‘Star Trek: Discovery’ Season 4 Writing Wraps; Production Continues With Tig Notaro Back As Jett Reno

Star Trek: Discovery has been in production for its fourth season since last November. We now have a few updates on how things are going, coming from the showrunners, and Tig Notaro.

Writers wrap for season 4

We now know that writing for season four has wrapped up. Co-showrunner Michelle Paradise shared the news on Twitter, sharing a photo from a script page saying “END OF SEASON FOUR,” and adding it has been a long journey to this point.


Season 4 production continues with Tig Notaro happy to return as Jett Reno… as written

While the writers are done with their work, the actors are still on the job. And thanks to an interview with Stephen Colbert this week Tig Notaro confirmed she is currently in Toronto for Discovery. This is good news for fans of Tig and her acerbic engineer Jett Reno, as late last year Notaro revealed she wanted to limit her time traveling to Toronto due to health concerns during the pandemic.

Notaro – who can be seen in the new Netflix zombie heist movie Army of the Dead – has a lot of projects going on but in an interview with AV Club, she talked about she is happy to make time for Star Trek:

I love it. There is something so fun and freeing about not being the producer, not being the writer, not being the star. One of the fun parts about Star Trek: Discovery, for me, is that they let me just pop in from time to time. Often I hear like, “Oh, they don’t use you enough,” or, “How come they’re not letting you…?” I’m like, “Star Trek lets me do whatever.” I have a full career doing stand-up and other projects and the fact that they’re so flexible with making my schedule work—I’m so lucky, and it’s so fun to have other people write for me and nail it. Star Trek, whenever I get a script, I’m like, “Oh, I can’t wait to see what my character is going to say.” That was the thing with Army Of The Dead. I just really enjoyed saying those lines.

Notaro continued, explaining that even though some may think the comedy veteran is improvising some of Reno’s funny lines, she isn’t:

I really don’t improvise too much when I go on to somebody else’s project. I’m typically taking on the project because I like it and I like what they’ve done. There might be a word or a line a little bit here and there that I might adjust, but it’s typically very minimal. I’ve heard people say, “Oh, I can tell you were riffing on Star Trek,” and I’m like, “No. No, I’m not. Somebody wrote that for me and they did a really great job.” It’s not my go-to to show up on a TV show or movie and just say, “Hey, I’d like to kind of go nuts here. I’m going to riff a bit.” If it comes up organically in a scene, or the director encourages us to, or my scene partner is going off, maybe something will happen. But I typically just try to learn my lines and do what they wrote.

Tig Notaro as engineer Jett Reno and Anthony Rapp as Lt. Paul Stamets in “Die Trying”

Season 4 is about challenging Captain Burnham

In a Variety panel from Wednesday night focusing on season three for the upcoming Emmy nomination season, co-showrunner Alex Kurtzman talked about Michael Burnham’s promotion to captain at the end of the season. He said it was always the plan for her to end up as captain on Discovery, but explained how this isn’t the end of her journey and it has dominated how they have written season four:

In some sense, it’s an ending, but it’s very much a new beginning because season four for Michelle and I has been largely defined by this question. Every time we broke story, the question is: how is this affecting Burnham as a captain? And I don’t mean affecting, I mean challenging her. Just because she has the chair doesn’t mean that she’s necessarily ready for certain things. And there are choices that she now has to make as a captain that she wouldn’t have to make as just an officer on the ship. So every story was calibrated to what new door does this open to her experience of being a captain and what new challenge does she have to face the ship to face and what new thing does she have to learn about herself and to discovery.

The executive producer also emphasized how Burnham isn’t going to start off as the perfect captain:

I’m confident that she is an extraordinary captain. But I think all the best captains have moments of doubt and fallibility and uncertainty. ‘Am I driving this ship toward its death and everybody on it.’ That’s a big weight to carry. So, Michael, Michael Burnham – who is certainly no stranger to carrying big weights – has a new one now. But she is wearing it very differently than she did before.

Sonequa Martin Green as Captain Burnham in season four teaser trailer

Star Trek: Discovery season four is expected to arrive later this year.

Find more Star Trek: Discovery news and analysis at TrekMovie.com.

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I’ve loved Discovery from the beginning, despite its flaws. It’s such a fun show. But I feel that Michael as captain was the one misstep of an otherwise stellar season three.

Discovery has no flaws. All the other trek shows in the past had the flaws. I can’t watch TOS with a straight face. No wonder it got cancelled.

Every Trek, including Discovery and TOS has flaws. They are all great though.

This is why this guy should be banned again. All he does is troll and bait people. I have no idea how he is still here?

Discovery has 1,031 flaws by my count.

I N-C-C what you did there.

TOS got cancelled because it had increasingly severe budget cuts, and lousy time slots, from what I’ve read, back well before streaming was imaginable, even before satellite television.
If TOS was so terrible then Star Trek would have died as a blip in TV history and the movies and everything after wouldn’t have happened.

P.s. I know you already know this lol 😆

I’ll say one thing, at least she didn’t get promoted to captain after being a cadet for a week.

Hopefully as captain, she’ll start doing a lot less crying though.

Yeah, I don’t see that happening.

Sadly I fully agree. :(

Why many fans can’t accept a Number One be the star of the show? It has to be the confusion that from the beginning she was not the leader, but the one who wanted to become the leader.

Rough start, like previous Star Trek shows, still I do enjoy Discovery. Look forward to watching Season 4.

That’s not the issue, the character is so poorly written that there is a growing sigh of displeasure whenever she’s on screen acting like Wonderwoman.

I would also say it was a tough start but we are now 4 seasons in and still we worry about the shows predicitability. It would need a monumental turnaround in this series to say this was a DS9 season 3 or a TNG season 3 level of recovery. They have no excuses now, she’s captain, new shining unforms and a new century. This should be the reboot of the show.

It’s still possible who knows.
IMO Voyager and DS9 had soft reboots in both their fourth seasons, headed of course by a brand new character for the show.
I don’t enjoy Enterprise but I will agree its fourth season was a considerable improvement on its previous three seasons. Almost all of the Treks shows have improved as they went on, peaking somewhere between Season 4 and 6.

“And there are choices that she now has to make as a captain that she wouldn’t have to make as just an officer on the ship.” 

That’s such bullsh*t, and completely inconsistent with her characterization. She’s always making decisions that the captain should be making. Or taking on massive amounts of responsibility that was never hers to begin with. That’s been a major problem feature with her character all along, from the first episode. Why would that change now that the responsibility is legitimate?

That’s a good point. She has been the defacto Captain pretty much the entire time. Now that she is in name as well, I guess the difference will be if she listens to her crew or will she still be right ALL the time?

Well from a mutineer to a captain is certainly a development. What I am wondering though is whether the writers or producers would be willing to kill off Michael and the end of the series?

They’re more likely to make her the President of the Federation. Cause apparently she can do no wrong.

She does wrong all the time. That’s why she went to jail. She just learns from her mistakes.

No, she never does wrong. The jail you reference was disobeying orders and mutinying. But, she did so because… Wait for it… Because she was RIGHT!!!! So no. Nothing was learned.

“at the end of the series”… this is what happens when you don’t proofread.

That would encourage a tsunami of characters tears and hugging and an episode doing her highlight reel from her best of moments as they all remenisce about her brilliance. As much as I despise the character she has to stay alive.

That journey took her three seasons and a thousand years. Pine Kirk made that journey in just under two hours… but wait, that was from mutineering first-year cadet to captain…

It sucked then, too.

She spent 7 yrs as the First mate on Discovery. She was not a cadet.

Question for the audience would any of Discovery’s episodes make it into the top 20 all time trek episodes?

The two part season finale of S2 is in my top 5. Yes, a few “clunk” moments but for a two part episode expanded from what was to be a single episode? I loved it and still do. I know people will disagree with me as I make my next statement. When friends would ask me how good Star Trek is?
I’d answer: “Such Sweet sorrow was as good as Star Trek pretty much gets. I wish I could have seen it at a theatre.” I go to maybe one movie a year. I hate theatres.

Hmm… Doubtful. There was only one episode that might qualify. Season 1’s Lethe. But I my guess is that it would not crack the top 20.

Tough question… Top 20… Depends on the benchmark you’re using. As far as content / story is concerned, I doubt it… But that’s mainly because DSC episodes rarely stand on their own and are part of an ongoing arc…There has been no Inner Light, no Visitor, no Far Beyond the Stars yet…

Visually, there are quite a couple of episodes that repesent the sort of “out there” artistry that I love. And given that these episodes are made on state-of-the-art modern FX, they certainly make it to the Top 10…

Si Vis Pacem Para Bellum
Saints of Imperfection
Forget Me Not

There are so, so many episodes now its becoming more difficult to pinpoint ‘all time’ top 20s and 50s.

None would make it into my top 200. I am skeptical as to whether any would make it into the top 500.

Enjoyed the second Harry Mudd episode in season 1 quite a lot.

Good to hear that Notaro will be around more. She was the best part of Star Trek Discovery. Her comments show that the writers are able to write comedy if need be. Currently Star Trek Discovery is the best Star Trek comedy show ever made. I’m normally against the cross pollination of the shows but since Secret Hideout is doing it already why not loan those who write for Reno over to Lower Decks for a spell? Give that show a couple of laughs?

My good friend Maximus, who is a gay homosexual, applauds the fact that Discovery has many gay characters, and I couldn’t agree more with him.

We both come from a city in the UK called Brighton, which is called ‘The San Francisco of the UK’; very radical, very alternative and very gay.

Its great to see so many people of different sexuality’s and colour’s in the Star Trek universe

Absolutely. Too bad that aspect of the show mostly hasn’t been the beneficiary of good writing, though. Imagine how awesome that would be!

Cant wait for season 4 to start i love this show i have watched multiple times.

Will Burnham cry in every single episode again?
Maybe all hostile alien races will pity her and leave the federation alone. Truly going boldly where no captain has gone before.

Star Trek will be Star Trek again when Paramount completely cuts the cords with the Bad Reboot & gang & parasites.