A Closer Look At What’s Coming In ‘Star Trek: Discovery’ Season 3

Tacked on to the end of the season three premiere of Star Trek: Discovery was a teaser for what’s coming up in the rest of the season. The rapid-fire editing shows you glimpses from scenes from many episodes, out of sequence. We have freeze-framed and sorted things around into categories to try to unveil the secrets. The following analysis is based on information previously reported along with some educated guesses. Obviously… SPOILERS.

Traveling with Michael and Book

The promo starts by showing some tranquil life with Michael Burnham, Cleveland “Book” Booker, and his cat Grudge on board Book’s ship. This moment is likely sometime after the season premiere (note Michael’s longer hair) and before Burnham gets reunited with the USS Discovery.

Michael provides a voice-over: “It feels like a dream, this world. A strange, beautiful dream.”

Michael investigates “The Burn”

Michael visits an alien planet that appears to be run by the Andorian/Orion alliance seen in the first episode. In voiceover, she says, “I’ve been searching for clues as to what caused The Burn.” This is likely early in her search as she still has shorter hair.

An alien hands her something with a Starfleet ship registry number. There is no known ship with the number (or starting with the number) NCC-4774.

Michael (still with short hair and in civilian clothes) meets with Federation Liaison Sahil, and her voiceover continues, “Answers that might hope bring the Federation together.”

Later we see Sahil’s Federation relay station with a destroyed Starfleet ship floating in the foreground.

Crashing the Disco

There are a few shots in the teaser showing a crash landing of the USS Discovery. This is likely from episode two, showing what happens after right after the episode two sneak peek, also released by CBS.

 We can hear Saru give the order, “All decks, prepare for impact” as the ship crashes into the planet.

Saru and Tilly visit a strange new world

Saru and Tilly exit the ship in civilian clothes, exploring the world where the ship crashed.

Bar fight, with help from Georgiou

This promo features some of the same fight shown in the Star Trek Day trailer, with Georgiou fighting a group that includes a human played by Jake Weber (Homeland).

This fight takes place in the same bar we saw a Coridanite talking to Saru and Tilly in the Star Trek Day trailer, and is likely from the planet where they crash-land. In a new shot, we can see one of the tough guys pointing a futuristic weapon at Georgiou as Tilly and the character played by Jake Weber look on. Georgiou says, “I’m going to enjoy this new world.”

The new promo also shows Saru using his new post-Vahar’ai spikes during the fight.

Discovery visits Earth?

The USS Discovery approaches a blue planet that looks like Earth, and Detmer happily declares, “There she is.”

Later in the promo, we get a shot of the ship and a shuttle approaching what may be the same planet.

Adira disses Disco tech

Adira (Blu del Barrio), in Stamet’s lab, tells Tilly and Stamets, “This science vessel is practically a museum.”

Tilly replies, “Well museums are cool, so…” Adira snaps back, “That’s what someone who lives in a museum would say.”

Later Adira makes a new Starfleet badge using 32nd-century programmable matter.

Inspirational speeches

Saru (with captain’s shoulder braids) says “There is so much we do not know. It is quite extraordinary, the journey we have had.”

Michael proclaims, “The Federation gave me a mission and a purpose.” We pick up her voice-over later as we see more action with, “…because the problems often seem insurmountable, but haven’t we always risen to meet them.”

Saru on the bridge of the Discovery says, “Discovery carried us into the future. We’ll make that future bright!”

Tilly tells Michael, “You are going to figure out what caused The Burn, and help to rebuild the Federation.” Michael replies, “We all will.”

Space battles

With the USS Discovery in orbit above a planet with a glowing shield, Owo informs Saru (entering the bridge), “Five unidentified vessels incoming.” The ship design resembles Xindi-insectoid ships from Enterprise.

The alien ships fire on the USS Discovery above the blue-shielded planet, with Book’s ship visible below the Discovery.

Things explode on the bridge of the Discovery.

Book’s ship flies away from the Discovery as ships fire on it, with Detmer in control of Book’s ship along with an unknown long-haired Andorian holding Grudge. Detmer says, “I’m about to do something that might get us both killed.”

Book’s ship fights a much larger ship and a few smaller ships above a red planet.

Stamets has some new tech

Stamets’ spore chamber gets an upgrade with programmable matter.

A visit to Trill

Michael fights some Trill as Adira watches.

Adira convulses in a pool, likely a Trill symbiont pool in the Caves of Mak’ala, and gets pulled underwater.

Adira and Michael surrounded by energy ribbons, with (probably) the Trill named Grey (Ian Alexander) on a floating table.

Alien robot

A robotic alien lifeform can be seen on the main screen of Book’s ship.

We later see the same lifeform with Book.

Crew together

Detmer, Tilly, and Rhys share a moment.

Tilly hugs Burnham as she returns to the USS Discovery.

Rhys and Bryce share a moment on the bridge.

The reunited crew (with new Starfleet badges) share a toast.

Culber, Nhan, and Michael on an away mission, possibly to Trill.

Tilly places a badge on a wall with other badges and nameplates, possibly a memorial.

Book in action

Book declares, “Let’s do it!”


Book throws an object, possibly a grenade.

And yells “Wooooh!” as energy bolts go past him.

Book and a long-haired Andorian, probably the one seen with Detmer on his ship, run from an industrial facility.

Book and Michael run from floating drones firing on them in a yellow forest. The drone are reminiscent of Echo Papa 607 weapons from the TNG episode “The Arsenal of Freedom.”

Book and Michael have another kind of action.

More space shots and action

A Discovery shuttle flies toward a gap in a cloud in space, accompanied by two drone-like objects.

The Discovery shines a light on a small vessel.

An explosion in a music venue.

Starfleet ships, including one like the USS Hiawatha medical frigate, crash into a cityscape. This may be a flashback to the aftermath of “The Burn.”

Tilly and Grudge

The promo ends with a funny moment of Tilly saying “hello” to Grudge on the Discovery.

Tilly tells Grudge, “I’m not a cat person,” and Grudge literally walks all over her.

Watch it

Here is the season 3 promo (NOTE: it is mislabeled as a promo for episode 2 “Far From Home.”)


New episodes of Star Trek: Discovery premiere on Thursdays on CBS All Access in the U.S. and on CTV Sci-Fi Channel in Canada, where it’s also available to stream on Crave. Episodes will be available on Fridays internationally on Netflix.

Keep up with all the news and reviews from the new Star Trek Universe on TV at TrekMovie.com.

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The font on that one wrecked ship is the TOS style typeface. Interesting.

That’s alot glimpses of the future to chew on! I will give them credit for at least trying to use a different aesthetic with the interior design of Book’s ship (although color-wise we are still caught in circa 2020 orange and teal ;) Likewise, it seems there are a number of ships that look much more smooth and rounded (my favorite is the ships that look like extracted teeth – hope we don’t see any eyeballs floating in space! ;) After the ultra-Eaves ships in 23rd century Discovery, at least the return to more Probert-like ships would now signify a bigger time jump than if they had stayed with pre-Eaves (and TOS) aesthetics, ironically.

So far I’m dismayed by the costume design. The designer of Discovery and Picard seems to be the same (or at least siblings-in-mind) because “street wear” is all verrry contemporary looking, brownish, leather, coats. Say what you want about William Ware Theiss, but his work immediately made it clear this is very removed from our present. Likewise for Roddenberry’s no buttons and zippers mandate (realistic or not).

As for future uniforms, there was sort of a bad precedent with Voyager and Enterprise already. I hold out hope the simple uniforms, especially for future (remaining) Starfleet, are really just “base clothing” (same as the black-and-yellow-lines off-state holodeck) that is actually fully programmable and infused with invisible tech, changing to any clothes needed according to the surroundign environmental conditions, providing personal force fields etc. The programmable matter generation in Adira’s hand seem to hint at that (for that matter, programmable matter is a smart idea to introduce to signify the time jump because even if we are dabbling in it now already, so far all previous Trek had not featured it).

I think it is clear why outside of comedy like Futurama, most serious science fiction does not go that far out into the future. With every century it becomes harder to provide a serious and believable projection that doesn’t look ridiculous in a few decades already and, more importantly, still allows the viewer to relate. At best, scifi becomes indistinguishable from fantasy as the saying goes, any techology sufficiently advanced looks like magic. Far from being freed from doing the hard work, there’s a daunting task for the production crew of Discovery, and we will see how much they can live up to it!

Last edited 1 month ago by Vulcan Soul

Excellent points Vulcan Soul. The costumes should look more futuristic. Going that far into the future is a daunting undertaking. At least they are trying to be creative and realistic at the way the far future is portrayed. Science fiction at it’s best.

the clothes and fashion don’t bother me so much. I mean.. how much have clothes evolved in the last 2000 years? Sure, we have new materials to make them from, lycra, nylon etc, but they are basically human body shaped coverings with added fashion (to taste of the time). So yeah fashions come and go, and the biker look might be fashionable again in the 31st century lol/

What *does* bother me is the lack of vision in tech. I mean… on the Enterprise J, it was supposed to have shuttle replicators, a whole city, a “virtual” bridge that you Matrix-d into from anywhere on the ship, futuretech. Whereas Michael walks straight up to Book’s “super-futuristic” control console and knows instantly what everything is “navigation.. comms..” C’mon Trek. You’re going that far ahead in the future, Book should be sitting in an empty room controlling his ship with his mind or something (I mean, we have that tech NOW almost, so its not even that futuristic).

They did kind of head in that direction on the Federation base, where everything in the place was nano-tech that just appeared and disappeared when needed. Great, more of that please. But then cos you need Detmer to fly Book’s futureship without a whole episode of her learning how to do it, Books ship becomes no more advanced than Voyager or something. meh.

I love that they are in the far future. I love the possibilities for storytelling and imagination that can offer them. I just hope they take advantage of it, and not rely on dumbing things down for plot convenience. Though I know they will ;)

Whereas Michael walks straight up to Book’s “super-futuristic” control console and knows instantly what everything is “navigation.. comms..”

I didn’t get a good look at the controls but maybe they are labeled? Would make sense.

Book should be sitting in an empty room controlling his ship with his mind or something

That would be boring for the audience. As Vulcan Soul said, you still want the audience to relate. Maybe that’s just me, but I’d find it quite unrelatable staring at someone sitting in an empty room and grimacing to illustrate that they are controlling their ship.

Discovery goes to Earth this season. Yes!

“This is not Earth. This is the planet of the Onlies, damn grups!”

Xindi are back…

It would be interesting to see what the Xindi are up to in the future.

The starship remains? Seen in season opener near the base.

The center badge on Tilly’s wall was one she wore. Perhaps this is a sort of chart of her promotions or transfers? Can anyone read the nameplates?

Before I saw the description in the article, the crashing ships at the end seemed to me like a flashback to the Burn. It’s more than one ship crashing.

If it is the Hiawatha, then that does lend credence to Michael being somehow related to the Burn. Or her mom. Or… the suit.

Maybe.

One of them could have definitely been the cause of, or at least involved in The Burn, but if that is a Hiawatha-type ship crashing, it would be 800+ years old since Book said the dilithium all exploded about 100-120 years before the present day, and Hiawatha-type ships existed in the 2250’s. I’m hoping they didn’t just get lazy and re-use the model like they did with the Magee-class ships above Utopia Planitia in the “Children of Mars” Short Trek.

Perhaps there is a chain reaction involved. If X set off the first burst near the Hiawatha, and then travelled to the future and started the Burn and then travelled back to the past to fix it. My head hurts thinking about it.

Most likely, they are “on to the next thing” and these are cute misdirects.

Interesting this article referenced “programmable matter.” In his novelization of “Star Trek: The Motion Picture,” Gene Roddenberry theorized V’Ger made use of programmable matter. In theory, this could be a real thing. Physicist and occasional science fiction writer Wil McCarthy published in 2008 a pop-science text, “Hacking Matter,” which dealt with this topic, what he called quantum-dot programmable matter. An table made of this stuff, for example, could at will have the characteristics of wood, marble, steel, glass, or anything else.

From a story telling point of view, this has some possibilities. If Book’s ship, for example, makes use of programmable matter then he could change the interior of his ship at will if he ever gets bored with the decor.

Discovery new episode currently #2 on Netflix UK. Folks are watching! Still no sign of the post Season 2 “Short Treks” though, which is a little disappointing.

Number one last Friday at least on Saturday when I checked. It’s been a big success since it began, as they knew it would be, hence their investment in getting Disco going. Netflix was always guaranteed global viewers for the show, it was CBS’ own SVOD experiment that was the risk for the US market – with (at the time) a puny subscriber base.

When I was trying to envision what a 32nd century Star Trek would look like, I was hoping they would take inspiration from “The Diamond Age”. And indeed they did with Programmable Matter, but I’m hoping we see really grand uses for it like in the book. But it’s an expensive idea to envision in VFX and that’s the peril of trying to envision this world.

Last edited 1 month ago by Michael K

While I didn’t like where / the way the plot of The Diamond Age ended up (it very nearly was a DNF and would have been if Snow Crash wasn’t a favourite), the speculation about programmable matter was very cool.

One thing particularly relevant in The Diamond Age for Trek through is how the boundary between programmable matter and nanites, similar to the ones the Borg used, is fairly fluid.

We see that Book has unusual recessive genetics which makes one wonder about nanotechnology, but the implications of programmable matter in the biological disciplines is something we’ve already seen to some extent in Voyager.

(And somewhere out there in a museum is the Doctor, who would be making these connections and extending them almost immediately. It’s unlikely he’ll show up in this season, but who knows what’s next…)

I too thought a lot about this. I still think it’s not adventurous enough, I look at Book’s clothing and it wouldn’t be too out of place here and now – they needed to be bolder with the visual styles of everything. If I consider here in the UK how much we’ve changed in 900 years – nothing is similar, language, values, worldviews, architecture, technology etc. etc.

The Picture above that of Tilly and Grudge showing a possible flachback of the Burn has strong vibes of Battlestar Galactica! It remindes me of that scene where Galactica jumps into the atmosphere and keeps falling until the last moment!

It will be intriguing to see if the THE BURN ADMONITION is as stupid as it sounds. “Only One, with the purest heart… and the cheesiest facial expressions… can stop… The Burning.” A Golan-Globus Production.

I wonder if there are any Trek fans that choose Discovery as their favorite series. I’m sure they exist since they’re are a lot of people on Earth, but it’s still fascinating.

There are actually 2 or 3 posters on this board who do.

Btw, it’s really a pity there is so little interest among posters to discuss the implications of going so far future as glimpsed at in the preview, and a pity for all the work TM put in to analyze it. Maybe it’s because it’s weekend. Anyway, I find this so much more interesting than discussing “sexualities”…

Last edited 1 month ago by Vulcan Soul

I saw a person comment on Youtube ( I know….usually a dumpster fire) that Discovery was their first Trek they watched. It made said person go watch more of the original stuff. They are now hooked and a fan of Star Trek.

That’s actually pretty cool. Even though I wish Discovery was better, at least it’s continuing the Trek brand and awareness so new fans get interested and watch the older series.

Ranking the best new Trek so far: IMHO

  1. Lower Decks
  2. Picard
  3. Short Treks
  4. Discovery

So impressive how they did all this post production in lockdown.

Based on the shapes in the planetary shield and the triangular designs of the ships, I wonder if these are Tholians rather than Xindi?

While interesting situation for Disco this season to be sure, there is a lot that Burnham (we) will have to be caught up on to explain what happened with “the Burn”. No doubt, it will take up 9 or 10 episodes to keep the suspense going. I wonder if the Burn is related to Burn-ham???? But that is merely early speculation on my part. Going that far into the future does pose a few issues, its the hardest thing to depict as other posts have stated in this string.
However, it seems that (lately) films have to show the same type of future and/or civilization. Dark, slightly dystopian, black clothes, etc looking like something out of Blade Runner. But that is where the drama comes from in any series. Only ENTERPRISE attempted to depict a different future when Crewman Daniels brought Capt Archer to the 31st century to avoid capture by Silic in season 2, “Shockwave“. But even that future was shown as a ruined (nuclear war?) cityscape and we never got the actual story.
I have to say that my friend in Florida watched the episode before we did, he told me the last few minutes of Ep 1 will have me in tears. Being recently retired from the military, I have to say that scene did strike a chord with me, while not quite crying out right, but I will say I was misty eyed.

Anyway you slice it, we are in for one wild ride this season of Disco!

I guess a dystopian future is more believable for most people. Seeing how the world is going I don’t blame that belief.

I dont like it and find it depressing. I think it sends the wrong message.