TV Review – Star Trek Discovery

Star Trek Discovery

If we played word association, ‘Star’ would be followed by ‘Wars’. But I’ve always had an appreciation of Star Trek, even if I’ve never properly watched it. I know what a Warp Nacelle is and I’ll happily argue that Picard is the best captain, so it’s not completely alien to me.

I’ve never been around at the start of a new series, so the chance to see Discovery whilst everyone is also experiencing it for the first time is intriguing. This will be an evolving review, added to as I see more…if I see more!

So…let’s boldy go? Sorry.

Episode 1

My expectation level was set to middling to be honest. But with this being a new show that doesn’t appear to overly tied into everything that has come before I figured Star Trek knowledge wasn’t required, unless for background enrichment. The opening credits were a tad understated, perhaps a recoil from the lyrics in the original opener for Enterprise. It looks pretty enough.

45 minutes flew by. I was immediately engaged, and found that whilst the characters fell into some pretty obvious roles, they were all interesting. There was a good balance between talking about stuff and doing stuff, something in the past I’ve found a bit of a problem. Maybe I’m a bit too gung-ho for Trek at times.

Regardless, there was a good thrust to proceedings. I quickly got my bearings and Martin-Green looks immediately at home, with no awakrdness from me only recently seeing her in The Walking Dead. 

I noticed my wife was turning to check out what was going on a few times. When I mentioned that I’ll be trying the second episode she said that she might watch it with me. Don’t underestimate how big a win that is. 

With some decent scene setting and a nice meaty cliffhanger, I’m looking forward to episode 2!

Episode 2

That whole ‘not enough doing’ thing?

Scratch that.

In my Star Trek viewing history I’ve never seen a space battle like this. There was lots going on and plenty of destruction. It’s not the dog-fighting excitement of Star Wars but it was cool to watch.

Perhaps even cooler was watching Burnham out-logic a computer. How’s that for being raised by Vulcans. The story almost gets a bit too silly when it comes to how she manages to get through this episode; I hope the plot doesn’t become too contrived when it comes to getting her where she needs to be in future episodes.

These episodes are effectively a long prologue. In that sense they’ve been very successful. Great effects, action, and a story that has felt very ‘Trek’ without getting bogged down. Let’s hope they have been a true reflection of the rest of the series.

Oh, I liked the opening credits this time.

Episode 3

This felt much more like an obvious episode of Trek to me. But ‘Context is for Kings’ still keeps the quality, and my interest, high. I don’t think it’s any surprise to say that things have shifted now we’re on the Discovery itself.

We get our first away team! Let’s just say I didn’t need people to dressed in colours to know how it was going to pan out.

With Burnham new to the ship, and her reputation proceeding her, there are a lot of relationships to introduce. Even this early on however some of them get a chance to evolve though, as Burnham shows those around her that’s she extremely capable, even if she is trying to keep herself out of trouble. 

For anyone with Trek knowledge this should be a great episode for spotting Easter Eggs. I noticed a few and then Googled the rest. There’s also a strong air of mystery around the ship, with a lot of it centered on Jason Isaac’s Captain Lorca. A guy who keep a Tribble on his desk is clearly a brave one!

I wasn’t quite as wowed by this episode, but it was certainly intriguing.

Episode 4

Is Discovery finding it’s groove? A good mix of science, morality and action sums up episode 4. I am pleasantly surprised that I’m just as interested in what’s going on with the Klingons as I am Burham and Starfleet. They have their reasons and they have growth to go through too, making them much more than just faceless fodder to make the good guys look good.

What makes things even more interesting is that Starfleet are hardly showering themselves in positivity. I know its war, but they seem to be willing to go to lengths I wouldn’t have possible for them previously. Not being a bunch of goody-two-shoes makes a nice change!

It’s war, so I expect to see worse yet. I also wouldn’t mind seeing more of the war itself, which seems pretty thin on the ground at the moment. I can’t care too much about randoms when I’m not seeing the bigger picture too.

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