Rev: “Star Trek: Discovery” Ep. 1 & 2

The most intimate Star Trek pilot, yet.

Grade: A- to B+

Pro:

  • Better and deeper writing.
  • Bold new ideas.
  • Nods to the established continuity, e.g. the USS Shenzhou‘s particle cannons were called “phase-cannons” rather than Phasers, Kahless the Unforgettable, Sto-vo-kor.
  • We need more of Doug Jones’ Saru.

Con:

  • The Vulcan neck pinch should’ve taken Michelle Yeoh’s character out much longer than that.
  • Lack of a great title theme or of great incidental music that is typical of all Star Trek.
  • Not sure which timeline the series is set in given the uniforms, the holographic tech, environmental suit tech, and lens flare.
  • The original Star Trek pilot, “The Cage,” takes place two years before this show. But that pilot and this show look completely different.
  • Sarek’s new power of transwarp communication.
  • The new pronunciation of Klingonese.
  • No Constitution-class starships were seen during the battle, but this can be rationalized. As first-tier exploration ships, that numbered less than 12, they were probably exploring beyond Federation space on five-year missions rather than hanging out by the UFP-Klingon Neutral Zone.
  • But if they were there, along with some Vulcan D’Kyr-class battlecruisers, the Federation would’ve whooped those Klingon butts.
  • Despite attempts at rationalization, it was a mistake to show cloaking devices in Star Trek: Enterprise and I think it is still a mistake now because it throws shade on one of the greatest Star Trek episodes ever, “Balance of Terror.”
  • I believe the idea that the Federation Starfleet is more about peaceful exploration than defence is a carry over from Star Trek: The Next Generation rather than the original series. Kirk and his contemporaries, were by exaggerated comparison trigger-happy.

Hope:

  • To see a cameo by the contemporary USS Enterprise, including Zachary Quinto as a young, Prime Universe Spock.
  • Exploring the backstory of Fleet Captain Garth of Izar.
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