Trekathon 919: Red Directive (DIS)

DISCO is back! Spoilers.

Discovery has had an unfortunate downward trajectory over the years. A strong first couple of seasons turned into a couple of years of galaxy-spanning perils I didn’t care much about. And a bad habit of spending a lot of time dwelling in trauma.

This season gets off to a very weak start. Lazy ‘4 hours earlier’ to start with an exciting’ scene. Some clumsy exposition. And then yet another never-before-seen top priority code. Which, of course, turns out to be centuries old. And despite the director being one who has done some good episodes in the past, some very clumsy direction in the different scenes.

There are some pluses – the villains we’ll be chasing are drawn quickly and strongly. And while they’re very much a cliche, you can at least feel certain that they’ll be fun to watch. The visual effects across the episode are universally incredible. Some of the prettiest things ever to grace a TV screen.

But then we’ve got a cringeworthy drunk Tilly scene, an underdeveloped rivalry with another Star Fleet Captain that comes out of nowhere, a desert chase scene with all terrain vehicles. A lot of the episode is spent on things I didn’t really want to watch very much.

However, unlike previous seasons – I care about the chase. It makes sense, calls back to Trek continuity, and promises for some fun adventure along the way. So by the very skin of its teeth, I’ll call this a promising start to the season.

Quick Hits:

  • I needed the recap on last season – it hadn’t stayed with me.

  • ‘Forced to mind meld’ is not.a cool joke, Ms Vulcan. Little bit like rape jokes.

  • The meta joke of David Cronenberg complaining about things being too theatrical is <chef’s kiss>..

  • It’s good to see Mary Wiseman back in the credits. I missed Tilly. (Yes, I remember what I said when she first appeared. What can I say, I was wrong!)

  • Real Bonnie & Clyde vibes from the Moll and L’Aik.

  • Do we seriously need to be adding new elements like ‘rival Captain’ in the final series of a show?

  • Why are getting wacky drunk Tilly with music? This scene is excruciating – just kiss the man there is obviously a thing here. Slightly redeemed by some beautiful acting.

  • Burnham ‘serious voice’ is so a thing.

  • They seem to have arrived in Mos Eisley somehow?

  • Is Fred a Soong-type android?

  • Self sealing stem bolts! Could be wrong, but not sure if we’ve actually seen them on screen before.

  • Enough with the legacy BS Stamets.

  • Oh no, not an off-road desert chase. Did we learn nothing from Nemesis?

  • Oh, I hate the triple split screen. So out of Trek style.

  • While it is a very silly scene, I have to admit the final result in terms of special effects from the ships stopping the avalanche is kind of worth it.

  • OMG, callback to TNG and the Progenitors. I was not expecting that. (My money was on the Ionians).

919 down.