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Star Trek Discovery Premieres – A Review

By September 26, 2017 Axanar News

So, Star Trek Discovery premiered on CBS last night. And I think it was greeted about like every other Star trek opening.  It’s OK, but let’s see where it goes.

Now, I love all Star Trek.  TOS, TNG, DS9 (the best Star Trek ever), VOY, ENT, the movies, and even the JJ movies!  I love Star Trek and don’t hate on any of it.  Because let’s face it, hatred is very un-Star Trek like.

That doesn’t mean it’s all good.  Star Trek V, Into Darkness, Spock’s Brain, are all pretty bad.  Most of the first two seasons of TNG, are simply unwatchable.  So we don’t have to like bad Star Trek and we should all be honest about what is good, what is bad, what we like and what we don’t like.

And that brings us to Star Trek Discovery.  And as you all know, if you want to see more you have to subscribe to CBS All Access. And remember, this is the first time CBS has ever made Star Trek.  Up until now, it has always been Paramount.  So, here are my thoughts.


I have been deluged with fan messages since the premier last night.  While some fans loved it and some fans hated it, I think overall fans were like “It was OK, not great”.  And you know what, that is FINE.  Star Trek ALWAYS takes time to get going.  Generally two seasons.  Look at TNG, the first two seasons are awful.  DS9, Voyager, Enterprise, all had weak first two seasons. So Discovery being “good” isn’t a bad start.

Discovery was fine.  I wasn’t blown away, but I watched the whole thing before saying anything and my first thoughts were “OK, let’s see where this goes.”  It certainly looked good on many levels.  And as a pilot episode, it is unlike any other Star Trek pilot.  It certainly was no “Emissary” or “The Cage”, the two best Star Trek pilots.  But in the age of serialized story telling, we can no longer expect to see a self contained classic as the first episode.

And I certainly liked that Discovery was so much like Prelude to Axanar!  I mean, 10 years before TOS, a war with the Klingons, a ship that looks just like the Ares.  A lot of fans have been discussing that it puts CBS reasons for suing Axanar in a whole light.   But being that Discovery was developed after Prelude to Axanar, you can’t help wondering how much influence Axanar was.  After all, we know Bryan Fuller was a big Axanar fan! It is a shame CBS didn’t think to keep Bryan on as Show Runner.

So will I continue to watch?  Yes.  I am in.  Oh, I won’t pay for CBS ALL Access, and with almost everyone I know saying they already subscribe to Netflix, Hulu and Amazon, I don’t know many people who will pay for CBS for just one show. (Want to read about if All Access is worth it?  Read this article.).  So the whole question of the success of CBS All Access will be determined not by one show, but by the habits of America’s viewing public.

And I will catch the rest of Discovery at my buddy’s place.


You know, with the state of film making now, every good show looks good, so you have to be working at a high level to make an impact and I liked the way the show was shot.  I was watching Star Trek Into Darkness last month, and as weak as that film is, it looks AMAZING.  I am always fascinated by how good films look, even small, independent films.  So I expected Discovery to LOOK good and it certainly did.  Great effects, great visuals, and I like the Federation production design for the most part.


And let’s be clear, Discovery is a reboot, pure and simple.  CBS can say all they want that Discovery happens in the prime timeline, but it doesn’t.  And any fan can see that.  The prime timeline looks a certain way.  This show looks like it takes place 50 years AFTER Voyager, and that is fine.  But don’t tell us it happens in the prime timeline, it doesn’t.

The Prime timeline has specific costumes which Discovery doesn’t use.  The Federation is using Cage era costumes at this time.  The ships look a certain way.   None of this is being followed by Discovery.  The Klingons clearly don’t belong in the prime universe.  Their look, their costumes, their ships, none of it is Prime timeline.

And as I always say, that is OK.  JJ rebooted the Star Trek timeline and I like what he did.  He honored the costumes, the look.  I even like JJ’s Klingons (except that Klingon ship…ugh).  Neville Page, the make up designer, even had a fantastic Klingon design that wasn’t used that I used as the basis for Kharn.  So I am OK with a reboot.


THE CREDITS  –  Weak music and a lack of imagination in the graphics.  Wow, we were all stunned. Nothing uplifiting here.  Now I wasn’t a fan of either the DS9 titles or the Voyager titles.  And Enterprise was a giant fail with that song.  But its graphics worked (especially the mirror Universe ones!).  Really expected more here.

THE BRIDGE  –  I love the bridge, but it is WAY too big.  You simply do not waste space on a space ship, and this bridge wastes a LOT of space.  There is no intimacy to the bridge and it is kind of disturbing.  Where are the boundaries of this bridge? It needs to be 33% smaller.

EVERYTHING KLINGON  –  I mean the makeup, despite the able input of Neville Page, is just not good.  And certainly not very Klingon.  It is so without form and not aggressive or distinct.  When Neville worked on JJ trek, the new Klingons LOOKED fierce.  Even while the Kelvin Universe is a reboot, I like the makeup, props and costumes of the Klingons.  I can’t say that about this version.  Everything about these Klingons hits me, and many fans, wrong.  The make up is soft and unimpressive. The costumes are absurd, and make no sense for a warrior race.  The interior of their ship is so very un-Klingon.  The ships?  Not very Klingon.  And why do they speak Klingon like they all have marbles in their mouth?  So yeah, I think the Klingons are a huge fail.

STARFLEET UNIFORMS  – The most obvious sign this is a reboot, besides everything Klingon, is that these Starfleet costumes do not fit in the prime timeline.  They also make no sense.  How do I tell rank?  I can’t spend 10 seconds staring at your uniform looking to see what rank you are.  Rank needs to be OBVIOUS.  Also, what department are you?  How can I tell?  We know that there are different color uniforms at this time in Trek.  Why couldn’t they incorporate that?  Not doing so was huge mistake. Look at JJ Trek, they did it beautifully!

AND FINALLY – The whole Starfleet emblem in the sand made NO SENSE.  If it is so cloudy that the scanners can’t pick you up, they aren’t going to see some emblem made in the sand.  UGH.   It’s like the Enterprise under water.  “That’s cool, let’s do that!”


So, I will wait and see.  I won’t pay for CBS All Access but I do want to see where Discovery goes.  Harry Mudd I expect to be another fail.  But they just filmed two Mirror Universe episodes, so that will be interesting.

I am not going to advocate anyone go buy All Access, but it will be interesting to see fans reactions after the whole season is out.











Join the discussion 53 Comments

  • Jim says:

    Watched both episodes and really wasn’t impressed I think they have totally messed it up …this won’t go 7 seasons .. you can take that to the bank

    • Doc Hubbard says:

      Disasterey boring weak actors unskilled nothing to look forward to bye bye undiscovered good riddance

    • Billdog says:

      What a huge steaming pile of Dog Crap! I just watched Star Trek Discovery (STD) and the 2 best things I can say about it are, 1. I rather get an STD then watch anymore 2. Star Trek V the movie is now an Oscar winner compared to this anal aborted, fascist, alt left, propaganda over stuffed liberal thought bubble. http://www.cbs.com/shows/star-trek-discovery/

    • Mark says:

      No constitution class ship spotted in the Federation fleet that came to help. This is around the time of The Cage. Where is the flagship?

      Even more strange is no mention of Spock. I know they want to establish their own show but some sort of continuity..

      I will give it time, but agree 100%. It’s a reboot, not keeping inline with era set.

    • Thomas says:

      You are right on that. There are enough mindless action movies with cheap game-like CGI out there already. Thos who like such flicks like Discovery or the JJAbrams movies are the Star Wars fans. This is not Star Trek. What made Star Trek different was that it is about characters, about intelligent Science Fiction, ethics, exploration and a positive view of the future. Discovery is crap.

      • Sean says:

        Thomas – Whoa! I’m a fan of those Star Trek and Star Wars, and I do not endorse the changes made to Trek. Star Wars is Star Wars and Star Trek is Star Trek, and never the twain should meet.

    • Rob says:

      What cbs should of done is set the new show after voyager with a new bad ass ship ( with slipstream drive ) a new alien race and just ultered the story slightly. Then they should of invested in Alec’s axanar given him there blessing and given Star Trek fans what they wanted,problem solved! Must say axanar looks more realistic for that Star Trek era then discovery.

  • […] I’m very curious to see where Discovery goes from here. This is one of those things that I really can’t judge properly until I’ve seen more of the show, and where it goes from here could be handled very well or very poorly. And since it’s 100% relevant, here’s Axanar’s review of Discovery. […]

  • Megan Reid says:

    My biggest problem with these two episodes is that by the end they haven’t done anything to progress the ongoing story, other than have the Klingons start a war. The ship and crew we were introduced to have all been swept aside, the big villain is gone and no explanation for what is happening or why has been given.

    By this point with TNG we’d met Q, been introduced to the Enterprise-D crew and been shown the capabilities of the new ship. With Voyager, we’d been shown the divergent crews, had the set-up for the series established (lost in space, alone) and had enough character moments to get a feel for each member of the cast. With DS9, they’d established the wormhole, explored the Bajoran setting and shown the tensions with the Cardassians. Even Enterprise had the Temporal Cold War, relations with the vulcans and the ongoing mission laid out, with Starfleet’s first struggling steps and stumbles on screen.

    With Discovery, we know a little about Burnham, her past and temperament, but everything else is now up in the air.

    I understand they want a cliffhanger to get people over the paywall, but there’s no narrative through line strong enough left to pull me over. This would’ve made a better film than the start of a TV franchise, with everything left ready for a sequel set elsewhere in the war torn galaxy.

    P.S. Why was there a robot on the bridge? Where did the advanced holocomm tech come from? Why was cloaking technology ‘unknown’ when Starfleet had already encountered it with the Romulans? How could the Klingons not have been seen for a hundred years, but at the same time Burnham’s family had been killed by them? Why were the Klingons honouring the remains of the dead when previously they treated corpses as empty shells? How..? What..? Why..?

  • Jay Soucie says:

    I just paid for CBS All Access but plan to cancel after two more episodes if I believe it isn’t worth it. I already subscribe to Hulu and Netflix. I can always wait for the reruns on CBS or when CBS adds it to Hulu or Netflix next year.

  • Bastian says:

    I recently watched a Youtube Video that went into the exact reasons why Discovery looks as it does. It seems to be related to the licensing dilemma between CBS and Paramount. Sadly the creator did not provide any links do evidence, but the narrative that he puts forward makes sense in a way. Her is the link to the video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tQcLLfzzKWA

  • David Stinson says:

    I liked to the Klingons. Not just about their look; I like that they were taken seriously, that they were given real motivations and given a culture, and not just made into pop-up boogeymen bad guys. And frankly, I really enjoyed the “peace-in-our-time, Neville Chamberlain” Admiral getting shellacked. Appeasement and showing weakness has always gathered the same, bitter fruit and 8000 amazing, irreplaceable Starfleet people had to pay the price for that stupidity. The ending scene for the Klingons actually got some sympathy from me. I understood why he did what he did, and could even make a case for it. Well-motivated “bad guys” who can elicit a little sympathy are essential to a good story. And I like the fact that the whole show was not packed full of Social Justice Warrior crap, which I frankly expected. I very much like the female leads. I have four daughters and am an advocate for strong, positive female role models. I am a fan of Star Trek as a Multiverse. I don’t see any reason that I should artificially limit my imagination when it comes to Star Trek. I and my little brother used to fight our sisters in 1966 over whether we were going to watch Glen Campbell or Star Trek and whose turn it was that week, LOL. So I’ve been around awhile. Smooth sailing, and thanks for the review.

  • Algan says:

    Hello, lifelong fan from Turkey: I
    adored Axanar & was & still angry what cbs did. As for Discovery, what you say above is almost exactly I felt & thought. And I pray the rest of it turns out better for the love of Star Trek because that’s what make us all over the world brothers & sisters. Cheers.

  • Algan says:

    Hello, lifelong fan from Turkey: I adored Axanar & was & still angry what cbs did. As for Discovery, what you say above is almost exactly I felt & thought. And I pray the rest of it turns out better for the love of Star Trek because that’s what make us all over the world brothers & sisters. Cheers.

  • Claude says:

    Hi Alec

    The choice of the costume designer
    as maybe, we follow the Enterprise tunics concept with a new appoach of color department. But the effect under light are not clear and the rank are invisible in the medium distance. Not realistic under battle.

  • Mike says:

    Now you know why you were sued…CBS wanted to use the Klingon War approach but as yours was traditional and connected with Roddenberry’s and they had no intention of keeping with the red thread that Gene Roddenberry had initiated, you had to go…pity. There is no underlying humor in this new series. It is a mere drama conducted in space that might have well been part of the Marvel universe like the Klingons that CBS are passing off as part of Star Trek. This series will have a following but I do not believe if\t will complete the traditional Star Trek marathon of 7 season…you never know though.

  • Ken says:

    Fair review from someone who should know, and does.

  • Joe Simmons says:

    I watched the Discovery episode that was aired on CBS TV. It was okay, but a obvious in your face reboot. A human child even if adopted by Sarek or another Vulcan. attending the Vulcan school, is well, illogical. The Klingons are pretty bad on all levels. And if those makeups were presented on Face Off, Neville Page would say they don’t work, they are monochromatic and the paint job is muddy and lacks definition. He would give them a “you missed the mark”. Which is sad if he is actually the one who designed their makeup.
    I have no idea how to recognize rank on their track suits.
    I think the characters show promise. But I won’t know until the time comes that CBS realizes their error or the series is released on DVD. I will not be coerced or blackmailed into paying for All Access, no matter how much I love Star Trek. I think this show would have worked better if instead of 10 years before Kirk it was 30 years after Picard, then the look etc. would fit nicely.
    But being what it is, if I get to see more episodes, I will view it as a alternate universe connected in name only to the Prime timeline or the Kelvinverse.
    I am really afraid that at some point they will introduce Spock as a teen or young adult, yet by the time Cpt. Kirk took command of the Enterprise Spock had been in Starfleet for 30 years. So at the point of this show, Spock would already be serving on Enterprise with Cpt. Pike.

  • Robert says:

    Netflix Australia has it one day after the premiere. Strangely it is labeled as “A Netflix Original”… So is Star Trek further fragmented between more companies now? I like the story line but the details do not fit. The mush mouth Klingon attire makes no sense and neither do the ships. I’m not sure about this Living Long and Prospering.

  • Dave Candage says:

    I wasn’t going to get All Access either just to watch one show. I had to work during the broadcast premier and there was no other way to see it, so I figured, for me, there is no Star Trek right now. then, I asked my wife if there was anything on CBS that she would watch that All Access would be worth it for her. She said there were a few shows she could watch that she wasn’t around for when they were first shown, so I signed up. Still free right now, so I can still cancel it without paying anything.

    As far as how the show itself was, I have similar thoughts as Alec. It’s wait and see. I actually would have preferred the TOS era Klingons with TNG era costumes. Leave out the lens flares. Different color uniforms.

    I watched the After Trek Episode after I watched the first two episodes and the producer guest (I forget his name) said the first two episodes were essentially a prologue. So, in a sense, Discovery hasn’t started yet.

    The first two episodes’ stories seemed fragmented. It was difficult to follow. Nothing seemed to resolve itself. Characters didn’t seem to get developed (I’m not saying any of this right, so hopefully, you understand). It was 2 hours of stuff and now I have to watch the real series to find out what’s going on.

  • Scott says:

    Also, why is everyone using holographic communications? We didn’t see that in TOS used by the Federation, but here it seems commonplace. In DS9 when they used it for 3 ep, they made it sound like the newest thing.

  • Yelnik Igwawa says:

    I agree with the criticisms, both positive and negative. If the show was on broadcast TV, I’d be watching it every week. The objections I have are entirely wrapped up with how CBS is attempting to monetize Star Trek. And those objections are far too passionate to be overcome by anything I’ve been shown to date.

  • Alex says:

    Another issue I have is the robot/Android on the bridge.

    Is it a machine? If so, why the female form? Do they hide extra battery packs there? Why take the time to design a anatomically correct form when there is a head like that? Or is this a throwback to old Trek’s trope about humanoid aliens and just putting something on their head to make them different? Or, perhaps, this was a female humanoid with some sort of helmet apparatus? If it’s a robot, how is tech that far advanced?

    • markfive says:

      I think that female ‘android’ like character is actually the ship’s D.J. (Daftpunk, Deadmaus).

      Bick a bick a… drop the space needle!

  • tim bradwell says:

    i agree this is a reboot. the ship starfleet ship is supposed to be old with outdated transporters and phase cannons beside phasers but it looks like a 24th century design and very advanced ai and forcefield tech.

    i can understand klingon look if the houses had spent last hundred years apart. klingon flag ship was apparently a very old ceremonial ship. would rather show was based in 25th century.

    look of discovery is kinda shitty like an elementary kid made it.

    i think if it wants to get more than one season then it needs to be placed on regular cbs

  • Sticks Ara says:

    I’m already paying for three services as it is (Netflix, Hulu, Crunchyroll), so I refuse to pay for a fourth unless it’s for Disney’s new service in the future. CBS just doesn’t have enough content that interests me enough to want to subscribe, especially for just one show. As of this writing, I still haven’t seen the pilot only because I haven’t made the time yet.

    But I’ve been telling people for some time now that the fun and excitement of Star Trek fandom has been disappointing for me personally for a while now. About all the things that the studios (CBS, Paramount) have done towards the fans lately. Not just Axanar, but towards other fan films, fan run sites, the fan run convention in the UK, and the overall disregard for fans loyalty to the franchise.

    It almost sounds like “No, you can’t enjoy Star Trek your way. You HAVE to enjoy it our way, or else”. And with that, it felt like I was slapped in the face and all my fandom just sucked out of me.

    I’m 48yo now and have been a fan since the 70’s. I remember when ST:TMP came out in the drive-ins and I begged my parents to take me to see it (I was about 10yo). And after the resurgence of the franchise in the late 80’s and beyond, we had so much ST that I was very happy that I could tune in anytime and watch it when I want. And the jj movies only made it more exciting to me. As a fan, I was happy….

    But not anymore. And so far, for the last two years, the feeling of disappointment hasn’t changed… at least for me. And it’s a real feeling deep down, and I don’t expect it to go away anytime soon.

    Anything new coming from the studio now just doesn’t feel fun to me anymore. It makes me think they don’t or ever cared about the fans…. only money. So I honestly don’t believe that this new series was made for the fans, it was made for money.

    But I’ve already decided that I won’t be giving them my money anymore. I will continue to enjoy all the past Star Trek that has come for the last 50 years, including the new movies, but not for anything related to this new series. And if I do decide to watch this series, I won’t be paying to see it. Most likely I’ll wait until the entire season is complete and then sign up for their one week free trial and binge watch a show, then cancel when I’m done. Whatever the studio decides to do then is up to them.

    To be honest, the last time I was excited for ST was when ST:NV and Axanar were being made. And I was excited to see what was coming next. So I will be ready to watch Axanar when it’s completed… that will probably be the last time the fun of ST will be there for me.

    So Alec, I look forward to seeing Axanar when it’s ready. And I wish you guys good luck.

  • mike galanda says:

    I like to give the show a change . I was looking foreword to the show till I seen part of the show. an then find out I had pay to see a show Not happen . there not one of the star trek an never seen one so bad. for you did not do your home work on lay of the ship. the way they dress what going to a night club? an how did you come up with that secic officer he will put other in they to die then support his ship did you not go back to the start of this show be for you cast that chicken…….it can be fixed . he die’s an the caption of the ship run ever time some happen . you cast her off of the Jen-luc pic good ida but he act not run to a radio if it get past two show will she keep up doing that ? may she need to stay at home an put a new one in her place that the first office will not have a big cat fight on air may you need to see how it done in real life go to a Us war ship for a day redo to how that done .you had over 6 moves an over 10 years of show an you come up with this junk. You have lost the Ida for the show . I know the people that did one ida for the new show here in rapid city South Dakota . it was based on the old cast an keep the store to the show . go back to them an as for help from other that made the show a win show . or drop so you do not make the Star Trek in the list of show like Knight Rider” (NBC, Season 1) you have a good show but bad ida an bad writer an get help …………..

  • Gary Neuman says:

    Alec- I understand your perspective on your review except for one major point. The show is Star Trek:Discovery. What we saw was the backstory of Michael and what lead up to her joining Discovery. I am waiting to Pass judgement on episodes 3 and 4.
    (And I am a supporter of Axanar and look forward to seeing your DVD!)

  • Ian Burleson says:

    THE hope was to finally see the Federation/Klingon war. This isn’t what many of us wanted. So, pass.

  • Enterprise-H says:

    Star Trek is passion, Alec. Love and hatred are two sides of the coin that is passion.

    Discovery may become great, but I personally see a real lack of vision. It is awfully generic. TOS and TNG both had incredibly iconic bridge designs. They were unlike anything else. There was admittedly not much else at the time, but even today the closest thing we have is a parody of Star Trek.

    The costumes I cannot say that I enjoy. Some people apparently do, but I liked how colours showed rank in TOS and TNG. I can never quickly assess who does what in Enterprise or in the TMP-era.

    Too much red and too much blue. Is that a reference at extreme partisanship?

    The only hope that I had was that, as some people speculated, the blue uniforms were in fact the coats worn by the away team while on the surface of Talos IV made overly fanciful* but that doesn’t seem to be the case.

    I could forgive a lacklustre beginning if the show held my interest. Things may look stunning but they’re not very interesting. Case and point. (SPOILER)

    The BEST character died in the pilot. The Game of Thrones formula does not work if everyone the audience is invested in dies. I have seen people who like the death, but I have also seen people who only liked that particular character and the show pretty much robbed them of any reason to care.

    *By which I mean to say WAY too fanciful. The tone of the show currently does not match the whimsical garbs at all.

  • Randal says:

    Pretty good analysis. Although as a life long Star Trek fan I am obligated to continue to watch every episode, I have to say that my observations are these. Far too much familiarity amongst the bridge crew, and not enough proper decorum of discipline. Yes the bridge is far too big, it’s a bridge not a lounge. Too many times when all the obvious sounds and signs of battle stop so that characters can have a heart to heart. It was in short lackluster, anemic and did not produce any anticipation for the next episode.

  • Marcus coull says:

    Can appreciate you opinion Alex and i will be watching it after having seen the two opening episodes on Netflix but i am srill bitter about how cbs paramont handled Axanar and fan films in general.This is Not Trek.Its a bad copy trying to be.Live long and Prosper..

  • Richard says:

    please take with a gran of salt .

    First I think Bastian is right the reason the show looks the way it dose Paramount / Bad robot can’t use any of TOS stuff CBS wont let them ..

    As for all the bellyaching that the show bites I think if CBS had stated that it was part of the new ( IE the J J time line ) people might not of complained as much but that’s my opinion ..

    Have A Nice Day 🙂

  • David V says:

    They stole your ideas and made them into Shit, pure and simple.

  • Brian says:

    I would have rather had Axanar. You understand how to update but retain the look and feel of Trek. CBS I fear is lost, and don’t have a clue. At least I have The Orville, but I will pass on DSC. No Thank You.

  • Josh says:

    Hahahahahaha. Oh my god this was a lot of passive agrresiem. Especially after you tweeted yesterday, and I quote;

    “We do not advocate piracy. But fans are pissed at what CBS did to Axanar and don’t forget.”

    9.6 million more fans than you got didn’t care about Axanar. And Discovery is better than okay, and you know it. That’s what upsets you the most.

  • Frank Miller says:

    Alec, the main reason for the differences in uniforms etc. is the rights split between CBS and Paramount and the fact that J.J.’s people are producing the show now. CBS holds license to everything in the series EXCEPT what’s in the J.J. movies. Paramount owns the exclusive license for those. Since J.J. friends are currently producing the TV show for CBS and Netflix, they can’t or are not allowed to use certain elements and if they do, the have to pay licensing fees for the elements they use. If CBS and Paramount had stayed together, making it looking TOS would have been simple but because of the split and CBS’ desire to appeal to more “mainstream”as opposed to diehard fans, they have to look like KELVIN timeline even though they are supposed to be “prime.” So you have a weird combination of both that doesn’t look like either one.

  • Ken says:

    I quite liked it and thought it was a good start, a very good start given the normal slow start of trek shows. The klingons were the weak part for me, not the story, but the look and language.

  • Roberto says:

    The whole combat sequence makes no sense at all.
    If it’s possible to teleport a photon torpedo, there is no need to use lasers or complicated maneuvers. Just teleport each photon torpedo inside the enemies ships, or very near to them, and the battle will be won in no time.

  • Dale says:

    #CBS boldly went nowhere with this attempt at #StarTrek

  • Paul Griffin says:

    Watched both episodes. They were OK. The EVA sequence was so STTMP.
    I found the Klingon sequences slow and plodding . Going back to Star Trek V, Todd Bryant and Spice Williams had Klingon down pat.
    Klingon is barked and snarled , not rolled out slowly.
    Being in Canada, the show is on my premium cable package. But I would not fork out extra $$ just to see it.

  • Paul Griffin says:

    I missed commenting on Alec’s observation on DS9.
    Aside from TOS, DS9 was the best series dramatically on a consistent basis.
    Even Season 1, all though to the end of that season with “Duet” and “In The Hands of the Prophets”, was great.

  • John says:

    Life long Trek fan here, and I so wanted to find something to like about Discovery. For me- Epic Fail. It is an ok space opera, but it is not Star Trek. Not anything that Roddenberry would recognize. So much of the plot of the first episode stretches credibility. Where to begin?

    Sending the Captain and First Officer at the same time down to a planet to fire a phaser weapon into apparently the only well and source of water on an entire planet? A task that could have been done by any crew member, but required the Captain and First Officer? In the middle of an ionized storm that they know would render communications and transport impossible. Really?

    A neurotically emotional First Officer, supposedly raised/trained by Vulcans, who spends the entire episode disobeying her Captains’ orders, and then assaulting her Captain with a Vulcan nerve pinch and stealing command of the ship because the Captain advocated trying peace and diplomacy first!!!! WTF!!!!

    Sarek, of all people, advocating aggression and First Strike against the Klingons!!! So much for canon. McCoy was lying when he said “Vulcans worship peace above all”.

    Bad science, like radiation that will kill you, but only after the 19 minute mark, and dodging asteroid debris while only wearing a space suit.

    Earlier comments were dead on. The uniforms, the “new” Klingons, the space on the bridge, the holograms.

    All this wouldn’t matter if they just didn’t call it Star Trek. But don’t try to pass this abomination off as being in the Prime universe ten years before TOS.

  • Rick Newton says:

    Just like JJ-Trek, Star Trek: Discovery is trying to force a link between TOS (and the original timeline) by dropping like “somethings” into their productions.

    The idea, I believe, is to pay service to, but not really address, the long time fan of Star Trek. To try, and fail thus far, to weave ST:D into the mythos that is Star Trek, especially TOS.

    As others have stated, and to which I agree, it might have been better if CBS had stated that Discovery would be yet another alternate timeline and then not tried to “drop” forced references to the original timeline (and more specifically TOS).

    The way that CBS has done this “homage” and attempt to “align” Discovery into the original timeline, IMO, is making Discovery a farce and thus far has shown that the underlying base that Gene predicated Star Trek on is being used in a manner of making it a joke.

    You notice that the concept of a humanitarian society and one seeking peace was the first pillar that became a “joke” with the Admiral in the opening two episodes. Then there is the attempt to explain away why any species would evolve to predict death–though only in a general sense. If a species were to develop this “sense” then wouldn’t it, as it developed, hone itself to the point of WHO, or WHAT, was about to die? But, more importantly, instead of evolving a sense of “something is about to happen [sooner or later] that involves death” why not evolve a sense that allows you to know the approach of an adversary and be prepared as necessary? If you can “sense” death, you have some form of precognition, why would a species evolve as explained. Really the purpose for this “sense” is to be used–then and in the future–as a method of creating foreboding and fear; to increase the tension of a situation; nothing more.

    And then there are the Federation vessels, most specifically the Shenzhou. I think that the entire reasoning behind putting the bridge on the “bottom” of the vessel–I refer to it as the bottom based on the scene where the ship picks up the captain and first officer from the planet and the thruster usage–was done only to force one to see that “in space there is no up or down.” The problem, strategically, is that the individuals on the bridge are now “hanging” away from the main “body” of the vessel. This makes securing the bridge during battle a larger problem in engineering than if the base of the bridge were interior to the main part of the vessel.

    The Discovery has the same problem that was present in the USS Vengeance, the dreadnought class vessel in “Into Darkness,” which is the “gap” between the two, inner and outer if you will, sections that comprise the main hull/saucer section. What engineering advantage does this have? What reasonable purpose does it have? Why would it be designed this way? It’s impractical and, frankly, is a weakness to be exploited by any enemy looking to attack the vessel with energy-based weaponry (like a photon torpedo, or phaser blast). And that just scratches the surface of the issues!

    As others have mentioned, the Klingons, their attire and the vessels are ALL WRONG. Wearing ornate clothing is not a “warrior way.” Ornate attire is what those that are of the regal class would wear and their warriors would wear attire appropriate to battle. A race that has no regal class and is instead all warrior cast would not dress as the Klingons in Discovery are dressed. Furthermore, it doesn’t appear to be very sturdy as armour! Note how easily the batleth went through the warrior that met Number 1?

    As to the other Klingon vessels: the Sarcophagus ship… WTF? (’nuff said there!), the other vessels were harder to “see” because of the way they aligned in the scene and later as they were in battle. However, one thing that did strike me was how the one vessel–fighter?–following the Shenzhou looked very much like a Death Glider from Stargate SG-1. The downward curved “wings” and the “bulbous” centre (which in this case may also represent the cockpit for a pilot).

    For me, there are a great many hurtles for ST:D to overcome before I consider being a long-term viewer, and these are besides the reasons it distracts me because of its desire to fit itself into the original Star Trek timeline just prior to TOS. If ST:D can tell good stories that, like TOS, speak to the social issues of “the day” in the present, *maybe* that will be what “saves” ST:D for me.

  • Another Ken says:

    To those of you wanting to give STD a chance, brought to my mind the Season 6 episode (apologies to Captain Jellico…)

    “I want the Star Trek series to be Star Trek. I don’t have time or money to give CBS or Paramount a “chance.” And…forgive me for being blunt, STD isn’t Star Trek.”

    There are those of you that believe if you tattoo the name Star Trek on something, it is so. But, to quote another line from TNG, Picard: “Wishing for a thing doesn’t make it so.”

    Star Trek doesn’t belong to Paramount or CBS. It has belonged to the fans since they saved it for season 3 of TOS.

  • Lance Ripplinger says:

    Thank you Alec, for the straight up, honest review. I haven’t seen STD yet, and will not unless it comes to Netflix, Hulu or Amazon Prime. I can’t justify signing up for another service, especially one that has such lousy content. I still think the name of the show itself is terrible, but that is just my own opinion.

  • Kenneth Prescott says:

    Alec, ST:D managed to make the Klingons the aggrieved party and the Federation as the aggressors. Seriously, that is a deal-breaker. Hope the series finale shows Michael impaled on a bat’leth or a d’k’tag.

    Make Qo’NoS Great Again! Qa’pla!

  • dextrian says:

    I was watching with my wife… and most of the time we could not contain to say “What?? That´s not startrek!!! it makes no sense!!”
    It´s “ok” , as a syfy ? Yest it is … is it starTrek? no -.- , not even close. And it´s not “purism” of “fan rage” or whatever… it´s just NOT startrek

    The klingon is a proud, and warrior like race… so… nothing less them 50 years showing how, and why , and well… DYE with honor , viking stile … and the battle end with … “no, we must ignore the enemy, and rescue the dead ” … wait wait … WHAT??? the warrior die in honor, now it´s in the middle of a battlefield and you gonna private them for entering Sto-vo-kor ??? dude, have you ever watch startrek ?? WTF ??? take 5min and look in wikipedia

  • Jason C Marshall says:

    Ok, so I watched the first two episodes of Star Trek Discovery.

    Let’s first look at the story. It’s very much a Star Trek story. Federation comm-post goes silent. The Federation send a scout/explorer to look into it. Ship ends up finding something weird. Klingons arrive after being out of touch for a century. Words are traded. Klingons open fire. Battle ensues. Lives are lost. The 4 Year War starts. Ignoring everything else, it’s a very Star Trek style story.

    The characters. The captain of the Shenzhou was what I expect of the way most Federation captains would be. Cautious but thoughtful and willing to take the risks when needed. Number one was a bit wooden, but I think the character can grow. The science officer was a typical science officer. The Klingons acted like typical Klingons.

    Ok. Now the nitpicking. Yep. Sorry but if you don’t like that I am a hard core fan, then stop reading at this time. I have watched the original series dozens of times if not more. All the movies (except the JJ ones) multiple times. I’ve also watched Next Gen, Voyager, DS9 and Enterprise multiple times. I’ve read the novels, played the video games (probably all of them) and own and played and run the RPG (multiple versions of it). Too say I know a “healthy” amount of what is Star Trek cannon for the Prime Timeline is a pretty good analogy.

    The ships. So. This series takes place 10 years (2256 as stated in the first episode) before the original series. Fair enough. At this time, if the Original Series is Cannon for Discovery, the most powerful ships in Starfleet are the Constitution class cruiser. The Enterprise herself has been operational under Capt. Christopher Pike since the early 2250s and will remain under him till the mid-2260s. The Constitution class itself has been active since the early 2240s. So, that means the current pinnacle of Federation technology (and the Constitution class was that) is what we saw in the original series. Now I understand the argument of the fact that special effects are better now with our current tech so let’s make it look slicker. Sadly the Shenzhou looks like it should belong to the movie era of ship design, not a decade before TOS. Now some of the ships in the battle on the Fed side looked a bit more like what I would expect. The Europa is obviously a Miranda/Reliant class design but it still looked more movie era than a decade before TOS. They could have used the old designs without issue. Look at fan productions like Axanar, where the old style ships looks slick and nice just because they were done using new cgi graphics. They could have done the same. Missed opportunity to show cannon continutity. The interior of the ships was another thing. Cute that the doors and bridge had the classic sounds, but that’s about it. Again, we have seen what the pinnacle of fed technology looks like (see the TOS episode The Cage) to look at what that is. The bridge of the Shenzhou had a mix of dials, knobs, levels, touch panels and monitors, and what looked like a thrustmaster flight stick system for the helm controls. Hologram tech… this one blew me away. We know from Cannon Trek that holograms weren’t in use like that till Voyager, that it was till the Prometheus (see Voyager episode Message in a Bottle) where they put holo-emitters throughout the ship. The Shenzhou had them on the bridge, the captain’s read room and even the first officers’ quarters.

    Oh yes … WTF is with having windows on the bridge!?! Get that JJ design shit out of there. If they had had a viewscreen (ala TOS, TNG, DS9, VOY, and ENT) they could have just turned it off and not been blinded. Yeesh.

    The space suit. It was movie era. Not even going to touch that. It’s a movie era suit.

    The uniforms. ST Enterprise was easy to explain. The newly created Starfleet was from an older military service and those type of jumpsuits are actual common. The uniforms in Star Trek Discovery don’t make sense. No considering we know what Starfleet uniforms look like at the moment (re: The Cage). The coloring for the different branches seemed right. Command was a silvery gold. Science seemed to be a silvery blue and ops/security a silvery red. But the uniforms were just ugly. I should point out that the symbol there are using, while cannon, is not standard for Starfleet. It was the Enterprise’s badge. Early on they established that each ship had its own style of ship emblem, much like modern wet navies have their own unique ship “coat of arms”. That symbol became the official emblem of Starfleet when the Enterprise returned home from its five year mission under Kirk, as it was one of the only ships to do so. Also if this was the JJ verse then the uniforms are still wrong. We saw what they were like in the reboots.

    Aliens. Ok. As we all saw the bridge of the Shenzhou had a whole lot of aliens. As we all know the only reason this wasn’t so in TOS was budget. Hence why in TNG, DS9, and VOY we saw more aliens. Better budget and special effects. The TOS offset this with the animated series (which is now Cannon I will remind you) showing alien officers on the bridge. Lt. Mress (a caitian comms and nav officer) and Lt. Arex (an Endoan nav officer). So having different species on the bridge wasn’t that much of thing. I liked the look of the science officer. The lobot guy, was weird. The Daft Punk band member I am not too sure about though.

    The Klingons. The missed so much possible continuity possibilities here. Can I believe that there might be an offshoot of the Klingon race that looks like the guys were saw. Yes. It’s been established in cannon that the Klingons have been out into space way before us. They explored and conqueror and fought wars, notably with a rather violent race known as the Hurq from whom they backwards research some of their technology. So it is total believable that a group of Klingons, outcast from the main empire, and interbreeding with just their own on their own little world or worlds, might genetically shift and look like those guys we saw. It would also explain their ship looking off kilter and old, and why it might have been a wreck when T’Kuvma found it. Now at this point it would have been easy to link the TOS and the events of ST Enterprise episode Affliction. The Augment Virus was turning a lot of the Klingons from what we had seen in the movies and TNG to what we know from TOS. Not all Klingons were affected and as such there were a mix of what we saw in TOS and the ones we saw later. Now Discovery has told us that the Klingons had been in a state of civil war for about a hundred years and that they have had little contact with the Federation. Ok, that matches about right for when the Augment Virus would have swept into the Empire. Affliction takes place in 2154, 102 years before Discovery. That fits. Ok, so still believable that the Klingons we saw are possible. This is where they missed their opportunity to link it all together. The 24 great houses send in ships. They appear on the hologram tech (that tech they don’t have) and low and behold they look like the new guys. Cannon out the window. The could have had the 24 houses looking like the Klingons we know, even a couple of the augment virus afflicted ones, though likely none of the augment virus afflicted Klingons would have likely sad on the high council. It would have added to the reason of high council’s initial disdain of the outcast group, but nope.
    Klingon ships. Again, I know. New technology allows us to do nice new effects. T’Kuvma’s ship is kinda weird but believable if you go with the theory that it’s an old design that was salvaged, which it looks like it was. The whole strapping coffins to the hull thing is strange, but it could also explain why the group would be outcasts. Religious differences. Now cannon again has that the D7 class battlecruiser was serving at this time. Indeed by the mid-2260s (the time of TOS) it’s the primary ship of the empire. Prior to it was the D6, a smaller ship, a predecessor to the D7 we all know and love. The Klingon high council members should have been in D7s. Klingons believe in force and strength. Why wouldn’t their great house leaders show up in the most powerful ships the empire had. The Klingon fleet that showed up comprised of the great house leaders had ships that looked like they were slapped together with bits and pieces from a scrap pile. That and a number of them looked like Romulan ship designs. Again opportunities to link it to TOS (something they keep saying as it’s in the Prime timeline) lost and gone. And again I will point out Axanar who made the older D6 and D7 look good by just using modern CGI.

    The cloaking device. The Romulans made this. The Romulans didn’t share it with the Klingons till the mid to late 2260s when the traded its tech for the D7 designs. Yes, Enterprise has shown us that other races had cloaking tech, the Suliban for example. And yes, in one episode of Enterprise they did see an early Bird of Prey (Enterprise episode Minefield), though to be honest if the Romulans had that advanced level of cloak at that early and age, how the hell did they lose the Earth-Romulan war.

    The theme song and intro remind me heavily of The Expanse.

    Overall. It looked like Star Trek, but then so do the new JJ movies. It was a Trek story, but so many things were off. I will watch a few more episodes but I think CBS has shot itself in the foot. Unless Space Channel is carrying it, it will only be on CBS All Access. A paid network like Netflicks and HBO. That’s going to make a lot of people not watch it. That and the claims of it being in the Prime Universe 10 years before Kirk takes over the USS Enterprise for TOS doesn’t really jive either. It’s not linking.

    This is yet another reboot and if they want it as cannon then its a third timeline.

    To be honest I kept hoping the whole court thing was a huge cloak and dagger thing and ST Discovery was going to actually be Axanar. Alec .. I eagerly await your two movies. I will keep watching ST Discovery simply because I need a sci-fi fix .. but tbh Orville seems to be giving me that more than Discovery. I want it to succeed too .. but …

  • Marcio says:

    “And let’s be clear, Discovery is a reboot, pure and simple.”
    This is the abstract of the serie.

    Forget Star Trek continuity. This is a New Serie “Star Travel” maybe.

    I´ll see, but I really miss Star Trek since DEEP SPACE NINE were messed

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