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
Ash Tyler/ Voq
Writer: Lisa Randolph
Director: David Solomon
Cinematography: Colin Hoult
Airdate: February 4, 2018
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
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
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
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. 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. 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. Maybe 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.
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 back 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.
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.