Star Trek: Discovery is the latest TV show in the Star Trek franchise. It is a prequel to the first Star Trek TV show, with the result that it is supposed to be centered around the cold war between the United Federation of Planets and the Klingons. Unlike its counterparts, Star Trek: Discovery is not centered around a captain but rather a first officer of a starship in the form of Michael Burnham, who is a human orphaned by Klingons and then raised by Vulcans. Something that turned out to have immediate consequences for the narrative of the TV show as a whole.
What Did We Learn from the Star Trek: Discovery Premiere?
The first two episodes of Star Trek: Discovery served as a setup for Burnham. Furthermore, it could be separated into two narratives that came together towards the end, with the first being focused on Burnham as well as the rest of the crew of the USS Discovery and the second being focused on T’Kuvma, who seeks to unite the Klingon houses for the purpose of resisting Federation influence.
Regardless, the two episodes start with the USS Discovery being sent to investigate a satellite in Federation space. In the course of the investigation, Burnham kills a Klingon soldier by accident, who turns out to have been part of T’kuvma’s effort to start a conflict that will serve to rally the Klingons behind him. Burnham attempts to prevent the outbreak of a war by firing on the Klingon ship because of the peculiarities of Klingon culture, but since she mutinied in the process, she gets arrested.
The situation begins to escalate as Federation reinforcements show up. The Federation leaders’ offers of peace play into T’kuvma’s rhetoric, thus strengthening rather than weakening his position as intended. In the end, there is a battle that results in a Federation retreat. Meanwhile, Burnham is convinced to escape her cell after communicating with her Vulcan guardian before convincing her captain to make an attempt to capture T’kuvma. Unfortunately, the situation worsens when her captain is killed in the attempt, which results in Burnham killing T’kuvma, thus cementing his status as something of a martyr in Klingon culture. Suffice to say that Burnham does not fare so well because of the whole mess, as shown by the fact that she is sentenced to life in prison for what was after all, the rather serious crime of mutiny.
What Can We Expect from Star Trek: Discovery in the Future?
Summed up, the first two episodes served as setup for Burnham’s eventual posting to the USS Discovery, meaning that it is hard to speculate much about what the rest of it will look like. There are a fair number of people who liked it, though the praise seemed to have been more common from the critics than from the viewers. However, there are a couple of points hindering the TV show. First, it has been some time since Star Trek has been on the TV screen, meaning that there is little existing momentum for the TV show. Second, it is made for CBS All Access, which is a hindrance that no new TV show needs at such a critical time.