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Star Trek: Discovery - Disco isn't dead

I feel like the overarching meta-theme of Season 2 of Disco was to launder out as much of the anachronisms of Disco S1, and to realign the show so that it can fit more comfortably in established canon. Get rid of the holograms, give Klingons their hair back, make the Discovery and its crew Top Secret, and eject them from the 23rd Century. And bringing Pike in as a Substitute Captain was a big part of that too. Bring in a stabilizing voice that feels like a classic Star Trek captain. Season 3 then, has been about realigning the form of the show to fit a more conventional Star Trek mold. And a big part of that has been the reorganization of the crew and really ironing out the command structure of the crew and giving voices to the supporting cast. And while there has been an overarching plot, each episode feels a lot more episodic and self-contained in a way that can't be a coincidence.

In a way, this kinda makes me sad. I like it when Star Trek pushes the envelope and tries new things, and it's kinda discouraging to watch the fanbase as a whole be so enslaved to their nostalgia and preconceptions. But I still think the show is ultimately better for what it's become, and the compromises that they've made with the show haven't been that bad when they've traded it for the ability to do other new/different things. If you thumb through the TT2 archive, I was extremely apprehensive about putting the show in a post-Federation 32nd Century. But I've been very happy with what the show has done with this fresh new setting.

Hoping we see more of Owosekun
She's probably my favorite supporting character. I really liked the moments she's had this season, which have mostly been as a supporting friend for Detmer. Those two have a good rapport. I'd love to get a whole episode about those two doing stuff. It's probably the thing I miss the most about the old model of making 26 episode seasons, because you had the time to dedicate "filler" episodes where a side character gets to take center stage. Like your Barclay episodes, or your Lower Decks episode, or your TNG O'Brien episodes. But when your seasons are half the length, they don't have the time to explore the cast as thoroughly and leisurely, when they're trying to fit enough screen time for the top billed actors and accomplish their season long arcs.

This week's episode, I don't think I've ever been so happy to see the Mirror Universe and I squealed a bit when it happened. A pretty regular critique I read of Disco S3 is that people don't like Georgiou/don't understand why she's even on the ship and trusted, but I mostly dig the character, and I have a lot of theories about her that I'd elaborate on if anyone cared to listen.
 

Aleryn

Gravity is overrated.
I'm of two minds with Discovery as well in regards to the directions its followed. I probably have enjoyed the first season the most because of its difference from the rest of the franchise. I've seen just about everything official with the word "Star Trek" in the title and I don't mind breaking the mold at all. With the possible exception of turning it into yet-another grimdark future show. Except for the mirror universe, that can be as horrible it wants to be.

But yeah, this new direction of season 3 is working for me. I didn't want to be forced 500+ years past the last point of reference but its entertaining so far. Certainly better than just people complaining about Janeway mucking up the timeline.

Please go wild about Georgiou theories; I was SO happy her actress wasn't just gone after what happened at the beginning.
 
I didn't want to be forced 500+ years past the last point of reference but its entertaining so far.
It's actually only ~150 years past the last point of reference, if you're counting the inferences into the Temporal Cold War from ENT. But that was an admittedly vague and narrow look into that time frame. Still, this is generally how I felt as well. I was mostly worried that Disco would haphazardly address the Temporal Cold War stuff from ENT or even worse just completely ignore it and accidentally retcon it out, but I'm pretty relieved that they've so far managed to be very consistent and faithful to established canon. Even things like Georgiou's time/dimensional displacement has precedent in canon. (The Voyager episode where Seven and Janeway were recruited as temporal agents and too much time travel would be lethal for them.)

Please go wild about Georgiou theories; I was SO happy her actress wasn't just gone after what happened at the beginning.
Ok so forewarning: not sure how much this is the edibles talking, and this is gonna be a big fat effort post. But please hear me out.

Back in Season 2 of Disco when Georgiou resurfaced as part of Section 31, she worked against her new bosses to help Burnham and the Discovery on their mission several times. In Episode 7, she warned Michael and helped her spring Spock from custody in an event that had served her a lot less than it served Michael. The plan included betraying her superiors, sabotaging security systems, letting Michael go, and letting herself get beat up. It wasn't totally altruistic because if she could undermine Leland, she served to benefit from that. But that's a big risk with an uncertain outcome and it doesn't fully explain what's going on. So let's take a look at this specific dialog exchange:



Burnham: "Why should I believe you?"
Georgiou: "Leland is just a puppet following orders. And I didn't think you'd want your brother's blood on your hands."
Burnham: "So you're telling me this out of the goodness of your heart?"
Georgiou: "No, the goodness of yours. I know so much more about you than you can imagine. But that's for another time."

This exchange and this specific line in bold always struck me as odd. Not just because it's out of character for Georgiou to try and appeal directly to Burnham's goodness with altruism. But because ostensibly, Georgiou should know very little about Burnham. She knows her own Burnham, yes. But while there are always similarities between Mirror counterparts, there's also very stark and fundamental differences as well. And knowing somebody's doppleganger doesn't really qualify as knowing someone "more than you can imagine". Especially when Burnham can imagine that's her go-to context. So there's got to be something more here, but what?

It's possible Georigou read through Section 31's archives on Burnham, reading through psyche evals, dossiers, top secret information, personal logs, etc. But that doesn't quite qualify as knowing more than you can imagine either, when you'd expect spies to have access to those kinds of things. And if she was doing that kind of research, it also begs the question why Georigou would be the kind of person do to that kind of research on someone who should mean nothing to her, especially if she's this heartless, despotic, bloodthirsty, psychopathic tyrant. And it just seems too overly sentimental to be so attached to her own Michael that she'd cyber-stalk her alternate universe version. Especially after her Michael betrayed her and had to be put down as a result. A worse person would hold a grudge if anything!

So what does Georgiou know and why is Michael always such an intense focus of her interest? We see several times in Season 2 and 3 that she repeatedly puts herself in harms way to protect Michael's life, and the easy read is that she's displacing her love for her Michael onto the Prime Michael the way Michael was clearly doing for her. But again, that doesn't track with the kind of character this evil emperor proports herself to being. So let's take a little leap back in time to the fourth season of Star Trek: Enterprise.



Recall that the USS Defiant (NCC-1764) found itself thrown back into the 22nd Century of the Mirror Universe, and its technological superiority formed the basis for the Terran Empire's later hegemony over the Mirror Universe's galaxy. But along with the ship came the ship's computer databases. The Mirror Universe's Archer immediately identified the knowledge and information of this alternate dimension as both subversive and incredibly dangerous. If people knew what was possible, that they could still achieve prosperity and security while providing liberty and peace for all, it would endanger the grip of the ruling class over their minions and their thrall species. And he immediately made moves to conceal the database from his crew.



When we skip forward to Discovery Season 1, knowledge of the Prime Universe is the most closely guarded secret in the Terran Empire. When Michael confronts Emperor Georgiou and reveals her true identity, Georgiou immediately and without hesitation slaughters everybody else in the room, despite these people ostensibly being her most trusted guards/advisers/servants. Mirror Georgiou knows of the Prime Universe, and understands the orthodox Terran view that knowledge of this universe is dangerous. Because after all, information is power but it's also impossible to kill an idea, and we don't want anyone getting any funny ideas about a United Federation of Planets. That's the assumption. But what if there's more going on here?

Knowledge of the Prime Universe seems to be the exclusive purview of the Emperor. And if knowledge is power, and you fear potential future contact from the Prime Universe, it behooves an intelligent leader to know their enemies and thus she'd have reviewed the Defiant's databases. Which we see in Star Trek: Enterprise includes dossiers on important historical Starfleet figures at the very least. And if other Star Trek shows are to go by, the computer libraries on Federation starships include an exhaustive amount of information for reference. So if Georgiou is a smart emperor, she'd have read through this database to learn about the Federation and naturally come across information about her Prime self, as well as... Prime Burnham.

Which brings us back to the beginning of this effort post. Recall, the USS Defiant went missing in 2268 during the Season 3 TOS episode "The Tholian Web" - a full decade plus after the events of Season 2 of Discovery. If Georgiou made it a point to learn about the Prime Universe through the Defiant's databases, then she'd be privy to information from the future. So she potentially not only knows who Michael is via conventional methods, but she knows who Michael will become according to history, which would definitely quantify as knowing more about her than she can imagine. To me, this is a satisfying answer explaining that bit of peculiar dialog. But why bring this up at all to begin with?

Well, when you start operating from the perspective that Mirror Georgiou knows information about how the future unfolds, then suddenly a lot of her actions over the course of the series begins to make a lot more sense, and brings into focus and consistency a character that many fans find frustrating, inconsistent, and unlikable. Take for instance, her plot to destroy Qo'noS and end the Klingon War at the end of Discovery S1. If she knows the future and the history of the UFP up through 2268, then she should know the outcome of this war with the Klingons. She knows that Qo'nos didn't explode, and that Michael was reinstated and the Discovery and her crew were publicly given credit for ending the war and received the highest honors in Starfleet for doing so. So why suggest and attempt to carry out a plan to destroy the Klingon homeworld if she knows it won't work... unless she knew she was aiding a self-fulfilling causality loop all along? She might not have known the specifics of how the war ended since I doubt the plan to hold Qo'nos hostage with bombs was part of official history, but she's intelligent enough to assess the situation once they returned to the Prime Universe and figure out what her role was in ending the war. So she never intended to blow Qo'nos up, but merely help Burnham and the Discovery fulfill their destinies.

But as you might surmise by now, that still leaves the question of, "why?" Why would an evil genocidal emperor do such things? Or, for that matter, even put herself in this position? If she knows the future, then she knows things like how Captain Georgiou died in the line of duty at the onset of the Klingon War, only to mysteriously resurface a year later alive, along with a USS Discovery that disappears for nine months, with zero explanation. Once she figures out who Prime Michael is in the Mirror Universe, and how she got to her universe, and that Prime Georgiou really did die, couldn't such an intelligent person figure out that the Captain Georgiou that resurfaced at the end of the Klingon War was her? Why allow history to unfold as the future Federation records say?

And this is where we finally get to my thesis: That Emperor Georgiou is a true believer in the Federation. And potentially always has been. It actually makes a startling amount of sense and explains all of the contradictions and inconsistencies, while explaining away the related plot holes of the story. It explains all of the "whys" I brought up to this point. And it also explains why she would care about Prime Michael (or even Mirror Michael) as well. So let's do a little empathy thought exercise.

You're the emperor of a viscous, insane empire. You are surrounded by enemies. You have no allies because everybody on your side would kill you in an instant if they could and take your throne. There is no safety, there is no respite. You can't sleep a wink or rest at night. You conqueror and kill and purge out of necessity because it's what keeps you alive. In the most recent episode, we see the contempt Mirror Burnham has for her when she senses even an ounce of vulnerability and weakness. It's a dog-eat-dog world. And if you felt even for a moment the burden and stress of living this kind of life, wouldn't the idea of the UFP be attractive? Maybe even intoxicating? Escaping to a world where there is no crime, no want, no worries of uprisings or backstabbings. You can sleep with the doors unlocked, be vulnerable with others, find real love and not have to constantly second guess them. If there is even a kernel of goodness inside of you, would you not covet such a life when surrounded by the constant danger, stress, peril, and exhaustion of being the Terran emperor? Would you not wish for things to be different? Wouldn't you want some of that world for yourself?

And this is just speculation, but that's why I think the Mirror Georgiou selected Mirror Burnham and "plucked her off the trash heap" to begin with. Of all the billions of people, are we to believe she selected Burnham to adopt as a daughter? A person with no relation to her? Completely at random? What I think is more likely is that she read about Prime Georgiou and Prime Michael in the Defiant databanks, their relationship, their trust and love, read their logs, coveted what her counterpart had, and wanted a piece of it for herself. And although the Mirror Burnham betrayed her and was a disappointment, she had a second shot with the real Burnham, and moved heaven and earth to protect this symbol of goodness and virtue and promise of what the world could and should be like.

I came up with this idea at the beginning of Season 3, and so far everything in Season 3 has reaffirmed this belief. Georgiou's flashbacks are her screaming in grief the name of a loved one (San!), and covered in blood. She is capable of love and remorse. Maybe she had a biological daughter and lost her? Maybe she was also adopted by a Terran Emperor and was forced to kill her and assume her station in self-defense? But she is not the cold hearted person she pretends to be. It's very much being telegraphed as a defensive mechanism. And when she lets those defenses down, we see that she cares and has a belief in altruism and doing good this season. Georgiou's increasing levels of desperation to help Michael makes more sense if you consider that her knowledge of future events is now rendered moot and she doesn't have the security of knowing things will work out OK for the first time. David Cronenberg's character typecasts Georgiou as violent and incontrollable, and that she should be put down like a dog. But her actions while facing death, while obviously filled with frustration and anger, reject that thesis. Michael calls her bluffs, she plays along, and she even gives Tilly a hug!

And when she returns to the Mirror Universe, not only is she visibly filled with apprehension of having to go back to being a fearsome murderer, but everyone can practically smell it on her. But they don't just notice this change as something that's just happened. Mirror Burnham accuses her of going soft long before. Implying she'd been losing her edge for a while in the Mirror Universe prior to the events of Discovery Season 1. That's certainly Mirror Lorca's justification for his insurrection back in the first season as well. Losing that edge makes much more sense if she really had been losing it as she grew more weary of her life and contemplated more and more the Prime Universe. And all of this is capped with a wonderful little bowtie during the episode preview for this week's episode:

Georgiou: "I've seen who you can be, Michael. I've seen what this world can be. And it is luminous!"

Bam! True believer. And IMO always has been. Maybe that's just wishful thinking on my part, but IMO there's sufficient substance to back it up so it's not an entirely crazy headcanon. And thinking of it this way, definitely makes the redemption arc of this character feel a lot more palatable/sensible and makes the prospect of a future Star Trek show with her as the lead a lot more palatable as well.
 
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Lakupo

Comes and goes with the wind
(he/him)
(so, I drafted this post earlier before Wisteria's post, so it's not really in response to it, just about Georgiou in general and maybe a different take)

Georgiou gets the best lines, who wouldn't want more of her? Especially this season, she's been a treat. One of the funnier things that's emerged this season is when she lashes out at people and everyone's like "Aw, who's a good little emperor? So feisty!" She's like a growling puppy to them now.

Kovich and his assistants argue that all Terrans are malevolent at a genetic level, but I think in this season and Terra Firma Pt. 1 especially they're trying to show that it's far more of a nature vs. nurture argument, and that being around the very Federation-idealistic Discovery crew is rubbing off on her. Terra Firma is also pushing the idea that she was already perceived as getting "softer" for the rebellion to forment, but Discovery is an emotionally-driven show and the intoxicating lure of the redemptive arc to writers is strong. As for the episode itself I enjoyed it,
but it's hard to tell where it's going in the second part. What is the endgame for Georgiou? Does she resolve her inner conflict regarding her Terran upbringing and Federation friends? But where does she go? Carl's doorway at the edge of forever seems like an easy way to get her back to Pike-era ST for a Section 31 show where she rebuilds the agency, or she could be "fixed" and hang out in the Discovery era. I'm still not sure where they're landing with this--they probably enjoy the freedom of exploring a new era of ST with two shows, but it's also a smaller world, and might be stepping on Disco's toes too much. Re: Wisteria's theory: I don't doubt that Georgiou has the Defiant database memorized, but the writers haven't really foreshadowed that being important in a while, so I don't know if her redemption will hinge entirely on that, unless we get a "what a tweest!" moment.

Speaking of the "very Federation-idealistic Discovery crew". and how every season so far the crew has been held up as a paragon of Federation values against an existential threat to those values: Klingon war, Mirror universe, Control, the Burn and its impact on Federation altruism.... Something I've seen hinted at over this season are some subtle questions of the post-Burn Federation's true intentions. The biggest hint was the Ni'var president questioning the Federation's motives, and a lot of things are brushed off as limited resources (Kwejian's view of the Federation, how couriers view the "V'Draysh") but I wonder if there will be some sort of reckoning between the ideal Federation perceived by the crew and maybe some shiftiness by the new Federation. Has the show gone to this well before? Yes. Multiple times. Do I think they'll do it again? I think it's possible.
 

Kirin

Summon for hire
(he/him)
Not reading back in this thread, because my partner and I just recently finished watching S2 (first time for her, re-watch for me... still pretty dang fun!) and are starting S3. First ep was pretty great! It did feel like the action portion contained an awful lot of mook-murdering for your average Trek episode, but I suppose that whole organization was pretty much murderous assholes themselves. After the initial shock of where she ended up and its recent history, Burnham sure took it all the following crazy events in stride (though psychoactive dust doesn't hurt to smooth things over). Also felt like Book being a jerk initially was laid on a little thick in contrast to him immediately/inevitably turning out to be a good guy who's mission is saving endangered species of all things, but I suppose it's sensible that he took a while to trust anything about Burnham in a setting where most people he meets would just as soon kill him. But anyway, those are all nitpicks, it was a good time. Looking forward to catching back up with the rest of the crew though!

Looks like the season is like 3/4 aired by now? Wonder how leisurely we need to watch in order to not quite catch up before it's done...
 

Aleryn

Gravity is overrated.
Damn. Thanks for posting that Wisteria. This type of WILD theory is why I participate in fandom. And I hope you're 100% correct about Georgiou.
 
First ep was pretty great! It did feel like the action portion contained an awful lot of mook-murdering for your average Trek episode, but I suppose that whole organization was pretty much murderous assholes themselves.
This did feel a bit weird for Star Trek, but it's not without precedent and is fairly consistent with internal logic. Star Trek has always had a lot of emphasis of people violently/painfully disintegrating from phasers. And in this episode, the phasers/disruptors/whatever that they're using are stolen off of the bad guys. And it's kind of a trope in Star Trek that the bad guys guns don't have stun settings, so it's probably an unavoidable thing if they want to stay alive.

Also felt like Book being a jerk initially was laid on a little thick
It's interesting to me that was your initial impression of him, because my initial impression of him was that he was an incredibly patient and nice person. A jackass probably wouldn't have put up with Burnham smashing his face in repeatedly so many times over the course of the episode. 😂

What is the endgame for Georgiou? Does she resolve her inner conflict regarding her Terran upbringing and Federation friends? But where does she go? Carl's doorway at the edge of forever seems like an easy way to get her back to Pike-era ST for a Section 31 show where she rebuilds the agency, or she could be "fixed" and hang out in the Discovery era.
Yeah, I'm curious where this is going too. If I had to guess though, she'll be sticking around in the Pike-Era. I'm guessing that despite her attempts to try and reform the Mirror Universe, things will blow up for her. And either our Carl (Qarl?) friend will give her an out to come back to the Prime Universe, or she'll hijack the ISS Discovery and be onboard it when it swaps places with the USS Discovery, where she'll then just lay low for a year or so as to not mess up the time continuum. This whole storyline feels like the writers crafting a scenario to justify her getting back to the Pike-Era so they can make their Section 31 show. An idea I've always been pretty leery of, but I'm beginning to soften on. What I really want though, is for her to end up back in the future-future, and for Burnham to leave Discovery to have a mommy-daughter combo show where they're doing the Federation black ops off-books in contrast to the USS Discovery-A going on more classical Trek adventures. We've kind of already had a preview of what that could look like several times this season, and I would be very down for that to just be its own show. It would solve a lot of fan complaints/issues with Discovery while letting Burnham's character be free to be more of who she was meant to be instead of trying to shove her square peg into the popular fan expectation of what a Starfleet officer's round hole should look like.
 
Oh gosh. I loved everything about this week’s episode. Just in love. I thought there was some pretty hammy lines but the character performances just really sold it. And god I just fucking love Michelle Yeoh so much.

Also I got mad hype when MOTHER FUCKING GUARDIAN OF FOREVER HELL YEAH. Can’t wait to see where things go from here.
 

Sprite

(He/Him/His)
Mannn, Yeoh’s spin-off was supposed to start filming after this season wrapped, now who knows how long it’ll be before we see it. Kurtzman said it would have a “surprising” setting, which I hope means she’s not going back to Pike’s era. Husband is hoping it’s the Temporal Wars, but given her almost dying here because of time travel, I doubt it.
 

zonetrope

(he/him)
Maybe I missed some finer detail, but "before the timelines split" seems to imply that the portal will deposit Giorgio at some point before first contact with the Vulcans. But it would be pretty hard to build a space-oriented show out of that concept ...
 

Sprite

(He/Him/His)
Carl said it would be a time when the two universes were “aligned,” which I interpreted to mean before they diverged so much as to make inter-dimensional travel impossible or dangerous. Though maybe it’ll be towards the beginning of the Federation and have Georgiou found Section 31?

...I really wish we weren’t getting a Section 31 show at all, but it’ll have Michelle Yeoh in it so imma definitely watch.
 
Mannn, Yeoh’s spin-off was supposed to start filming after this season wrapped, now who knows how long it’ll be before we see it. Kurtzman said it would have a “surprising” setting, which I hope means she’s not going back to Pike’s era. Husband is hoping it’s the Temporal Wars, but given her almost dying here because of time travel, I doubt it.
Maybe I missed some finer detail, but "before the timelines split" seems to imply that the portal will deposit Giorgio at some point before first contact with the Vulcans. But it would be pretty hard to build a space-oriented show out of that concept ...
I hadn't heard that tidbit Sprite, that's interesting. I had assumed she'd have just been plunked back in the 23rd Century, but sticking her somewhere else might be interesting. Earlier in the season, the David Cronenberg character said that the Prime Universe hadn't had contact with the Mirror Universe in some 600 years because of the two diverging. So sending her back to a time where those two universes are more closely aligned in order for her to not rip apart at the subatomic level probably precludes any Temporal Wars, cold or otherwise, if the shows are going to remain consistent with what they've already said. But who knows! I don't.

A Federation black ops/spy show could be a lot of fun depending on how its handled. A lot of it'll depend on the writing and performances. It would be fun to have her show up in the 24th Century and try to rebuild the agency after Bashir tore it down in DS9. Or end up in the 22nd Century and help build it up to begin with. Or something else I'm not anticipating.
 

Sprite

(He/Him/His)
Oof, this latest episode was a mess. I thought the reveal was pretty dumb, but I was expecting it to be dumb. Though I am glad the Burn seems to be entirely an accident. I’ll take lil’ Krill Akira here over some vast conspiracy. I was really worried it’d be an inside job.
 

Lakupo

Comes and goes with the wind
(he/him)
After watching the episode, I peeked at a couple of big websites reviews that opened with “this was the best episode of the season” and I was like uh, discarding your opinion and leaving this website now. (I’ll watch Jessie Gender’s review later, but I usually agree enough that I worry that their opinion overrides my own) There were a couple of moments I liked (Captain Tilly, uh... oh, the glitched holos had some funny lines), but overall it was a mess.

Actually, the core plot of the episode felt kind of like a wonky Doctor Who episode. Maybe even a lot of Discovery is like a wonky Doctor Who episode? I tried to articulate why I felt this way to my husband—who has remarked on how different the new Trek pace is from classic Trek— but he didn’t quite understand what I meant. I mean, even putting aside that the burn being caused by Kelpian River Song who was turned into a time lord in utero by magic radiation having an emotional crisis that’s represented by a monster and living among automatons is like, very Doctor Who, there is a focus on a style of emotionally driven storytelling and magic solutions that feels more Who-ish than Trek-ish (see: end of episode with Book and his brother on Kwejian). Sure, a majority of the engineering solutions in any given Star Trek episode are like “magic”: just reverse the polarity of the warp field and redirect the plasma flow to the deflector, but at least they try to make it sound like technobabble. Maybe it’s an ineffable structure thing.

I actually kind of liked the production design for this episode though, there were a lot of nice shots in the nebula and of the scenery on the planet, but it felt wasted in service of a goofy plot.
 
I thought this week's episode was fine. It was definitely a step down from the rest of the season, but that's not necessarily a knock on the episode when the rest of the season has been so friggin' good. Nothing felt like a "mess" or was out of place. My only real criticism was how Ossira managed to follow them, which was quickly handwaved as expedient for the plot. The reason this episode wasn't as good as previous ones was simply a matter of structure. All of Season 3 has been building a long term plot in the background, but every episode has mostly been centered around a stand alone central story that gets solved in said episode. It *feels* right because that's just the standard Star Trek M.O. Episodic TV. And this episode to me very clearly had other aspirations, setting up a four episode long, serialized arc to finish off the season. Which is fine by me. Just gotta have patience to see it unfold properly.

Actually, the core plot of the episode felt kind of like a wonky Doctor Who episode. Maybe even a lot of Discovery is like a wonky Doctor Who episode?
This is an idea I've been feeling for a while now. People like to compare nuTrek to the JJ Abrams movies and the compulsion to make Trek into Star Wars. But by my money, the better comp is as you say, Doctor Who. The focus on emotional beats and melodrama, interpersonal conflict, the handwavy nature with regards to tech, the season long arcs, the grand threats to the galaxy/existence, it all feels intensely Doctor Who. Specifically Moffat's version of it. The push to turn the USS Discovery into a Tardis by making the ship's computer sentient with a sexy voice feels like the most egregious aspect of this. And the mysterious song resonating through the galaxy feels reminiscent of the whole Four Beats storyline. I wouldn't say that this experiment is bad per say, Star Trek as a franchise historically has frequently plucked ideas and concepts from other contemporary fiction through its time (Even Doctor Who!) but it does feel misguided and produces mixed results.
 
Michael worried about Saru being objective. Lol
It's funny, but it's not hypocritical or bad. I dunno about you, but someone with a tracheostomy telling me to not smoke is a hell of a lot more convincing than someone who has never took a drag on a cigarette in their life before. It would only be hypocritical if Michael hasn't learned from her mistakes in the past and wasn't self-aware of her own failings, and given the character development and growth over the last three seasons, I think it's fair to say she has.
 

Jeanie

(Fem or Gender Neutral)
I stole this from the internet but it sums how I felt.

There’s a scene in the latest episode of DISCO where it finally feels like Star Trek because Sexy Mummy Man and the Wicked Witch of the West have an extended conversation about basic sociological ideas with nary a Michael Burnham, explosion or shaky-cam in sight.
 
I thought this week's episode was - yet again - really good. The back and forth between Ossira and SexyAdmiralFace was perfect stuff. Lotta differing takes on the internet about Ossira's true intentions, but I read them as being mostly sincere, just that she was also OK with her fallback strategy as well if it came to that. Glad SexyAdmiralFace stuck to his guns though. I feel like, had this encounter happened before the Discovery showed up, he might have went ahead and made that compromise without her answering for her crimes, which is the lowkey subtext of the episode that I think is really magical stuff. He's Mr Pragmatic at the beginning of the season, but the Disco crew has had their idealism rub off on him enough that it's changing his worldview. I'm also amused at how one of Ossira's big concessions she wants out of the UFP is that capitalism is fundamentally moral and OK, which is both hilarious and delightful. The implication being that the default position of the UFP is that capitalism is very NOT moral and OK.

Also, Michael going full Die Hard was pretty good stuff. And the guy who acts Stamets is a treasure and spit some hard truths right here that honestly felt overdue.

Also, have I mentioned how much I appreciate the depiction of Orions this season? Between this and Lower Decks, it's nice to that they're being given some texture finally and not just evil slavers with weaponized pheremones while being barely dressed.
 

Kirin

Summon for hire
(he/him)
Partner and I caught up finally and now we have to wait like everyone else. This season has been really great! Love Adira and their evolving family unit with Paul and Hugh. Love Georgiou and I like Wist's take on her arc. Love Captain Saru and Number One Tilly.

For a while I was really worried about whether nu-Federation was more sinister, and it took a while to trust the Admiral at all, but it seems like he's actually on the level, just working in his own set of constrained circumstances. Was also wondering if old glasses dude (Cronenburg? Hah, did not catch that) might be a behind-the-scenes baddy pulling strings, with his cynical nature and keen interest in the mirror universe, and I suppose that's still possible but there's not much time left for twists.
 
Little under 48 hours until the season finale hits. I'm very looking forward to it, but also gonna be pretty sad. Because we've had new Star Trek on every week for almost half a year straight, and it's really given me something to look forward to and enjoy during this last year that has been utter shit. It's gonna feel like a void when it's gone.

I think I can guess how the episode will play out for the most part, but we'll see. The biggest curve ball they could throw would be to kill Saru off, or have him decide to go take a sabatical to explore Kaminar now that he can go back. Which could happen in order to make room for Michael to move up to Captain but I highly doubt that's gonna happen. What I think is most likely is that shit goes south in a hurry at Federation HQ, and when everything seems doomed, ships will warp in from Earth, Trill, Ni'Var, and Kwejian to help the UFP out in order to repay the kindness that the USS Discovery showed them, and reaffirm the spirit and honor of the Federation/Starfleet that the Disco has been the torchbearer for all season long. Like, I will be gobsmacked if that doesn't happen, actually. And the best part of such a finale, is that it will be the fourth season of Star Trek in a row that ends the same way. Bonus points if the USS Riker/Titan is one of the ships that shows up.
 

Lakupo

Comes and goes with the wind
(he/him)
Little under 48 hours until the season finale hits. I'm very looking forward to it, but also gonna be pretty sad. Because we've had new Star Trek on every week for almost half a year straight, and it's really given me something to look forward to and enjoy during this last year that has been utter shit. It's gonna feel like a void when it's gone.

I think I can guess how the episode will play out for the most part, but we'll see. The biggest curve ball they could throw would be to kill Saru off, or have him decide to go take a sabatical to explore Kaminar now that he can go back. Which could happen in order to make room for Michael to move up to Captain but I highly doubt that's gonna happen. What I think is most likely is that shit goes south in a hurry at Federation HQ, and when everything seems doomed, ships will warp in from Earth, Trill, Ni'Var, and Kwejian to help the UFP out in order to repay the kindness that the USS Discovery showed them, and reaffirm the spirit and honor of the Federation/Starfleet that the Disco has been the torchbearer for all season long. Like, I will be gobsmacked if that doesn't happen, actually. And the best part of such a finale, is that it will be the fourth season of Star Trek in a row that ends the same way. Bonus points if the USS Riker/Titan is one of the ships that shows up.
This is probably accurate except Kwejian is pre-warp. Their phaser rifles are made of wood! (this just means they'll hitch a ride in Ba'ul Emerald Chain ships. So, they'll probably blow up Nakatomi Plaza the Federation Bubble State in some way and this will mean Michael will become like, Queen of the Federation rubble but I like to think that Saru will take on some larger role in uniting the recovering Federation.
 
I've got a lot of thoughts that I'll probably effort post later, and there were some silly moments, but mostly that was a good finale and the perfect soothing balm for what has otherwise been a terrifying and nauseating day. 🖖
 
Still ruminating on the ending. I think the dramatic climax was a little anticlimactic in ways I can't really describe. But that didn't really matter too much, especially when Burnham had the clapback after shooting down Osyraa and was like "I NEVER GIVE UP" I kinda just shouted at my TV "DAMN STRAIGHT GIRL"

Also, when Lt Sahil came back at the end in a spiffy new uniform I was fist pumping the air.
 

Kirin

Summon for hire
(he/him)
Oh! One other random exciting thing is it'll be super cool if Gray gets to permanently join the crew as a holo, as they were pretty heavily foreshadowing.

Speaking of crew shuffling, with the new status quo at the end of this ep Disco continues to have a new captain each season. Does that mean we'll get one season of Capt. Burnham, and then... dare we speculate a season of Capt. Tilley? I mean, yeah, right now she's going through some good growth but definitely not ready for that full-time yet, but a lot can happen in a season. And while this has always been Michael's show, I could totally see her spending a satisfying tour as captain but then deciding she was best in another capacity going forward.

(Of course I also love Saru and hope he continues to be around in some capacity. Speaking of which, the last two episodes were I think the first time I've ever seen Doug Jones getting to act *not* in a fancy latex suit - turns out he can do that just fine!)
 
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