STAR TREK: DISCOVERY SEASON 1 EPISODE 15

WILL YOU TAKE MY HAND?

Star Trek: Discovery Season 1 Episode 15 “Will You Take My Hand” is the finale of the season for this series. Much excitement surrounded how this Star Trek: Discovery uniform colors and designepisode with so many loose ends. What is Emperor Georgiou’s plan with Discovery now that she is captain of the ship? What will be her fate? How will the war end? L’Rell and Ash Tyler, will they ever have a life in The Federation?

All these questions could be answered in season 2 of Star Trek: Discovery. Or not. Burnham’s future is imperiled because after the war, she must return to the prison camp. She is a mutineer. Star Trek: Discovery Season 1 Episode 15 “Will You Take My Hand?” is sure to please whether it be a cliffhanger or an all out resolution to the events of the season.

MAIN AND GUEST CHARACTERS, WRITIERS, DIRECTORS

 

Science Specialist/Commander Michael Burnham

Commander Saru

Ash Tyler

Paul Stamets

Sylvia Tilly

Emperor Georgiou

Amanda Grayson

Admiral Cornwell

L’Rell

Sarek

Shavo

Keyla Detmer

Admiral Gorch

Weapon Trader

Rhys

Dennas

Ujilli
Airam

Joann Owosekun

Bryce

Shava

Director: Akiva Goldsman

Writers: Akiva Goldsman, Gretchen J. Berg, and Aaron Harberts (story)

Teleplay: Gretchen J. Berg and Aaron Harberts

Airdate: February 11, 2018

SYNOPSIS

Burnham’s monologue while on the bridge asks us to identify fear and how to destroy it, then Emperor Georgiou posing as deceased Captain Georgiou interrupts her thoughts. Violently commanding the bridge and ordering the conn about the correct approach to identify Qo’noS, the Klingon home world. Her philosophy is to take humaneness out of the manner in which we look at our enemies. The unprincipled remarks made by Georgiou are discussed by Burnham and Saru. Burnham is ordered to stop talking to Saru by Georgiou who then insults him with a cannibalistic joke. Georgiou pulls Burnham aside to admonish her and expresses her belief that Burnham’s weakness is her inability to finish a plan like in the episode “The Vulcan Hello.” In the last episode, the Emperor utters to Sarek that Burnham has a weakness that would jeopardize their plan.

In the brig, Georgiou and Burnham interrogate the Klingon captive, L”Rell for intel on Qo’noS. L’Rell witnessed Captain Georgiou die earlier in the season. Burnham reasons with L’Rell to no avail. Georgiou uses force and brutal tactics t coerce the information until Burnham proposes another idea.

In Tyler’s room, Burnham questions him about Voq’s (his alter ego) memories of Qo’noS. She and Georgiou barge in on Tyler making a bowline Star Trek: Discovery Season 1 Episode 14knot; he tied them as a child, Voq. He believes it ties his past and future. Accessing Voq’s memories, Tyler discloses the location in the caves near an Orion outpost to drop the drone recon device. A 3-D holographic image of Qo’noS as an aid, Ash Tyler directs the best location for the recon drone. But the drone will need assistance in the caves. Tyler will be a part of Georgiou’s away mission to the caves of Orion. Tilly is also chosen for the away mission. She carries the drone in a case and the team travels to Qo’noS.

The Discovery jumps to Qo’noS. Near the Orion outpost in a market place with no other humans, the team masquerades as smugglers. Meeting an arms trader, Georgiou and Tyler discuss matters while Tilly and Burnham wander to a food stand. They reach an agreement not to trust Georgiou and to carefully observe her. The rest of the away team does not know her personal motives for this mission.

The team separate to search for the area. Georgiou enters a club and dances with a few of its employees.

As Burnham and Tyler investigate the black marketplace, they run into Klingons playing a gambling game called t’Sang. Ash Tyler is actually very good. His Voq persona controls him to speak fluent Klingon, to place bets and to ultimately win the game. But Burnham tires of the game and plods to a parlor down the street.

Tilly smokes an alien substance with a little green man. (That thought is entertaining all by itself.) This drug knock her unconscious.

Tyler trails Burnham to ask her why she left the game. Burnham explains her childhood trauma. Her parents stayed at the Vulcan outpost because Burnham wanted to watch a celestial event. The Klingons entered their home and she hid as they killed her parents, ate their dinner and cared not. Tyler understands now why Burnham hates Klingons. None have been kind to her, except Voq. Tyler and Burnham make amends with each other.

When she awakens, Tilly stops the little green man from prying open her case which contains the drone. After asking what she inhaled, the little green man informs Tilly that it is ash from the active volcanoes in Qo’noS. The volcanoes travel the entire planet. Then, Tilly opens the case. It is not a drone in the case, but a hydro bomb!

Georgiou steals the case from Tilly. Tilly levels with Burnham and Tyler about Georgiou’s actions. Quickly, Burnham radios Discovery and contacts Admiral Cornwell, but Burnham suspects Admiral Cornwell already knows and was in on the ruse.

If Georgiou iniates the bomb in the active volcanoes of Qo’noS, it will destroy the planet, all life on the planet. Genocide. Burnham advises

Cornwell to cease with the plan, but Cornwell will not give in. Left with one course of action, Burnham threatens Cornwell with mutiny. The rest of the crew on the bridge concur. Cornwell has no choice, but to change the plans.
At the Shrine of Morlar, Michael appears to halt the detonation of the hydro bomb. Georgiou is decidedly against it, but in the end backs down choosing her freedom.

L’Rell energizes into the shrine with Ash Tyler. Given a choice L’Rell can deactivate the bomb or annihilate all life on the planet of Qo’noS. She deactivates the bomb and is then transported to the Mo’Kai ship. Ash Tyler believes there is no life for him at Starfleet and he follows L’Rell. He leaves Burnham with his bowline knot…and memories.

L’Rell demands to be emperor of Qo’noS and start the reunification process of the planet will be destroyed by the hydro bomb she will set. The Klingons elect to allow L’Rell to lead them and so the Federation, Earth and the Klingon home world are saved.

In Paris, on the planet Earth, Burnham is reinstated as commander for her bravery and decision-making in the time of peril for the Federation. Sarek

By CellarDoor85 – Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=37101332

recognizes her courage and his mistake and pins her as commander and his daughter. Other awards are handed out. Tilly is admitted to the Starfleet officer training school. Saru receives the Medal of Honor. Stamets and Culber, posthumously, are recognized for their heroism.

Discovery, with Vulcan father Sarek, travel to Vulcan to pick up their new captain. En route, the Enterprise captained by Pike send a distress call that Discovery intercepts…

THEMES AND OTHER LITERARY DEVICES

 

War. The Klingon War as been used to outline the idea of war ans why we war. It could be how we manage our fears. We need not destroy each other in the process.

Fear. Identifying fear and destroying fear is the only way to truly win in this world. It may have been the moral of the story. How we handle our enemies is a close tie to our humanity.

Perspective. Georgiou sees the enemy unhumanely. Burnham humanizes the enemy as she becomes more aware of her humanity herself. This happens on the bridge with Georgiou’s correction to the conn about what to call the Klingon home world. Also, these two clash again with L’Rell in the brig. Their interrogation tactics.

REVIEW

Star Trek: Discovery Season 1 Episode 15 “Will You Take My Hand?” was full of great surprises including the end, but we will get back to that in a moment. The holographs’ special effects her spectacular as were the sets for Qo’noS. The different alien life of Qo’noS reminds me of the richness of alien costume on Star Trek: The Original Series “Journey To Babel” where The Enterprise hosts a multitude of diplomats including Spock’s father Sarek. I am left to wonder what kinds of species the landing party of Georgiou, Burnham, Tilly and Tyler are dealing with on this planet. Michelle Yeoh as Emperor Georgiou proves she can handle characters made of heroines and villains. Sarek shows emotions as he congratulates and reinstates Burnham to her rank as Commander. James Frain and Sonequa Martin Green give another boost to this series with the relationship between Burnham and Sarek as well as Burnham and Amanda Grayson. Another select episode from Star Trek: Discovery.

CONCLUSION

This wraps up the first season of Star Trek: Discovery. Star Trek: Discovery Season 1 Episode 15 “Will You Take My Hand?” tied loose ends while creating new ones that lead into season 2 nicely. A big REVEAL is soon to come with subsequent season. It has been a superbly directed season and well written episodes and an all-star cast. This Star Trek series is worth watching year after year.

How do you think the next season will be of Star Trek: Discovery? Please feel free to leave your comments below.

 

STAR TREK:DISCOVERY SEASON 1 EPISODE 14

THE WAR WITHOUT, THE WAR WITHIN

Star Trek: Discovery Season 1 Episode 14 “The War Without, The War Within” is a quiet episode full of drama. We are struck with the aftermath of a nine-month war with the Klingons which the Federation is losing. Emperor Georgiou is a part of the prime universe now. What to do with her? This is key to the plan against the Klingons. The relationships between Burnham and Georgiou is more complex now. We do not know what is up her sleeve, but Georgiou wants to travel back to her universe. Does she have a plan to do just that? Will she use Burnham’s weakness of guilt for the death of her captain to forward her own agenda?

MAIN AND GUEST CHARACTERS, WRITERS, DIRECTORS

 

Michael Burnham

Saru

Ash Tyler/ Voq

Paul Stamets

Sylvia Tilly

Captain Lorca

Emperor Georgiou

Admiral Cornwell

L’Rell

Sarek

Keyla Detmer

Dr. Pollard

Admiral Shukar

Admiral Gorch

Rhys

Airam

Admiral Drake

Joann Owosekun

Bryce
Writer: Lisa Randolph
Director: David Solomon

Cinematography: Colin Hoult
Airdate: February 4, 2018

SYNOPSIS

 

Back in the prime universe, the USS Discovery is boarded by Admiral Cornwell and a convoy at phaser point. Surprising the crew, acting captain Saru demands to know the meaning of this. The admiral must be sure. They

Star Trek: Discovery Season 1 Episode 14
By uncle_shoggoth – The Cape Panel – James Frain SpeaksUploaded by stemoc, CC BY 2.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=29634211

move the entire bridge crew away from the controls. Sarek, performing a mind meld, sifts out the truth from Saru the troubles the crew encountered in the mirror universe. For a moment he sympathizes with Burnham in a very humane way. Very unlike the Vulcan. Or more like himself than we know.

Cornwell seizes control of the Discovery. In the conference room, she reports heavy damages waged by the nine-month war with the Klingons. The algorithm of the cloaking device may aid The Federation, but that also could be too late. One third of the Federation fleet is obliterated. Multiple star bases have been ravaged by cloaked suicide Klingon Birds of Prey. Not only that apparently the Klingon houses are wrestling over leadership of the Klongon Empire.

Meeting with Emperor Georgiou in her quarters’, Cornwell confesses their resemblance is “remarkable likeness.” Burnham appeals for asylum for Emperor Georgiou and that the emperor has no motive. But mirror universe Georgiou denounces Burnham’s plea. Georgiou does not want Burnham’s

By CellarDoor85 – Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=37101332

assistance or The Federation. She only hankers to return home to her own universe. The admiral denies the request because The Federation is in the middle of a war and it does not have the means to return her. Admiral Cornwell’s plan is to travel to Starbase One. There Emperor Georgiou will be held until other arrangements can be made.

Jumping to Starbase One, Discovery realizes their hails are not being answered. Saru’s ganglia are out for a moment. Upon further investigation, Star base One has been overtaken by the Klingon house of D”Ghor. Burnham deciphers the Klingon crest. With no humanoid life signs, Saru orders the Discovery to warp out of range of the Klingon scanners. A hesitant Cornwell declares most of the Federation leadership was on that base and “the Klingons are practically in Earth’s backyard.”

Burnham flocks to Emperor Georgiou’s side to pump how the mirror universe Terran Empire won against the Klingons. The answer: attack Qo’noS, the Klingon home world. But the emperor believes Burnham is “too weak.” Mostly because of her regret for her captain’s death. Haunting her, Burnham admits it bothers her every day.

Georgiou summons Sarek to her quarters. She has observed the paralleling demise of both Burnhams. Declaring Burnham is not capable of the reality

Star Trek: Discovery Season 1 Episode 14

of a true plan to shatter the Klingon empire once and for all, she brainstorms a better strategy against their common foe. All Georgiou desires is Sarek and Cornwell’s service to effectuate it.

Tyler is back. Voq has been defeated by Klingon L’Rell. Not everyone on board Discovery identifies Tyler with his former self, but the Klingon Voq. While Saru is diplomatic and Tilly accessible, Burnham is not and Stamets, who Culber is survived by, are less forgiving. Tilly accepts Tyler the way she accepted Burnham in episodes past.

Discovery can jump to Qo’nos, but the spore drive has too few spores to complete the jump. Stamets must terraform a nearby moon for more spores. Star Trek: Discovery Season 1 Episode 14 Successful, this is only stage one of the plan to return authority to The Federation. Next, jump to Qo’noS and tactical locations by jumping into a cave system there in a recon mission.

Who will head this treacherous mission? Georgiou. Emperor Georgiou will substitute for dead Captain Georgiou of the prime universe. A lie masterminded Admiral Cornwell to mislead the crew in believing the prime universe Captain Georgiou was captured not killed by the Klingons and The Federation saved her in a daring rescue attempt.

THEMES AND OTHER LITERARY DEVICES

 

“The War Without, The War Within”. The title suggests coordinated worlds of our souls and our universe. It also alludes to the fight within The Federation as Georgiou ventures into the role of “captain’ of the Discovery.

It Ends as It Begins. Burnham quizzes Georgiou on the answer to annihilating the Klingons. Emperor Georgiou (from the mirror universe, Burnham’s real captain Georgiou is dead) as Sarek did in “Battle at the Binary Stars” relinquishes the answer to bring the Klingons to their knees.Star Trek: Discovery Season 1 Episode 14 The War Without, The War Within Is it a mistake, again? Or is she right, again? We don’t know yet. We do know Admiral Cornwell and Sarek are in on the ruse more than Science Specialist Burnham and Commander Saru know. Sarek, Cornwell and Georgiou intentions are not exactly the same as Burnham and Saru. Besides, Georgiou does not believe Burnham has the “inner strength” to implement such a subterfuge.

The problem there in: Will this be a problem for Burnham and Saru? “Captain” Georgiou heading USS Discovery is a disaster waiting to happen in Burnham and Saru’s opinion. But Georgiou is needed for the success of the plan. What are the writers whispering to the audience about the state of affairs in this country? It could mean anything or nothing at all.

By the way, why hasn’t anyone relieved Burnham from duty? It was under Captain Lorca that Burnham was given released from prison temporarily. Star Trek: Discovery Season 1 Episode 14 The War Without, The War WithinMaybe there is no time. Maybe there is no Federation for now. Release her to where?

Parallel. Ash Tyler is now the ostracized one in the group instead of Burnham. Tilly is to Tyler as she was to Burnham. Open. Looking for friends. Tyler is the outsider. A betrayer. Mutineer. Burnham cannot handle the lover that almost killed her. Like the Klingons who killed her parents so long ago?

Ash Tyler is the soldier who had two people living in one body-the one who could do the unthinkable and the one who could not. He was patriotic,then a deceiver. After all this mayhem, he acknowledges all the wrong that was done by his hands. Can he forgive himself? Can everyone else?

Evil Leadership. No matter how the USS Discovery tries, it is always under evil leadership. First Lorca. Now “Captain” Georgiou. It’s a select crew on board this ship and a sterling ship, but the leadership is destructive. Is this what the writers are trying to say about America? Your decision.

REVIEW

This week’s episode of Star Trek: Discovery Season 1 Episode 14 “The War Without, The War Within” discusses topics in a hushed tone. Alliances are made behind trusted friends’ backs. How much to do in war when your backStar Trek: Discovery Season 1 Episode 14 The War Without, The War Within is against the wall comes into play? Making deals with the devil. Any devil. In hopes everything will turn out well. With Starbase One fallen, Admiral Cornwell is looking for an answer with none in sight. Enter Emperor Georgiou. Lisa Randolph wrote an outstanding episode. Her credits include the television shows “Reign” and “Rush.”

There are many mysteries this week about The Federation’s tomorrow. Looks grim.

Meanwhile, the characters’ who took center stage this week were another triplet: Sarek, Cornwell and Georgiou. Burnham was the concern of Sarek and Georgiou for different reasons. Ash Tyler’s reemergence signified a mirror of Burnham’s past which she is trying to disassociate herself from. He, like Burnham, must discover who he is now.

Subtleties are important in this episode. Actor James Frain performed these subtleties effortlessly. He played in “Agent Carter,” a tv series and “Tron:Legacy.” Frain has been around the acting business for some time.Musical composer Jeff Russo’s scores are a great and overlooked detail into the drama of this episode, but should be suitably observed. All around good episode.

CONCLUSION

Star Trek: Discovery Season 1 Episode 14 brings the audience almost to the end of the season and to the edge of our seats with anticipation of The Federation’s future. Cornwell and Sarek have devised a plan with Georgiou that is unique, true enough. But will it work? Stay tuned. What do you think will happen next to the crew of the Discovery and the Klingon war? Appreciate your comments below.

STAR TREK DISCOVERY: SEASON 1 EPISODE 13

WHAT’S PAST IS PROLOGUE

Star Trek: Discovery uniform colors and design

Ending with last week’s episode’s BIG reveal about Lorca, Star Trek: Discovery Season 1 Episode 13 asks a thoughtful question about destiny and fate. How do we perceive our destiny and fate and how it will all end? Destiny. Fate. Reality. Quoting Shakespeare’s “The Tempest,” “What’s Past Is Prologue” and Star Trek: Discovery’s writing have great backstory that is necessary to understand and enjoy the full effect of each of them. Mixed with the allusions of MacBeth’s”Vaulting Ambition” Ted Sullivan’s writing this week does justice to Star Trek: Discovery. And it keeps with the tradition of Star Trek’s obsession with The Bard alive.

MAIN AND GUEST CHARACTERS, WRITERS AND DIRECTORS

 

Captain/Science Specialist Michael Burnham

First Officer/ Captain Saru

Lt. Ash Tyler/Voq

Paul Stamets

Captain/Cadet Sylvia Tilly

Captain Gabriel Lorca

Emperor Georgiou

Commander Landry
Keyla Detmer

Lord Eling

Rys

Airam

Joann Owosekun

Bryce

Director: Olatunde Osunsanmi

Cinematography: Glen Keenan

Writer: Ted Sullivan

Airdate: January 28, 2018

SYNOPSIS

In the Agonizer room, Lorca releases his crewmen who were imprisoned in the agonizer chambers for following him in the rebellion against the Emperor-Georgiou. This includes Commander Landry (her counterpart died

RANGOON, Burma (March 9, 2014) Actress Michelle Yeoh speaks at the pre-conference luncheon of the East-West Center International Media Conference. At the luncheon, Nobel Peace Prize laureate Daw Aung San Suu Kyi announced the launch of the Suu Foundation, a humanitarian organization dedicated to advancing the health and education of the people of Myanmar (Burma). Yeoh is a board member of the foundation. [Department photo by William Ng/Public Domain]
fighting a tardigrade in the fourth episode.) Lorca promises to make the empire “glorious again” by transmission seeking more followers for his resistance against Georgiou. He seizes control of the ISS Charon and threatens to uproot Georgiou revealing his location to her for a showdown. He also is told by Mirror Stamets his folly of leaking the coup to Georgiou without Lorca’s consent. Lorca finishes Stamets for that later. In the meantime Mirror universe Stamets provides Lorca with a new biological weapon to use in the war.

Georgiou listens to the transmission and orders Burnham into the Brig not allowing her to contact the Discovery to them of the upcoming battle between Lorca and Georgiou. Burnham escapes Georgiou’s crewmen. Lorca urges Burnham to join the rebellion and notifies his team not to injure her.

The Discovery is en route to the palace ship Charon when Saru releases Stamets for work as engineer. Stamets levels with Saru and the crew about Mirror universe Paul Stamets corrupting the mycelial network for evil gains-using its resources to power the flagship Charon.
In the corridor, Georgiou is met by lone Owosekun, the sole survivor of the massacre on her party by Lorca. She is to give a message to Georgiou reporting the events of the fight. Soon after delivering this message, Lorca and his team kill her starting a phaser fracas. All of Georgiou’s team are dead except for Georgiou herself who beams away to another part of the ship.

Meanwhile, Burnham contacts Discovery. She has the unpleasant duty of wising Saru and crew that Lorca is from the Mirror universe and cannot be trusted. Ordering them to leave quickly, Burnham briefs the crew of Discovery about the hostilities between Lorca and Emperor Georgiou.
Saru, on the other hand, updates Burnham on the corruption of the mycelial network that Stamets learned while in the mycelial forest and in his comatose state. Due to the palace ship’s unhealthy use of the network as an

By Gage Skidmore from Peoria, AZ, United States of America – Doug JonesUploaded by maybeMaybeMaybe, CC BY-SA 2.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=22896425

energy source, the mycelial reactor must be obliterated to save all universes and every timeline. Discovery must be in proximity to fire a spore filled photon torpedo. However, the shock wave from the explosion consume the ship and devour the spore drive. Discovery will be stranded in the mirror universe.

Burnham decides to help Georgiou rout Lorca and his rebellion. They allow themselves to be captured by Lorca and his crew. They are brought to the throne room. Bartering herself for the release and escape of Discovery’s crew, Lorca blabs to the Discovery crew about Burnham’s decision. This gives Saru time to fire on the ship and Georgiou and Burnham to stage a comeback against Lorca’s forces and lower the containment shields on the mycelial reactor. Burnham struggles against Lorca in the throne room until she wins pointing her phaser at him. She confesses the Federation would have helped Lorca return to his mirror universe if he had asked for help. She spares his life, however, Georgiou does not and in a twist of fate, stabs Lorca in the back. Georgiou then throws Lorca into the reactor chamber.

Gerogiou hands Burnham her communicator to contact her ship and admits that fighting alongside Burnham reminded her of the Mirror universe

By vagueonthehow – Flickr, CC BY 2.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=63033555

Burnham quite a bit. Georgiou knows her time is short with the rest of Lorca’s rebellion advancing to the throne room and realizes her own demise. She will prolong the rebellion’s advancement as long as she can so Burnham can transport home.

In so doing, Burnham has a thought and rushes Georgiou saving her from her own fate. They are transported back to Discovery. Discovery fires on the mycelial reactor and warps into its center. Using the mycelial network to jump, Discovery travels through its own universe with the help of Culber’s ghost reminding a confused Stamets through a rejuvenating mycelial network and showing him the way home. Discovery arrives in their universe-the prime universe. But they overshot their mark by nine months-in the future. The Klingons, it appears- have won the war.

THEMES AND OTHER LITERARY DEVICES

First in the title, “What’s Past Is Prologue” is a quote from Shakespeare’s “The Tempest” Act II scene i. It means the past is only the beginning to a wonderful future if you follow through with your plan. In “The Tempest” it is Sebastian, the villain and very Lorca-like, who suggests to Alonso to kill his father to be king and take his place. Sound familiar? It hints to us that the writers even borrowed the plot of the Shakespearean tale in some respects.
Plans. One of the running themes that makes a blatant emergence. Georgiou even states directly to Burnham in the throne room,”It was a good plan.” She gives the impression that she is well pleased with Burnham’s plan and deception to Lorca. Let’s analyze Lorca’s long range plan of returning to his mirror universe. He, too, has been conniving the entire time misleading Lt. Stamets and putting Stamets’ life in jeopardy and lying to Saru and Burnham about how they arrived in the mirror universe.
Escapes. Lorca and Landry escape the agonizer booths. Georgiou and Burnham escape Lorca’s rebellion. After a plan is a way of escape. Skillful writing. Everyone in this episode has a plan almost like an effect for every cause.
Communicator. An expression of communicating with others. In the mid season cliffhanger “Into The Forest I Go,” Burnham is trapped on the Klingon ship of the Dead. She lays down the phaser and the communicator to face the Klingon leader Kol. Now, the device she needs is kept from her by the Emperor Georgiou. Burnham must contact Discovery. It must put as much distance between it and the Charon as possible. Again, Star Trek: Discovery uses death in Greek mythology in the sixth episode “Lethe.”
Salvation. Burnham saves the life of Emperor Georgiou. In the “Vulcan Hello,” Burnham was not able to save Georgiou or transport her body back to the USS Shenzhou. In this episode, Burnham delivers Georgiou to the USS Discovery unharmed from the doomed lot. Her flagship named the ISS Charon, literally is the ferryman of Hades in Greek mythology. He carried souls to across the River Styx to the world of the dead.

REVIEW

Star Trek: Discovery Episode 13 “What’s Past Is Prologue” displays the power, grace and talent of actresses Sonequa Martin-Green, Michelle Yeoh and actors Jason Issacs and Doug Jones. The crew of the bridge begins to gel with Captain Saru as acting captain and we are ready to acknowledge them and interact with them. Which is perfect.

Airam played by Sara Mitich, Emily Coutts as Detmer and Oyin Oladejo’s Owosekun unfurled more than just a close-up or an acknowledgment to orders in an episode. It was great.

The action was packed and suspense high as martial arts and CGI flourished superbly. Congratulations to director Olatunde Osunsanmi and writer Ted Sullivan for Saru’s pep talk to the crew after Lorca’s betrayal was uncovered.

As far as action in the Star Trek universe, this series is one of the best.

Michelle Yeoh and Sonequa Martin-Green highlighted the episode and will be at least in the upcoming episode. What chemistry!
Burnham had so much to gain with the Mirror Universe Lorca. In her universe, she is a prisoner with very little rights if any. Here Burnham could rule an entire galaxy. People obey her every whim. What would not be hers? She’s lost alot-Ash Tyler, for example. The deck is stacked in her favor with Mirror Lorca if he can be trusted. He attempts to sway her.

Instead, Burnham is bent on correcting her error in her universe that Lorca perceives as a plus in his universe. She is going to preserve Emperor Georgiou’s life. I like the subtleties in this episode. You must think for yourself.

Finally Burnham, Georgiou and Lorca share the screen together and it is magnetic. Hopefully the Star Trek: Discovery audience will score a Discovery movie deal in the future. Only they could pull off a movie devoted to the mirror universe on the big screen. The fight scene with Lorca, Georgiou and Burnham was excellent. Michelle Yeoh is as graceful as ever, maybe even more so. Jason Issacs as Lorca was a top-notch decision by the production and casting crew. Skillful decision-making.

CONCLUSION

Star Trek: Discovery Season 1 Episode 13 was jammed packed with action and suspense. The crew of Discovery is not out of the woods yet. Now that they are back in their universe, the events have changed a little with the war with the Klingons. Out of the frying pan and into the fire. Another problem to solve. Each episode is more heightened than the last. Interesting. Knowing that they have a following (Star Trek: Discovery and CBS All Access), how will this season end? Cliffhanger or resolution. We will have to stay tuned to see. Please comment below on this season thrilling end will be.

STAR TREK: DISCOVERY SEASON 1 EPISODE 12

Star Trek: Discovery Season 1 Episode 8VAULTING AMBITION

Star Trek: Discovery Season 1 Episode 12 “Vaulting Ambition” aims to expose Captain Lorca’s true plans and his hunger to repossess the Terran Empire. Opportunistic? To say the least. The title quoting Shakespeare’s play “MacBeth” and cluing us into Lorca’s state of mind, we also watch Lorca cross people and universes to enter the Imperial ship for one purpose-a coup against Georgiou. Here we learn why Burnham is so important to him and what is at stake for Discovery to return home.

 

MAIN AND GUEST CHARACTERS, WRITERS AND DIRECTORS

Michael Burnham

Saru

Ash Tyler/Voq

Paul Stamets

Sylvia Tilly

Captain Gabriel Lorca

Emperor Georgiou

L’Rell

Dr. Hugh Culber

Lord Eling

Captain Maddox

Barlow

Senior Guard

Dr. Pollard

Junior Guard

 

SYNOPSIS

Traveling by shuttle craft to Emperor Georgiou’s flagship, the ISS Charon, Burnham and Lorca discuss meeting with the alternate universe Georgiou and their mission in the Imperial palace ship which is to track down intelligence on the USS Defiant. The data files Saru and crew analyzed was mostly redacted. A lofty goal considering…Statmets is improving with care

RANGOON, Burma (March 9, 2014) Actress Michelle Yeoh speaks at the pre-conference luncheon of the East-West Center International Media Conference. At the luncheon, Nobel Peace Prize laureate Daw Aung San Suu Kyi announced the launch of the Suu Foundation, a humanitarian organization dedicated to advancing the health and education of the people of Myanmar (Burma). Yeoh is a board member of the foundation. [Department photo by William Ng/Public Domain]
from Saru and Tilly, but he is still in a coma and his brain is somewhere in the mycelial network. Floating there with his carbon copy genius scientist, the other Stamets admits to a miscalculation in an exercise with the spore drive. They both are in a coma and trapped in the mycelial network. And the network is polluted. Our Stamets has a get away plan form it.

In the hall of the ISS Charon, Georgiou meets with Burnham and Lorca. She presents Burnham with a present. Three Kelpiens stand by and Burnham must choose which one,but for what purpose, she does not know. The choice, alternate universe Saru.

In Sick Bay, Tyler and Voq compete for dominance of the body both inhabit. Between screams of hate form Voq, Saru hears the pleas from Tyler for help. What is Saru to do?

Over dinner of Kelpian cuisine(Poor Saru), Georgiou quizzes Burnham on her hesitance to rush Harlak as commanded. Her working theory is Burnham and Lorca are colluding to topple Georgiou. Stating Burnham and Lorca became more than teacher and student more like intimate, Georgiou explains with a knife to Burnham’s neck. Her decision is clear. Execute Burnham. The crime. Treason.

The Stamets twins chart a path out of the network. Prime Stamets sees Dr. Culber.

Execution time for Burnham. Enter the throne room.

The Imperial Council surrounds her when Burnham confesses her true identity. Giving Empress Georgiou the Starfleet pennant of the prime universe Georgiou, the empress pieces together the puzzle. She executes the Imperial Council except for one. The deal is he is tight-lipped about this situation and he gains a governorship. Emperor Georgiou is well aware of the Federation.

In the brig, Saru persuades L’Rell to explain Ash Tyler/Voq. She elucidates that Ash Tyler’s organs were donated for the surgery to alter Klingon Voq after Ash Tyler was captured at the Battle of the Binary Stars…

Catching up with Culber in their quarters, Stamets uncovers the truth. Culber is dead.

Emperor Georgiou offers another trade in the throne room. To Burnham. The redacted data of the USS Defiant for the spore drive construction plans.

Saru has an idea to end Ash Tyler’s pain. Beaming Tyler/Voq to L’Rell’s cell, Saru leaves him there. She must decide what to do with him.

L’Rell chooses to perform a ritual ending in a Klingon death cry.  Only she can touch him.  With gloves hands that extend sharp thin blades, L’;Rell touches Tyler/Voq’s head.

In their quarters, Culber snitches on the alternate Stamets. The is the reason the mycelial network is polluted. This pollution will corrode the known universes-both of them.  He also informs Stamets that he is dead.  It crushes Stamets.  He does not want to gone on without Culber.   His partner reassures Stamets that he must keep right on going.

Both Stamets awaken. One on the ISS Charon, the other on Discovery.

Georgiou leaks more Intel to Burnham about her alternate’s relationship to Lorca enough evidence to surmise that Lorca is the mirror universe Lorca as he frees himself from the agonizer booth.

REVIEW

Star Trek Discovery Season 1 Episode 12 “Vaulting Ambition” gave us excellent drama and surprising twists (some predictable), but all in all a good show. Hanelle M. Culpepper directed this episode. Her work includes TV hits like “Gotham,” “Empire,” and “Criminal Minds.” Her ability to capture Emperor Georgiou’s longing for her daughter and Burnham’s surprise of Lorca’s true identity was exceptional. Not a minute lost in storytelling. Jordon Nardino’s writing talent has not suffered one bit. After writing for “Desperate Housewives” and “Gilmore Girls,” he put his abilities to good use here. The Georgetown University alumni easily fit together the clues left by the show’s previous writers to create the picture of Lorca’s true identity. His high-flown ambition to “reclaim what is rightfully” his-The Terran Empire. Masterfully done. Michelle Yeoh is always a pleasure to have back on Star Trek: Discovery. Her presence always felt and welcomed. Great show this week.

CONCLUSION

So, Lorca revealed as the mirror Lorca was this week’s big surprise as well as Burnham and Georgiou’s counterparts relationship. Burnham’s parents still die in the alternate universe. A fact Burnham cannot escape in either universe. Star Trek: Discovery Season 1 Episode 12 has answered a few questions and produced a few others. Please feel free t leave a comment below and answer any of these question. Stay tuned for Star Trek: Discovery Season 1 Episode 13 “What’s Past Is Prologue.”

How will Star Trek: Discovery get back home?

Will Burnham give the spore drive secrets to Georgiou breaking the Prime Directive?

How will the crew deal with Lorca now that his new identity is exposed?

 

STAR TREK DISCOVERY SEASON 1 EPISODE 10

Star Trek: Discovery uniform colors and design

“DESPITE YOURSELF”

After a mid-season hiatus, Star Trek Discovery has begun again its

episodes for the rest of the season Star Trek: Discovery S1 E10: Despite

Yourself answers many swirling questions that cliffhanger episode 9

asked in December. Many conspiracy theories have been confirmed while

some still linger like Section 31, “a deep state” in the Federation.

This episode is sure to please as Jonathan Frakes takes the helm of

Discovery as its director in this episode “Despite Yourself.”

THE MAIN AND GUEST CHARACTERS, WRITERS AND DIRECTORS

Michael Burnham

Saru

Ash Tyler

Paul Stamets

Sylvia Tilly

Gabriel Lorca

Rhys

Keyla Detmer

Dennas

Airiam
Director: Jonathan Frakes

Writer: Sean Cochran

Airdate: 01/17/18

SYNOPSIS

Okay. The last episode, “Into The Forest I Go” the Discovery made a jump to unknown coordinates which was thought to be near Starbase 46. And it was. In this week’s episode, “Despite Yourself,” we find out that Discovery reached Starbase 46…but in a mirror universe. In other words, a universe like our own in most ways with some exceptions.

Okay. The rubble of what should be Starbase 46, the USS Discovery immediately is under attack from a Vulcan ship. Only the Cooper is there to save Discovery. The ISS Cooper. The ISS could stand for The Imperial Star Ship.

Lorca describes the mycelial network and their jump into this parallel universe through his map using the 133 jumps around the ship of the Dead. A pivotal scene. With a tribble on one side of his mycelial map and fortune cookies on the other, Lorca paraphrases his talk with Lt. Stamets about the realization of the paths the network accesses. Burnham and Saru visibly doubt Lorca’s credibility of this innocent mistake and Burnham wishes to review the navigation logs which Lorca shoots down the idea. Saru implies Lorca’s fault in Stamet’s condition and Lorca deflects it. His idea is this: Blend in with this mirror universe, seek a way to survive and then find a way home. He orders Discovery to comb the Klingon wreckage-leave no stone unturned-for information on this parallel universe, the exceptions in it, what makes it unique from our own universe and what they can learn about it.

Lt. Ash Tyler is appointed to sift through the Klingon rubble for a data core that will answer all their questions. During his mission in space, Tyler has flashbacks of his time in prison with L’Rell. They are vivid and to him horrible. Burnham confirms they are in a mirror universe and the Terran Empire exists not the Federation. This empire has a faceless emperor and they are prejudice against all who are not like themselves. This includes the Klingons, Vulcans and Andorians. All aliens are subject to their rule. Lorca understands they cannot ask these people for help. Burnham also elucidates that an identical Discovery may be in their universe now. Or you could meet your alternate self in this mirror universe.

Tilly’s twin in unearthed as the captain of the Discovery. An exception in this mirror universe. A long haired blonde, she is evil and ruthless. The Cooper thrusts Tilly in her captain’s role when they communicate by audio only and she must respond as captain. Lorca responds as her Irish engineer. The ship is refitted with the acronym ISS instead of USS. So, the crew wears different uniforms and rank insignia. The alternate universe Burnham was killed by the Lorca copy or so the Klingon data core states. And Lorca is a rebel. More exceptions.

Stamet is in and out of consciousness since the 133 jumps in the spore drive. He rambles about the palace and the enemy is near. Culber stays by his side. Lorca approaches Culber about his supposed guilt of persuading Stamets to perform the 133 jumps and he informs Culber that he wants some other doctor to provide care for Stamets. In fact, he believes Culber is too close to the situation.

Tyler visits L’Rell in the brig for some explanation. She answers with releasing her to receive that information. When he does, she uses the prayer of Kahless to trigger his memory. To resurface them completely. He recites the prayer in perfect Klingon. He recalls some of his memory but not enough. L’Rell is forced into her cell again by Tyler.
He goes to Sickbay to ask the doctor for help concerning his “imaginations.”

Tyler becomes highly irritable when the doctor questions him and Dr. Culber threatens to take him off duty. Tyler just wants some tests run to check himself out and not let the team down. Culber agrees. His tests confirm Ash Tyler has been altered in his physical body and psychological state-another personality lay underneath his Ash Tyler persona. After receiving this information from the good doctor, Tyler kills him. He rushes to the transporter room for an away mission with Burnham and Lorca. They all will transport over to the Discovery where Burnham is captain-an exception of this universe.

Since her absence, Connor has control over the Shenzhou and its crew. They are shocked and amazed to see Burnham and Lorca. She unwillingly takes him to the agonizer chamber for torture. Burnham and her away team must access the database to understand how the Defiant, another USS starship returned home after being caught in this universe. Connor escorts her to the bridge. On the turbo lift he explains that he never instilled the fear in the Shenzhou crew the way she did and he now knows why. He attacks her in the turbo lift in an attempt to kill her. He fails and she stabs him. Surprised by her own actions, Burnham can only stare into the eyes of her young crewman. The turbo lift doors open and she is welcomed by her crew who witness the result of her devastating act of violence. They remove his body from the bridge and she takes the captain’s seat.

THEME AND OTHER LITERARY DEVICES

THEME

Connectivity is the theme in the mirror universe. How we relate to
one another is almost as important as our actions toward each other.

MOTIF

Networking. The empire despises anyone “other.” If this empire can ostracize everyone else and their needs, they can sniff out any rebel like suffocating a fire.

Torture. Lorca was tortured in the agonizer booth as a type of punishment for betraying the Empire. Tyler was tortured by his memories in the Klingon cell and what happened there. L’Rell, the Klingon traitor, does not interpret Ash Tyler’s memories as a tortured experience, but an enjoyable one for both of them.

SYMBOL

The ISS Empire. The empire is an example of networking. How they
relate, interact and their actions towards others are decided by Terran
relations and that is the only way they will do business with anyone. They believe they can survive without anyone else and if they keep their network exclusive they can defeat anyone else. These people represent oppression.

The Rebels. Vulcans, Klingons, Andorians and other aliens make up a group to dispel the ISS Empire so they can live peaceably in the galaxy. These aliens are outside the “network” of the ISS Empire. They are segregated and hated by the empire for simply no being a part of Terran empire. They are the opposite of the network. They embody the idea of freedom.

The ISS Gesture. Among other things, it may hint at something greater. Observe that when Tyler is on his mission to retrieve the data core he extends his hand through his machine in quite the same way. Just saying.

SCENES

A very important scene in Lorca’s room where he explains to Burnham and Saru the depth of the mycelial network has him situated at a map of the network and its many locations. On one side is a tribble. On the other side are his fortune cookies. Not only symbolic, but doubtless, a portentous event. It was a well directed scene.

PARALLELS IN A PARALLEL WORLD

Tyler and Lorca parallel each other in that both are being tortured- Ash Tyler is psychologically and he does not know why. Lorca is being tortured physically in the agonizer. He definitely knows why. He is a traitor to the Terran Empire and he is trying to free the aliens suppressed by this regime.

Tyler and Burnham. Tyler kills out of aggression, but Burnham out of self defense. She is attacked in the turbo lift by Connor who was captain of the Discovery before Burnham’s return.

 

REVIEW

All in all, this episode felt right for starting the second half of the season. It has uncovered some interesting surprises and yet more remains. We have new questions which leads to the next episode “The Wolf Inside.” It has been confirmed that the crew of the Discovery is in the mirror universe. Although, Star Trek: Discovery is not quick to reveal a plot twist as in Lt. Ash Tyler failing a medical examination that would insist he is human when it does the episode races through the moment. So, the crew of the Discovery counterparts like Capain Tilly in the mirror universe did oppose their regular universe characters to me and Burnham and Lorca’s equivalents are thought to be dead. Lorca, himself, a known fugitive. The different sleek bridge design of the Discovery in the mirror universe was larger than the regular bridge and more breathtaking. I liked it.

There are many unknowns in this mirror universe. Nothing is as it suggests. This universe reflects some social issues of our times. Dr. Culber’s death was unexpected. It does fit nicely within the context of Lt. Tyler’s emotional problems and it was a logical progression that the lieutenant would act forcefully in that way.

Jonathan Frakes who played Commander Riker in The Next Generation directed “Despite Yourself.” His direction was above par. The fight scene between Burnham and mirror universe Captain Connor in the turbo lift was well done. I must also say that the scene with Lorca, Burnham and Saru in his room as he explains to them the mycelial network and other places it could take them may hold significance in episodes to come.

So, this episode was a well-rounded episode for the second half of the season and should pilot us to more revelations in the series.

CONCLUSION

The mid-season opener of Star Trek: Discovery Season 1 Episode 10 “Despite Yourself” was shipshape this week. The episode rubber-stamped some theories of Star Trek fans. It also surprised us with the death of one of the more important Starfleet characters. The Discovery appeared in mirror universe where nothing is as it seems. Many questions have popped up in the selfsame episode where there have been a few obvious questions answered.

The second episode of the second half of this season, called “The Wolf Inside,” will debunk the rumors of Star Trek: Discovery’s success as a series or will seal its demise depending on the direction of the show.
Either way, it is a certainty we will have to watch next week’s episode before we can decide on this series’ fate.

What did you think about this week’s episode?  How many of your questions does this episode answer?

Please leave your comments below…

STAR TREK: DISCOVERY SEASON 1 EPISODE 9

“INTO THE FOREST I GO”

The mid-season finale to Star Trek: Discovery is Season 1 Episode 9 “Into The Forest I Go.” The title is a quote by philosopher John Muir and the episode leaves us asking questions still. However, the quote is: Into the forest I go to lose my mind and find my soul. Insanity and salvation have been recurring themes in this series. But the show leaves a lot unanswered. Questions like “Where are they?” and “What will happen to Lt. Stamets and the spore drive?” We witness a couple of firsts in Star Trek with this episode including the relationship between Stamets and Culber progresses. Discovery has been renewed for a second season and this first season has been extended into next year. We will have to see what happens.

MAIN AND GUEST CHARACTERS, DIRECTOR AND WRITERS

Michael Burnham

Lt. Commander Saru

Lt. Ash Tyler

Cadet Sylvia Tilly

Lt. Paul Stamets

Captain Gabriel Lorca

Joann Owosekun

Airam

Keyla Detmer

Rhys

Dr. Hugh Culber

Admiral Cornwell

Admiral Terrel

Kol

L’Rell

Director: Chris Byrne

Writers: Bo Yeon Kim and Erika Lippolt

Cinematography: Glen Keenan

Airdate: 11/12/2017

SYNOPSIS

“Into The Forest I Go” begins where “Si Vis Pacem, Para Bellum” ends.
The Klingons are approaching the planet Pavho and Captain Lorca is commanded by Vulcan Admiral Terrel to leave the friendly Pavho and set coordinates to Starbase 46 behind Federation lines. There the greatest scientific minds will meet to devise a way to break the invisibility screens that cloak the Klingon battle ships. Lorca’s new mission is to have the scientists of the Discovery join the conference for a solution. Angered, Lorca suggests defending Pavho and stay to confront the Klingon sarcophagus ship. However, the admiral makes the directive clear to jump to Starbase 46. Saru pleads with the captain not to leave the planet unguarded, however Captain Lorca heads the ship to Starbase 46 at warp 5. At that speed, the Discovery will reach Starbase 46 in 3 hours. Lorca admits to the crew on the bridge that he has no intentions of obeying the direct bidding, but he must have a good reason. Until then, he allots the crew that amount of time to find a solution to the Klingon cloaking problem.

Time is essential and Lorca has to have a good reason for Discovery’s delay. The captain talks with Lt. Stamets, the ship’s navigator on the bridge, he orders Stamets to the Medical Bay for a full examination. The lieutenant is hesitant, but obeys his captain’s wishes.

Burnham unriddles how to detect the Klingon ship while cloaked. She observes that the Klingon ship produces a large gravitational field that bends light making it disguised. The crew would have to place sensors on the Klingon ship to collect details and transmit back to Discovery creating an algorithm allowing the ship to be detected by Federation vessels. How to get the away team on board the Klingon ship? Use the spore drive to ambush the Klingon ship. Once the ship cloaks, the away teams beams over before the shields on the ship go up.

The results of the full examination on Stamets proves that negative effects of the spore drive. Stamets has brain damage due to the jumps. But Lorca needs 133 jumps to complete the mission to detect the Klingons cloaking device. Reluctantly, Stamets agrees.

Lorca, with Stamets’ agreeable to his wishes, tells Tyler to prepare his boarding party. Tyler suggests Burnham to assist him in the away mission. No one has been on that ship besides her except for Captain Georghiou. The sensor locations are strategically important to the mission. Lorca orders Burnham not to go to the Ship of the Dead. She will stay on the Discovery and give the location to place the sensors on the Klingon ship to someone else. After Burnham makes her very logical argument, Lorca concedes. Burnham is part of the away team and Discovery jumps back to Pavho before reaching Starbase 46.

The ship battles the Klingon Ship of the Dead while Tyler and Burnham beam aboard it. They set the first device, but Burnham picks up human life signs. Tyler wants her to ignore it, but she will leave no human behind on this ship. In the brig, Admiral Cornwell sits paralyzed from the waist down. And in the same cell is L’Rell, Tyler’s the Klingon torturer. When Tyler sees L’Rell, he is benumbed by a post-traumatic stress disorder spell. Flashbacks of his time with L’Rell torturing him in the Klingon prison ship vividly replays in his mind. He is incapacitated.

Burnham goes it alone to the bridge and plants the sensor. Meanwhile, Stamets is having a fit of his own in Engineering chamber. He cannot continue these micro jumps. They are straining his brain. Discovery has made only 33 jumps. On the Sarcophagus ship, Burnham hears Kol’s voice clearly through her communicator and the universal translator in it. He admits he wants to cloak the ship to escape the Discovery. Something is amiss to him, but Burnham buys time and challenges Kol to combat to delay the Klingon ship from disappearing therefore the mission can be a success. Kol throws a few punches at Burnham and he ribs her very well by mocking Georgiou with the captain’s own name badge in his possession. Goading him into combat over his honor, Burnham discloses she killed T’Kuvma on the very bridge they stand on. Kol grants her the challenge and he forgets all about the Discovery and their predicament.

Ash Tyler reclaims his composure from his bout with PTSD by Cornwell’s therapy session with him in the brig. Then he aids the admiral by grappling with the guards. After Discovery finishes its micro jumps, it beams aboard Tyler, Admiral Cornwell and a scrapping Burnham who rips her captain’s insignia off Kol’s armor just in time to beam out. L’Rell invites herself along with Tyler and the admiral.

Once the boarding party is back, Lorca locks onto the Klingon ship of the dead and orders it destroyed with photon torpedoes. He medicates his light-sensitive eyes so he can relish the moment with the explosion from the ship.

Later, Tyler and Burnham discuss his condition and their relationship advances. Stamets decides to jump the ship one last time to get Discovery home, but this final jump pushes him to seizure and he regresses to a stupor with his eyes turning grayish blue. Discovery finds itself in a very distant place, not knowing where they are and there is a Klingon wreckage all around them.

THEME AND OTHER LITERARY DEVICES

THEME

Fear. In “Into The Forest I Go,” this is prevalent from the beginning to the end. Chiefly, Ash Tyler’s fear spawned by the site of L’Rell. He becomes petrified and we finally watch his emotional collapse unfold as he relives the past torture.

MOTIF

Paralysis. In the brig of the Klingon ship of the Dead, Admiral Cornwell Star Trek-Comic Consuffered paralysis from the waist down. Ash Tyler’s paralysis was emotionally driven due to Post traumatic stress disorder. While Cornwell’s paralysis was physical both Ash Tyler and Cornwell’s paralysis were at the hands of the same torturer-L’Rell, the Klingon torturer. She shared the same cell with them at this point which is another discussion in and of itself, but I digress…

Tyler and Cornwell uses their strengths, his combat skills and her psychology background to conquer their captors while they nursed each others weaknesses, the emotional wounds of Tyler and Cornwell’s physical incapabilities to beat their situations.

SYMBOLISM

The universal communicator was employed to symbolize communication. When Burnham put down the communicator, it symbolized something else. She also laid down the phaser with it. This symbolizes war and peace.

It also typifies the cold war. The communicator and phaser set down by Michael Burnham betokens the state of affairs between two countries when they are neither at war (a phaser) nor at peace (a communicator). They are not talking, they are not warring. This mirrors the relationship with the Soviet Union and the US—-between the US and North Korea–the armistice that followed that war. This may be where the series is headed with the Klingons and the Federation and its timeline with Spock and Kirk. Once there was a war, then the two parties agree to unsteady agreement of peace.

The Battles. Two battles are staged for Kol: the one outside the ship with the Discovery and the one inside the ship with Burnham. Neither battle with his foes is meant to be a death match, but to keep him preoccupied. The outside battle with the Discovery is a war with the outside world, the Federation and the other Klingon houses. But the battle with Burnham epitomizes a war within himself. Kol’s deepest desire is to demonstrate he deserves the title he has earned.

Two Minds. Tyler and Stamets are both going through sensory overload in the brain. With Stamets it is one of knowledge, too much. With Tyler, it is an emotional overload filled with flashbacks of torture. These represent a far deeper problem for both. Their job titles clue us in as Stamets is a Scientist and Tyler is Chief Security officer. Both these officers slip into a kind of traumatic trance.

REVIEW

Kol vs Burnham. I enjoyed the fight scene and all that it had to offer. The acknowledgment of Captain Georghiou, her demise and her redemption by recovering her captain’s badge, all pertinent to Burnham during this sequence is how and what fuels the overall arc of the series and all found in

Pictured (l-r): Doug Jones as Lieutenant Saru; Sonequa Martin-Green as First Officer Michael Burnham; Michelle Yeoh as Captain Philippa Georgiou. STAR TREK: DISCOVERY coming to CBS All Access. Photo Cr: Jan Thijs. © 2017 CBS Interactive. All Rights Reserved.

this one scene. But let’s examine why Burnham acted this way in the first place. The Klingons were going to cloak into space and lose the Discovery. Discovery was not finished with its jumps yet. Burnham had to check Kol’s decision quickly. One way to do this is with a showdown, make him prove his worth in front of his comrades. I enjoyed how violence was not Burnham’s intent only when she perceived no other way out of the situation to stall the Klingons from cloaking and the Discovery losing the ship, her and her comrades did she engage the Klingons. This time she did not kill anyone and no one in this scene was killed by her. Burnham’s self-sacrifice was rewarding and recovering Captain Georghiou’s badge satisfying. She managed to , save the boarding party, rescue Admiral Cornwell , save the mission and L’Rell who wants immunity from the Klingon empire.

We also spotted Burnham is a sure shot with the phaser. She keeps proving that. Not so good with the hand-to-hand combat, she and Kirk are much alike.

I prized the universal translator coming into play on the Klingon ship. We heard the Kol speak English for the first time. It was worth the wait. Great build to it throughout the entire season.

The first half of the season leaves us on a cliffhanger about where the crew of the Discovery is. The ship materializes near a wreckage in space. Lorca made a confusing decision with his coordinates to the next destination and to override the helms coordinates. Lt. Stamets could not maintain the jump completely with the spore drive. He is suffering from brain damage. All of which makes for a very interesting climax.

Conclusion

That’s it for this half of the season for the series Star Trek: Discovery. The highs and lows of losing comrades and finding new ones has made Discovery worthwhile in the first part of the season. The settings and special effects were also gainful for the series. Star Trek: Discovery’s season begins its second part in January. Hopefully many of the questions we have will be answered in this next part. We will have to wait and see.

STAR TREK: DISCOVERY SEASON 1 EPISODE 8

SI VIS PACEM, PARA BELLUM

If you want peace, prepare for war. The title for Star Trek: Discovery Season 1 Episode 8 is Si Vis Pacem, Para Bellum. The translation, above, has Latin roots. This episode is rooted in harmony and its opposite. The visual and special effects were superb on the planet and in space. The series is asking more questions with very little answers. Episode 8 sets viewers up for the mid season finale. Viewers should be pleased.

MAIN AND GUEST CHARACTERS, WRITERS, DIRECTORS

  • Michael Burnham
  • Lt. Paul Stamets
  • Captain Gabriel Lorca
  • Cadet Sylvia Tilly
  • Ash Tyler
  • Joann Owosekun
  • Airam
  • Kol
  • Kovil
  • Terral
  • L’Rell
  • Director: John Scott
  • Writers:Kirsten Beyer and Staff writer: Sean Cochran
  • Airdate: 11/5/17

SYNOPSIS

The U.S.S. Discovery answers an emergency hail from the U.S.S. Gargarin who is being attacked by 6 to 8 Klingon vessels. The ship is blown out of the stars and Discovery almost with it. She has to retreat using her spore drive.
Referring to Tilly as captain, Stamets is back to his grumpy ways. Although, later he will not be able to explain them.
On the sarcophagus ship, Klingon Kol exploits his stolen cloaking device to gain support with the other Klingon houses.
Lorca forwards Saru, Burnham and Tyler on a mission to the planet Pavho which has mysterious capabilities. A tall crystal structure is erected that reaches into the sky on the planet. Starfleet’s aim is to use the electromagnetic signal found in the planet into a sonar makeshift so as to alert them of the cloaked Klingon ships. On Pavho, Saru is having trouble with the constant noise the planet discharges. The away team discerns they are not alone, but the planet is inhabited by sentient beings.
L’Rell promises fealty to Kol, but to prove her worth she must interrogate Admiral Cornwell for beneficial intelligence.

Burnham and Tyler discuss their futures, but focus on their present sealing it with a kiss.
Encountering a hut in the woods, the sentient being fails to make contact because the universal translator cannot interpret. The sentient being adopts Saru as the linguist. It intertwines Saru to do so.

Stamets admits the unfavorable side effects of the spore drive are taking their toll on him. He is disoriented and reality shifts for him. Asking for medical help with put Doctor Culber, his partner between Scylla and Charybdis.
L’Rell’s interrogation is actually a request for defection to the Federation side. They plan an escape and Admiral Cornwell will help L’Rell in her alliance with the Federation.
During their discussion, Saru learns that the Pavhoans are one with the planet. They are failing to make contact with any other life forms in space by employing the tall crystal radio. Saru is still having problems with the noise on the planet. He steps outside and the Pavhoans engage with Saru again. He lies down on the ground reliving the past.

The next morning, Saru is not acting like himself at all and informs his team they will stay on the planet forever in perfect bliss. He therefore destroys their communicators. Burnham and Tyler now have a problem.

While escaping the Klingon sarcophagus with Cornwell, L’Rell’s plan is foiled by the Klingons. She fails to save herself by “killing” Admiral Cornwell and disposing of her body.

Saru is distracted by Tyler while Burnham at the crystal relay connects her devices to it.

L’Rell learns most of her comrades dead in a room where she dragged Admiral Cornwell’s body.

Saru arrives at the crystal relay and destroys Burnham’s equipment so that she cannot contact Discovery. A confrontation between the two ensues. She fires upon him after with ther phaser and convinces him that peace can be found with the end of the war.  Tyler shows up and Burnham requests from the Pavhoan for aid against the Klingons.  Saru believes the Klingons will destroy the Pavhoans and their peaceful planet.  The relay is energized sending out its signal. The away team is beamed aboard. Saru apologizes for his actions against Burnham.

On the sarcophagus ship, Kol denounces L’Rell as a traitor and accuses her of treason.  L’Rell is escorted off the bridge while the Klingons are being hailed by the Pavhoans. The sarcophagus ship is invited to Pavho.

Klingon ship arrives at Pavho. There the battle begins with the USS Discovery and the sarcophagus ship.

 

THEMES AND OTHER LITERARY DEVICES

Fear. One of the major changes was Saru’s disposition. On Pavho, without the element of fear, Saru becomes violently aggressive. Perhaps, more like the predator species in his dynamic. He demonstrates what happens if he lives without fear to me. He, like we all, need fear otherwise we become unstable. His logical, anchored mannerisms hinge on fear. His strength on Pavho when fighting Burnham indicates that there is something more to his species than prey. If predator is the flip side of Saru, the coin is fear. Remember, Lorca and Burnham are not too fearful at all. They arc toward aggression especially in their decision-making and actions.

Harmony vs. Discord. The vibration originating from the planet Pavho, its effect on Saru and the surroundings in general imply harmony. The battle with the Klingons in space for the USS Discovery suggests discord.

MOTIFS

Communication.  The relay on Pavho sent communications out to other life forms.  Saru became the new communication mechanism when the universalCBS Logo translator did not work in deciphering the Pavhoans’ messages.  And Saru destroyed Burnham and Tyler’s communicators.

Light followed by a Sound. Remember in the first episode “The Vulcan Hello,” there was the Klingon beacon that radiated a light then a sound happened after that. Then Captain Georghiou asked for silence and Lt. Commander Saru explained the sound. After that the Klingons arrived, a fleet of them. This is no different. Planet Pavho flagged the Klingons to this remote location. Another historic battle could develop.

Sonequa Martin-Green confessed Michael Burnham’s first name was derived from Michael, the archangel. Captain Lorca’s forename is Gabriel as in the messenger angel. Where is the other one?

SYMBOLS

Planet Pavho is a symbol of harmony. It could also be an Eden and what humans and other life forms were before discord and strife. It may also symbolize paradise’s abrupt end. The color scheme seem to hint at this peace and tranquility. In the Bible, Eden is a paradise on Earth, but what surrounds this paradise? The planet Pavho reminds me of this. Perhaps a paradise, but violence with the Klingons and the Federation surrounds this place.

REVIEW

The visual and special effects were stunning. I appreciated the use of color schemes on the planet Pavho. The director, John Scott, should give himself a big pat on the back for this one. He had to negotiate the battle scene with the Klingon setting and the Planet Pavho. I would have liked to have seen Burnham and Tyler’s relationship as an Adam and Eve connection. They were in the right place for it. To me, Saru’s behavior may not be that far removed from him. We only know the prey species of his kind not the predator one. The predator species may enlighten us to Saru and his behaviors, fear versus aggression. We’ll see.

IN SUMMATION

Star Trek: Discovery’s Si Vis Pacem, Para Bellum was another good episode. It had a lot of twists and the series can still take a lot of turns in that it still doesn’t answer as many questions as it asks. That makes for a great story. The directing was specifically memorable. The Discovery series in filling out more with plot about the Klingons and Burnham’s relationship with crew members. Discovery is turning out to be an exceptional Star Trek series.

 

 

 

 

STAR TREK: DISCOVERY SEASON 1 EPISODE 7

Homer would be proud.Star Trek: Discovery Season 1 Episode 7 takes its name from Homer’s “Iliad.” This week’s episode may prove to be the most fun in the series thus far. From a recurring character to time loops, Star Trek: Discovery was full of pleasant surprises. Sanity was a major theme in this episode and Lt. Stamets did everything possible to keep his during this unending incident.

MAIN CHARACTERS, WRITERS, DIRECTORS

Michael Burnham

Commander Saru

Cadet Sylvia Tilly

Ash Tyler

Keyla Detmer

Captain Gabriel Lorca

Airaim

Rhys

Owosekun

Paul Stamets

Barron Grimes

Harcourt Fenton Mudd

Stella Grimes Mudd

Writers: Aron Eli Coleite and Jesse Alexander

Director: David M. Barrett

 

SYNOPSIS

After an interesting log given by Burnham into her opinion about some crew mates on board the USS Discovery, the Science Specialist emerges at a party. Tilly questions Burnham on the relationship status of she and Tyler after their “two dates.” Burnham evades her questions with ease and probes a tipsy Tilly about her own relationships with men.

Lorca calls both Burnham and Tyler to the bridge to examine an ill space whale-gormagander. He chooses to beam the whale a shuttle bay. In the shuttle bay, the awaiting Burnham and the rest of the science team ready themselves for the giant space creature when Harry Mudd dives out in a space costume and bombards the science team with phaser fire. Burnham communicates to the bridge about the shuttle bay’s present condition. Mudd reveals himself to Lorca by taking off his helmet and swearing revenge against Lorca. He vows to sell Discovery’s secret propulsion system to the Klingons as Lorca’s penance for banning Mudd from his lady love, Sweet Stella and detaining him in the Klingon prison. Then Mudd triggers an explosion.
Miraculously, Burnham reemerges at the party. Lt. Stamets charges Burnham in an attempt to prohibit her from leaving the party. He rambles on about a gormagander. Burnham pays him no heed only to realize Stamets was telling the truth. She ponders his premonition. She recognizes Mudd in engineering studying Discovery’s new propulsion system. And Stamets slays him. He divulges that they have been through the same scenario numerous times. Again the ship explodes.

The scenes reset and this time Stamets blitzes Burnham in the corridor as she is walking to the shuttle bay. There, he outlines their temporal loop paradox and his retention of all the previous incidences. Coupled with Mudd’s interest in the spore drive, Stamets leaks to Burnham all Mudd is missing is him to piece the puzzle together. Begging for a secret to persuade Burnham when the loop restarts, she simply whispers to him. The cold boot this time allows Stamets to screech that Burnham’s secret is loveless times and his annoyance of the time loop. He teaches her “to dance” in the corridor and gives her advice about love so next time she can ask Tyler about Mudd while they disco.

The time loop restores itself. Burnham while slow dancing with Tyler admits the time loop dilemma to him. Tyler remembers a story about Mudd and Burnham theorizes Mudd’s device to aid him is a time manipulating apparatus. On the bridge, Mudd greets the crew and transports Lorca to the brig. There Mudd confesses to killing Lorca 53 times. (If the time loops is set for 30 minutes at maximum then the USS Discovery has been in this time loop for a little over a day.) Tyler attacks Mudd, He in turn, defends himself killing Tyler with dark matter. Stamets is threatened with dark matter by Mudd who regards him as temporal loop cognizant. Stamets gives in. He teaches Mudd about the spore drive and confides himself as its missing element. Mudd has every component needed to give the ship over to the Klingons.

Tyler dead, Burnham hatches a new plan. She needs the loop to renew itself if she ever wants to see Tyler alive again. Burnham accesses the captain’s quarters to meet Mudd and disclose that she killed T’Kuvma and the Klingons want her more than anything else. She then eats the dark matter.

The loop reestablished, Mudd reaches the bridge to see a dismayed Lorca who is willing to trade the Discovery, Stamets and Burnham for the rest of the crew’s release. Mudd accepts the agreement and dissolves the time orb halting the time loop. He then dispatches the ship’s location to the Klingons. After leaving the bridge, Stamets and Burnham escorted by Mudd unveil a truth that Stella is not who he is running to but running from. They also declare that the non-critical systems on the ship were not disarmed and that the captain’s chair is a non-critical system. Tyler rewired the chair. The coordinates of the ship were not sent to the Klingons, but to Stella and her father, an arms’ dealer who is making a fortune off the war and who put out a reward for Mudd’s capture.
In the transporter room, Stella and her father, Baron Grimes await Mudd. And he has the perfect excuse for leaving Stella. Stella forgives them and the entire family is transported off the Discovery. Tyler in the transporter clues Burnham to the fact that he is very much interested in a relationship with her.

THEMES AND OTHER LITERARY DEVICES

The seventh episode of Star Trek: Discovery delves into love. The quote taken from the Iliad goes something like this:

There is the heat of love, the pulsing rush of Longing, the lover’s whisper, irrestible-magic to make the sanest man go mad.

The poem written by Homer is in dactylic hexameter and the passage in referenced in Book 14 Lines 259-261. It was published in 800 BC. Dactylic hexameter is a meter for classical epic poetry in Greek and Latin. It is also known as heroic hexameter or six feet hence the term hexa

means 6. Each foot is dactyl or a long syllable followed by two short syllables—long-short-short. An example of a dactyl foot would be “HU-man-ly” as in humanly possible or “TY-pi-cal“. An example of a poem written in dactylic hexameter is Longfellow’s “Evangeline” and nursery rhyme “Hickory Dickory Dock.” Rare is it in English , though. Interestingly enough, hip hop music is believed to be written in this heroic meter.
Our poem takes place ten years into the seige of Troy. Achilles in unwilling to participate in the war effort against Troy after the Greeks pillaged a city Chryse gaining the daughter of Chryes, a priest for the god Apollo and Achilles seizes Briseis and has to relinquish her to Agamemnon, the leader of his army…
Some themes of the “Iliad” are honor, courage and love versus wrath, eternal slaughter, torture and disgracing warriors. It seems akin to Discovery’s mass murders by Mudd especially dehumanizing Captain Lorca. Mudd admitted to killing the captain 53 times before again killing him which is reminiscent of Achilles degrading Hector’s body. This may be too much of a read into the subject. Mudd enjoyed killing the crew of Discovery repeatedly. Burnham’s courage was tested when she decides to kill herself to restore the time loop allowing Tyler to live again. So was her love tested as well.

The quote itself was used for motifs and symbols, such as “a lover’s whisper,” “longing” for a lover, “madness,” and “sanity.” I believe like Burnham whispering into the ear of Lt. Stamets, her and Tyler’s yearning for one another specifically in the turbo lift when they discussed the kiss. And the casual loop hammered away at Lt. Stamets’ sanity. Mudd appeared to be a little maniacal this episode. A result of the time loop. Stamets and Mudd contrast and parallel each other.  Both learn from the time loop.  Stamets learns more about his crew mate Michael Burnham and Mudd learns more about the ship.  These two characters gain access to off limits areas or secured areas.
With Mudd again it is the ship and with Stamets it’s access to Michael Burnham’s personal life which she heavily guards.

REVIEW

This episode of Star Trek: Discovery conjured the lighthearted spirit in its audience this week. The crew as a team resorted to trickery to solve the problem of Mudd’s devilry through his wielding of a time crystal. Stamets, Burnham and Tyler all had a hand in Harry’s demise and the Star Trek-Comic Conexplanation behind it. In many ways, this episode reflected classic Star Trek ingenuity. I believe the fans responded to that writing in a very positive way. We have Aron Eli Coleite and Jesse Alexander to thank for this. Coleite and Alexander both wrote for the TV series Heroes which aired from 2006-2010. Toned with complex story plots reaching over several episodes such as is the norm for writing in comic books, Aron Eli Coleite clicked perfectly into that series as a producer and writer being a comic book writer himself. However, in the episode “Magic To Make The Sanest Man Go Mad,” he wrote for a standalone episode. Jesse Alexander tagged along with him as a writer on “Heroes” also steps out of character to write this bewitching episode. Both have joined forces once again to write, but on Star Trek: Discovery.

What I like about the time loop was it was never tiresome. The reset was manageable and not too predictable. The reason for the time loop was address quite well as was each time loop reboot. Though the episode was shot entirely on the Discovery, it did not feel like a “message in a bottle.” The plot, setting and the scenes were contained to the ship, but not claustrophobic or confined. I never really felt deprived of another world experience. David M. Barrett directs this episode with great balance. You have to like a person whose credits include stunt work right alongside producing and directing.
The casual time loop was that one event depended upon another event depended upon another event where this last event was the cause of the first event. Those loops are always mind-boggling.

IN SUMMATION

Star Trek: Discovery’s episode this week explores love and its craziness not to mention a pressing time loop and a pesky villain. With an allusion to the “Iliad” in its title, Star Trek Discovery concocted its most amusing piece this series yet. Enjoyable, I look forward to more from this franchise’s newest evolution.

STAR TREK DISCOVERY SEASON 1 EPISODE 6

LETHE

Greek mythology infests Star Trek: Discovery Season 1 Episode 6: Lethe. It deals with the themes death, forgetfulness and pain. Sarek experiences all five emotions associated with death in this episode which reflects the five rivers of Hades in Greek mythology. There are Styx-the river of hatred, Acheron-the river of pain, Cocytus-the river of wailing, Phlegethon-the river of fire and Lethe-the river of forgetfulness. Okay Burnham wailed but the meaning was meant to translate over to Sarek and his feelings during this episode.

CHARACTERS, WRITERS, DIRECTORS

Michael Burnham

Saru

Ash Tyler

Paul Stamets

Cadet Sylvia Tilly

Captain Gabriel Lorca

Admiral Cornwell

Dr. Hugh Culber

Sarek

Kol

Terral

Keyla Detmer

V’Latak
Discovery Computer

Dennas

Director: Douglas Aarinokoski

Writers:Joe Menosky and Ted Sullivan

Airdate: October 22, 2017

SYNOPSIS

On Vulcan Sarek boards a ship with L’Vatak, a pilot. They leave headed to a certain location. In the corridor, Burnham and Tilly jog for exercise. Burnham reveals to Tilly in a convincing Kirk speech how she can make fast track to the captain’s chair by shaving 6.5 seconds off her time today. Tilly will have none of this and wants breakfast.

Lorca and Ash fight a battle sequence with the Klingons on the holodeck. There Lorca quizzes Ash on his birthplace, his father that he never knew and his deceased mother who was a school teacher. Lorca, satisfied with the job interview offers Tyler the chief security officer position previously held by Laundry.

On the ship, V’Latak exposes himself to be a logical extremist and that the Uridia nebula they are near is not the destination for the discreet Cancri IV diplomatic mission Sarek is on. Vulcan blows himself up almost taking Sarek with him.

In the mess hall, Burnham and Tilly debate breakfast. Tilly desires a green tea, but Burnham decides on three egg white burritos. There they meet Ash Tyler. There Sarek calls to Burnham. She falls to the ground unconscious. Sarek guides her through space in a Vulcan mind meld to a place resembling Vulcan. People populate the background as well as artwork. Then, he casts her out. The place Sarek called Burnham to his a painful memory of the time she was rejected to the Vulcan Expeditionary Group.

Recovering in Sickbay, Burnham asks Lorca to find Sarek. She confesses that she was dead for three minutes after an explosive detonated by logical extremist attempted to kill her and Sarek’s katra was embedded in her to save her life. Now, they have a special connection that everywhere she goes somehow he is there with her. She knows he is in trouble. In his quarters, Lorca communicates with Vulcan Admiral Terral about Sarek. He is informed by the Vulcan that Sarek was on a discreet mission of diplomacy meeting with two Klingon houses who are against Klingon Kol’s ruling council. Lorca launches an unauthorized rescue mission to save Sarek.
Just outside the Uridia nebula, Burnham volunteers herself as a human probe to locate Sarek. But how? Lt. Stamets tools a synthetic mind meld enhancer which will boost impulse signals to Sarek’s katra. Lorca wants to move the ship into the Uridia nebula, but Stamets cautions against it. Instead, they send in a shuttle craft with Burnham’s suggested Tilly to operate the neural device. Ash’s duty is to pilot the craft.

Cornwell enters the USS Discovery to approach Captain Lorca about his decisions as of late. In the shuttle craft Burnham bemoans her memory of her biggest failure and the reality that Sarek is contemplating it to near death. She requests Tilly not to remove the neural enhancer if her vital signs decline. This is the result of Sarek’s shelling against her. But when the time comes, Ash orders Tilly to detach the device and it revives Burnham.
On Discovery, Admiral Cornwell confronts Lorca on an unauthorized rescue mission, engaging in eugenic manipulations with Stamets and the tardigrade situation, ignoring orders and the USS Buran incident spoken of in episode 5 “Choose Your Pain.” However, through all this, Lorca manages to be cleared for duty. Lorca dislikes the attack on his character and offers a drink instead.

Ash Tyler rallies that Sarek is not reliving Burnham’s mistake, but his own and to question him on it. When Burnham enters the Vulcan like mind space Sarek admits his mistake of choosing his own son over Burnham for the Vulcan Expeditionary Group. The Vulcans were very interested in Burnham. Sarek never lost faith in Burnham. He lost faith in himself. With this secret off his chest, Sarek instructs Burnham on how to perform the mind meld to save his life. He is able to active a transponder to reveal his location in the nebula.

In his quarters, asleep, Cornwell reaches for Lorca. He, near unconscious himself, puts a phaser to her head. She blurs out that she cannot let a “broken man” head the Discovery. Meanwhile, Saru, informs Lorca that Sarek is in Sickbay severely wounded.

Sarek refuses to acknowledge the event with Burnham, she declines to let the event subside. Outside, Lorca congratulates Burnham on her new Science Specialist” position on the bridge. Sarek needs someone to send in his stead to the diplomatic mission. Lorca has an idea.
In the corridor, Burnham meets a jogging Tilly. She confides to Tilly that there are many ways to the captain’s chair and to find her own. Tilly says she has and keeps on running. Admiral Cornwell agrees to go in Sarek’s stead.

In the mess hall, Burnham orders a green tea and encounters Tyler again under more amicable conditions.

Admiral Cornwell meets with the two Klingon houses on Cancri IV in neutral territory, but it is a trap. Kol appears as a hologram and instructs Dennas to kill the hosts. Kol celebrates his high ranking hostage. Later, Saru reports to Captain Lorca about Admiral Cornwell’s situation. He declines to execute an unsanctioned mission.

THEMES AND OTHER LITERARY DEVICES

Death is a recurring theme in this series. The title, “Lethe,” advocates the message when Sarek is near death close to the beginning of this story and Burnham’s life signs deteriotating when she confronts Sarek in his consciousness. The threat of the death of Lorca’a captaincy maybe another symbol of this.

Lethe is a river of forgetfulness in Greek mythology and Sarek does wish to forget his sin committed against Burnham. Ethically, she is the only person who can “save” him from the dire situation by forgiving him and save his life in the nebula. Sarek has to accept forgiveness which he does in his ill-stricken state, his subconsciousness. Once fully awake, he denies remembering the incident, but this may be the first steps of Sarek forgiving himself. He also may feel responsible for the Federations present condition with the Klingons and the war. I believe his gamble for peaceful negotiations with the pair of Klingon houses at Cancri IV testifies to his shame. Had Burnham been accepted to the Vulcan Expeditionary Group maybe none of this would have happened. Count the concrete happening that Spock chose Starfleet over the Academy then you have a remorseful Sarek who believes this is his fault. Spock may have only ventured into Starfleet after he saw how Burnham excelled and was headed to captaincy before this incident. That had to be the talk at the table on Vulcan. He may have seen his own future at Starfleet. Spock would have a logical reason for entering Starfleet. Sarek may have sealed it.

Intimacy is another theme for this episode. The Sarek/Burnham relationship and the Cornwell/Lorca relationship mirror each other in certain ways and counter each other in other ways. Sarek and Burnham fight in broad daylight in his consciousness. Cornwell and Lorca are in dimly lit quarters with stars shining through Lorca’s windows and sipping on champagne. The Sarek/Burnham relationship is resolved, the Cornwell/Lorca relationship takes a nasty hit with a phaser.
The choicest metaphor to explain Sarek’s condition mentally and physically was the radioactive nebula. The reality that the ship could not travel into the nebula and that only a select few could was brilliant writing. Burnham as the human probe set inside the nebula to find Sarek and the metaphor for her probing Sarek’s consciousness sets up the next pivotal scenes beautifully. Sarek leading Burnham to his mental condition using the Vulcan scenery then he drives her off is parallel to the series of events describing Sarek bringing Burnham to Vulcan as a child only to expel her later and therefore she boards the USS Shenzhou starting her Starfleet career.
The “broken man” metaphor describes Lorca and Sarek. Both are living with mistakes and actively striving to correct them. They both have a woman in their lives who is struggling to help in their own way. Neither interprets these women’s actions as aid although Sarek appreciates the assistance of Burnham much more than Lorca does of Admiral Cornwell.

REVIEWS

Sonequa Martin-Greene’s acting was stellar. Her Burnham to Sarek mind meld was beautifully hypnotic.I The sets of Vulcan were simple and aesthetic. I did not get lost or bored with them. Star Trek: Discovery works well with the settings in this episode. The lighting on Vulcan was also noteworthy. And in the background of this pivotal setting with Burnham, I believe it is possible that a younger version of Spock was present. Remember, it is Sarek’s consciousness. He has other Vulcans in the background and each serves a purpose for being there.

The writers completed the episode ending with Tilly’s routine jog in the corridor and accepting the best course to becoming a captain one day. This lets the audience know that she is serious about her dream. There is a toughness emerging from Cadet Tilly through her connection with Burnham. Burnham trusts Tilly for emotional support which is why she wanted Tilly on the shuttle with her when Burnham entered the nebula. That relationship is blooming well. She hints to fancy Ash Tyler who seems to give Burnham the benefit of the doubt.
I would have liked Burnham to have met with the Klingons instead of Admiral Cornwell. That would have spun the plot in another direction. The plot was so deep, the writers could have taken it down many avenues. It’s good to have that choice. Speaking of writers, Joe Menosky’s experiences with Star Trek like The Next Generation, Deep Space Nine and Voyager, not to mention 2009 Star Trek, really adds strength to the plot. You can tell that the story meets your expectations and surprises you as well. He also has a rumored fetish with the number 47.
Jayne Brooks acted well as Admiral Cornwell. You may remember her as a doctor on Chicago Hope or in Kindergarten Cop with Arnold Schwarzenegger. Shazad Latif, London born actor is settling into the Star Trek: Discovery cast He played in the movie “The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel” alongside famed actress Dame Judi Dench.

Conclusion

This Star Trek episode was one of the best of the series thus far. Full of imagery, metaphor and themes,  Lethe is sure to please every die hard Trekker.

 

 

 

 

STAR TREK: DISCOVERY SEASON 1 EPISODE 5

CHOOSE YOUR PAIN

Welcome to Star Trek Season 1 Episode 5: Choose Your Pain.  We rest from the ship as the central setting of the story instead venturing to a Klingon prison shuttle. Captain Lorca’s ability to command is challenged.  And Mudd makes his first appearance on the show played by Rainn Wilson.

MAIN CHARACTERS, GUEST CHARACTERS, WRITERS, DIRECTORS

  • Michael Burnham
  • Saru
  • Captain Gabriel Lorca
  • Ash Tyler
  • Lt. Paul Stamets
  • Cadet Sylvia Tilly
  • Dr. Hugh Colber
  • Harry Mudd
  • Keyla Detmer
  • Rhys
  • L’Rell
  • Airiam
  • Admiral Cornwell
  • Director by Lee Rose
  • Story by Gretchen J. Berg, Aaron Harberts and Kemp Powers
  • Teleplay by Kemp Powers
  • Airdate October 15, 2017

 

SYNOPSIS

In a dream, Michael Burnham switches places with the tardigrade in the cultivation bay and feels the painful side effects of the displacement activated spore up drive or the new propulsion system.

Lorca is a guest at a Starfleet admirals’ meeting where the admirals whisper suspicions that Burnham may not have incited the war with the

Star Trek-Comic Con
Cast & creators panel at SDCC 2017

Klingons even though they do not want her on the Discovery. Lorca is steadfast that it is his ship and his rules.

Traveling by shuttle back to the Discovery, Lorca is taken hostage by a boarding Klingon party. Meanwhile, Saru, now the commanding officer, orders several jumps to locate the captain. Burnham informs Saru on the effects these jumps have on the tardigrade. Saru Ignores her warnings so Burnham beseeches Dr. Culber. Culber diagnoses the tardigrade’s brain will not function at all if these jumps continue. Both enlighten Stamet. With

Stamet’s behind her, Burnham enlists Tilly’s help to copy the tardigrade’s DNA to a receptive animal and continue the life of the project.

On the Klingon prisoner transport, Lorca meets Harry Mudd. Trapped there too, Harry Mudd instructs the captain on the culture. In order to stop a mutiny, the Klingons offer a captive to “Choose your pain.” The captive decides who will take the next beating from the Klingons, a beating that is at times fatal. Harry Mudd chooses Lt. Tyler Ash, another captive.
Lorca survives torture by the Klingons. Knowing his sensitivity to light, the Klingons force open Captain Lorca’s eyes and shine a bright light in them. Mudd shares his dislike for Starfleet because initiated the war. Harry Mudd snitches that Lorca blew up his last ship and crew of the ill-fated USS Buran. Lorca confesses that the Klingons ambushed the ship making him the only survivor and he would not subject them to Klingon torture. Deducing that Mudd is working with the Klingons, Lorca enlists the aid of Tyler to escape the shuttle leaving Mudd behind. Mudd swears revenge.

During the argument between Saru and Burnham about the life of the taridgrade,  Saru accuses Burnham’s reckless behaviour demonstrated with this tardigrade is exactly what got Captain Georgiou killed.  Burnham did not disagree. Saru confines Burnham to quarters when she, Culber, Stamets and Tilly produce a DNA transfer from the tardigrade to humans and that humans now have the power to navigate the displacement activated spore drive or the new propulsion system. The suggestion, Saru discredits as a violation of Federation law. Instead of that pursuit, Saru researches qualities of great captains like bravery, self-sacrifice, tactical brilliance and compassion. And during the next operation of the spore drive, the tardigrade enters cryptobiosis or “tun” which is a state where all metabolic processes standstill, a death like condition. It is severe. The tardigrade is revived by Stamets, he privately decides to navigate the next jump for the displacement activated spore up drive in the tardigrade’s stead. But, Stamets is severely injured and revived quickly.
Saru ascertains Lorca is in one of a caravan of Klingon ships and that he is being pursued by the other craft. So Saru beams Lorca and Lt. Ash Tyler onto the USS Discovery before their transport explodes. He acknowledges the tardigrade’s danger as a navigator to the new propulsion system and orders Burnham to release the animal. Burnham frees the creature into space where it then disappears. Saru also admits he was jealous of Burnham’s position and relationship with Georgiou. As a peace offering, Burnham entrusts Saru with Georgiou’s telescope.  He,later cnacels his findings of his own merit as a captain in Lorca’s absence.

Later, in his quarters, Stamets confides in his partner, Dr. Culber, that the experience in the cultivation bay was unimaginable. Dr. Culber suggests he be more careful and after Stamets withdraws from the mirror, his mirror image lingers for a brief moment longer.

THEMES, METAPHORS AND MOTIFS

Self-sacrifice is a theme in “Choose Your Pain.’ It is listed by Discovery’s computer as well as notable captains including Kirk. Stamets decided to choose to hurt himself over the tardigrade by navigating the ship in the last jump. Also, dare I say, Burnham’s empathy in her dream where she is in the cultivation bay navigating the USS Discovery instead of the tardigrade is also a type of self-sacrifice…a stretch maybe, but those are my thoughts.

“Alice In Wonderland” symbolism of dreams as Burnham experienced still adds value and credibility to the series. It deepens Burnham’s CBS Logounderstanding of the situation.
Burnham relinquishing Captain Georgiou’s family heirloom to Commander Saru may have major significance. First, it can represent his initial search into his own self-discovery. Second, it may clue the audience into the fate of Saru’s deepens Burnham’s making capabilities while he is a commander of the ship and his ability to protect his captain well.

REVIEW

Lee Rose’s direction in this episode was good. I enjoyed the lighting giving a certain ambiance to Lorca’s cell. She debuted as director in the film “The Color Of Courage” with Terminator famed Linda Hamilton. Her other credits include “Grace and Frankie” “and “Under The Dome.” The edgy writing is due to actor and director Kemp Powers. He was a staff writer in the Discovery episode “The Vulcan Hello.” He is credited with “This Day Today” and “Fight Your Way Out.”
Harry Mudd makes his debut in the new series not as comedic relief but sinister and some dark humor moments. Saru and Burnham’s turbulent relationship feels near explosive as Saru loses his temper and possibly his patience with Burnham; it resolves itself-for now, nicely. Burnham does endure the guilt of Captain Georgiou’s death even if no one detects it.Quietly, Burnham is several steps ahead of Lt. Stamets in his discovery of the spore propulsion and she may predict its demise. Ash Tyler finally enters the series after being credited without acting in a single episode until now.

Conclusion

Star Trek Season 1 Episode 5: Choose Your Pain veered us away from the ship and we learned some of Captain Lorca’s past. We know some facts about Lt. Ash Tyler. Next week’s episode 6 is “Lethe” and is sure to bring more interesting story lines. If I were you, I would stay tuned…