person/place/event] before if it was so important?” question. We didn’t know about it because we didn’t need to. Even a Series Bible can’t contain all the possible stories they want to tell.

Tiger2

This has been debated over and over again at this point. Yes its been pointed out about a million times Spock didn’t mention other people in his life, that is a ‘canon’ explanation, but its still not much a ‘logical’ one (see what I did there ;)). For many people, they still can’t believe Spock never mentioned a sister who is not only serving in Starfleet right along side him but is now more famous than he is. I’ve said this many times, its hard to believe someone who is the first mutineer in Starfleet history, only human to even attend the Vulcan Science Academy, the one given credit to both starting and ending the Klingon war is not one of the most famous (or infamous) Starfleet officers at this point. It should be pretty known who she is and her family given their father is also ambassador to Earth.

And then of course the Discovery writers sunk the explanation Spock doesn’t mention his family to people when it was revealed he told Pike about her (I mean why wouldn’t he?). And everyone keeps saying Spock, Spock, Spock but then seem to ignore that Sarek never mentioned her either although he talks about Spock all the time (its why he’s there lol) including to even Picard.

So yes on one level you can make that excuse. It doesn’t mean everyone is going to buy it though. Maybe 1-2 years he may not mention her but 30+ years later to so-called long time friends? It doesn’t fly. Yes, yes, there is Sybok but ironically that was part of the reason so many hated that character, he literally came out of nowhere. It just didn’t fly with reality. And with Sybok he was directly involved with Spock’s life. They never even lived together.

But all that said, it is still just a TV show. I’m sure most people just told themselves (like me) ‘whatever’ and just moved on with it. I don’t think they needed to go a thousand years into the future to explain why he never mentioned her but it sort of proves it was probably a mistake to have her be his sister if THIS is the only way to reconcile it in their heads.

CaptainSheridan

When and why would Spock or Sarek, or anyone for that matter, mention her in any Star Trek we’ve seen? In what context of any episode would this need to be brought up? I mean Sulu had a family and Kirk didn’t even know about it. Even if Picard learned about her during his mind meld with Sarek, why would he mention it to anyone especially learning through the same mind meld of the secrecy about her? Its like Ro Laren – we don’t hear about her actions causing the disaster on Goran II until its relavent in an episode.

Tiger2

This is a strange argument. Why wouldn’t they mention someone who is also in Starfleet, the first human to live on Vulcan and a mutineer? I mean maybe it wouldn’t just come up in passing but I would assume it would probably come up at some point.

And look I’m going to say this again, but it shouldn’t HAVE to come up, because Burnham is already too famous. She would just be known by most people in Starfleet at this point. First season people would literally called her ‘the mutineer’ when her name was even brought up. THAT’s how much she was known. Kirk and everyone else is in Starfleet RIGHT NOW, why wouldn’t they just know who she is?? Yes maybe by the 24th century she would just be a footnote in Starfleet history but in this time, she would be on the mouth of most Starfleet people because of her notorious involvement in starting the Klingon war. My guess is Sulu didn’t have a brother also serving in Starfleet the same time he was and was responsible for revealing who the Romulans were.

The show runners clearly knew this and why they gave Spock the ridiculous lines at the end of the finale suggesting even MENTIONING her name will get you a court martial. So its not even about Spock not mentioning her name, the writers literally made it illegal to bring it up lol. I mean think about it, THEY CLASSIFIED HER ENTIRE EXISTENCE!!!

So you explain it to me then, if its just about Spock not casually mentioning he has a sister over a game of chess with Kirk, then why go through such extremes of why she can’t be mentioned? Because the writers seem to think just that idea alone is pretty preposterous and had to come up with something stronger to explain it. True what they came up with is also pretty preposterous lol, but it really does tell you they know they created a huge problem going forward. Especially if they stayed in the 23rd century and she kept saving the universe.

And its also why the show will most likely stay in the 33rd century. Why go through such extremes of pretending the ship was destroyed and people can now literally go to jail just bringing up her name if they are all coming back by season 4?

David

I sometimes wonder if Bryan Fuller filled the show with canon violations, as a screw you to CBS who nixed the anthology series idea. I could imagine the spore drive as a rival
tech to also unreliable slipstream tech post-Nemesis. They could have Burnham as ‘the child Sarek never had’ (have her treated like His child but make her only a protege ) which would add tension to his relationship with Spock, his actual child. Despite the improved Season 2, the writers seem to consciously create more problems from themselves, when they didn’t need to. Then they just sweep it under the rug like that would even be possible.

JonBuck

Bryan Fuller made a lot of unfortunate decisions that they’ve had to live with the entire series. He could have set it in the 26th century where the spore drive wouldn’t have been out of place. And also used the Enterprise-J.

Trellium G

An Enterprise-J series would have been great and still connected to the concept of Star Trek. I remember reading somewhere that it could travel to other galaxies. Can’t remember where though.

“Can anyone remember when we used to be explorers?”

Professor Spock

David they are starting to fix things.

Constiff

I love this series so much. :-)

Ok I am very pleased that you got to where you should have started from in the beginning, THE FUTURE Yes you are canon free But I hope you are not blind to the many thing that this opens the door to Races of being we saw in ALL THE OTHER Star Trek shows like TOS METRONS in ( AREA ), The Kelvan Empire in the Andromeda galaxy ( By Any Other Name ). The Melkots,( Spectre of the Gun ) Trelane’s race of advanced civilization ( The Squire of Gothos ) and lets not forget Organians ( Errand of Mercy ). Now lets talk enemies The Tholians, The Gorn and The Borg how far have they advanced into the quadrants.

A Concerned Fan

I am going to go on a Trekkie rant here. I am not happy with them time jumping the series to the 32nd century. I was perfectly content with them staying in the 23rd.

I am not happy with the fact they did this — it feels like to me they listened to the trolls and said “screw you” to those who supported the show since its debut a year and a half ago. Change does not come easily for me, and for this show to go in a direction feels like a gimmick to get this show to work better and to appease those who hated the show from the beginning.

Put this into context: in 1995, DS9 was not doing too well in the syndication ratings thanks to an overcrowded syndicated market. The producers decided to bring Worf over to boost its ratings. In 2003, Enterprise’s ratings were falling off fast. What do they do? Introduce a brand new species (the Xindi) determined to destroy Earth.

Having Star Trek: Discovery time jump it’s titular starship and its crew 930 years into the future just so they can get away from established canon and stuff — classifying the ship in the process in the time period it left — feels like an utter betrayal for those of us who had no issues with the ship in the 23rd century in the first place. So what if it was more advanced than the U.S.S. Enterprise? So what if it looked different? It didn’t matter to me. To me, Star Trek is always about the stories and the characters that inhabit the said stories. I don’t care about how it looks — the so called “visual canon” be damned. I enjoy each series for the characters and stories.

That being said, I am looking forward to seeing what comes out of this. Will the show finally stop being hated on by the trolls? Probably not, but I have a feeling they’re very much happier now that the ship is out of the pre-The Original Series era.

Rant over.

NOW we are in the future we are very limited in technology to other races I would think, limited crew to run ship and their is no why the ship is not heavily damaged from the fight.

somethoughts

Why cant they just warn starfleet about control before it becomes homicidal?

You have a time suit and can warn starfleet about control or any disaster. You can even warn starfleet about mirror Lorca and save prime Georgiou with the time suit.

Why be lovers with the guy that ate your captain? So much to fix with the time suit…Go back in time to the battle of the binary stars and ignore the Klingon cloaked ship and all will be fine. Adventures of Prime Georgiou and Michael can continue.

Trellium G

They would still have to destroy the palace ship in the mirror universe to save the mycelial network from destruction.

somethoughts

True, just saying if Michael did really have a time suit she would fix her biggest mistake/regret. She would undue her mutiny on the shenzhou and save thousands of lives from that war, saving prime Georgiou in the process.

Warn starfleet about Lorca and save the network/universe, then stop control before it became homicidal.

Save her parents from the Klingons. I wonder, the effects this would have on Michael, maybe she would never be raised by Sarek and be brothers with Spock.

You have a genie in a bottle and you dont fully use the wishes.

DaveCGN

” She would undue her mutiny on the shenzhou and save thousands of lives from that war, saving prime Georgiou in the process.” I never understood that point. It was a trap set by the klingons. With or without mutiny they would have attacked anyway.

somethoughts

not if michael didnt explore klingon ship and kill torch bearer

Captain_neill

On one hand saying that talking about Discovery under penalty of treason seems too much of a cop out, it always seems to be “make it classified” is the way around it.

And while it might be interesting to see the distant future, to me it just seems like the writers just have no idea what they want this show to be

Good writing could have made DSC work in the TOS period.

I want to have hope, but with Kurtzman I just don’t have that as strong as it used to be.

somethoughts

Yes, I enjoyed s1 and s2 but I dont buy the whole lets not talk about it bs. Should have did a reset where Michael uses the red angel time suit and save her parents from the Klingons. She gets raised by her parents and joins section 31.

L. Todd Collier

Brilliant to solve Canon problem. Serious issues with tech though. Will see it anyway.

Kevin Jones

Placing Discovery in the distant future and then banning any talk of Burnham, the Spore Drive and Burnham or it will be considered treason quite frankly feels like lazy writing.

And honestly, Discovery’s biggest issue is NOT the time period but the writers themselves. Then again, I guess that what happens when you have writers who have more experience writing soap operas than science fiction.

Trek in a Cafe

I thought you wrote “any talk of Berman” LoL.

jpaq68

You are correct, it was a case of lazy writing. The entire second half of the episode felt like it just borrowed elements from Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure (Bill and Ted needing certain things and they appear because they’re going to use the phone booth to put them there after they get back to San Dimas) and the TNG episode “Clues” when Picard orders Data not to reveal what happened when the Enterpise encountered the xenophobic Paxons.

blackmocco

Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure was written by two (then) nobodies with no Hollywood connections and no previous screenwriting experience in a cheap Los Angeles diner.

Star Trek: Discovery was written by an entire staff of well-paid professional writers.

Guess which one’s time travel actually makes sense when you add it all up…?

Your sixty seconds starts now.

Spockz

Wait. Temporal agents are in 31st century (Enterprise). They are able to detect time travel. If Discovery travel to the 33rd century..that is 200 yrs later. That means they created a future incursion in the time line. The Temporal Accord with other factions would not allow Starfleet factions to go into future. So it is not completely free from St Canon.

Dean S

Can’t wait for the 3rd season of Discovery! Why not another series, “Pike’s Enterprise”?

Treweis

compared to the first two seasons of TNG, VOY and ENT – great exception: DS9 – Discovery had a great run. however, season 3 will be something really new in Trek and I welcome that.

blackmocco

Well, that didn’t take long. Just received an email from CBS AA asking me to take a survey regarding Discovery. I’ve worked in the entertainment business for thirty years and when you get a survey that shows you pics of the cast and asks you to rate who you like best and why, you can be sure some changes are being considered. Also of note: no questions asking what I liked about Discovery, simply what I didn’t like.

Trellium G

I wish they sent me that survey. I only got an email begging me to reconsider my cancellation by offering a discount. But I let them know why I was cancelling after the series finale of Discovery.

blackmocco

I’m sure more people on here will receive it. This site got mentioned in a question about Trek related sites I visit. Can’t say I’m surprised by the survey. There’s a lot of negativity to fend off following the finale. Nothing worse than a nervous studio executive who’s suddenly getting asked by his boss why there’s bad buzz about a show. FOCUS GROUP TIME!!!!

It asked me would I describe myself as a fan of the show, and was I satisfied with it. It asked me how I would describe Discovery to someone who’d never seen it. Would I keep CBS AA once it ended? Was I excited about Picard, Lower Decks, etc? Gave me pics of the main cast asking me to pick my favorite and what I liked about the character. What did I not like about Discovery? It listed a bunch of other CBS shows – some I’d heard of, some I hadn’t – and asked me if I’d watch them.

Changes be coming, folks. Watch this space.

TG47

Thanks for sharing blackmocco.

I don’t know if you have it in you, but based on my recent experience, I’d suggest taking a fresh look at some of the early S2 episodes to clarify your response about what you disliked.

Our middle schoolers aren’t tolerant of cliffhangers or waiting for the resolutions serialized stories, and there were certainly some graphic scenes and episodes to avoid again this season…

So, I’ve recently started rewatching S2 from the top with one of them.

I’ve found it really remarkable how much better I liked the much of the writing before the showrunners were fired. A toxic environment couldn’t have been allowed to continue certainly, but the situation really took its toll on the season overall, particularly the back half.

Despite feeling very impatient with Burnham at the end of season, I found it easy to like her and engage with her story in the first half. And as many have commented, Tilly has been written as a caricature of herself since midseason.

blackmocco

Yeah, I quite liked most of the first half of the season. It felt like there was some attention being paid to fleshing out the characters and some effort being made to address some of season 1’s shortcomings (some of which I was fine with being left unaddressed, to be honest). Burnham was sharing the space with the rest of the cast, Tilly was actually made sympathetic so we could start to like her, we were slowly getting to meet the rest of the bridge crew and the imagery of the Red Angel was beautifully mysterious. I’m probably the only person on here who loved the Klingon episode and wanted to see more of that.

But then the second half happened and it all went to pot. I doubt I’ll ever watch any of that back half again. I tried rewatching the finale and couldn’t get ten minutes into it. At this point, I could give two shits whether we ever even see the Discovery again. Probably NOT what CBS wants to hear. Appalling.

I agree, the changing of the guard in the writers room seems to have had a disastrous impact on the show’s quality but now we’re left with more questions about that scenario than before. Yes, a toxic environment shouldn’t have to be dealt with, I get it, but were the showrunners disappointed at the lack of quality in the writing crew? Was that frustration coming out in the way they were dealing with each other? That shit happens. TV production deadlines are b-r-u-t-a-l and if you’re responsible for bringing everything in on time but you’re getting handed sub-standard work that constantly needs to be redone under pressure, it really doesn’t take much for things to get ugly. I work in prime time TV, so I’m well familiar with creative shake-ups and how they can influence what happens next, for better or for worse.

Nonetheless, these are professional writers no matter who’s running the show. They should have been able to pick up the slack. Instead they took what could have been an intriguing and mysterious plot and hacked it out, wasting everyone’s time and robbing us of what could have been a compelling story.

To sum up: I wasn’t very flattering in the survey. But judging by the negative tone of the survey’s questioning, I don’t think they were expecting me to be. It’s damage control now.

TG47

Yah, Blackmocco I’ve had the same questions about what really happened.

Different context, but I’ve been occasionally in the position of being the responsible supervisor who’s had to take the pen away and rewrite everything late at night and on weekends.

Frustration on all sides, and the original authors feel disrespected even when senior management has made it clear that the original product wasn’t meeting expectations.

But it also sounds as though the basic storylines weren’t broken before production started. Tamara Deverell has said publicly that the windows of the church in the 2nd episode New Eden were redone 22 times because the story they were supposed to tell kept changing.

What I don’t get is why Kurtzman let things slide so much in terms of basic quality after taking over as showrunner. It sounds as though he didn’t have the time to give to the job.

blackmocco

Unfortunately, the big question there is whether Kurtzman and our definition of basic quality meet the same parameters. I’ve wanted to give him the benefit of the doubt since he’s been attached to Discovery, but his track record isn’t doing much to settle my doubts. He’s very much from the Abrams/Lindelof/Orci school of storytelling who all once read that story about Spielberg coming up with the ending of Jaws and think they can apply that mantra to every single turn of the story. The problem for these clowns is they don’t realise – or care – Spielberg spent every single second of that movie leading up to that ending fleshing out his characters so we care about them and ratcheting up the tension so the threat is very real to them.

(You probably already know this but just to clarify: shark has oxygen tank in mouth. Roy Scheider shoots oxygen tank. Shark explodes. Someone says to Spielberg: “that’s not what would happen. It doesn’t make sense.” Spielberg says: “doesn’t matter. I’ve got the audience with me now. I can do what I want.”)

TG47

And even for Spielberg it would have been a hard sell for Trek fans.

The average Trek in the target age range is very bright, highly educated and is very likely to enjoy the show by debating it after…

CBSAA’s market research teams should be going into the dorms at MIT and CalTech, even if it means providing free subscriptions : if they can’t hold that audience, they are done.

And they did have them in the 90s.

blackmocco

While I’m the first to concede Star Trek ain’t exactly high art, it does require, in my opinion, a certain thoughtfulness to succeed. Its finest hours have never been about explosions and beautiful fx shots, and I think too many people have tried approaching it as if that’s the part people always wanted to see. Star Trek has always been about the characters. Everything else comes second. You get that cocktail wrong, and it’s not really Star Trek. Even people that don’t like Star Trek know that. At least Abrams was honest when he said he couldn’t get into Star Trek as a kid. Kurtzman claims he’s a fan, but if he is, he clearly wanted the show to be something it wasn’t, even then.

This is a tangent, all apologies: I love Watchmen. I’ve probably read it at least once a year since it came out back in the 80s. I think it’s maybe my favorite overall comic book. When the Zack Snyder movie came out, I was surprised it could look so close to the book but miss out on so many of the story’s emotional themes. I mean, they were in the movie but it felt to me like Snyder didn’t care for those parts of the book that really resonated with me. He just wanted to make an adult superhero movie, but for him, that just meant amping up the violence while they saved the world. He missed the point. The book’s story is actually carried and resolved by these characters slowly realizing their place in the universe. Snyder’s version is just empty noise.

Discovery has certainly had moments where it felt like a Star Trek show, but way too rarely, and far too often it’s felt like empty noise.

TG47

Blackmocco I agree that the characters are essential, but nifty science ideas like manifold time and Dyson’s spheres are part of what makes Trek work too.

I’m beginning to wonder whether one the problems is that as math, physics and biology become increasingly abstract and reliant on advance math, it becomes more difficult for the average person with a basic undergraduate science background to recognize and accept current speculative science in Trek. It’s too far out from basic Euclidean-space physics and math.

I actually don’t think that the speculative science in Discovery was that much more like magic than in past series, but the ideas are out there, and the explanations and demonstrations of the process of science and engineering were weaker.

I’ve been thinking a fair bit about a recent critically well-received book called Ninefox Gambit. From a ‘math as a language to describe a universe’ perspective, it made a lot of sense to me. But it gets a lot of negativity on sci-fi readers boards from those readers don’t seem to have intuition about what different topologies could mean and therefore argue that it’s fantasy in disguise.

On another note, by character I don’t think either of us mean Moll Flanders level unending misfortune and melodrama. Which is what the new additions to Discovery’s writers room seem to understand as character driven drama.

blackmocco

Agreed 100%. Discovery has floated plenty of nifty science ideas over two seasons. The problem being that they were either left unresolved, unsatisfactorily explained, or were skimmed over to move onto something noisy instead.