Listen: ‘Star Trek: Discovery’ Crew Audiologs Offer ‘Season 4’ Clues

With season four of Discovery coming on Thursday, today Paramount+ released three new official Star Trek Logs on Instagram each voiced by the original actors. Since the new season picks up a few months after season three, these new logs give a glimpse into what the characters have been up to and hint at what is to come.

Culber hints at Picard connection to bringing back Gray

It’s already been confirmed that Dr. Hugh Culber will be making good on his season three promise to make Gray, who can only be seen by Adira, into a real person again. And today’s doctor’s log voiced by Wilson Cruz offers a big clue as to how he is going to do it. After lamenting the difficulties in “building a body for Gray,” Culber says he has found the “work of a 24th-century cyberneticist” adding “her writing is revolutionary.” It sounds like he could be talking about Dr. Agnes Jurati, the synth expert who assisted in bringing Jean-Luc Picard back as an android at the end of Star Trek: Picard season one.

 

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Su’Kal fitting in on Kaminar as Saru misses USS Discovery

Doug Jones voices a log as Saru, as he remains on Kaminar, after taking leave at the end of season three to ensure that Su’Kal settles in after spending a century alone after he caused The Burn. Saru’s log reveals that Su’Kal is socializing with other Kelpiens who are “making efforts to welcome him,” leaving Saru to think of the USS Discovery, as he ponders the question, “when will I return?”

 

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Book inspired by rebuilding Federation

The final log comes from Cleveland “Book” Booker, voiced by David Ajala. In his “consultant’s log” Book recounts how Captain Burnham and the USS Discovery have been “going on missions to former Federation worlds” which has been going “fine,” although he recounts a problem on a planet called Selaya and a mix-up involving Grudge. The jaded former independent courier actually finds hope with the return of the Federation.

 

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That’s very interesting about Culber making Gray a body. It’s funny, for some odd reason it never occurred to me it would be an actual body. I thought they were going to go the hologram route and maybe find a way to sync in their consciousness via a computer like Zora.

But this makes much more sense. It’s odd to me we haven’t seen any Synths in the 32nd century. It seems like a few would just be around and even designated their own species at this point considering we’re 800 years in the future and there would be a lot more of them once the Federation no longer banned making them. But it probably just has to do with the fact Picard was written too close to when Discovery season 3 was. Now they have a chance to combine them. Again, why going forward is a lot more fun for me! This couldn’t (or shouldn’t) have been possible at all for Discovery first two seasons.

For me, this is super exciting! I been saying I want more A.I. stories in Star Trek. We got more in DIS and PIC but it was the generic robots want to destroy the world trope. I want just more nuanced stories like we got in TNG and VOY with Data and the Doctor. Now that we are in the 32nd century they should just be part of that society IMO. Maybe we will see that with Gray!

And who is this geneticist in the 24th century? Culber is obviously not talking about Soong or Maddox. So yeah maybe we will get a cool connection!

I’m not thrilled with this connection at all. It basically implies that there have been no advances in robotics in 800 years. The galaxy should not be in some technological stasis just because a tv show isn’t covering that timeframe. The Burn only affected propulsion, no other advances should have been affected.

No I fully agree with you. As I said, Synths should just be a normal part of the 32nd century now. Over 800 years they should just have their own society in general I would think. We should probably even see more human cyborg type of characters like we saw with Airiam and even Rutherford. Now THAT said, maybe something else happened between the 24th and 32nd century that slowed that progress down somehow and I don’t mean the Burn. Maybe something happened in the 27th or 28th century. Who knows? That’s why when you go forward in the timeline, in this case MUCH more forward, its kind of easy to make up anything you want to justify a story point. But maybe nothing happened and there is now an entire planet full of them. We just don’t know either way yet.

But that said, when it comes to Gray, we’re not discussing a normal person either, he’s basically some type of remnant consciousness that is coming from the Tal symbiont, so we’re not just talking about a normal brain consciousness transfer either. How do you go about extracting something like that? In fact I don’t understand why Gray’s consciousness is so fully, well, conscious, when the others that is part of the Tal symbiont isn’t and more memory based like past Trills? So its already confusing.

But man, Star Trek is weird lol.

Am I the only one who thinks Airiam is coming back at some point? She just kind of drifted away into the galaxy, so she could be found and resuscitated. Probably (sigh) as a villain. Falls into a wormhole and goes back in time and somehow becomes the first Borg, some silly thing like that.

Back in second season I had so many crazy theories on Airiam and was hoping even after she died some of them were proven true like she was either the Red Angel or somehow her consciousness became part of the Data Sphere and we find out later basically Zora was really her. Yeah, none of that remotely happened. ;)

So I would like to think she’s coming back, but I kind of think they moved on.

shhhhh… don’t given them any ideas!!

I would hope they wouldn’t try to do the Borg origin at all. Especially making it “humans fault” or human centric would suck multiple magnitudes. Just keep it a mystery.

But that said, when it comes to Gray, we’re not discussing a normal person either, he’s basically some type of remnant consciousness that is coming from the Tal symbiont, so we’re not just talking about a normal brain consciousness transfer either. How do you go about extracting something like that?

An interesting theory. There was a DS9 episode (I forget the title) where Dax’s previous hosts briefly inhabited the bodies of the other crew members. That does imply a remnant consciousness. There was also that episode where Dax discovered a previous, mentally unstable host that she had not known about, and where that host caused Dax to develop a metal illness of sorts; that too implies a remnant consciousness.

This is the first sensible explanation I’ve heard for Gray beyond, “welp, ghost story!” Thank you!

You’re very welcome! :)

Still very curious on how they will do it!

I think the thing Jurati may be great at, and people from 800 years later may not, is transfering a biological consciousness to a positronic brain. That is the stuff Inigo Soong never mastered, and his plan was self-serving — to live forever. I’m not sure many roddenberrian humans would like that (Picard didn’t!), so the thing of mind transfering might have become stale, a temporary fad, at most, such as criogenics at our own time.

That maybe the breakthrough Culber needs, beside all the regular 32nd Century knowledge in IA and robotics…

I’m not surprised there’s been so few advances in robotics given that 800 additional years of medical technology could only barely give Detmer her eyebrow back.

Or Picard’s hair in the 24th Century, even though Bill Shatner got his hair back in the 20th…

This whole thing with Gray seems primed and ready to make zero sense. I hope I’m wrong, but this sounds awful.

It’s not Discovery if it actually makes sense man. ;D

I know, right? And who knows, maybe it will once it’s all revealed. I’m not going to hold my breath waiting on that to happen, though.

But hey, at least I get to watch it, which is more than most of the show’s fans outside North America can say. What a dropped ball that whole thing is!

Yeah I hope so too but I’m not holding my breath. You probably read my other post already, but the whole thing sounds so weird if they are now suggesting they can abstract a consciousness from a Trill symbiont from someone who has actually been dead for several years.

And of course we know they are just suppose to be memories of past lives of a host and not the actual consciousness of them. But hey, it’s Discovery, and like every nutty half brain idea this show comes up with, you just #$@# go with it and hope it will make a modicum of sense once they technobabble their way through it.

And yeah the international fans got royally screwed. If they announced it a month ago, they could’ve gotten more prepared. But to do this just days before it premieres (and no specific release date when they can watch it) is just shameful.

That abstraction-of-consciousness aspect is what’s giving me such pause. I guess I can kind of roll with it, since I accepted sentient holograms (a thing that doesn’t make much actual sense) in Treks past.

But also, if you’re going to do that with Gray, then surely you’re doing it from the symbiont’s memories. And surely the symbiont would object to that, because that’s not the way being joined works. Either way, that’s not Gray; that’s going to be a fake recreation of Gray. I guess the same is kind of true of Culber, though, and everyone ignored that after an episode or two. So hey, go for it, Disco, you doofus.

I think once again the “creatives” have made the same mistake…. by giving a character or set of characters a “life altering, meaningful, hugely important” development to their character, without actually letting us get to know them in their usual setting. For example, I watched a few scenes from Star Trek, West Wing and Battlestar Galactica recently. In each of those, there was a meaningful development to a character and when that character portrayed emotion I really felt it. When Spock was angry at Valaris (sic) swiping the phasor away, the look on his face meant more to me then that robot girl dying in Discovery last season. When I saw the late John Spencer nearly moved to tears during an episode where he had to confront the shame of his alcoholism becoming public, it felt more to me then Burnham/Spock taking the time…and oh my lord, so much time… to say they love each other and when I saw Starbuck (the latest one) nearly cry when Adama forgives her in the 1st season it meant more to me than when Tilly got promoted.

The point I’m trying to make is, I could have cared about Gray dying or having a new body or whatever, if I got to know them… (I believe the character is non-binary but if I got that wrong, apologies) … I would have cared genuinely about these changes. But frankly, I just don’t. The CLOSEST I got to caring was when Detmer was clearly suffering from PTSD… that could have been an amazing story line with complex threads and with real time and love going into writing. Instead it was here and gone before anyone had a chance to care and it was done in such a ham fisted way that the writing feels, I’m afraid to say, childish and prosaic. And its not just Discovery as well! Look at Picard… and the “character” of Raffi being estranged from her son… what could have been a deep a meaningful development in this characters life was shoved into a cluttered and disjointed series and then ripped out again before you could say “cut!”.

If we saw Burnham as an accomplished starfleet officer over several episodes or even an entire season, he committing mutiny would have seen as a shocking and meaingful development. So it’s clear from the 1st episode to the last season, the writers have no idea how to make people care about characters.

Wow, you hit the nail on the head in so many ways!

Like you, I don’t understand so much of the half cocked ‘character development’ they do on these shows? I (and many others) have made a lot of those complaints here. They don’t seem to do anything but the bare minimum on establishing internal conflicts with a lot of them and then just drop it. You pointed out the best two examples, Raffie and Detmer. They set them both up with this struggle the audience is suppose to identify with, the PTSD and Raffie’s separation from her family, and just dropped! Neither was ever brought up again. They just went on like it never happened and didn’t affect their characters in any way. It’s like someone just said they need to give them something to do for a few episodes and that was it. Just bizarre.

And another great example, but oddly flipped was how they treated Airiam. Since her name was brought up here, that was a the worst example of trying to instill emotion from your character. This was a character everyone wanted to know about the minute we saw her. We were so curious of what she was and how she got that way. We weren’t even sure was she an alein, robot or a human-cyborg for two seasons. She was in 20 episodes, had maybe a line or two in half of those. We FINALLY get actual background and development on her at the very end of season 2….just so they can pull a cheap emotion when they killed her off.

I remember how unbelievable that felt at the time. And I don’t think it really dawned on people how bad it was then because so many of us was convinced (as Bryant Brunette said) she was coming back. Her death was just a red herring. It had to be, right? No way you kill off what could potentially be one of the most interesting characters on the show in the same episode you bothered to tell us who she actually was…oh and suddenly besties with Tilly out of nowhere.

It really felt like someone said in the writers room, “Hey we need a big moment in this episode and kill off one of the known characters for people to ‘feel it’. Who? Oh how about that cyborg girl? But it’s not going to really sell since we haven’t bothered giving her anything but a name for two years. So let’s drop her entire life story in this episode and then kill her! Brilliant!”

For people who like these shows and claim others don’t because they just want to hate on ‘nuTrek’ seem to ignore these shows do have basic fundamental writing issues. It doesn’t mean everyone has to care about that, but for the ones who do, yeah, it’s a big problem with liking the shows more. And with PIC and DIS, the real issue is they are SO busy just trying to throw out their big world ending plots, sadly the characters are usually written in such a half way or that plays to melodrama and not real depth. That moment you mentioned with Spock slapping the phaser out of Valaris hand was earned because they spent the entire movie showing us how much the two genuinely cared for each other and both well developed. And they did that in under two hours.

LOL I started this thread a lot more positive and ended up not so positive. But this is why message boards exist, to hash things out.

Oh, yes, for sure the writers of Discovery are guilty of putting the impact before the punch. The majority of the emotions they try to convey on the series feel entirely unearned to me; which is a real shame given how great the cast is at conveying them. Imagine if the writing lived up to this cast! Ah, well.

Don’t even get me started on Raffi, who may be the single worst major character on all of Star Trek.

So true. Has been true since the first use of the spore-drive…

I agree. Im worried too. I didn’t like the Gray storyline in S3. And I have zero interest in a resurrection story. But, I guess I will wait to see what happens!

I liked Adira’s story quite well at the beginning, but Gray kind of ruined it for me by the end of the season. Plus, the more I think about it the more annoyed I am that a symbiont was able to be put in a human. Why do that? Why not just make Adira a Trill? There doesn’t seem to be any persuasive reason for this so far; it feels like yet another example of the people who write this show simply not caring about what’s been done on Trek previously. I mean, I know that’s crazy, because they all say otherwise in interviews, so … yeah.

As you say, though, we’ll see what happens.

The realistic answer is the writers are trying to find ways to ressurrect the characters because they don’t want to answer to a social media mob who decides what tropes can or can’t be used in shows. That is what happened with Culber and what is now happening with Gray and why they can’t really use the previous “rules” of trills and symbionts on Trek. Because technically if they do that, then they open a new can of worms where they can potentially ressurrect all of the previous trill hosts one way or another.

They open a “person” of worms. :)

I’ll go back to sleep now.

I think it would be a good idea for all the “Creatives” to switch off their social media feeds and lock themselves in a room with a bunch of old skool ST writers, surrounding themselves with lore (old casettes, new DVDs, some of the “better” books and magazines) and just write stories that make sense. The social media screamers get what they want…. smart, cohesive, lore-obiding stories, and creatives get what they need… space from the social media screamers.

For your international fans who have just been shafted – please avoid spoilers in your headings otherwise you will lose your audience too

As a (very disappointed) UK resident, thanks for this courtesy.

I think they’ve got to reveal that the Borg were farming the Federation for synth technology (ie they wanted to be able to make assimilation for innovation obsolete). The Borg could then making the hive mind totally alive, alive cubes, drones, be able to live on any planet and even live in space.
This explains FC where the real objective was to try to capture Data only to be disappointed he was limited and not fully capable of full imagination/innovation.
This also why V’ger wanted Decker to join with it.
Then the Fed bans the research.
That or people didn’t want to live forever or Picard was a total jerk and just hid the tech (or again to keep from the Borg?).
I would have made a Picard season about the Borg after synth Picard at any cost, invading everything to get him.
That or due to everyone living forever and uploading themselves into synths they overloaded the Fed so they ban it.

I’d assume the “Selayans” mentioned in Book’s log are meant to be the Selay from the TNG episode “Lonely Among Us.”