The second season of Star Trek: Strange New Worlds has already been filmed, and on Star Trek Day, TrekMovie had a chance to talk to co-showrunner Henry Alonso Myers about what fans can expect when the series returns.
For season 2, would you say it is a different season or more of what worked in season 1?
I want to say more of what’s worked. But I would also say, in some ways, it’s different. We were trying to take what worked and really amplify that. And then try to correct where we weren’t happy with it. But the biggest thing we tried to do was not hold back stuff. We were really like, “Okay, let’s pretend this is our last season. And let’s absolutely go for everything that we wanted to do.”
You didn’t have any fan feedback before you did season 2, so can you give examples of what you thought was working?
I would say we tried to do comedy, and we were like, “Let’s go for bigger comedy. Let’s make things bigger and crazier.” We tried to do drama, so we wanted to really kind of go to the gut of stuff and make episodes that were going to make you cry.
And something you wanted to correct?
One of the things that I wanted to do a correction on was that I feel like we weren’t able to really touch on every single character. We’ve worked really hard to try to give every character their moment in the show. That’s the hardest thing about the show.
Like how Ortegas didn’t get one in season 1?
Yeah, and Ortegas does get one in [season 2]. And frankly, I wish I could have more episodes for everyone. Because we have this incredible cast. And I would love to write stories for all of them. I know that everyone in the writers’ room feels that way.
Does the 10-episode season limit how you approach it, unlike the old days with 25 episodes where you could do silly bottle episodes that sometimes turned out amazing?
That was my favorite thing.
Your fantasy episode [“The Elysian Kingdom”] was kind of like that.
That was absolutely a bottle show.
So you don’t feel the pressure to deliver big character moments or plot action every week?
No. That was an episode that was both silly and gut-wrenching. I think all episodes – whether you are doing 25 or just 10 – really do have to deliver on that. I think it’s really important that we’re not wasting the time with the audience. We want to make sure that it feels like you’re actually having an emotional experience; that the characters actually go through a journey that means something. That doesn’t really change. I do wish we had more episodes so we got to explore more things about more of our characters because I love all of them.
Season 1 had a bit of a thread with the Gorn plotline. You would agree they were the big bad of the season?
So is there a different big bad for season 2? Or a different plot throughline?
I would say that we try to carry through on the promises we made in season 1. That’s what I would say.
So, more Gorn?
I will not say any more than that. [laughs] Okay, here’s what I’d say. In season 1, a lot of our throughlines were really about character. And that’s how we approach season 2, except we tried to do it in a bigger, more intense, crazier way. The characters are at the heart of every story. We’re not telling stories without telling stories about character. And that’s really what season 2 is about. But that also means bigger science fiction ideas, bigger stranger worlds, crazier things. We try a couple of things that have never been done on Trek before—personally I believe successfully. But I can’t really wait for people to see and to judge for themselves.
When do you expect to get the season 3 pickup?
I mean, any day now, you know. [laughs]
They did send out that press release talking about how well the show is doing internationally.
Here’s the truth. Our network partners—they’re running a business. They have a way that they have to go about things. They have different things that they have to check on. I am patient.
But you have thought about it and written things down?
Oh yeah. [laughs] Many conversations. Yes, there is work being done on season 3, whether officially or not.
More to come
TrekMovie spoke to a number of Trek celebrities and creatives on the purple carpet at Star Trek Day 2022, so check back for more exclusive interviews.
Rewatch the season 2 clip
Season 2 arrives in 2023. Here is the Star Trek Day clip from the Ortegas-focused episode.
Keep up with news for the Star Trek Universe at TrekMovie.com.