Interview: Christina Chong On How La’an Is (And Isn’t) Like Khan In ‘Star Trek: Strange New Worlds’

When it was announced that Strange New Worlds included a character named La’an Noonien Singh, fans immediately saw a connection to the Star Trek villain Khan Noonien Singh. It has been confirmed that La’an is a descendent of the infamous genetically enhanced Khan, and at the gold carpet premiere in New York, TrekMovie had a chance to talk to actress Christina Chong about that connection and more.

In terms of being a Noonien Singh, does the show explore why La’an would keep such an infamous name?

I don’t know how much I can reveal about that, but what you will see with La’an is the fact that she does carry similarities to Khan in the way she has natural abilities for combat, she’s tactical, she’s fierce, she’s a fighter. She has that hard exterior. But she is not at all like him in her purpose. She has a completely different purpose. Her purpose is to keep her new family alive, the Enterprise crew. They are her new family and they are all she has, actually.

And does she feel the burden of her family name?

Absolutely. One-hundred percent. She feels like the way I relate to it when you’re bullied as a kid. I was bullied for being Chinese as a kid. So in that way, you’re judged for who you are and what you look like and where you come from. I’m descended from a Chinese father. La’an is descended from Khan. But it’s getting rid of that feeling of how you’re not worthy or you’re not good enough, or that you should be painted with the same brush. She very much works through being painted with the same brush. She’s working through that. And she gets through the other side of it—starts to, at the end of season one. And then season two, who knows? Maybe she’s got enhanced genetic capabilities. I don’t know. [laughs]

Christina Chong as La’an

You are just over halfway through season two, right?

We’re on episode seven right now.

With Jonathan Frakes directing…

Yeah, Jonathan Frakes!

You have done a lot of action in your previous roles, was there new specific training for Star Trek action, or did they assume you know how?

I think they figured, ‘Yeah, she knows what she’s doing.’ I used to be a dancer as well, so the choreography side of it, I love that. I love figuring it out and putting it all together. But yeah, I didn’t really have anything special. It was also COVID as well. So there wasn’t really any time for training. We were in lockdown in London and it was seven days from finding out I had the role to being in Toronto. So there was no time.

But did they give you phaser training, at least?

Oh, yeah. That was like, “Uh, how do I do this? Is it like a gun?” Because obviously, I have never used a phaser before. But yeah, definitely on set there was some. I also remember the first time I used a tricorder, I was like, “Ethan, how do I do this?” [laughs] So yeah, they’ve been great. Ethan, Rebecca, and Anson have been great at helping us figure the world out for the first time.

Christina Chong at NYC premiere of Star Trek: Strange New Worlds (Paramount Plus)

And in terms of what you’ve already filmed so far, do you have a favorite episode so far?

Episode eight. Without a doubt. Episode eight, because my little Roonie Boonie is in it. My little dog. She’s a toy Cavapoo and she’s my dog. And I read the script for episode eight and I was like, “I feel like Runa could be in this.” So I asked Chris Fisher, our producer/director on set, “What do you reckon, Chris? And he was like, “I’ll pitch it to [co-showrunner] Henry [Alonso Myers].” I thought he wasn’t going to pitch it, but he did. And the next script the script came she was in it, like proper in it, she’s got close-ups and everything!

Christina’s dog

Last summer, presumably when they shot episode eight, Chong tweeted out a photo of her beloved dog and how she brought joy and smiles to the cast of Strange New Worlds.

Apparently, Runa has taken a liking to the series star.

More NYC SNW interviews to come

Stay tuned for more gold carpet interviews from the New York premiere of Strange New Worlds. And check out our earlier interviews with Strange New Worlds co-showrunner Henry Alonso Myers and executive producer Alex Kurtzman. And with stars Anson Mount and Rebecca Romijn.

Star Trek: Strange New Worlds debuts on Thursday, May 5 exclusively on Paramount+ in the U.S., Latin America, Australia and the Nordics. The series will air on Bell Media’s CTV Sci-Fi Channel and stream on Crave in Canada. In New Zealand, it will be available on TVNZ, and in India on Voot Select. Strange New Worlds will arrive via Paramount+ in select countries in Europe when the service launches later this year, starting with the UK and Ireland in June.

Find more stories on the Star Trek Universe.

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Wouldn’t Spock have remembered her and put two and two together when researching Khan after he was awakened? Scratching head here!

Yeah, that’s one thing that doesn’t make a lot of sense about her character’s existence.

Agreed this is what is confusing me, just like T’pring being here as I was thinking this could contradict Amok Time.

I am curious but a little worried how they will do it

So I went back and watched Amok Time. Although I always thought Spock said that he hadn’t seen her since the betrothal, I had evidently just inferred that. He doesn’t actually say it. So he could have met her in the interim, and just didn’t mention it when he was explaining the betrothal part.

That’s probably my biggest problem with this iteration of Trek. They try to include elements from the past and tie it all in, but they do such a bad job executing it. There is so much material in Trek and for whatever reason, the writers haven’t been the best at bridging things well. Discovery had issues with this – largely due to where the initial seasons take place. Picard also has issues with this despite it not being a prequel series.

Strange New Worlds looks like a great show. It is limited due to its setting and established canon. Bringing a descendant of Kahn into the mix feels silly. I’d be perfectly happy with this character and history if she had any other name. It’s not a deal breaker for me, and the show still looks interesting and I’m looking forward to it.

It makes one realise how smart Gene Roddenberry was in his insistence that TNG not reference TOS in those early days. It allowed TNG to be its own show and when it brought TOS characters and references later on they felt earned.

Excellent point, Neill. Something that really hadn’t occurred to me during the years TNG aired.

The attitude back then was different from now. Back then they intentionally did NOT want to reference the original show. It’s why it was set some 80 years later. To distance itself from it. To help it be it’s own thing. I’ve said before I was not a fan of that as I preferred them to stay in the TOS movie era for a new show but I understood why it was done. Now the attitude at Trek is that if they can make a link to an older show then they WILL do it. And a big reason for that is it is obvious that is what the fans want. Why do you think all the TNG cast is coming back for the final Picard season? Pretty sure that was not the original intent when the show was being planned.

Exactly. And when you think about it, it’s kind of asinine in general for us all as fans to be whining about a few minor canon inconsistencies when many of us are kind of demanding they do new series like SNW and Picard’s TNG Reunion season.

It’s a no win scenario for the writers — I feel for them! Canon is not meaningless, but we should focus on the big picture of canon and not sweat the small stuff like this cool new character who is descendant of Khan.

How is this a no-win situation?? What fan was begging to A. see a Noonien Singh descendant and B. Place them on the Enterprise??

This is their own weird obsession with Khan ONCE again. The irony is fans have been saying they DON’T want more Khan. This has been the case since STID. Most fans kept saying we don’t need him in the Kelvin movies, seriously. Just don’t do it. They put (sort of) put him in the movie anyway and we know how that worked out.

And here we are again.

They are only making their own problems. No one was remotely asking for this.

Hmm, you might be confusing the fan hatred (including mine) for the weird STID move with the White Brit version of Khan?

Excepting that, I want to see the Nick Meyer Khan limited series, I have read and really liked Mack’s Khan prequel novels, and I’m very exciting for Khan’s descendant to be in SNW.

I’m fine with more Khan, provide it’s not JJA’s “Peaky Blinders / Khan” mashup ridiculous character…lol

No tons of people didn’t want Khan in STID. That was made clear many times. Trekmovie even created polls about it multiple times and how many wanted Khan prior to STID. He never got more than single digits.

But yeah it help not only did they put Khan in, but then they put in someone who didn’t even act or resemble which begged the question why put him in at all then, but that’s been beaten to death of course.

Even the Khan show idea, you can feel the groans on the boards when it was discussed by most fans and probably a reason why it never got any real traction.

But this team seems oddly obsessed with a character most of the fanbase has moved on from long long ago.

Yea, because the crew was just staring the mission and it was way too early…plus the casting choice just mystified the F out of everyone. Yea, based on all that, I was one of the tons of people who didn’t want that.

And I think we would agree that most fans were really warm to the idea of the Khan Nick Myers story.

So it’s really about how they do it. And we really don’t know yet on SNW regarding this character. Perhaps by the end of the season she will be a fan fav and will be all over the Trek conventions in the next year?

I always hated the Nick Meyer Khan idea. But since it was suppose to be a 3 hour mini-series, it wouldn’t have been a big deal either. Most people didn’t like it when they thought it was another show. And yes it can still be good, it just doesn’t feel necessary to do either since we know the guy’s entire life story. I will say if they want back to the Eugenics war in the story then yeah more people would be into that idea.

And I’m not saying La’an the character won’t be good or interesting. She could be a great character. I just wish they gave her a different back story. She could even still be an augment and maybe a secret embryo that survived from Cold Station 12, but directly related to Khan himself is just fan service no fan was ever asking for.

That right there. I think this would be a bit easier to take if she was a leftover augment. Some sort of secret she had to protect or something. But noooo…. We have to have the link to the Khan man himself. (eyeroll)

When John Harrison announced he was KHAAAAAAN in STID, I nearly walked out of the theatre. It’s the only movie I’ve ever wanted to walk out of in disgust. So many interviews leading up to the movie promising it wasn’t Khan, and I recall Roberto Orci hanging out here saying the same things. Didn’t help that it wasn’t a very good movie either.

For me, I was prepared since I heard the news ahead of time. When I got over my initial eye roll I stayed open minded about it and thought “Well, I assume they will explain it in the movie.” NOPE! So it’s funny people think this situation will get some long thought out explanation and may not even be one at all. I’m just pretty cynical about a lot of this new stuff lately. But we’ll see!

BTW, very off topic but did you also use to post on IMDB? That was my old stomping ground until the message boards with ka-put but I use to time on the Kelvin movie boards, mostly STID and Beyond. There was someone with the same handle there on those boards too.

I knew it was Khan 6 months before the movie came out and couldn’t believe how so many fans were in denial here and elsewhere.

We can add that Khan prequel series to the list of David Mack Star Trek series that really would make great limited streaming series, although I think Vanguard be the most likely to happen.

As I said when they borrowed Control for S2 of Discovery and decided to validate the Kelvin movie version of the Prime Universe future in Picard rather that using the best of the Litverse (Destiny), with the novels carrying the fans for nearly a decade and a half, if the stories onscreen don’t hold up to the stories in the books, better to put aside the egos (and the creator cut of the residuals) and actually use the great IP in Mack’s books that ViacomCBS ALREADY OWNS.

At this point, I can’t think of any logical reason why none of Mack’s series have been adapted.

Hey TG47 it’s great to see you posting again! :)

It seems like you disappeared around the time Picard started but I know you have a life. I am curious about your thoughts on Picard this season. I think you already know mine and it isn’t good lol.

I have never read any Star Trek novels before but I know how much fans like you like Mack’s work. I don’t understand why they don’t adapt any of the novels for TV or films either, especially the way fans praise them. But I guess they have their reasons.

Yea, I love the Khan prequels, and would love to see it on P+ some day.

Like you, I am fine with more Khan, provided it’s done right.

[blockquote] We can add that Khan prequel series to the list of David Mack Star Trek series that really would make great limited streaming series,[/blockquote]

The Khan prequel books were actually written by Greg Cox, unless there’s also a separate series by David Mack that I’m not aware of.

Thanks for the correction, you are right, of course. I have them somewhere in my cluttered house.

I have no issues with them making links to past Trek but how they are doing it is feeling absurd. Having the TNG cast doesn’t create any canon problems at all so that’s fine, it works. But having a Noonien Singh on the freaking Enterprise with other characters who knew nothing about Khan in Space Seed is just ridiculous. There is no reason for her to be on this show, none. It only creates canon issues, not highlight them and that’s the problem with so much of these new writers started with giving Spock a sister in Discovery.

It’s like they think audience want all these ridiculous connections for fan service. No fans want good stories with good characters first and foremost. They only put that into question when they do things like this.

I disagree, but I totally get where you are coming from. This is exactly the way I felt about what I think was the biggest fan service dumpster fire of all time — the Enterprise Klingon Augment Virus two-parter. lol

BTW, in WOK, Chekov remembered Khan, but Checkov was not serving on the E at the time of that ep, so this has happened before.

Again, at least it’s orders of magnitude better that White Brit Khan. And at least it’s not as head scratching as to why was this supposedly famous first captain of the E (Archer) and his ship (NX-01 E) were never mentioned in 35 years of Trek eps previously — you don’t see Kurtzman making up new Enterprises and new Enterprise Captains like Berman had the audacity to completely F with canon on, thank god.

I didn’t like the Augment Virus story line and found it unnecessary but it didn’t change canon either.

THIS is changing canon. That’s a big difference.

I’m not defending the Khan remembering Chekhov thing, but you also know that was just a mistake. They clearly just didn’t realize the character wasn’t on the show then. This is apples and oranges.

And Kurtzman gave Spock a sister lol. I mean, that’s messing with canon in a way no one EVER did before. And it looks like it will keep going in this kind of direction.

I’ll wait to see how they do it (as if I have a choice lol) but outside of pulling the usual making it ‘classified’ (A Discovery tradition) I don’t know how it won’t contradict Space Seed in a big way.

Just like Spock/Burnham it’s creating situations no one was ever asking for. I just don’t get the point? Enterprise, Discovery and now it looks like SNW all share these type of issues sadly and why I’m not a huge fan of prequels in the first place.

I know the point. It’s because these writers aren’t confident they can create fascinating and interesting stories with people who mostly stand on their own. They have to throw in a safety net of a link to something in the past to hook in the fans who clearly want it. I find it lazy, myself. But that is the reason. It’s OBVIOUS the Spock-Burnham connection was made in case the show stumbled. And it did the very first season so they went to that lifeline right away. Consider they said you would never see Spock and all that. That was true only if the show worked.

“I know the point. It’s because these writers aren’t confident they can create fascinating and interesting stories with people who mostly stand on their own.”

I’ll buy that. But then again, when many fans “drool” all over the character canon connections on LDS most weeks, and also view the best part of DSC as the season with Pike’s E, I totally get why they aren’t super confident to not bring in these canon character connections. Fans are fickle — like today, it’s oh no, we don’t like this particular canon character connection, but tomorrow night it’s going to be thanks for giving us the cannon connections we wanted.

They are damned if they do and damned if they don’t.

“And Kurtzman gave Spock a sister lol. I mean, that’s messing with canon in a way no one EVER did before. And it looks like it will keep going in this kind of direction.”

But no, Harve Bennett gave us Sybock. See, right there you say “in a way no one EVER did before” you unequivocally prove the broader point I have been making today that a lot of fans who are acting all shocked like Kurtzman is doing something new here so easily forget that this has all happened time and time again in the Berman, Bennett and Roddenberry eras. I mean you basically just said giving Spock a sister is a canon mess that no one has done before, completely forgetting that Sybock was the same deal, right?

And I would argue that the Bennett thing is a worse canon brainfart, because Michael was adopted and lived with them for what, 10 years only, maybe?

Sybok didn’t lead his own show AND was a Starfleet officer on top of that. He was in one bad movie and disappeared after that. That’s why Burnham was worse MUCH worse!

What’s funny is they didn’t learn from that lesson but doubled down. Doing an idiotic thing because someone else did it first doesn’t make the argument stronger…at all! Especially since Sybock has all been wiped from canon.

I still think giving Spock a sister was one of the WORST ideas Discovery done (and they had a lot of bad ideas lol). It’s part of the reason they had to throw the ship a thousand years into the future just so Spock can pretend she died and never spoken of again. Yeah Sybock was bad, Burnham was worse! At least they got to kill off that mistake. With Burnham, they literally just pretend she stopped existing lol. Man, this show!

I get your opinion there, but I will point out that if they hadn’t figured out a plot device like that to bring in Spock and the Enterprise into a core part of a DSC season, then all Star Trek fans would not be getting to see the premier of SNW tomorrow.

Maybe it wasn’t the best possible plot device, but it got us SNW. All Sybock got us was a really bad movie that most of us would like to forget.

Here is the thing about Sybok though. Kirk directly addressed the elephant in the room in that movie by pointing out Spock never told him of a brother.

We all know Chekov in WoK is a continuity error. I recall Koenig himself said he knew but if he spoke up he knew he would lose lines! So he clammed up. And honestly, and this is the real key, issues like that don’t matter too much if the overall product is GOOD!!!! And there are other plot holes in the movie

BTW from my POV the biggest fan service dumpster fire of all time is the entire Lower Decks show.

“BTW from my POV the biggest fan service dumpster fire of all time is the entire Lower Decks show.”

I stand corrected. You are 100% correct. Nothing else comes close.

I would argue Chekhov wasn’t even a continuity error. Just because Space Seed didn’t show him doesn’t mean he wasn’t there. No ep of TOS or canon references Chekhovs stardate as his first day serving on Enterprise.

Unless you buy Koenig’s joke that Chekov met Khan in the head… Then no. Khan never saw Chekov and should have never recognized him even if he was on the ship elsewhere.

Koenig himself basically confirmed it was a continuity error though.

TNG referenced TOS often in the early days. One of the very first episodes was a sequel to “The Naked Time.”

And that’s all it was, references. This is dropping in a character as a full time cast member and somehow pretending her entire back story won’t be part of the show. If that wasn’t the case, why is she even there? These people just can’t help themselves.

Yet it’s weird how many people here today seem to have forgotten that freaking Dr. McCoy was in the first ep on TNG? An obvious cameo handover from TOS to TNG.

I feel like I am seeing a bunch of fan comments today that are inconsistent with Trek series history. It’s human nature though — people get sentimental about the old shows and eps and tend to forget the issues that bothered them years back on those shows/eps.

How is Dr. McCoy showing up on the Enterprise breaking canon? Dude, your ‘arguments’ are getting silly now. No one cares about a cameo or having old characters show up, it’s about a character whose entire existence makes NO sense from what we know about TOS.

They have been doing ridiculous things on these shows from the start and why fans have issues with these shows. If you and others don’t. that’s fine of course. But it’s funny these writers know the fanbase they have and yet keep doubling on this stuff.

That’s not my point. I was commenting on several people today (e.g. Neill Stringer) commenting that TNG did not have connective tissue to TNG early on. It’s like they forgot that McCoy was in Ep 1. That’s all.

I have no issues with the McCoy scene — I like it and I DO NOT think it breaks canon.

OK, I apologize then. Yeah it’s so many posts so the debates are getting a bit muffled.

No worries. BTW, just saw the Kenobi trailer…wow!

Yet after The Naked Now there were no major references for a few years. Ira Behr recalls the difficulty of being able to mention Spock’s name in the episode Sarek, and this episode featured Spock’s dad.

The Naked Now was the one and only time they brought up the “old Enterprise” in the first few seasons. They didn’t even mention any characters names. I think they did it because one of the things “The Naked Time” did on TOS was give a little character depth right away so the audience could get a little idea of what made some of these people tick. TNG used it the same way.

Well Dr. McCoy was actually in the first ep, Encounter at Farpoint, and he’s in a rather lengthy scene with Data that is a very sappy passing of the torch from TOS to TNG, and the scene ends with them referring to the Enterprise.

I guess they didn’t specifically mention “McCoy” or directly say “old Enterprise,” but that’s a technicality.

OK… But I consider that cameo more of a conceit than a real honest to goodness reference for story purposes. I mean, compare that to Relics, that came some 6 seasons later.

DeForest Kelley was in the first episode. How is that not referencing?

McCoy was a passing the baton moment. Like Picard on Emissary and Quark on Caretaker.

Also notice McCoy was never referred by name.

But Ira Behr said there was resistance to mention Spock in the episode “Sarek”

That’s all legalezze. It’s a two minute scene with McCoy and Data, and everyone watching knew McCoy was being sappy about the old Enterprise, and everyone knew it was McCoy.

It it quacks like a duck, flies like a duck and swims like a duck, it’s most probably a duck. Yea, the were referencing the old E with one of the old E’s characters main characters over the course of scene, obviously.

I love how comments like this act like this didn’t occur in the past Trek eras. Like Alex Kurtzman invented character canon inconsistencies that screw with Trek timeline events? Come on, man!

This has always happened, and will continue to happen. Canon is guidance, but each iteration of the franchise does change it — hopefully it happens in small ways only like this example. It is what it is.

Well, the difference is that these canon inconsistencies usually weren’t right there in the names of new characters. Rather than fudging with the details of a past episode, like Khan meeting Chekov, this time it feels moreover like a marketing scheme.

Like someone said we’re still getting big numbers with this Khan character. Our analytics suggest that using his name, or at least part of the name, might help spark interest in this series, along with Pike, Spock, Number One, Enterprise, etc. It’s spreadsheet thinking.

For me, personally, I can go either way with this canon stuff. Canon schmanon. But this particular instance seems a bit patronizing to fans.

Also novels can work a way round it.

You mean like coming up with a play on Spock’s name, say Sybock, because they know that fans really respond to Vulcans?

Or coming up with and implausible plot device to bring Spock back to life after the actor departed because it was critical to the movie box office?

Been there, done that. Nothing new here.

They never established Chekov’s service record being at odds with his meeting Khan. Not trying to use any pretzel logic here, but it’s reasonable to assume that he was onboard, even though the actor doesn’t appear in the episode.

I don’t like using the Stardates as evidence since they were just making up those dates as they went along, but Chekov is in “Catspaw”, which has an earlier Stardate than “Space Seed.” He was onboard the ship if you accept the stardates.

Catspaw: 3018.2
Space Seed: 3141.9

Koenig himself basically confirmed it was a canon error.

So much for canon being “meaningless”…lol

You know… you should really look the term “canon” up. Every time you try to “gotcha” me about my canon stance, you come off not only as being stalkerish, but also confused.

It’s a shame this site doesn’t have a way for people to block others. The way One Lion follows me from thread to thread is creepy.

A lot of us been begging for a blocking feature for years. That would go a loooong way and cut down on the silly back-and-forth that’s done here with people you have no interest in talking to.

I would love to have that feature. There is nothing worse than someone getting personal with you in a juvenile fashion just because you raise a technical issue with them on their Star Trek remarks. I should know, as I use to be “that guy” a Trek fan lifetime ago…which I guess means I should be more sympathetic to this type of behavior.

OK I will try harder to ignore that type of behavior and just move on.

I’ve been thinking the other way: Since Khan wasn’t that well-known (???) in Space Seed without research or immediatly recognized, why should it affect La’an being a descent of him 260 years later?

100% this.

Actually I read that as Khan was well known but the story was he was defeated and the fact that scores of them escaped in the sleeper ships was hidden from the public. There was no reason Kirk & Co would think this was Khan and only checked out the story after becoming curious.

Actually, it turned out that Scotty, for one, was totally familiar with him. They just weren’t initially aware of who it was that they’d managed to pick up.

And I don’t know why fans, one day out from the premiere of this show, have convinced themselves that the producers don’t have an explanation for this character’s existence. (Now whether it will be a good explanation is anyone’s guess.)

I think the easiest thing to do would be send La’an Khan forward in time a millennium or so at the end of the series and have everybody else pretend she didn’t exist so that universe doesn’t implode ;)

It’s brilliant!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

You should be a writer for this show Corinthian7! I think they would go for an idea like this!

Kirk seemed to have realised who Khan was too.

The other thing is that some commenters here are mistaken about Eugenics Wars era-Khan’s place in human history. There was an entire scene in Space Seed where the conversation between Kirk, Scotty and McCoy (along with a somewhat outraged Spock) made it very clear that 23rd century humans regard Khan as a controversial historical autocrat but not a villain; Kirk and Scotty even admit to admiring Khan as a historical figure.

So the closest real-life equivalent of Khan is Julius Caesar, not Stalin or Hitler etc.

Christina Chong’s remarks about La’an “feeling not worthy or not good enough” and being “painted with the same brush” can be interpreted in different ways — especially if the “baggage” of carrying Khan’s name and bloodline isn’t regarded as a stigma but the legacy of a Julius Caesar-type ancestor as one of the towering figures of Earth’s history. That could certainly cast quite a long shadow of high expectations, as least where other humans and La’an herself are concerned.

But as you’ve rightly said, it would be best if fans don’t jump the gun but wait for the show, rather than prematurely jumping to conclusions either way.

Just imagine it as a reboot. If TPTB insist that it isn’t one they shouldn’t put that many head scratchers in it.

agree. I’d much rather if they had just started Disco as a new universe and took it from there and then differences are fine. Sure – having three universes is a little weird, but they could have saved themselves from looking like they just don’t care about things like continuity.

I feel like I’m going to have no choice but to do just that when watching SNW. Otherwise these canon violations are going to drive me absolutely nuts. I have to say, things like this ALREADY popping up are not giving me a good feel prior to the premiere.

People forget that these are shows and it’s a fictional universe, not historical footage. We also don’t know how the Soong character will fit in yet. Just because Spock later meets her ancestor doesn’t mean he has to say “I served with your descendent a few years ago”. Sometimes people wind themselves up over a line from over 50 years ago instead of just enjoying the story in front of them. Is DS9 a different universe from TNG because Trills were retconned for DS9? No, you accept it as a retcon and move on.

It’s just annoying that TPTB claim in every fluff interview how important continuity is to them but then make retcons for no good reasons.

Actually, Spock did tell Khan that. Right after the bathroom incident with Chekov!🤣

Been saying since Discovery they should’ve just rebooted the show from that point on and it cuts down the complaints by 80%. But to keep pulling these ridiculous ideas and pretend it fits into PU canon is eye rolling to say the least.

Agreed Captain. This is the most puzzling character addition, and even distracting to a degree.
There seems to be a desire to tie Khan to everything. Personally, I would have preferred they flesh out underdeveloped race (like they’re doing with the Andorians). Another Deltan would have been interesting.

Could they really do much with the Deltan in a PG-13 show?

They introduced Deltans in TMP and that movie is rated G. And they just like sex. It’s not like Star Trek hasn’t shown people in bed before. They don’t have to be walking around naked or anything.

Yes but this is a full on series. Eventually they would have to get into the Deltan culture in some fashion. But I made that comment tongue planted party in cheek.

OK, no worries!

Khan is like Trek’s Joker. TPTB just can’t help themselves.

Who says he did not? Episodes do not follow every second of every character’s life and conversations.

Do you see the resemblance? I don’t. And the guy they found in space was “just Khan…” Maybe there are a lot of Khans in the future. The same goes with Zeframs… it took a while to link good ol’ Cochrane with “just Zefram” in “Metamorphosis”.

Reminds me of Berman force-fitting in the NX-01 and Archer, yet TMP established as canon that the previous Enterprise was the XCV-330, and also there had never been a reference from and TOS and TNG ep or movie to Captain Archer which is really hard to believe if you take the timeline too seriously (like I do, lol).

And then there is Chekov remembering Khan…don’t get me started on that on. lol

That sort of thing doesn’t bother me. No one was saying that was ALL the Enterprises. And more importantly…. ST: E did not exist when TMP was made. So it wouldn’t have been there anyway. I guess they could CG in the NX-01 in one of those images on the Director’s cut…

That and that ship is still part of canon. It just came before the NX-01 did which was made clear in STID. So was one of the early Enterprises as the movie stated. I don’t see that a problem at all.

Yea, later in Enterprise the papered over this canon-rewrite with and ep the relegated the XCV-330 to a test ship. So they fix this arrogant canon change by later have a BS app that codifies their canon change.

“XCV-330gate” LOL

But it was stupid canon to break. You could have had the same show. Just make the NX 01. Be the XcV and have it be a ring ship. Done and done.

Agree to disagree. I had zero problems with it. I do not consider very small production issues like blurry photos of old Enterprise’s in a feature made long before any of the Berman shows existed to be something they really NEED to stick to like glue.

LOL, I have the Eaglemoss XL model of it with the Starships Guide that goes with it, which includes the history of it from TMP to why it wasn’t used in Enterprise. It’s awesomely bold and looks so much better than the derivative, cluttery mess of junk known as the NX-01


So your are Starfleet, and you are rebuilding the flagship of the fleet, the Enterprise, and you decide to put a commemorative display of the past Enterprises. So you put in TOS Enterprise, the original sailing ship Enterprise, a military aircraft carrier, and then to round out Starfleet E’s you deliberately don’t include the famous NX-01, which played out such a big role in early Federation/Starship history and which was captained by the famous Admiral archer…but instead include this XCV-330? That just sounds silly! LOL

I have a real hard time buying that, and I have never heard a good explanation from anyone on why I should by that argument.

They’ll probably just handwave it, just like they “reconciled canon” in Discovery S2 by making it “top secret”. Honestly I’m not counting on much. They don’t care.

I hope to God the Khan connection works/make sense. I’m trying to be positive here…

I hope so too but I just have no faith it will.

Same, but considering their record on how they reconciled other canon issues (that THEY created), I’m not particularly hopeful.

It’ll take a huge amount of suspension of disbelief that Spock and Uhura didn’t bother to mention in “Space Seed” that they served with a descendant of Khan.

Yes it certainly will.

maybe they didnt care. like in Space Seed whats spock gonna do when he find out hes Khan Nooiean Singh? – immediately Space Book the descendant he worked with and be like ‘hey ur great great grand father is tryin kill us yo!’ (maybe he did do that lol)

They totally did mention it. It was offscreen so you didn’t see it. Episodes do not follow every second of every character’s life and conversations.

That’s a feeble explanation. Using that logic, literally anything can be ignored, in which case there’s no point in even having continuity between stories.

Seems very similar to Alara and Talla from The Orville.


And that’s EXACTLY why they went that route! 😕

Why even bother with these kinds of gimmicks? You know they are just going to screw it up.

I agree. I wish they would just think of new ideas instead of trying to rehash old ones. We’ll see…

It tells me this staff have little faith in their ability to tell original stories with original characters. That they feel the need for “safety nets’.

I’m all cool with this character, love the actress.. and I think I would have gone for her related to Khan too…. but you can’t help but think you could have your cake and eat it too by making her related to say Joachim from the Eugenics Wars.
I mean you just basically ignored the Eugenics Wars in Picard and now you are going to play the difficult game of her being related to Khan but it being not a big enough deal to screw up Space Seed? Okay….

There is nothing in Picard that says the eugenics wars did not happen in the 90s…just like how when Voyager traveled to the late 90s there was no mention of the Eugenics Wars.

That was some war eh!??

It is ridiculous to have this character. First of all, why? Why do they need to do this? They don’t have any other story potentials? Please.

Next, Spock would absolutely remember her.

Finally, all this talk about her having genetic abilities is just ridiculous. She would likely be 7 – 10 generations removed from Khan. There would no longer be any extra abilities. And how many relatives of past conquerors have any notoriety? Do relatives of Napolean have that as their mantra? Again, please.

That’s my point. Even in today’s society having a relation to a known figure in ancient history is considered more of an interesting oddity than anything else. What can they do with her in a time where it is even LESS of a thing in society?

Exactly! I am descended from Mayflower passengers. I’m so far removed from that ancestor that it’s really just an “interesting oddity” that I bring up at Thanksgiving and maybe one or two other times a year it comes up. I have a feeling this will be a defining characteristic.

Also, only a very small fraction of my genetic code is theirs. Heck, I’m as tall as my dad, and he’s only one generation removed from me. My parents both wear glasses (as do I), but my brother has better than 20/20 vision.

There’s two possibilities:

  1. Nearly every generation for the last ~200 years has been Augments, with little non-Augment DNA being introduced.
  2. Augment DNA (somehow, through the power of “science”) always overwrites non-Augment DNA.

Well, relatives of Napoleon do have a certain cache in France. But Khan I would think would be more comparable to Stalin. Yes, there are descendants of Stalin, but most are not proud of it and most changed their name.

Just to reiterate a longer comment I posted upthread, Khan is not comparable to Stalin but someone like Julius Caesar, a controversial real-life historical figure who elicits mixed feelings or actual admiration in many modern-day people (depending on their perspective). Space Seed had a scene focusing on a detailed conversation between the main bridge officers making this basic point. Kirk, Scotty and McCoy expressed admiration for the historical Khan and even explained their reasons by listing Khan’s positive traits, albeit with the caveat of also admitting to the “appalling” human streak of admiration for benevolent autocrats. They certainly wouldn’t do this if Khan was equivalent to Stalin.

It’s obviously going to depend on how SNW depicts things, but La’an’s “baggage” isn’t necessarily something negative but the burden of having a famous and widely-admired (albeit controversial) overachiever for a direct ancestor. Some people in that situation would just be proud of it, others would feel it’s a hell of a lot to live up to.

I feel like the dumbest part of it is that she still has the same last name as Khan…like, it’s been what, 300 years? People marry other people! It’s so, so ridiculous to think they retained a name like that for so many centuries.

To be fair, perspectives on descendents of “past conquerors” (or ancestors in general) depend on the part of the world you’re from. Historical lineages are still a very big deal in some cultures. But it’s correct that this isn’t supposed to be a big deal for most humans by Star Trek’s 23rd century, whether the ancestor is famous or notorious.

The genetic stuff…Well, sometimes traits do run in families, even centuries later. It depends on how dominant those genes are and how much the families have historically intermarried with people with similar traits.

As for Khan, being genetically engineered as a “superman”, maybe his genes were deliberately “supercharged” in some way so that some of his traits/abilities are inherited and dominant down the generations. I’m just guessing here, of course ;) But it wouldn’t be surprising if SNW has that kind of pseudoscientific explanation for La’an’s abilities.

Question: I watched an interview with the actress last night and she said her character had a secret genetic capability she was hiding. How could she hide her genetic abilities if she had to go through starfleet medical testing with 23rd century medical technology not finding out?

How did Bashir?

He not only came 100 years later but his enhancement was his mind. Seems reasonable that given the advances in the science over that time and that it was his brain he of all people would have the smarts to hide his skills.

Bashir wasn’t a full augment. He was made smarter and had better visual coordination but he couldn’t pick up someone with one hand or anything.

She probably used the same method that Tyler did to hide the fact he was a Klingon. ;)

I’ve figured out her special enhancement: 2.5 DIMENSIONAL THINKING


Lorca, Darvin and Bashir.

next? (I’m sure I can come up with more given time)

This is a comment for TrekMovie folks. Thank you, first of all, for keeping us informed and fostering this community. Even though I am about to say a “but”, I am genuinely thankful and love what you do.

As I read this article, though, and then googled “NYC SNW premiere”, I found that there is this whole multi-week event at the NYC Paley Center, which on May 1, included a screening of the first 2 episodes of SNW… open to the public!

Why didn’t TrekMovie preview this? I mean, we get previews of cruises, and books, and merchandise, and even random obscure auctions. But a pre-screening of SNW open to the public! Plus a whole exhibition devoted to Star Trek… No article about that? Or did I miss it?

I am so bummed I missed it. Fortunately, it seems the exhibit keeps going through May, so I can at least still catch that.

Thank you both for answering! I hope to catch the exhibit, of course. I mostly meant the Premiere on May 1, and the sale of public tickets on April 22. But understood–links were out there and it was said in the podcast (per Anthony’s next post). I missed that. Thanks again.

It actually was mentioned during a podcast 2 weeks ago and linked here on the site.

But as Laurie said, It was the same thing that we already showed in our coverage from Chicago.

We need an episode where Mr. Arex lends a hand or three.


Then why keep the name? You know, there’s no shame in changing it when it carries that kind of baggage. I remember hearing somewhere that before WW2 there were around a dozen Hitlers listed in the New York phone book. After the war, there were zero. Just sayin, La’an.

The funny thing is, if they hadn’t included the Noonien part of her name, nobody would have much of an issue. Sure, we would wonder if there was a connection to Khan, but Singh is such a common name there would be a reasonable doubt. And they could’ve had fun teasing us whether she is his descendant or not for a while.

Oh well.

Yup, big ol facepalm on keeping a highly-charged hyphenated name for 300 years. Maybe they’re a family of fascists and proud of it?

This feels like a very BAD creative choice for a character. Honestly there really isn’t much you can do with this character. You can’t have her be ostracized because that doesn’t line up with human society of that time. You can’t have her with genetically enhanced abilities because it has been shown time and time again that those who have been genetically enhanced start feeling superior to those around them. Unless that is the point of the character. But then, it would be a repeat of what we have already seen before.

I suppose it is possible something will be done with her that has not been considered that is interesting. But based on this interview it sure doesn’t sound like it. This element of the show does not bode well.

Not as bad as having, I don’t know, Spock’s sister or something. But agree.

Or Captain Archer and the NX-01 Enterprise.

What was wrong with that? It didn’t contradict anything.

Yeah I don’t understand that either? How does Archer contradict anything? We knew Starfleet was around in the 22nd century. And he wasn’t Kirk’s grandfather or anything. (Thank Kahless!)

In TMP, they show a display in the crew lounge that has the previous Enterprises’s on it, and the starship they show before TOS Enterprise is not the NX-01; it’s a completely and radically different design, called the XCV-330. This bold and cool design was suppose to be the ship for Enterprise, and Okuda and Drexler based their initial design on it, but Berman wanted a completely different design done from scratch, so he arrogantly retconned canon by directing those two to redesign it. So they then tried in their second design to present something that still looked a bit like the XCV-330 to be consistent with Roddenberry’s intention, but Berman overruled that design as well an ordered them to start from scratch on a completely new design — so he retconned canon just because he had the power position to do that.

Regarding Archer, yes, a lawyer would say that Archer doesn’t contradict anything, but it strains credibility to me that — given all of the key, formative major events and missions that Captain Archer made, then earning him a promotion to one of the most famous Admirals in Starfleet history — that he is not referenced by any Star Trek character in 35 years of episodes. Surely they could have picked one of the many names of previous Starfleet officers or at least their family names mentioned in various eps over the previous 35 years to make this more believable. I realize this is the weaker of my two points here, but in combination with the starship issue above, it does again point out the footloose-and-fancy-free way that Berman treated canon.

Berman came up with the entire Enterprise series idea without much regard to canon — he just created stuff in the series because it looked and sounded good. For example, all the tech and the “universe look” itself in Enterprise looks much more like a prequel to TNG then a prequel to TOS. Where are the clean-lined ships that we saw in TOS? The ships all looks like pre-TNG ships, not pre-TOS ships. He didn’t care to get it right. He preferred to create his own canon just because he could.

Yeah I know what the XCV-330 is, I actually stayed awake long enough for that part lol. It’s another Enterprise and came before the NX-01, which no one is arguing, so I don’t really follow your argument? It’s still part of canon and that was made clear in STID it was an earlier Earth ship and probably before Starfleet was a thing. It doesn’t mean the NX-01 never existed either. And obviously it didn’t at the time because there was no show in 1979. But it fits in canon well now and STID did a great job fitting both ships in the timeline since everything before the Kelvin incident is still considered Prime Universe history too.

And no offense, it look really ugly to me. I glad it wasn’t the main ship on Enterprise. I didn’t love the NX-01 originally either but it looks more like a Starfleet ship.

As for Archer, the character didn’t exist until the show started. And he was a character from 1-200 years prior from TOS and TNG. He was now a footnote in history by now. It’s not like they ever talked about anyone in that time period before. If they did, then they would’ve just named the character after that guy I imagine. That was the beauty of setting the show so earlier than the others, there was really no hard canon beyond the Romulan war.

But hey, that’s why I say over and over it’s the reason I hate prequels and wish they stay away from ALL of it. But here we are lol. Just keep going forward you wouldn’t have nearly these debates over past canon.

But writers and producers like putting their own stamp on things. That’s why Spock has a sister and a Noonien Singh served on the freaking Enterprise a few years before they ran into Khan.

They used the TOS movie designs as the official TOS style. I thought Enterprise did pretty well as a prequel for both TOS and TNG.

Sorry… But it sounds to more to me that you are annoyed they didn’t use that version used in a 1979 movie more as the ship for the Enterprise show. It doesn’t contradict anything. There is nothing that says that immediately preceded the original E or if there were even 4 versions before it. There were only rooms for what… 5 or 6 images so they chose 5 or six of the many Enterprises that came before the refit. It’s really a stretch at all. Far less than Burnahm being Spock’s adoptive sister.

Admittedly I am pleased with the production design of Enterprise. It really felt like it could evolve into what we saw on TOS over time. Unlike the crap show we got with Discovery. So I’m going to have to disagree on this one.

Well it’s a very slight contradictions but it contradicts TMP when Decker showed the history of Ships named Enterprise.

All he did was say that all those ships were named Enterprise. He said nothing that they were all predecessors to the current Enterprise.

If this were a legal case in court, sure you win that case. That and $3 will buy you a cup of coffee.

Common sense-wise though, it strains credibility as to why the famously important to the Federation founding NX-01 captained by the famous Admiral Archer, would not be proudly displayed on the commemorative display of famous past Enterprises.

I mean, the starship has been built and paid for by Starfleet, for Christ’s sake — of course the NX-01 is going to be there. I mean, can you imagine how embarrassing that would be if members of the Archer family were on board and they didn’t see their grandad’s ship.

So putting on my BS filter, I am not buying that that Starfleet would not have the NX-01 on that display. Of course the NX-01 would be on that display!

True…but still bad enough.

A contradiction? in Star Trek? This is impossible, clearly <Insert hated showrunner> is incompetent!

We’ve never seen instances of characters remembering other ones that weren’t on the show yet. Khan definitely didn’t remember Chekhov in TWOK the Holy.

Exactly, and I was beginning to think I was the only person today who doesn’t have this perspective. It’s like people really think that this approach is something new that Berman, Bennett, Rodenberry would never had done. Lol

I don’t think the issue is necessarily this being something new, but rather used again instead of going in a totally original or different way. I think people here are just annoyed that they had to go to this well again after Burnham and all the other instances mentioned.

The Burnam-Spock thing got us SNW, and that part of that season of DSC with Pike and company I would say was the high point of DSC for most fans. And the near-weekly canon character connections on LDS are drooled over by many fans (not me).

So what is P+ suppose to think given this sort of fan response? Obviously, they will not conclude that they need to be more original and not do more canon-based characters.

I’m not saying Berman, Bennett, Roddenberry wouldn’t have done it. But till Enterprise they always moved forward. Canon is much easier when you look forward and not back.

Here’s a fun advice I’ll give to all “canonistas” (such as I) out there:

After watching a new SNW, BEFORE jumping to conclusions, watch the pertinent linked episode from TOS. It will help you separate real canon from “conclusions derived from what we’ve seen before that somehow become a notion of canon in our minds.” Because SNW (I’ve watched the first five) is threading VERY CAREFULLY, in ways that somehow may seem to condradict canon, but actually don’t. Including pertaining that alien race Akiva loves to mention. You’ll see. :-)

I appreciate that, Salvador. So they’re walking a tight-wire, not surprised.

What, you mean fans shouldn’t assume the worst and complain Kurtzman is f’ing everything up with canon? Wow, you have some nerve suggesting that.

/s ;-)

Love the appeal to assessment based on actual evidence rather than headcanon and/or whatever “Blish” added in the Starlogs or gamma canon authors of the myriad of TOS novels have added to colour in the gaps of what’s actually been onscreen.

Which outlet do you work for?

“But she is not at all like him in her purpose. She has a completely different purpose. Her purpose is to keep her new family alive, the Enterprise crew. They are her new family and they are all she has, actually.“

Khan in Into Darkness:
“My crew is my family, Kirk. ls there anything you would not do for your family?”

Khan also exhibited deep affection for his crew and followers in Space Seed and TWOK.

Not a big deal. There are plenty of people who are related to tyrants, infamous gangsters and master criminals. The only problem with this, is that it’s too on the nose. Had this new character been just “La’an Singh” instead of “La’an Noonien Singh” (and KHAN isn’t a first name; it’s a title, and “Noonien” is a male first name, btw), this issue wouldn’t be so controversial. Oh, well. Blame it on the timeline changes caused by the Temporal Cold War, I guess.

Looking forward to the show but this is a HUGE red flag of what I suspect will be many unfortunately.

More proof supporting the idea that the current Star Trek writers lack creativity.