Alex Kurtzman Talks Picard Series And Star Trek’s Future On TV

CBS continues to move full steam ahead on expanding the Star Trek franchise. Just this week we have seen the announcement of a new Star Trek group, the first animated show in decades reach a new milestone and a high-profile event to garner award buzz for Discovery. In a new profile piece in the LA Times, the man behind this expansion talks about where he sees Star Trek going.

A psychological Picard show and complex Section 31 series

In a new article about the state of the Star Trek franchise, Alex Kurtzman confirms that CBS All Access is planning on having three live-action Star Trek shows in rotation, but not at the same time. In addition to Star Trek: Discovery, the other two shows are the Picard series featuring Sir Patrick Stewart (which went into production last month) and the planned Section 31 series starring Michelle Yeoh, which is expected to start up after the third season of Discovery (which itself goes into production this summer). Kurtzman also tells the LA Times that there are other unannounced Star Trek shows in development.

The Picard show is set to premiere later this year. Kurtzman outlined their approach:

The mandate was to make it a more psychological show, a character study about this man in his emeritus years. There are so few shows that allow a significantly older protagonist to be the driver…What happens when circumstances have conspired to not give him the happiest of endings? Hopefully, it’s a reinforcement of [‘Trek’ creator Gene] Roddenberry’s vision of optimism. He’s going to have to go through deep valleys to get back to the light.

The man in charge of Trek on TV also explained why they have chosen to spin off a show focused on Michelle Yeoh’s Empress Georgiou from Star Trek: Discovery:

People locked in on Georgiou as being a wonderful oddity. She is wicked, devious, manipulative and yet somehow radiates this incredible heart. People love her…We looked to shows like ‘Killing Eve,’ to franchises like ‘Mission: Impossible,’ things that were complicated on a plot level but also a character level. I think it’s fun for people to see a show with a protagonist who’s entirely unreliable. At the end of the day, she’s going to do the right thing, but in the exact wrong way.

Something new for two animated series

Kurtzman also spoke briefly about the two animated Star Trek series in development. Regarding the recently announced kid-oriented show headed to Nickelodeon, Kurtzman promised it is nothing like the 1970s Star Trek cartoon, adding:

 I can’t reveal details on that one, but it’s something that has never been done before in Star Trek.

As for the adult animated comedy Star Trek: Lower Decks slated for CBS All Access and headed up by Rick and Morty‘s Mike McMahan, Kurtzman said:

It’s a total love letter to Star Trek; there’s no mockery.

Discovery season 3 to go bold

The third season of Discovery is being written right now with Kurtzman and co-showrunner Michelle Paradise. He spoke briefly about the opportunities available to the writers by jumping the show into the future:

Now that we’re free from canon, we get to ask ourselves some incredibly bold, complicated questions. We get to dive deep into our imagination and think about what the universe would look like [930] years.

Season 3 of Discovery will look at the state of the galaxy 930 years later.

Keep up with all the upcoming Star Trek TV shows on

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“it’s something that has never been done before in Star Trek”

My bet is on 3D animation

I think he’s referring to the plot:
It’s the FIRST time a show isn’t focused on a Starfleet crew. These kids are civilians and outlaws from the fringes of an alien society. It’s going to be super exciting to see the Star Trek universe from an angle we have never seen before outside of perhaps novels.

I’ve wanted civilian Trek for years! Even the Picard show might be kind of civilian Trek, depending on exactly who these other characters are, and what the setting is.

I’m excited!

There’s just so many facets of the Star Trek universe that have nothing to do with being in the Federation that I have to agree. Civilian Trek has so much potential. I’ve even wanted a “pirate” show. Something like the Maquis where the last thing you want is to run into Starfleet. That always seemed like the easiest way to get around writing under Gene’s utopia constraints.

A civilian trek show would be awesome. We see one side of the federation…but a show set on earth would be good also….we have seen snippets of it throughout the many series…but I would love to see a star trek academy series focusing on new recruits to their graduation and being posted to their first starship

I think civilian Trek is the only way they could do Picard series, since it needs to be different than the other two series and Disco is doing the whole trek across the stars angle. Picard is going to be slower, muchhh more character driven, nowhere near the high octane spectacle of Disco. You’re right, there are so many possibilities in Trek. There are so many worlds. A million stories could be told within the Trek universe. I just hope the good ones make it to screen.

Honestly this “we have to be differnt” drive is a trap in my opinion. move away too differantly from trek and people aren’t going to like it. that said, there is certainly room for some differance in theme etc (look at the MCU) I think what trek really needs though is a flagship “core trek” series

Don’t think the MCU is a good example to use for being different. At least from the feature film side of things. They are more of an example to use for following a set formula brings in tons of cash.

Agree, every Marvel movie feels the same to me. Avengers 3 and 4 mixed it up nicely, otherwise they are all formula

I know lol.
Look what happened with Star Wars when The Last Jedi came out. Talk about a fan-frenzied over-the-top reaction!

I loved that movie.

It’s likely Picard will start off in retirement and then something happens that brings him back to Starflèet.

I’ve wanted civilian Trek for years!

Yeah. Because AFTERMASH and RADAR were such memorable shows!

Trapper John MD – 7 seasons, made the creators a pile of money.

I suspect the Picard series will be a bit like the two parter Gambit, except of course not so criminal.
Hope I’m right.

I think CBS is dooming Trek generally by insistence upon the pay access only. Wrong. Good luck Picard/ Sir Stew.

Yes, which explains why they announce a new show every week…


Tell that to HBO and Netflix.

the nikleodon series strikes me as a classic kids show,l young cast, etc. it’s proably going to be hated by old trek fans. which is a pity as animation could really be a way to deliver a great series on a budget. trek would greatly benifit from a series of the quality that SW Clone wars came into

Yeah but something tells me the Nick show will have more in common with Resistance than Rebels. Again, I REALLY hope I’m wrong.

Eric, I’ve been curious about a civilian Trek possibility for some time as well. I’m just unsure about it being a bunch of teens running around on a found star ship on their own. I hope my initial fears end up being unfounded.

How about a cop show that takes place in the Trek universe?

I’ve always joked that the perfect Trek show for CBSAA is Starfleet JAG or CSI: Vulcan.

Yeah I think a kids civilian show would be fine too. It would be easier for more traditionalists Trek fans to accept since its a cartoon and not a live action show and it will let them be more creative just showing what living in the Federation is like as a citizen and not just a Starfleet officer.

I know not everyone like Kurtzman or is happy with some of these future shows like Section 31 but I give him credit for trying to make Star Trek more than just people being on a Federation starship, especially if they plan to make a dozen shows in the next decade. Mix it up a bit. Show us different angles of Star Trek we never seen before. That’s why DS9 has the fanfare today that it has, because its really the only show that tried to show Star Trek in a different light and succeeded. But even that show was mostly about Starfleet officers, just with a wide mix of others too.

The Picard show sounds like it won’t take place on a starship either, which I’m fine with, just as long as we get a good show out of it.

I have a feeling it will be post Federation, perhaps some point after Picard and before season 3 of DSC. These kids might find and restore a derelict Starfleet vessel and end up learning Federation values through the ships logs or EMH or something.

I am hoping one of the animated shows are post Picard. I think your idea would be interesting, having kids in a century or two post Picard learning about what the Federation use to be and maybe finding remnants of it as they wander around the galaxy.

That or running into the Borg lol. Seriously I do like that idea. And it doesn’t even have to be in canon (although I’m guessing it will be if they follow the Star Wars model). But something with a different twist which it sounds like we will get along with the Picard show, definitely Section 31 and whatever will be happening with Discovery next season. Star Trek needs to be shaken up a bit and doing it with a kids show is easy to do, especially since its trying to capture a new audience.

“Kids wandering around the galaxy”, learning moral lessons, and defeating the Borg sounds exactly like a recipe to cheapen what was an amazing first 50 years of Trek.

Seriously, everyone thought that Janeway defeating the Borg by her lonesome in the Delta Quadrant gutted them as an enemy. Now a small group of kids/”lawless teens” is going to do it?

I have a very bad feeling about this, as Indy used to say, and Kurtzman’s interview has done nothing to quell it.

I hope that we can separate this cartoon series from the rest of the franchise and jettison it from canon, kind of like TAS.

I was clearly kidding about the Borg lol.

Let’s just see what the show is about before we decide its the worst idea ever. But if it IS the worst idea ever, I will speak up about it. I just to be positive about any new Trek.

Kinda hard to be worse than the Captain is secretly from the MU. Still boggles my mind someone thought that would be a good thing and that enough people in power thought so too that it ACTUALLY happened.

following the star wars model isn;t a bad way to go about it. SW clone wars, and SW rebels where solid series, clearly designed with youths in mind yes, but they didn’t talk down to their viewers and dealt with reasonably mature things. sadly the odds of star trek getting a “clone wars” is pretty minimal

“I give him credit for trying to make Star Trek more than just people being on a Federation starship”

This is going to be like MASH trying to be about more than a bunch of doctors in Korea: completely uninteresting outside of their native environment. Thus we got AFTERMASH and RADAR (both flops, and the (thankfully never filmed) MASH GOES TO MAINE.

The Mirror Georgiou character is a lot less delicious than Kurtzman seems to think.

“This is going to be like MASH trying to be about more than a bunch of doctors in Korea: completely uninteresting outside of their native environment.”

Or Star Wars outside the core Skywalker saga (the audiences have spoken). This “deconstructivist” approach seems to be highly en vogue: strip away all the layers that make the show, and you end up with: nothing. As Homer Simpson would say: D’uh!

Trapper John MD ran for 7 seasons and was Emmy nominated for best actor.

“The Mirror Georgiou character is a lot less delicious than Kurtzman seems to think.”

I honestly have no idea why Kurtzman & Co are salivating so much over that painfully ill conceived character. If it is Yeoh they are gaga over then find a different character for her to play! Is that so hard?

“I honestly have no idea why Kurtzman & Co are salivating so much over that painfully ill conceived character.”

I find it very troublesome to say the least. EVEN if it’s Yeoh they really like, they clearly don’t give a damn if her character is just a teeny bit genocidal. Their moral compass is clearly out of whack, and such people want to lecture us about compassion and inclusiveness!

It’s pretty darn obvious that if grabbing a phaser and killing as many children and babies as possible would get her back to the MU, not even as an Empress but just back, she would do it without any moral issues whatsoever.

why give him credit if we think he’s doing a poor job of it? Discovery feels like a poorly executed attempt to do… pretty much what DS9 already did

That’s what I thought that he meant, too.

I super agree with this, I am beyond excited for the Nick show and the Lower Decks. Picard is a solid third place. And I still haven’t even watched Disco season 2. I should maybe stop reading these articles cuz I keep getting spoiled lol

S2 binges well albatrosity.

(Did a second pass with our kids once the season was over, and I was able to FFWD the graphic violence – of which there was much less.)

I want a star trek show without Starfleet. I want to see how people live on Earth.

I don’t know… That is starting to feel like Caprica.

That’s a good bet, but I don’t think that’s what he meant.

Kurtzman-Orci actually won an Emmy for their animated ‘Transformers Prime,’ which was 3DA. It’ll probably be an evolution of that technology.

I think it will go down a lot easier if its a 3D show. That’s clearly what’s been the trend for awhile now. Even Disney rarely makes 2D animated movies now and they set the bar for it.

It’s being done by the studio that made TF Prime? well there’s hope then.

Optimus Prime and Megatron were written very close to how they were on G1. Say what you will about Bayformers, but Prime got those characters right. Casting Cullen and Welker helped as well. Canceled too soon, i don’t know if it was because of lack of toy sales. Hasbro was shortsighted in killing that series.

Who else is crossing their fingers that the unrevealed series is a Pike and Spock series?

As for the kids show, Star Trek has always focused on adult protagonists, (except for Wesley, Jake, Nog, and Naiomi.) If the target audience is kids, then the protagonists have to be kids as well. I’m thinking either a young cadet show, or more likely kids on a starship.

I think it’s more likely the Starfleet Academy series, and I wouldn’t be surprised if they put it on the CW or a cable channel.

Technically Kurtzman has form for involving Pike and Spock in Starfleet Academy so maybe you’re both right ;)

The CW has too many shows now. I think it’ll be a CBS All Access series that just markets itself like a CW series.

So you want “Starfleet Academy 90210” …?
You can’t be serious.
You — ….You just CAN’T be serious.
God Almighty, help us all ….

Whichever series it is, the “3 live action shows in rotation” seems to confirm there won’t be another one before one of the current ones ends.

Keeping my fingers crossed that Discovery gets cancelled after season 3. I’m ready for something new already!

Thats why everyone who thinks a Pike show is just going to happen in a year or two are probably getting their hopes up. TWO live action Trek shows is fine, three can be a lot but doable with the limited episodes. But four?

Imagine TNG, DS9, VOY and ENT ALL running in the same year (even with limited episodes). That’s what we’re talking about basically. My guess is one of the other shows will have to get cancelled first before they even consider another full time show. Discovery could be the first to go being the ‘oldest’ but its still relatively new. The only other option is switching Pike for Section 31 but clearly no one at CBS is budging on that show as it seems like its happening.

“The only other option is switching Pike for Section 31 but clearly no one at CBS is budging on that show as it seems like its happening.”

Spinach has been ordered by Daddy Trek so Spinach is what we are going to eat ;)

(I’m also keeping my blood pressure pills ready just in case!)

If I were a betting man I would wager that Discovery will only get 3 seasons. The only thing that will save it is if season 3 is some sort of earth shattering fantastic story. But what are the odds of that happening? Honestly.

You’ll lose that bet. The pike show isn’t happening.

Read again, please. I wasn’t pretend wagering on if a Pike show was happening or not.

Which unrevealed series? I thought everything was accounted for by now.

-STD (entering 3rd season, satisfies fans’ hunger for “far future” series)
-Picard show (in production, vaguely satisfies fan hunger for “next next generation” series but with hopefully more original setting and less formula)
-Section 31 (early seasons’ STD spinoff)
-Lower Decks (animated, comedy)
-Nickelodean series (animated, children’s, 3D)
-KHAAAANN!! (miniseries, Nick Meyer, rumored by Meyer to have been shelved)

Have already lost track which of the lower-middle three have been officially greenlit.

What have I missed?

Spreading the franchise too thin, and too greedily.
Will these producers never learn from past mistakes?

Producing more than two Star Treks at once without overlapping in exhibition is an entirely new and intriguing mistake! :-)

“Spreading the franchise too thin, and too greedily.”

It’s not necessarily spreading too thin in terms of plot (all different time periods, settings etc.) but fundamentals: all serialized, all emotional, all style-over-substance. TNG is dead, in a lot more ways than its beige hotel lounge designs, which is ironic (and tragic) given it was the most successful Trek ever…

Serious question: It seems like you don’t like a lot of Star Trek. What is your list of favorite series to least favorite series?

I’m going to guess VS likes TOS and DS9 (the only ones I like), but that he can watch TNG too, though gets bogged down by the squandered potential. Am I batting at least .667 with that prediction?

There is nothing wrong with having multiple shows running at the same time as long as all the shows have their own identity.

Problem with the later 90s/early 00s Trek, and why it ultimately ended, was that it was getting repetitive.
TNG, Voyager and Enterprise had a lot of storylines that could have been switched between the series and no one would have noticed. Only series that tried something different was DS9.

It goes much deeper than that.

TNG, VOY, ENT and (yes) DS9 all looked and sounded so much alike that they suffered from the same costume designs, make-up, lighting, music and technobabble. You could be in the next room and literally not tell them apart.

For a franchise that had already been through the stylistic diversity of the Harve Bennett movies, this was a blandness worse than death.

CSI would prove you wrong.

I’m probably the only one still hoping for more of Enterprise’s 22nd Century era at this point.

Ways in which that can be different from Picard and Section 31 include an all-out War movie against the Romulans and Remans. Perhaps done in a documentary style looking back at the conflict decades after it ended.

Or largely Earth bound Political Drama in getting disparate aliens to co-operate in creating the Federation in the first place.

I’d love to see a Romulan War/Enterprise story. Give it some deserved love!

Honestly with all the Star Trek coming, anything is possible now. I think at some point they will go back to the 22nd century and give us the Romulan war which Enterprise should’ve set up from the beginning of that show. But its not too late. If they guys are still thinking about a Khan show (ugh) out of all things, I’m guessing nothing is off the table!

But yes WHEN it may come could be a long time from now but it could happen.

I would LOVE to see the NX-01 crew together for some sort of TV movie or mini-series set some 15 years later dealing with some element of the Romulan war. This is the only advantage that streaming has. The people in charge have far more freedom to green light stories like this that would have never been done on over the air or even cable.

I can assure you, many others feel like you do!
This great show and its actors deserve a correction to how the show ended.
The negativity that was around that show was completely unjustified, to me, it was the best show the star trek has ever produced, and considering the fact they had about half the episodes the others had makes it even more impressive.

I can’t stand how Alex keeps saying “free from canon” as if it was a trap. The confines of the federation had been able to tell stories for 50 years. They trapped themselves by trying to tie in so much of TOS. Had they set the show after Nemesis, they wouldn’t need to keep making these excuses.

As an additional note, I loved Pike this season so that would be a loss. But but the “wah canon” note is getting old when it’s also their fault.

This guy wants to have it both ways: profit from the Trek name recognition and built-in audience (or so he thinks) all the while he doesn’t care a frak about what Trek is actually about as like Abrams he is a disciple of Star Wars. I wished he had the epiphany of RDM that this is always gonna be lose-lose (for himself and the fans) as long as he does not realize his vision in his own original universe instead of trying to shoehorn Trek into his (literally) fantasy.

Sadly discovery is unwatchable to me due to it’s horrible camera angles.
Makes me sick to death.
I’m sure others are like me also.

There was like one bad episode in terms of camera angles, how does that make a series unwatchable?

Haters will hate.

Wow that’s harsh.

Ad Astra when you do this it really feels like gatekeeping to me.

And MysticalDigital there were certainly several Discovery episodes by more than one director that tried to create movement around a static group of people speaking by spinning the camera.

While both of you may be visually able, as they say in the disability world, TuckerToTheBridge is saying that this trending use of camera effects is a barrier to them.

And wonders if others experience the same.

They may be blunt, but expressing their own sincerely visceral experience of a visual effect seems fair to me. And this has come up enough across broad swath voices here that it’s not an unusual reaction.

I hope that Kurtzman and TPTB consider different visual and auditory preferences and barriers as they work to give the menu of shows ‘different looks’.

I respectfully suggest that you two consider that those Star Trek values around respect for diversity that you both have said are important would include consideration for others who might be differently abled than you in a visual sense.

How is a light hearted comment about people complaining about Disco translating to “you are not a real Star Trek fan!” which is what gatekeeping is?

Seriously? I don’t get it.

‘haters will hate’ is a ‘light hearted comment?’

And yeah, the visuals on DSC are as godawful as the Abrams ones, hard on the eyes and IMO seriously wrongheaded for a science fiction program (though probably just fine for an outright fantasy, which is a genre I rarely watch.)

Gatekeeping is saying that someone doesn’t have the right to speak Ad Astra.

Yup say ‘your not a real fan’ would be gatekeeping.

But also saying, ‘your expression of a sensory reaction is hate’ is too.

I don’t want to over-read into TuckerToTheBridge’s comment, but it’s not humorous at all for those with sensory reactions to be belittled…

Which is how your comment came across to me.

Unless someone has tried to set you on fire, you don’t know what hatred is.


I’m going to pile on here. People, myself included, can respect your opinion, as well as others, that you like the show. If one can explain the reasons for that opinion all is well. (I even expect the same opinions to be repeated) But to say things like “haters will hate” with NOTHING to back it up just comes across as arrogant and mean spirited. Like you are just annoyed someone doesn’t like something you do. I realize this is a quite common internet thread thing but most here present their opinions and feeling and give reasons behind it and are respected in doing so. One of the reasons I like posting here. If you feel compelled to disagree I implore you to please do so in a more reasoned manner.

Thank you.

Oh for heavens sake: it was a JOKE. I’m sorry that you were personally offended by my attempt at being humourous.

So restating a tired cliche that you’ve used multiple times is a joke? Sorry. Not buying it. This will be my last comment on the matter. Feel free to get in the last word.

No you’re missing the big picture, what makes Star Trek so watchable is good story telling! Camera tricks and light manipulation can only take you so far! Certainly not far enough to end an episode and defintly not to mention a season. A good story need no help from flashy post production effects but those things add to the overall imaginings of the story teller and allow us to dive into a future that captures our imaginations.
STD deviated from that philosophy by placing the flash above good story telling and the results are as plain as the nose on your face.
Ultimately I Agree with you STD is unwatchable but not for its flash, in fact, their effects are the best in any series but and here is the essence of the issue with STD: effects (post production) are meant to elevate, to truly capture and make grand the keys aspects of a story and when the story isn’t any good then the effects become hollow. STD is a hollow shell of Star Trek, a mirage as it were, in the sea of story telling. That’s truly heart breaking to me because I really love Star Trek and what it represents.

All episodes I’ve seen in the first season, had weird angles. Two people stand and talk and the camera takes them in a diagonal angle.. I really cannot understand why it is necessary? a sudden spinning imagery of a hallway, the bridge moves in a bizarre fashion. You try and listen, understand what the characters have to say, and the whole screen just moves like you’re in a roller coaster..

No you’re missing the big picture, what makes Star Trek so watchable is good story telling! Camera tricks and light manipulation can only take you so far! Certainly not far enough to end an episode and defintly not to mention a season. A good story need no help from flashy post production effects but those things add to the overall imaginings of the story teller and allow us to dive into a future that captures our imaginations.
STD deviated from that philosophy by placing the flash above good story telling and the results are as plain as the nose on your face.
Ultimately I Agree with you STD is unwatchable but not for its flash, in fact, their effects are the best in any series but and here is the essence of the issue with STD: effects (post production) are meant to elevate, to truly capture and make grand the keys aspects of a story and when the story isn’t any good then the effects become hollow. STD is a hollow shell of Star Trek, a mirage as it were, in the sea of story telling. That’s truly heart breaking to me because I really love Star Trek and what it represents.

Hope they don’t forget Q on the new Picard Series. The whole TNG 7 seasons Q was present helping Picard to make hard choices. He has to be present at some point.

Q did nothing except make me face palm, spoon feed Picard all the answers and provide a brief moment of comedy relief. He would be fine if they want to have a light episode but in a 10 episode season long story arc it does not feel like there will be time to waste on that worthless imp.

Q is in my opinion the best TNG character. So I also hope he will be around.

“People locked in on Georgiou as being a wonderful oddity”

Really? Pretty sure people locked in on Pike. For once in their lives, a studio should do the obvious thing and follow the optics. Dump the 31 series and give us a 1701 Pike series instead.

We’ve beeeen there, we’ve trod that ground a thousand times through at this point. We no longer need to follow white male captains on the Starship Enterprise. It’s time to shake the foundations. You can’t go boldly when you’re stuck in the same format.

Your opinion.


Also its a form of racism because you’re discriminating against someone on grounds of their skin colour (and sex). We should be blind to these aspects completely if we ever want to live in a truly inclusive world. One day we may get there, but there sure is a lot of evidence around that we’re quite a way from that point yet.

The Recursion King,

It’s good ideal to say “today we will be skin color blind” but if that’s all that’s done, it doesn’t do much to level the playing field. The political systems where this has been eliminated in current laws are still weighted down in favor of pale skinned males because they base their legal systems on past legal precedents; a past millennia of which tilt in favor of propertied pale males.

But could we replace the white male captain with someone who isn’t an evil tyrant who is pretty chill with eating or torturing sentient beings? Just a thought.

+1. The idea that a character like this should be idolized is the antithesis of everything that ever drew me to Star Trek.

The only way this works is if they make her like Xena, trying to atone for past wrongs that she knows were wrong. But we’ve seen nothing from the Mirror Georgiou character so far that suggests going in that direction, and they’d need to be very deft to pull it off.

The sad thing is that it was obvious that Yeoh was a real trophy for the Trek franchise, and they didn’t need to kill off Captain Georgiou at all if they wanted to keep her.

I think we saw hints of what they want to do with her in season 2. Which was obvious and quite frankly, completely out of character for someone from the MU. It made me facepalm. But then, we’ve been over this already.

I haven’t seen S2 but I don’t see how making a brutal Terran Empire tyrant the star of a television show is “idolizing” that person. That’s like saying Breaking Bad idolized Walter White. I’m sorry, but Walter White is a lying, murdering psychopath and in no way do I look up to him. But his story is interesting as f*%k and it makes for good television.

I don’t see how you could possibly make the argument that producing a show full of mystery and intrigue about a bad person in the Star Trek universe is “betraying” anything that Star Trek stands for. Star Trek is a TV show about a fictional world where everyone holds different values. The values you took from it are the Federation’s values, but there’s a lot more to it than that, and I’d like to see it. And seeing it on the screen doesn’t make me think, “Oh yeah, I now idolize this character.” No. I’m watching a TV show.

We have no idea what the Section 31 show will be like. I remember my dad being real upset at the Xindi attack in Enterprise for changing the show’s direction after 9/11, he said “I don’t like the premise, I don’t like where it’s going, I don’t like how the characters are acting.” But the writers brought it all back to utopian let’s-just-work-together quote-unquote “Star Trek” (but more specifically Starfleet) principles at the end of it. So like??? Maybe it’ll be good?

Apples and oranges. Breaking Bad spent inordinate amounts of time and intelligence focusing on the consequences of Walter’s actions and showing us his gradual descent from frustrated and emasculated chemistry teacher to the king of his bloody empire. You were never meant to idolize Walter White and the producers of the show never went to an interview trying to convince an audience why you should like him. Kurtzman is trying to tell us that Evil Giorgiou’s just a riot and so likable. He comes across as utterly clueless about what’s going on with his own show.

Okay, I mean I can’t argue with that. I haven’t heard/read any of Kurtzman’s interviews about Georgiou, so idk. But I think it’s up to the show that ultimately gets produced to communicate its message, not up to the producers to explain it. So maybe Kurtzman is just marketing, and the show winds up being good and non-compromising in its morals.

For me, it’s not so much about Georgeau (although I’m not a fan of the MU to begin with) it’s the idea that someone thinks that it’s reasonable that such a character would be a great addition to a super secret organization with hyper advanced tech and their own star fleet (apparently). Section 31 show? Not my cup of tea but OK. Following Georgeau around to see what mischief she can get into? Not for me but OK. Putting evil-Georgeau in Section 31? No. Sorry. Dumber than dumb.

This, I can understand. I guess we’ll just have to see if they take a bad idea and make it into something worthwhile. But from what I hear other people saying about Disco, it seems like there’s no faith in them to get it right. So I guess it’s a big wait and see

In theory, sure, Georgiou could be an interesting, complicated person on the level of Walter White or Don Draper. But so far the character is like something pulled from a dark, gritty reboot of Flash Gordon — watch how BAD I am, and watch me do it in black leather!

Not the most subtle adult drama material to draw from, the Mirror Universe. But we’ll see.

While I spent 2 Trek series waiting for a captain of colour and 3 waiting for a female captain, I would like to think that there’s room for a positive white male captain in the menu of offerings.

I don’t think diversity is something wherein a series ticks off a box and then we say we never need to do that again. I would be very distressed if someone were to argue ‘been there, done that’ about a black male or white female captain.

More to the point, at a time where examples of toxic white male masculinity are before us in the news and in entertainment, it may be exactly the time for Trek to counter that.

There’s a recent article about how Pike has provided a model for non-toxic, healthy masculinity.

In my own case, I was curious about Pike’s story after The Cage, but actually never thought that a show with him would be something I’d cheer for at this point in time.

But it worked, and I wish fans seeking diversity would stop seeing the pitch for a Pike show as getting in the way diverse Trek.

Picard will offer positive leadership, but it sounds as though he’s got a difficult, late-in-life journey after leaving the captain’s chair. There’s room for Pike’s Enterprise.

I certainly agree with the second paragraph of what you wrote, and I wholeheartedly agree that it’d be a great move to have a positive white male leader embodying masculinity in a non-toxic way. I would be all for that. For all we know, we could be getting a positive white male captain in our menu of offerings: we don’t know who’s in charge on Lower Decks. I’m just saying it’s kinda boring! It feels so staid, the wise white male leader as the main driver of the story. Give us an alien captain. Give us something unique. I’m not saying that there *shouldn’t* be room for a plain vanilla squeaky clean white guy captain show, but I do think, given the constraints of television, that a pitch for a Pike show actually *does* get in the way of developing other shows, precisely because the menu is limited and can only hold so much. So I say keep pushing forward in making Trek bolder and more colorful, and save the white guy captain for a few more years down the line.

“We no longer need to follow white male captains on the Starship Enterprise. It’s time to shake the foundations.”

Yes, it is. But this team has shown with Discovery that they are clearly not up to this task. When Lorca and Pike (white male captains) are fans’ favorites for S1 and S2 respectively and hardly anyone gives a d&mn about your protagonist (black female non-captain – almost a perfect “opposite”?) then – well – you’ve failed miserably, there cannot possibly be a clearer sign.

“When Lorca and Pike (white male captains) are fans’ favorites for S1 and S2 respectively and hardly anyone gives a d&mn about your protagonist (black female non-captain – almost a perfect “opposite”?) then – well – you’ve failed miserably, there cannot possibly be a clearer sign.”

It’s clear the issues lie with those people who somehow feel the constant need to shame, demonize and scapegoat NEAR 50% of society in MOST western countries for all the problems of our times because there’s a religious cult that says you are automatically marginalized, discriminated and yet more worthy if you have a rare skin color or sexual orientation. This scapegoating was wrong the last time it concerned “the Jew”, and it is just as wrong this time when it concerns “the White (Male)”.

As a matter of sound business, Western shows are targeting the majority demographics of those countries same as African shows have majority (if not exclusively) black casts and Asian shows have majority (if not exclusively) Asian casts. Nobody labels people who deem this perfectly healthy and normal as black or Asian “supremacists” though, and that is the difference!

I mean I think the only sign to take from that is that the writers haven’t succeeded in getting their audience to care about their protagonists. That doesn’t say anything about the white male captains being superior characters because they’re white male captains. They’re more interesting people, and that’s what we all want, is good characters. The characters can be anything, but wouldn’t you rather see something you haven’t seen before? Again, we’ve had four (4) white male captains across six tv series. If they can write a compelling white male captain, they can write a compelling alien female captain, or compelling Hispanic autistic captain, or anything. The what isn’t as important as the who, but if we’re gonna talk about the what, then I will go on record saying I am tired of and bored seeing white male captains in Star Trek and would love to see something NEW plz

I’d say 3 of 6 as Lorca doesn’t really count since he was opposite boy from evil land and Burnham was the lead of the show or if you prefer, Saru was in charge when Lorca went all MU on us.

You’re right, I guess I should amend my comment to say: we’ve had five series out of seven (counting TAS) with white male captains and 13/13 movies. It’s. Been. Done. (is my opinion) (and the rest are facts)

What a load of you know what! Please no more SJWs.


What franchise do you think this is?

Please no more people who use the designation “SJWs.”

A load of what?

You sure can. They did it for a grand total of 30 seasons prior to this dumpster fire that’s happening right now.

Oh have they? I lost count, and that’s a problem. I shouldn’t have to keep counting how many series and movies feature white men at the center of it all. We would all be better served if Trek gave us better characters, especially in infinite combinations. But what you’re referring to is the past, and I want the franchise to move forward. When was the last time Star Trek actually succeeded (financially and culturally) with a white male captain? I think it was around, let’s see, approx. ten years ago.

Happily, I’m not fool enough to believe that checking a box on some sort of casting bingo is sufficient. Good writing has to come first, and they’ve got none of that.

For the record, by the way, I wouldn’t mind if Trek never had another white male captain. I just want the series to have great characters at their center, and for them to be played by great actors. I’m only getting the latter half of that equation right now. It’s not enough.

“I shouldn’t have to keep counting how many series and movies feature white men at the center of it all.” — You need to let go of that hate. It’s not going to lead you anywhere positive.

I think that one contributing factor for all the love that Pike is getting isn’t that he’s a positive straight white male, but that he’s the ONLY positive straight white male we’ve seen in two seasons. He’s practically the only positive straight human we’ve seen, regardless of race. Lorca and Leland were the primary bad guys in the first two seasons. Tyler has promise but is too emo for me. Rhys and Bryce are practically invisible. Stamets and Culber are fine, but I would rather they focus more on their work than their relationship; I don’t watch Trek for romance.
I’m not asking for the cast to be male-dominated; it’s just unfortunate that the imbalance is so severe the other way.

Jeff, their “logic” is there can be no such thing as reverse discrimination and no “imbalance the other way” either as long as it concerns the “majority”. Being anti-majority is the new raison d’être for the chattering classes (but then again, when has it not been throughout history?) Wait, males are not the numerical majority in most highly developed countries anyway? Never mind…

Vulcan Soul,

Re: when has it not been throughout history?

My history taught me the phrase was “Death to tyrants!” and tyrants have NEVER been in the majority.

I’m just wondering what the argument against it would be. Like, look at the TOS/KT crew: 1/7 of them are female. No one has a problem with it really; that’s just the way it was back then. But someone would have a problem with a Trek show that’s 1/7 male, wouldn’t they? And then the question becomes: why? Why can’t you enjoy a show that’s mostly female if the characters are compelling? The point is: the “what” of who they are isn’t super essential to the fact that they’re interesting characters who do interesting things. And if the writers have to write these characters, then why not make them different? Why do we have to adhere to the same white male standards seen across 50 years of television? We’re charging headlong into the 2020s, and America is getting more diverse every day. I see NO REASON why Trek shouldn’t fully embrace the optimism and ideals it has long been known to preach and actually put into practice its IDIC sensibilities. And every white male captain they put in the chair is one step further away from accomplishing it.

The gender/ethnicity shouldn’t matter. If the show was written well, no-one would care.

Thumbs up on that, blackmocco. Big thumbs up. I honestly do not give one damn about the gender or race of any of the crew. I just want a good Trek show.

Nailed it.

It shouldn’t be that Pike was more coherently written than Burnham and the Discovery characters, but he was.

My theory is that the writers and showrunners were more careful with the Pike character (and Spock for that matter) because they were established.

Would that the writers and showrunners have as well thought through and coherent approaches for the characters that they created…

That’s exactly right, it shouldn’t matter. But because we live in a day and age where it does matter, and because we’ve seen the white guy captain thing in 402 episodes across TOS/TAS/TNG/ENT/DSC and 13 movies, I want some more diversity! If gender and ethnicity don’t matter, and the writers can create interesting characters, then just make them diverse. There’s no reason not to.

Some people just want the same thing over and over. I don’t think I would bother to watch a Pike show.

Then don’t. That’s the whole point of multiple genres. Not everything will appeal to everyone. But most will probably find something worthwhile in the play pen.

But Star Trek transcends the conventions of a “genre”, because it can be and frequently is multiple genres: mystery, action, suspense, comedy. In TOS especially the show exhibited great range. Star Trek is a setting, it’s a universe, and there’s a lotttt going on in that universe. I guarantee you that we can all find equally as much appeal in a non-white non-male captain as long as they’re written well. So if it can be done, then why isn’t it being done? I still haven’t heard the argument in favor of more white male captains. There’s nothing about the sci-fi genre or Trek in particular that necessitates it. Which is why, if they had to pick one to produce, I hope the showrunners go with something new.

You aren’t hearing the argument because in this day and age precious few care what the race and gender of the captain is. Most just want a good story. If I can get a good show with a female or color in the chair, I’m happy. If I get a good show with a straight white male in the chair, I’m happy. Being good is the bottom line.

I don’t think I’m hearing the argument because there is no argument to be made. No one in their right mind would argue for more white male captains, but for some reason me asking for less of them is a problem with so many people

People aren’t arguing gender or races because not many really care that much in this day and age. The bottom line is a well written story. Only you seem to have an issue with it around here.

I agree completely! I loved Anson Mount, but yes, we need to get back to the original Trek ideal of highlighting regressive human traits and educating against them. This time around we actually don’t HAVE to make a white male leadership trope the center of attention to appease the censors. These foundations were literally conceived to be shaken. I could not be happier with Star Trek returning more aggressively to it’s values.

I Think Captain Sisko would beg a differ

Why bring race and gender into this?

That they’ve pressed forward with cannibal mass-murderer Georgiou as a major character is unconscionable to me. They clearly are doing it just to keep Michelle Yeoh around, and I get that impulse. But how it wasn’t priority one to rehab the character is mystifying to me. It’s not *really* possible. You can’t *really* rehab that character. But they could at least have tried. Have her be sincerely all like, “Gosh, I’m a new person now that I see the value of your Federation ways.” She can still get things a little wrong here and there to add some spice, but rehab first, spice later.

And maybe that’s what season three will be, I don’t know. But as of now, it’s the worst thing to ever happen in Star Trek, for my money.

I really don’t understand this argument. Star Trek is a television depiction of a utopian society for non-utopian television viewers. You can explore the world of utopia from a thousand different angles: from the shiny badge wearing Starfleet that keeps it safe, to the thugs and criminals and mass-murderers, even a Mirror Universe tyrant. The galaxy in Trek has always been a seedy and dangerous place. In a lot of those places, bad prevails over good (Kodos the Executioner ring any bells? He sounds scary, and interesting). This is just part of world-building, seeing the universe from all angles. If you’re not into the premise, then the show isn’t for you; but it really shouldn’t be “unconscionable” to you that a television network has decided to create a show around an interesting and roguish character. It’s not like, by producing this show, CBS has somehow undermined the entire meaning of the Federation and its principles. It’s a TV show.

Depicting a murderer of billions as “interesting and roguish” is abominable. End of story.

No, it’s not. I’m allowed to be interested in bad people doing bad things. Just as you’re allowed not to be. But for you to say it’s abominable is bereft of any logic. You can say it is uninteresting to you, unappealing to you. You can’t just make blanket statements about the morality of putting seedy characters front and center in a television show you haven’t even seen yet. You don’t have the authority to make those claims.

“Bereft of any logic”?

adjective: abominable

causing moral revulsion”

I assure you, I am morally revulsed by Georgiou.

As for my claims, I 100% DO have the authority to make them — they are opinions, and I need no authority from you nor anyone else to hold or express them.

Same goes for you. So feel free to make a case for Star Trek having a main character who is a murderer of billions and a literal cannibal of sentient life. If that’s how you want your Trek to be, you go right on ahead and make a case for it as loud as you wish. I ain’t tryin’ to stop you for even a second.

Bryant Burnette,

I don’t know. STAR TREK has always traced its space faring lineage back to NASA which built its success on the Nazi Werner von Braun, who didn’t think anything about the deaths of 10,000 slave laborers as long as it got his V-2 rockets to a successful launch – not to mention the Allied deaths when they reached their targets.

If American presidents were willing to forgive him those deaths and award him medals for getting a handful of men on the moon, maybe this show can use this character to explore the nature of such “redemptions?”

It’s not impossible, but in order for it to be faintly acceptable it would have had to happen already.

As for von Braun, I’m not aware of him being a part of ordering billions of deaths, nor am I aware of him being a cannibal. So while I see what you’re going for there, it’s a weak comparison at best; and in any case, the storytelling on the show has not backed it up as of yet. Maybe it will eventually, I don’t know. But I don’t see how it can.

I totally get why people like Yeoh. I myself don’t, much (as an actress — I do like her very much in interviews as herself), but that’s fine. I will not bend one teeny-tiny little bit on Georgiou herself until the show does something to cause me to do so. She is a horror, and not in the good way.

Bryant Burnette,

Thanks for acknowledging the possibility even if you are dissatisfied with their possible timetable.

But please don’t be that guy, in regards to that Nazi. His not personally whipping each slave laborer to death by exhaustion, is no route to absolution for him. Contrary to what the US government, its military and its agencies want us to believe about him, von Braun was not some mere civilian bureaucrat rocket hobbyist employed by the German Army ignorantly and obliviously rubber stamping authorizations cleverly concealing heinous acts. He was a black-uniformed member of the elite Nazi SS three times promoted to major well aware that when the Allies obliterated his rocket base at Peenamunde that to get the new Mittelwerk one built in record time the “workers” would be worked to death.

And that elite soldier was designing ballistic missiles, that he fully touted as being able to deliver en masse an equal number of enemy non-combatant deaths when their journeys were completed. Do you honestly think that SS officer bothered to care about drawing a distinction between the tens of thousands “enemy” dead caused by his rockets’ beginnings versus an equal number of deaths caused at their ends?

I’ll take your word for all of that (I know very little about von Braun), but doesn’t that actually make Empress Georgiou a less acceptable character, rather than more?

I just don’t know that this is what Star Trek needs to be doing. Star Trek needs to be showing us how we can be better, not how we can be more entertaining at being worse. S

o sure, I’ll tentatively accept the notion that redeeming Georgiou might be good storytelling material for a Trek series to tackle — but we need to see the process, and we need to feel the emotion of the change in Georgiou, and I think the time for that to happen has passed. It’s a shame.

Georgiou is a worrying character. In the mirror universe she would kill to get promoted. That’s completely antithetical to Star Trek’s values. She’s also committed genocide of a vast number of people (said to be billions!) and thought really nothing of it. Her closest real life counterpart that I can think of, would probably be Adolf Hitler. Should Star Trek really put a Hitler like character front and centre? I would say only if they want to show how messed up the character’s values and belief systems really are – to make an example of them. Otherwise, forget it!

The Recursion King,

Indeed she is. But there really doesn’t exist any legal method to try her in the Prime for crimes committed in an entirely other universe.

It seems obvious Kurtzman is interested in exploring the same political thinking that went into his movie’s Marcus, i.e. that other Feds along these lines believe more primitive genocidal mass murderers are needed to keep the Klingons and Romulans at bay.

Just as the US did with Nazi weapons scientists and agents, i.e. employing them after WW II’s end to hold back the godless Red Menace.

This! Pike seems to have resonated with the audience. Georgeau? Not at all. I am still wondering what evidence he has that makes him think people are fawning all over Geurgeau. It looks to me like he is confusing Pike for Phillipa.

Georgiou is fun. Pike is boring.

“Now that we’re free from canon, we get to ask ourselves some incredibly bold, complicated questions. We get to dive deep into our imagination and think about what the universe would look like [930] years.”

I’m really excited about this. They can now do ANYTHING they want for as long as the show is around from this point on. They will have no excuses anymore nor have people complaining such and such doesn’t belong in the period because we won’t know WHAT belongs in the period until they tell us. ;)

The biggest positive about going forward and in a completely unknown period of Trek. Even Picard show will have some limitations but Discovery will have none. It sill has to be good though but I’m rooting for the show more than ever now. Certainly much more than in season one.

Their imaginations aren’t up to the task.

I don’t know how to break this to you but the 930 year jump into the future was meant to help us forget the last two years of the Pseudo Trek dumpster fire that CBS green lit in the first place.
As for your, “Now that we’re free from canon” remark. Well, lets no forget what canon meant, it meant a foundation on which great story telling was told.
No your missing the big picture, what makes Star Trek so watchable is good story telling! Camera tricks and light manipulation can only take you so far! Certainly not far enough to end an episode and defintly not to mention a season. A good story needs no help from flashy post production effects but those things add to the overall imaginings of the story teller and allow us to dive into a future that captures our imaginations.
STD deviated from that philosophy by placing the flash above good story telling and the results are as plain as the nose on your face.
Ultimately STD is unwatchable but not for its flash, in fact, their effects are the best in any series but and here is the essence of the issue with STD: effects (post production) are meant to elevate, to truly capture and make grand the keys aspects of a story and when the story isn’t any good then the effects become hollow. STD is a hollow shell of Star Trek, a mirage as it were, in the sea of story telling. That’s truly heart breaking to me because I really love Star Trek and what it represents.

Well Mike, I like the show a lot more than you do and trust me I have my issues with it too, but I’m willing to see what they do with it in a new setting.

And for me, its not so much about going into the future (although a big part of it) so much as they simply can start over with a new canvas. I wish the show was just rebooted altogether if they wanted to stay in the 23rd century and then oddly none of the canon issues fans had would’ve been an issue at all like giving Spock a sister (although it still may not have been a popular decision). But it still made no sense no matter how people tried to twist or justify it and obviously the producers felt that way too.

So I’m willing to give it a chance. Yes it still has its problems for sure but I give the producers credit that they are trying hard to improve it and make it feel like more Star Trek. Let’s not forget people felt the same way about TNGs first two seasons and things eventually changed. Same for DS9 and even Enterprise. Even when I was giving the show grief I always said it can simply change and improve in time like all the others and why I’m rooting for it even when I thought it sucked frankly.

And I’ll be rooting for it next season too! It’s never been a black and white issue for me. It’s Star Trek, it never is.

What you wish for is irrelevant.
What I wish for is irrelevant.
What is relevant is good story telling.
Star Trek Discovery had all of the good will before it aired but what STD lacked, what will ultimately doom any series, is good story telling.
Combined with an un-relatable led character that appealed to no one, after all, how can you root for a human that’s raised to have no emotions and that will at every opportunity disobey her superior officers.
I tried watching this show but with little to no substance, you can’t blame the hoards of fans for jumping ship.
Last point, even the producers of STD didn’t believe that this show was going to make it to a third season. In an interview one of them spoke about sending the ship into the future because of a possible cancellation.
STD isn’t real Star Trek and if you don’t believe me and you don’t believe in the producers then you must be in a parallel universe where the suns light makes your eyes hurt :)

Just sounds like it isn’t your show man. Maybe the Picard show will be more for you. Take it easy.

“… somehow radiates this incredible heart. ”

They tried their best in season 2 to make people forget her genocidal and mass murdering ways. But I think her development felt fake.

It felt ridiculously fake and was the worst thing about Season 2. In most of her scenes, her presence was superfluous. The hissing and moustache-twirling didn’t help. The only thing that worked at all was her attempt at reconciling with Burnham.

“The only thing that worked at all was her attempt at reconciling with Burnham.”

It’s a bit like a documentary about Hitler focusing exclusively on the loving relationship with his dogs and somehow totally forgetting about that pesky holocaust!

But but, Hitler got heart!!1!

Yep. It was totally forced. There was no organic reason for evil-Georgeau’s heart to grow even a micrometer. She only did it because a future show requires her to. I understand they love Yeoh. I get that. I find it misplaced loyalty but I get it. Why not just find another character for her to play? One that is more up Yeoh’s alley? Or is that just too hard a task for the creative team at Secret Robot to accomplish?

(1) Philippa’s twin sister Francine, also a Starfleet captain, shows up
(2) Philippa was never actually killed at all, but was being kept in a holding cell and is released when L’Rell finds out about it
(3) Q brings her back to life
(4) the Talosians reconstruct her from Burnham’s memories and they make her a body out of nanites or whatever
(5) they clone her from hair they find in that bag she left Burnham
(6) a salt vampire pretends to be her, meanwhile sustaining itself on the sweat in Ash Tyler’s beard

I’d accept any of those over what they’ve done so far.

Or, and this may be too mind bendy for many to accept… Yeoh just plays a completely NEW character? Think people can get around the same actor playing a different part on the same show? Come to think of it, I don’t think a lot can handle that.

Bryant Burnette,

Re: clone

A cloned body would just be an empty vessel to hold Philippa’s recovered katra or some such. It would be simpler to clone a body for her from the Empress.

Given the number of opportunities for death for the Empress in the MU, perhaps it would be reasonable to assume she recognizes the value of having an extremely compatible organ donor and we find that she’s somehow managed to fake Philippa’s death while secretly storing her for medical emergencies?

Philippa allegedly died before Empress Georgiou even knew about the other universe, though, right?

Bryant Burnette,

You are forgetting The Empress had access to the Defiant’s historical database in the MU. Unless I’m confused about when she rose to power there, she knew when and where Philippa was going to die before it happened which would have easily facilitated such an extraction subterfuge.

I mean … sure, why not? It’d be better than what they’ve actually done.

Mr. Kurtzman, I would like to have Japan anime art style animated Star Trek series, but not something like Studio Ghibli that have this “western feel” characters.

What is he talking about? He sounds clueless as to what has gone wrong with this show. Even just reading through any of the comments sections on here, it’s pretty clear almost no-one gives a chicken-fried eff about Georgiou or Section 31. This does not bode well.

blackmocco, you’re much closer to this industry than I…

Is my hope realistic that Valerie Hart and the rest of the CBS global marketing team should be able to provide a reality check of real market research data and analysis?

It’s a fairly strong message putting them in Secret Hideout’s space while reporting to senior CBS executives.

This is pure speculation on my part, so take it for what it’s worth, but this sounds like he’s digging his heels in on a concept he’s been told no-one – that’s NO-one – really wants to see. Only someone who doesn’t get Trek would think we now need a show about shadowy covert power play led by a former Klingon and a genocidal mass murderer from another universe.

I think about that survey and laugh at the idea Kurtzman is suggesting, that the majority of people who took it picked Giorgiou as their fave character. Utter nonsense. Michelle Yeoh rocks but the character, like pretty much everything else with Discovery, is an abject depressing failure.

As to the question you asked- who knows? I’ve no doubt any damaging focus group data would be presented to everyone in charge but is that enough to change direction for the show or – hopefully – usurp these people and replace them with more capable writers? Probably not. Fuller will always be blamed here and used as an excuse for what went wrong and how they need a chance to “make the show their own”. God help us. “Free from canon.”

I’m not totally against the concept of a Section 31 show. Not my first choice but there are worse concepts out there. Just set it in the TNG era and DON”T have lead be a homicidal evil dictator from opposite land refugee be the lead. Hell, I’d rather see TYLER leading the thing. Consider the gravity of THAT comment.

And your comment sums up everything they’ve done wrong here: “it’s not the worst idea… …except that all the ingredients they’re using to make it are wrong.” Personally, I think maybe possibly there’s a seed of a good idea here as a show but as the flagship show it’s spinning off from is – to my eyes – an unmitigated disaster, this is just not going to work. Even the people who defend Discovery on here, bless’ em, have next door to no interest in a Section 31 show. NOBODY WANTS IT! WAKE UP!

“I’ve no doubt any damaging focus group data would be presented to everyone in charge but is that enough to change direction for the show ”

Why oh why was I just thinking about the age-old adage “Don’t believe in any statistics you haven’t faked yourself” in that regard? ;)

It’s pretty clear who is the cook and who is the waiter here, and the tail is not going to wave with the dog no matter how much sincere integrity Miss Hart is bringing into this!

Uhm VS, Ms. Hart won’t report to Kurtzman…

She’s not some external marketing expert contractor with Kurtzman as her client.

She’s a CBS VP, reporting to yet more senior CBS executives.

I predict a very challenging dynamic unless Kurtzman genuinely starts taking on board her team’s feedback.

My point was that Kurtzman is not reporting to her and I think in the big picture this “the network does not really understand Trek” is still true so yes she will give input but unless a major fkup occurs far down the road I’m sure Kurtzman will be given pretty much free reign for a while. Remember how bad things had to get before Berman was retired?

We’re already two seasons in to the major fkup. I doubt Kurtzman would be replaced because that would be three seasons in a row where a showrunner has been Airiam’d out the airlock, leaving the show in less-than-ideal conditions.

BM, the problem is the inside-people apparently don’t see it as a major fkup. All clear on the Titanic, full speed ahead!

That’s all I was thinking reading his comments about the S31 show. Clueless.

I truly hope this is not a clueless decision. I am just wondering what evidence they have that suggests a Georgeau led show is something audiences jonesing for. From my point of view as a fan who dabbles in some social media, I’m just not seeing it.

“The word is no. I am therefore going anyway.”

They have no evidence to suggest that. In fact, the only evidence they would have would suggest the complete opposite. Nobody is asking for this show with these characters. That’s pretty clear. It’s a dreadful idea.

He’s practicing the art of lying until it becomes the truth.

Yep. Exactly right.

Extra points for naming the person who perfected this “art” originally.
Suddenly “Space Hitler” makes sense ;)

Ok, as a parent whose own values were once shaped by Trek, one of the things I’d most like to see would be for Trek’s new offerings for kids and teens to really take on diversity.

Most North American kids shows fail at this: both before and behind the cameras.

Not just my view, but the findings of a major new academic study by a Canadian and an American that looked at 3000+ shows.

My personal experience is that our kids picked up diversity from shows that were produced with public broadcasters as the Canadian partners (TVO, CBC, ICI) and may or may not have had a public broadcasting partner on the US side.

I never expected the STEM show Annedroids (TVO and Amazon Prime ) would provide us the basis to have the nonbinary gender conversation as well as conversations about low-income families, foster parents and visiting social workers, but it did. And it has a 100% Rotten Tomatoes audience approval rating.

Star Trek’s new offerings should be at that level in my view, and I’m concerned that they are benchmarking on Star Wars kids shows instead.

The inherent problem of Trek not being able to discuss global majority issues like income equality or poverty is that all Trek shows depict post-scarcity societies and even those shows that really shouldn’t (Voyager) ultimately went back to that old well. Maybe scarcity is incompatible with Trek’s utopia, which of course is telling (though not necessarily wrong), but as a consequence this will always be a topic Trek cannot credibly talk about.

Then again, I have seen that Kurtzman et al. have pretty much waved good bye to “Issue Trek” beyond incredibly safe (for their target group) virtue signaling so this whole point may be moot.

Well VS the new teen show is supposed to involve a group of kids in trouble finding a startup and salvation.

It’s a good question how and why in Trek’s ideal society without scarcity these kids are marginalized.

And whether this social situation will be seriously explored or just some cliché backstory.

But while the creators have done good work, this isn’t the niche they have expertise in.

I’m expecting cliché.

“I’m expecting cliché.”

And that you should. It’s a kid’s show! When even Discovery can’t deliver any meat, we shouldn’t expect the Saturday morning cartoon to deliver Shakespeare.

Vulcan Soul,

FWIW, as I recall, the FLASH GORDON animated series spun off from the color FLASH GORDON motion picture was far superior to it – almost, but not quite, to the extreme of your Shakespeare example.

“People locked in on Georgiou as being a wonderful oddity. She is wicked, devious, manipulative and yet somehow radiates this incredible heart. People love her…”

“Wonderful oddity”! I wonder if he would describe Hitler in the same way? Because that’s exactly what she is, Hitler times ten. And I don’t know which “people” “love” her outside the Secret Hideout offices, this is a major case of echo chamber (And a major case of hypocrisy of course in how all these people fiercely oppose the current administration which is not 0.1 percent as fascist and murderous as their own character creations and story plots).

Finally, as I long suspected he sincerely believes all of Space Hitler’s crimes don’t matter and she is redeemable as long as she has “the heart at the right place”. This, folks, is why an exclusively emotionalist society, as ours is rapidly becoming, is ALWAYS going off the rails. When rule of law is replaced by rule of subjective emotion (empathy, compassion, you-name-it), there is no justice anymore, it’s all favoritism.

What we need is a new Enlightenment that jettisons all these BS “feels” and returns to the plane of rationality and logic!

I’ve always liked Michelle Yeoh…but Id FAR rather a continuation of Pike and Spock’s adventures aboard that new-fangled Enterprise instead of more Section 31 shenanigans.

Still hopeful for a decent show with the ‘Picard’ character however.

Why’re they so god damned concerned with being “free from canon”? They act as if jumping into the future negates everything else that has happened in Star Trek history. If they were so worried about trying to create something new that had fewer continuity problems, they should’ve started beyond all of the canonical events in the first place; problem solved. You would still have all of the history to build upon, without needing to treat it like a burden.

“Free from canon” is code for them hating the concept of Star Trek. They just want the name and some of the treknology to slap on things that are completely not Star Trek. Every time I read these interviews where they say how happy they are to be “Free from canon”, it always seems to have a subtle undertone of contempt for what Star Trek is.

We’ll see how quickly they lean on the canon they are desperate to escape when they are ordered to boost subscriptions.

No, it’s free from the people who obsess over wood and string computers from TOS being what the show filmed now should look like.

I’m not even sure what you are talking about. Season 2 of “Star Trek: Pike”, pretty much proved they are capable of working within canon while utilizing updated technology and modern production values.

The problem wasn’t canon really. Canon only became a problem when they decided to set the show 10 years before TOS and ignore all the canon elements except those they felt helped their own show along. And again, I can live with that if IF the show they made was, you know, GOOD. It wasn’t. So canon became an even bigger issue than it would have been. And sadly they never addressed the canon issues like they said they would. They didn’t explain away anything. The way they set the show up the only way to explain things away would be to somehow hit a “reset” button where they perhaps shoot off to the future and Burhnam somehow prevents the Iron Man-ish time suit never ever gets built by anyone.

Yes this was the biggest problem. People keep saying visual canon shouldn’t count but um that doesn’t mean everyone has to agree with that. Visual canon is just as important as story canon to a lot of people. Look how much they bent over backwards to make the Star Wars prequels like Rogue One and Solo fit into OT visual canon. Star Wars fans would’ve rioted if the X wings fighters suddenly looked like completely different ships.

But yes if Discovery was just a better show in general people could’ve gotten over it in time maybe, but it wasn’t. At least to a lot of people so here we are. Now they ‘rebooted’ the show by putting it in another time period altogether. It may not solve the writing problems but there will be no more questions about why everything looks so much more advanced or how can the spore drive stick around.

To me, the visual canon is important enough that if you update it for a modern look, you absolutely NEED to evoke the feel for what came before. Discovery literally did NONE of that.

Sending the crew 900 years in the future is a double edge sword. Sure they free themselves of most canon (them feeling confined to canon is another issue, too) but now the bad stories and hollow characters will take even more of a center stage. If they don’t get their act together (and I suspect they won’t) their writing problems will only become more glaring.

“Now that we’re free from canon” ….
How can you people look yourselves in the mirror, and truly call yourselves
“Trekkies” when you wholeheartedly support this GARBAGE …?

Simple, people who get hung up on the stupid silly minutiae due to production differences over 50 years should be ignored. Why is it this franchise can’t even update and reinvent itself when that’s what sci-fi does to any series?

Perhaps MysticalDigital because Trek has had the multiverse concept since its early days.

Not so much those other series that have relied on reboots.

Trek fans can tolerate different time periods and different universes… they just want the existing work not to be undone.

It can, all they had to do was call it a reboot and it would’ve been done. Instead they tried to have their cake and eat it too by saying it all takes place in the TOS timeline while ignoring the look and feel of TOS and that just angered a lot of fans. They should’ve just put the show post Nemesis on day one (which a lot of people wanted anyway) and they could’ve done whatever they wanted. They could’ve made Burnham Spock’s daughter or something if they were that desperate to have some TOS character connection. And you wouldn’t have to twist yourself over it like a pretzel trying to have it make sense either.

But this is what frustrates people like me, because I KNEW this was going to be an issue on day one. This was a big part of the reason I didn’t want it to be a prequel, because all it would do is just get people to constantly compare it to TOS and thats exactly what happened. It couldn’t just be its own thing because all prequels do is force people to make constant connections to everything from before and how it all fits. And Discovery didn’t fit in that universe in any meaningful way and it only made things worse.

Funny enough Star Trek DID reinvent itself, decades ago. First with TNG and then with DS9. But in reality you can ONLY do that by either A. going forward or B. rebooting it. Outside of those two options fans are just too fickle. Maybe a Pike show will work but I honestly think ultimately it will still have the same issues Discovery did, so be careful what you wish for.

I am glad to see all these new Trek series. I probably won’t like all of them. But that’s fine. It’s still great to see Trek alive on the (not so) small screen! Pretty excited. And I for one also love that they try new things instead of rehashing 90s TV.

“People locked in on Georgiou as being a wonderful oddity. She is wicked, devious, manipulative and yet somehow radiates this incredible heart. People love her…”

He is so out of touch.

That “incredible heart” bit is horrifying.

Oh, that Georgiou is such a scamp. Such a fascistic, murderous, cannibalistic scamp. Give her a sitcom!

Georgeau: I would just send the fleet to wipe out the planet!
Section 31 commander (with smile): Oh Phillipa, you wouldn’t be you if you didn’t think that!

(Laugh track)


People keep throwing that word around, but I must have missed where she ate a human?

Eating aware creatures, such as dogs, apes, etc. while extremely distasteful is NOT cannibalism.

Kelpiens are sentient beings. Not, technically-speaking, humans, I’ll grant you; but that’s not much of a difference.

Bryant Burnette,

It is NOT cannibalism. It IS for STAR TREK fans repugnant on the level of Gracie and George being hunted in TVH for food among other commercial uses.

Your hyping it as cannibalism makes it appear that you somehow feel that your argument against the Empress is weak and needs to be goosed by evoking a visceral response to compensate.

I don’t. However, it seems as if you feel a semantic distinction such as inter-species consumption not counting as actual cannibalism makes Georgiou’s actions more acceptable. And if that’s the line of reasoning you want to stick with, you go right ahead.

Bryant Burnette,

Re: more acceptable

Nope. I have been quite clear. Her sins are quite reprehensible on their own merits without the constant propping it up that you apparently feel it requires from cannibalism. Exaggerating into something that it clearly is not is only clouding the issue and ultimately undermining an extremely relevant argument from you.

Yeah I’m not sure where this ‘love’ for MU Georgiou is coming from lol. People seem to love Pike, they seem to mostly just tolerate Georgiou and many still want her dead.

I get they really want people to be on board with the new Section 31 show but all season 2 of Discovery did was prove why it could be a really bad idea, especially if your star is Georgiou. Frankly I would’ve liked Leland to be the one to stick around and lead the show.

“Hopefully, it’s a reinforcement of [‘Trek’ creator Gene] Roddenberry’s vision of optimism.”


Kind of worrying if the guy producing the show has to wonder about whether this will happen or not.

Discovery has been visually stunning, but it has utterly failed in conveying the sense of the rational optimism and mature harmony, also in the face of mortal threats, that all Roddenberry Star Trek had. This, together with a plethora of incoherent or poorly written characters, has been my main grudge with Discovery, much more than minor or major canon violations.

I couldn’t agree more. The canon stuff bothers me, but if I felt the show was more in keeping with the tone and approach of previous Treks, I’d shrug that off real quick. Instead, it seems determined to avoid the tone and approach of previous Treks at all costs, and I really can’t quite figure out why. It’s not broken; use that format with modern sensibilities and production capabilities and you’d likely have gold to show for it. Instead: pyrite. Stinkin’ pyrite.

“it has utterly failed in conveying the sense of the rational optimism and mature harmony”

The favorite words of old showrunner and new showrunner are: heart, feel, emotion. And you wonder why it failed?

And if only they could convey actual ‘heart, feel and emotion’. Unfortunately most of the emotions in Discovery have felt shallow and fake: just think of Airiam’s funeral. How am I supposed to believe that all those people were actually in pain for someone they’ve barely interacted with for over two seasons? I have felt more genuine emotion for Tuvix.

Tuvix and Sim. Yes. Ariam’s funeral felt contrived rather than genuine.

We want romulans and borgs back

Lol really? No, just no. I do not want either of those at this point in the timeline they are doing, it would mess up continuity more than it is already. Humans did not meet the Borg until 2nd season of TNG, and humans did not see a Romulan face until the episode Balance of Terror in the first season of TOS.

No Borg or Romulans, please!

VZX, the show is in the 32nd century now, none of that matters anymore. ;)

So they can bring in the Borg, Roumulans, whoever.

Please no Borg.

They were very heavily used in Voyager.

I would love to see them both back too. I am curious if we will see them in the 32nd century.

I suspect we will see Borg in Season 3 of Discovery. You watch. They are showing up. This writing group is too lazy not to do it.

So I did a CTRL-F to look for any tidbits to the Pike show and the first mention of Pike was here in the comments. Bummer.

If the only new Trek show being displayed on CBSAA is Section 31 I will cancel it. After the the Picard show, of course.

I just really do not want a Section 31 show. I would not care, it’s just that I wish Kurtzman would re-direct all the resources for the Sec. 31 show to a Pike/Enterprise show.

If they kill off Beverly or something, if that’s the “darkness” Picard has to go through, people are going to be upset. That could explain why Gates etc. isn’t in it. Nobody wants to watch 10 hours of old depressed Picard.

I was thinking that as well. This whole “It’s Trek optimism because we END the show there after dozens of hours of grimdark Trek” is such a cop-out (and they tried that with Discovery too). If only the end is optimistic and this is all “per aspera ad astra”, in reality what we have seen on screen is not Trek.

OK. There were two comments that just caused face palms.

“People locked in on Georgiou as being a wonderful oddity.”

Really? Who did that? What evidence is there to support this? Anecdotally there is none.

“She is wicked, devious, manipulative and yet somehow radiates this incredible heart.”

She does? All I have seen is an evil dictator who eats sentient beings from a universe of 2D mustache twirlers.

“People love her…”

I’m sure some do. Find a different character for her then because the one she has been playing has been monumentally weak.

“I think it’s fun for people to see a show with a protagonist who’s entirely unreliable. At the end of the day, she’s going to do the right thing, but in the exact wrong way.”

Yes. That can be fun. But it doesn’t work for an evil dictator from “opposite land”. Find a different character for her to play if you want her around so badly.

“It’s a total love letter to Star Trek; there’s no mockery.”

I’m very much looking forward to the Lower Decks show. But him saying that scares me. Those of us who were following Trek in the early 00’s have bad memories about show runners using that phrase. He, or someone on his staff, ought to know better.

“But it doesn’t work for an evil dictator from “opposite land”. Find a different character for her to play if you want her around so badly.”

I think he is seriously unable to tell black-and-white from grey. And you thought color-blind is bad!

Kurtzman has the air of spinning out the placeholder pitch for the S31 series.

The series isn’t greenlit yet…and whoever Georgiou is in season 3 of Discovery won’t be the final endpoint.

The thing is, I can actually imagine a way to make a Georgiou redemption work.

And the assigned creators Kim and Lippoldt have promise. They are shaping into solid Trek writers.

More Lippoldt has the neuroscience PhD that might seriously consider how Georgiou’s brain and mind may evolve in the environment of the very different Prime Universe. The brain IS plastic, and Georgiou is subject to a radical and permanent change in environment.

It makes sense in terms of neurodevelopment for changed neural pathways behaviour to grow out of a strong attachment to Burnham.

What they need to do is to balance the writers room with someone like David Mack who knows Trek inside out, and will always take principal characters through the tough road to earned redemption.

(Mack’s been doing novels, but he co-wrote the Nog story treatment for DS9
the episode where a traumatized Nog hides in the holosuite after losing his leg.)

In any event, Kim and Lippoldt don’t have the pilot or bible written yet. Things could evolve a great deal before this series gets green lit.

This is a matter of morality and justice. Even if her neural pathways were somehow able to change, that doesn’t make her any less responsible for the genocide(s) she committed before, and you won’t find many viewers who would seriously advocate “second chances” for such a person. And this whole idea (some people’s) of her being squeaky-clean in THIS universe because she committed all her evils in ANOTHER one is a major cop-out…

Well VS, I agree that it’s fundamentally disturbing.

Especially for those of us who found mid 20th century tyrants, genocides and atrocities a solid rebuke to moral relativism.

That’s why I would find this whole concept would be more viable without the ‘fun’ or cute dimensions.

Frankly, I found Georgiou’s delight in Leland’s suffering in the finale showed she’s still a really sick and appalling personality at this point.

But I could see David Mack making this work.

He managed it in the S31 novels…Bashir was seduced into some of the fun spy stuff, but became clear on how he was being compromised.

Perhaps after a point Georgiou’s internal values will change, and she’ll start doing the right thing for the right reasons and have to come to terms with her past.

They’ll need some other characters beyond Georgiou and Tyler, but there’s an opportunity for a rich story that balances the fun with the ethical reflection.

A lot people keep commenting about how they don’t “get” the appeal of a Michelle Yeoh-led Trek. You have to remember Trek is being produced as a GLOBAL property now. Having a Chinese lead is a huge deal when it comes to expanding the franchise in Asian markets. I don’t care for the Georgiou character myself for a lot of the reasons already stated by others. But Kurtzman isn’t shooting from the hip on this one. This is probably the most strategic move to expand their fan base they’ve made so far. You or I may not like it. But the future of Trek as a profitable property may depend on it.

People don’t have a problem with Trek being a global property with an Asian lead. They have a problem with poorly written shows.

If this is their plan God help them because they just devised the Iphone 5C of television shows for “the Asian market(s)”. Newsflash: Star Trek and Star Wars is NOT working there, no matter who you stick at the helm. Newsflash 2: Michelle Yeoh was a hot property there 20 years ago, nobody cares anymore.

I’ve heard this take and just don’t buy it. It makes no sense. If they want an An Asian lead for an Asian market, they do not HAVE to have it be a homicidal evil dictator from opposite land. There are plenty of options here. They could find a different actor. Perhaps one who is currently working and known in the region and is willing to come to North America to do a show aimed at that region. (Disney has hired nothing but locals for their live version of Mulan, for example) Or they could just come up with a different character for Yeoh to play. Either way is better than what they are planning.

“from opposite land” I love that remark!

I would have gone with “alternate land” but opposite land flows better.

That idiot Kurtzman and his group of story less hacks along with JJ are utterly destroying an awesome franchise, what a shame! STD was so unwatchable and yet there are articles out there ranking STD above other Star Trek series. As long as these clowns are running the show Star Trek has no future, Sad!

Hopefully, it’s a reinforcement of [‘Trek’ creator Gene] Roddenberry’s vision of optimism. He’s going to have to go through deep valleys to get back to the light.

Well, that certainly doesn’t inspire me to watch. And the way he says “hopefully” does NOT fill me with confidence.

I feel like the entire concept of a Section 31 spin off goes against EVERYTHING Star Trek means and stands for. Plus as evidenced by the fan petition for Captain Pike, THIS is what viewers want.

Also, I feel like they are missing a huge opportunity by making shows that only appeal to certain groups instead of making shows that can appeal to a wider audience.

I agree. I’ve had high hopes for the Picard series, but this sounds very much like how they described the first season of Discovery.

I really disliked how a part of the “excitement” of Discovery was seeing how they would repair everything in the end (of season 2, as it turns out), and it would turn out to be “proper” Trek, after all. Why don’t just make awesome Trek all the way?

I don’t want to wait until episode 10 to see the big reveal: “See, he’s acting like the good old Picard in the end, after all”.

Can we get a Klingon series ? Lets see the klingons from their point of view. Dive deeper into their mythology. Also….A show set on a colony would be cool also. I think it would be budget friendly because location shooting….waitaminute….Game of Thrones is known as one of the most expensive series ever due to them globe hopping…but a colony show can use a lot of interior sets built.

Mr. Kurtzman, I fear, is simply pandering to the fanboys. They bitched about retro-Trek so complete change of course -now Discovery will be set in the future. Animation series? Sure. Two! We want TNG! Poof! Picard.
I think better writers, a clearer vision, and less pandering would make a better Trek. I thought we’d have a more adult-themed series and not all this sobbing and self-doubt. Hope it improves.