As a first Season it’s the most uneven season since probably the first season of TNG.
In fact I would go further and say it’s all over the place as my opinion with the show is too.
As I said in my review of the pilot I was unimpressed, the whole thing felt very stiff and the action and effects were bland, the Klingons a bunch of bores. At that time the pilot still had the touch of Bryan Fuller behind it and the creative team he had brought on board sounded promising. We had Nicholas Meyer and Rod Roddenberry as executive producers. Meyer was even supposed to be writing episode 3 but his script was ditched and his participation in the writers room went down to zero. His only involvement now is merely his name on the credits. I haven’t heard anything of Rod Roddenberry either. It’s rather disappointing as it were these names that gave me a sense of trust in the direction of the series.
From episode 3 (the second pilot) onwards I still felt the show to be all over the place. A lot of the early episodes were uninteresting, the characters and crew of the Discovery were unlikable but there is one character who piqued my interest. Gabriel Lorca.
The character was absolutely fascinating to me, he didn’t sit in the Captains chair, he kept the lights down low due to an eye condition caused by the destruction of his ship, he seemed to be suffering from PTSD, he was a hard ass and kicked the crap out of the Klingons, even when he blew up their ship he put some eye drops in his eyes so he could watch their ship explode in brilliant glory, fuck yeah.
I got the sense that Lorca was being developed as a Villain for the series. I thought would be around a bit longer than 1 season, I expected that eventually it would be Burnham verses Lorca but I didn’t expect it to turn out the way it did…
The thing with Discovery is that it doesn’t grab you the way a show like ‘Battlestar Galactica’ did. It’s not the dark brooding type of Trek people were expecting. It still very much is Star Trek, though clearly by new producers finding their feet and with Discovery I felt I was kinda getting a bit more fan service. I could tell I was falling for the show when I started humming the unhumable theme tune. I started to like the ridiculous concept of the Spore Drive. By Episode 9 I felt the show was really hitting it’s stride in fact. Then we move to episode 10 where the show enters the Mirror Universe for the first time and it becomes bat shit crazy and had me going “holy crap” a few times. I’m not a fan of Mirror Universe episodes but I gotta admit I was geeking out a bit with the mention of the Defiant from the ‘Enterprise’ episode ‘In a Mirror Darkly’. I’m not really surprised they returned to the mirror universe since those episodes were among the highest rated of ‘Star Trek: Enterprise’. Bringing Michelle Yeoh back as a Mirror Universe version was fantastic too. It released her from the confines of a Starfleet Captain who doesn’t fire first to a total ass kicker. I love Michelle Yeoh’s action movies so when she kicked the shit of of Lorca I was throwing my hands in the air in and cheering. Very few TV shows make me do that. Discovery had me in it’s dirty claws finally, giving me everything I had wanted. I felt dirty but also felt so good.
Making Lorca into a Mirror Universe villain wasn’t a bad idea, it’s kinda interesting. But if find that in doing so it sacrificed a lot of what the character was/could have been. Yes, he is a baddie from the mirror universe, he was fun but the Lorca we thought he was, the traumatized man, was the far more interesting one that had the potential for heavy drama. I hope Jason Issacs returns as Lorca as he is up there as one of my favorite Villains alongside Khan and Gul Dukat.
So Discovery is not the Trek show I hoped for. It is the fast food of Star Treks. Yet like a child high on fat and sugar I am eager for more.
The new/old Enterprise.
I had read a rumor that the Enterprise was going to show up at the end of the season so I was waiting with baited breath and as the distress call came in and the Enterprise was announced I clasped my hands in trepidation.
After seeing the ship I let out a huge sigh of relief and nodded in approval. Discovery producers did us good on this one. It resembles the original very closely and is a very nice and restrained update. I might even say I love it but I’m still excited over the whole thing.
I think a large part of my relief lies in how utterly disappointed I was with the Kelvin Universe Enterprise which didn’t look so much a starship as it did a sculpture made by a designer. The Enterprise A looks even worse in my opinion. Kelvin Universe Starships are pretty ugly.
The Original Enterprise is perfect and doesn’t need to be changed of course but it’s understandable that there is a desire to update it a little bit. I can accept it and we all knew this day was gonna come.
Favorite Quote: “We choose our own pain. Mine helps me remember.” – Lorca