he new Star Trek: Discovery series was highly anticipated and has premiered amidst concerns that it is being overshadowed by Seth MacFarlane’s, also highly anticipated, The Orville. First impressions are not entirely negative, just mostly.
I laid my bar of expectations on the floor and somehow Star Trek Discovery didn't even clear that.— Daniel Hardcastle (@DanNerdCubed) September 25, 2017
We centre around Michael Burnham; a human whose parents, we find, were killed by Klingons. She was subsequently raised by Sarek, Mr Spock’s Vulcan father. Flashes of her past, including her first moments meeting Capt. Georgiou, are very inciteful; they inform and progress the plot. However, they don’t make me like Burnham. I understand her motivations for her actions, but it doesn’t make me think that she did the right thing. Quite the opposite.
I really liked how different the beginning was from any other series opener in the franchise. Spanning over two episodes we are thrown, just like the crew, into a situation way bigger and more consequential than we imagined. The directing style is reminiscent of J.J. Abrams and this may have been on purpose. It is pleasant to watch, the character development is good, it’s interesting and the story held me. But I’m unfortunately struggling to find any standout elements that gripped me into continuing watching.
Discovery is set ten years before Kirk but therein lies some issues which I’m finding difficult to get past. At one point Burnham actually reasons with the computer. If we are to believe we are pre-Kirk should the computer not be less advanced? You could never reason with it on this level – everything was very much black and white. Burnham negotiates a grey area.
I feel like we are covering old ground and exploring some of the same issues which have been touched on in previous series. Although Burnham is human she was raised as a Vulcan and thus has this perpetual internal struggle between logic and emotion. We have been here before. Also, we leave the story with Burnham facing life imprisonment. This brought up suggestions that her character may have a similar deal to that of Tom Paris in Voyager. What more is there to explore within this theme?
I'm having some trouble with Star Trek Discovery. Specifically the apparent story parallel between Michael Burnham and Tom Paris. [thread]— Marie (@buknerd) September 26, 2017
I also dislike the Klingon re-design. I’m not an expert or anything but looking back at Lt. Worf’s ridges in Next Generation and his obvious body and facial hair is a huge jump from the hairless, multicoloured, many-ridged Klingons we see here. I’m aware a huge amount of time has passed by, which included a period of illness which altered the Klingon’s appearance, but the progression is not obvious, especially when you look at the change is traditional dress – very ornate.
This series needed to be careful. It needed to be different enough to springboard off the success of the recent movies and attract new fans to the franchise. It also had to adhere enough to canon to keep older, very serious fans happy and supportive. I’m not sure it has successfully achieved the latter.