Podcast: All Access Reviews The First Two Episodes Of ‘Star Trek: Discovery’ Season 5

All Access Star Trek podcast episode 178 - Star Trek: Discovery season 5 premiere

[Discovery 501 review starts at 24:32; 502 starts at 57:35]

Anthony and Laurie are joined by Matt from the Shuttle Pod this week! They start with the latest news on a potential Paramount sale to Skydance, Alex Kurtzman’s hopeful statements about Trek “surprises,” the addition of a Deep Space Nine channel to Pluto TV, and Hugo nominations for Strange New Worlds. They also speculate on new info about the Section 31 movie and talk about the “First Contact” score heard at a NATO ceremony last week.

After that, they take a deep dive into the first two episodes of season 5 of Star Trek: Discovery, discussing the refreshing pace of the show, character arcs, best moments, nitpicks, and play a clip from Sonequa Martin-Green’s interview at the NYC premiere about the Burnham/Rayner relationship and what it means to her.


Paramount Reportedly Close To A Deal With Skydance

Alex Kurtzman Teases Star Trek “Surprises” Coming Up, But Greenlighting ‘Legacy’ Is Out Of His Hands

Pluto TV Adds Dedicated ‘Star Trek: Deep Space Nine’ Channel

‘Star Trek: Strange New Worlds’ Picks Up Two Hugo Award Nominations

‘Section 31’ Movie Director Says It’s A “Different” Star Trek + New Character Details Revealed

NATO Explains Why The Theme For ‘Star Trek: First Contact’ Was Played At Sweden’s Induction Ceremony

Sonequa Martin-Green on The View

Chief O’Brien at Work comic

The Promellians

The Procrustean Petard

Let us know what you think of the episode in the comments, and should you be so inclined, please review us on Apple.

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Great pod today! So happy to have Disco back to inspire nerdy questions about the show. Like Fred should have a twin, right? Don’t the synths always come in pairs? Maybe his brother will show up.

Good point! And who knows, maybe that’s the answer to the “notify his family” question we were debating.

Fred’s twin… George, perhaps?

Somewhat OT, but Happy First Contact Day kids!

Happy First Contact Day to you too! 😊🖖

Happy First Contact! LLAP!

Another great episode – and nice to be able to talk about new Trek stories again! And it looks like this will be a good National Treasure/Indian Jones ride.

So a bit off topic…When did phasers become 20th century pistols? In TOS, they could take out a whole person (like a hobo in “City…”), or a Mugatu, or an entire evil-world running computer.

Now, they fire energy bursts (instead of a steady stream) and they seem much much less effective. Shaw and others make their escape from Borg-zombies while taking cover behind cargo crates. Instead of being incinerated, the crates take the phaser fire like they were bullets. On DISCO S5 E1 Burnham blasts away in a corridor with a phaser rifle, causing only sparks. Or in other scenes, getting effective cover ducking behind trees or building structures. And countless other examples of phaser battles in recent years. They seem no more effective/damaging than a modern automatic pistol.

Speaking of recent years, has there ever been an in-universe explanation of the value that detached nacelles provide? What is their advantage or is it just supposed to be a futuristic thingy that can be done?

I think it all started with JJ in 2009…

“If you’re wondering how he eats and breathes, and other science facts, just repeat to yourself ‘It’s just a show, I should really just relax.’ “

But really, the show writers don’t seem to care about these things…

Why does Kovich say that they should complete the mission by any means necessary, but then not really mean it? He is standing on the bridge saying nothing while they stop pursuit to save the village. Then he allows Rayner to get “retired” despite being the one actually following his orders (and what rank or position does Kovich hold? Is he even in Starfleet? Why are different people following and not following his explicit orders?).

Why, other than for drama’s sake, did Kovich send two captains on a mission without establishing a chain of command? Within 5 minutes it results in an incident where a whole village is nearly wiped out, they lose their quarry, and a veteran captain is retired from Starfleet. Maybe there is a good reason for a chain…

And since when is “by any means necessary” a Starfleet approach? Does the “Red Directive” override all other regulations? No one tells us, but apparently no, it doesn’t; except Rayner thinks it does.

Why do they keep referring to Fred as dead? He was never alive, and he just got broken. Fix the hole in his chest or just take off his head and reboot him.

But, as I said, the writers apparently don’t care about any of these issues so I guess neither should we.

Ugh, I had hope for new DIS episodes for about half a day on Thursday until I actually watched the new episodes. They have good pieces here and there (production quality, actors) but can’t manage to put together good, compelling sci-fi stories. :(

100%! I was so looking forward to the new season, but after watching the first episode, I’m not sure I wanna watch any of it.

So Burnham gets hit by a chunk of space debris and laughs it off? Not to mention I would imagine being on a starship in warp, even with magnetic boots, would really mess up human physiology. Then there’s the paralysis beam that seems to paralyze the body, but not the mouth, so we can be informed that they’ve been paralyzed. How does it discriminate between the mouth and the rest of the body? Last time I checked, the mouth was a part of the body. Or maybe it only paralyzes you from the head down only. I don’t know, whatever…

Then there’s the science of bringing starships into the atmosphere and having them fly a few hundred feet above a settlement/town. Imagine what a typical airline passenger plane would do flying a 100 ft above your house or your town. I would expect an object like a starship, which has considerable mass, flying in such a low altitude above the ground would disturb a lot of things. But, you know it doesn’t, so maybe there was a science-y reason why, but whatever… I don’t know.

As you said the writers don’t seem to care, so why should we?

How many handwaves are we expected to endure in an episode?

I liked the smaller, character moments. But the story was utter crap. It just didn’t hang together.

I wish they would hire writers who understand science and understand science-fiction.

This comment is an episode late, but thank you Laurie for your remarks at the end of the last episode asking the haters to take a hike. Believe me, I have MANY issues with Disco. But any criticism I have (which I rarely post online) are specific and constructive and they are just one man’s opinion. The hateful vitriol that this show inspires is mind boggling. It’s ugly, it’s mean and it’s absolutely contrary to ANYTHING that Star Trek represents. Like Laurie said: just don’t watch!!!! On IMDb I saw someone make a comment saying something like “I can’t wait to hate-watch this season of Discovery.” Really?????

Anyway, I don’t want to hate on the haters too much. So…re: this episode: I think it was a solid start to the season.

I kind of chuckled the whole episode because Jeff Russo’s score just kept screaming: “ADVENTURE!!!!” “It’s ADVENTURE TIME!!!!”. Don’t get me wrong: I loved it. I typically don’t enjoy Russo’s work (as opposed to that talented little genius, Ms. Melumad, and the AMAZING work that Barton did on Picard S3), but I thought what Mr. Russo did in the first two episodes was really wonderful and really set the tone of the new direction. There is a pep in everyone’s step, all set to Jeff Russo’s buoyant music.

I think Discovery starts seasons very well. I thought both seasons 3 and 4 went off the rails a little (or a lot) but they started very well. Remember, all of that stuff in Iceland in “That Hope is You”? Olatunde Osumnsanmi shot that thing like a frigging Marvel movie. It was super cinematic!! And the writing was pretty stellar. I think “Red Directive” was pretty good but not exceptional, and I think one of the reasons might be that this is the only season premier that Alex Kurtzman didn’t co-write.

The McGuffin is…interesting. Let’s see where that goes.

A few more thoughts in bullet point:
-I miss (and will always miss) Grumpy Stamets.
-Nice organic way of bringing Book back. Kudos.
-where the hell is Nilsson?? Did Sara Mitich leave the show??
-Where is Bryce?? They had better pay off the random storyline where he was “working with” Kovich. Remember, when Kovich cryptically said he had more important things to tend to than the possible destruction of Earth at the end of season 4???? Was it this new McGuffin? Does Bryce know about it??
-I am totally and completely invested in the extended bridge crew family of Disco so when two of them are inexplicably missing I want to know why. Please don’t send them to Mandyville.
-Raynor—-great new character. Shaking things up Stashwick-style.
-I just love the chemistry between Saru and Tirina (sp?). That actress is just phenomenal.
-finally…always and forever…I’m just IN AWE of Sonequa Martin Green. She IS the show. She’s just fantastic in every way. My favorite Burnham moment in this episode: Goodmiral Vance: Good luck on you mission. Burnham: (gives him a funny look) Mmmm. Moments like that just make me wonder: was it written that way? Was it improvised? Anyway….magic.

I really hope they finish the series strong. Please please please…

Was this comment long enough? Just making sure.

I’ve been known to do the occasional hate-watch, but I would never go find forums or posts or discussions by people who love a show to tell them I don’t. So silly. And I also think the season 3 opener was one of the best episodes they did.

Has nobody else thought that the L’ak character has quite a resemblance to the Star Trek Beyond villains? Also when his helmet was retracting in their first scene, his head seemed to be almost reforming or visually distorted or something.

Also the sand on Discovery issue reminds me slightly of the corrosive fungus or whatever that ate away at the hull of the Liberator in Blake’s 7, eventually destroying it…

I thought that character also looked like the Beyond aliens. I wonder if the make-up artists are the same.