I haven't see any of Star Trek: Discovery
since the first season so, in anticipation of Star Trek: Strange New Worlds
, and as some mental stress relief, I did a marathon viewing on Paramount+ of all four seasons up to the current episode.
Having watched all of the episodes in a row, my view of the show has changed a bit.
: I still think S1 with the Klingons is bonkers but, in hindsight with a fresh perspective, and understanding the legal issues at the time that prevents the show from using designs from the prior series, I think the overall story line wasn't awful. Certainly interesting though not that well written.
: The "Red Angel" was... bizarre. V'oq/Tyler? Bizarre. And the idea that some of Spock's records were "missing" because they were stolen? Apparently the writer of that particular scene didn't get the memo about how digital data works. Captain Pike and the glimpses of life aboard the Enterprise in a period post The Cage
and pre Kirk were far more interesting then the main Discovery
setting and is easy to see what led to Strange New Worlds
being pitched. Harking back to the visual style of S1, the "armor" uniforms of the Mirror Universe look like something that would be used if there was ever a Star Trek: The Musical
: Couldn't help but think "Wait, wasn't this the premise of Andromeda?!
". After that initial response the ol' memory kicked in that Andromeda
was itself based on a Roddenberry concept for an undeveloped Trek series. It hurts the brain a bit thinking that a Star Trek show bears more than a passing resemblance to a non-Trek show that was based on a concept by the Trek creator intended to be a Trek show. The embracing of a brutal Mirror Universe emperor as a crew member? WTF?!
Overall, though, the writing seems to have been improved over S1 & S2. Being free of trying to retcon the series certainly allows a lot more freedom.
: OK, did anybody not
guess how the Burnham/Book relationship was going to turn out? It was a bit of a given that it was going to happen. And Zora? Did the writers watch Legends of Tomorrow
and think, "Hey, that ship thing, that's a good idea, let's use it!
OK, some bad writing and plot holes aside, as a whole the series is watchable. There have certainly been worse shows that were far more popular. I do have a problem though with one particular item though, to the point that watching some scenes lose their impact because of being distracted. That problem? The main character of Michael Burnham.
As some of the prior comments immediately above allude to, the use of the character as the Star Trek 'messiah' is so over the top that even when other characters bluntly tell her that she is not responsible for everybody & everything the story just moves on and doesn't address it. The problem is compounded by how the actress plays the character. Why the heck is she whispering nearly every single line?! It is bizarre watching scenes where the characters she is interacting with are talking in a normal tones and she whispers everything. And notice how she tilts her head? Between the head tilt and whispering it's like she is either about to cry at any given moment or go full on crazy. When not whispering while making over exaggerated facial expressions the other mood portrayed is giddy. It's one or the other, take your choice.
It's a shame, really, because watching the whole series like that there are some interesting ideas presented but by centering literally every story line around Burnham, and with how the character is portrayed, the main character is also the worst thing about the show. Instead of a show where characters are presented as equals in importance, as a team, Discovery instead is written so that everybody else is just there to ultimately be background noise to Burnham.
I'll keep watching as episodes are released if for no other reason than seeing if the Kovich character is ever explained with a backstory. Having caught up I'm starting the viewing of Picard