This is a transcript of our sixth season two recap, available here
Saru [From episode] : Are you suggesting that I might be incapable of following Starfleet regulations or that I would disobey your orders?!
re:Discovery theme plays.
Ben: Hello and welcome to re:Discovery. The Star Trek recap podcast which won’t shoot spines out of its headphones at you. I’m joined on the bridge by my firm but fair Captain Carla Donnelly. Greetings Captain.
Carla: Hello Benjamin.
Ben: I’m sorry I was pointing at you when I was miming that you can’t see this listeners but that’s what was happening.
Carla: It’s okay.
Ben: I got a bit excited. We’re going to get excited, I can feel it, feel it in my bones. Now, “The Sound of Thunder” follows up episode four “An Obol for Charon” to forward the story of the Kelpians, and like that episode combines action and the kind of high concept moral quandary with a twist science fiction that Star Trek is famous for. Plus, it’s a time for Doug Jones as Saru to shine. This episode is all about our favourite first officer and how his life is changing forever. As Hugh Culber readjusts to his newly created, and super buff by the way, body and Saru wonders what changes are occurring within him? A new Red Burst is detected over a planet outside Federation space. Saru’s home world of Kaminar. When Discovery arrives in orbit, the predator Ba’ul species refuses their hails, and Pike orders Burnham to go down to the planet to make official first contact and ask if the Kelpian’s know anything about the Red Angel. Saru, displaying uncharacteristic aggression, argues with Pike that he should be the one to go and eventually after extracting a promise that he won’t share the truth about the “vahari” and start a war – Pike agrees suggesting the pair start with Saru whose own village. On the surface Michael and Saru meet Saru’s sister Siranna, now priest of their village since the death of their father. She is happy to see her brother who is presumed dead and accepts his story of his travels among the stars but grows angry when she thinks he has only returned because he wants to ask about the angels. The Ba’ul meanwhile, have noticed their arrival on the planet and set off alarms. Siranna angrily tells Saru to leave and never return and he and Michael beam back to the Discovery. In orbit the Ba’ul finally show themselves demanding that Discovery returned Saru to them and leave. Despite being ordered to stand down Saru reveals to the Ba’ul that he has survived the “vahari” and knows the truth about the so-called “balance” they maintain. The Ba’ul become even more insistent that he be turned over, sending multiple of their advanced ships to surround Discovery. Ordered off the bridge, Saru goes to the transporter room and turns himself over. He and Siranna are brought aboard one of the Ba’ul’s ships which promptly vanish from Discovery’s sensors.
Carla: On-board the frankly creepy “Alien-esque” ship Siranna and Saru face one of the Ba’ul – a really gross alien life form appearing to be constructed of tar like liquid. The Ba’ul reveals that Saru is the first Kelpian to have transcended the “vahari” in 2000 years and it must stay that way. As Michael, Airiam and Tilly unearth from the sphere’s history – once Kelpian wins transcend “vahari” they become the predatory species; and the Ba’ul were their prey for thousands of years. Saru and Siranna must now be put to death so the Kelpian’s never learn of their power. In the most boss move so far in this series, in place of his threat ganglia Saru has now grown extendable fins with spines that shoot from it and Saru attacks the Ba’ul with full force. The Ba’ul unleashes droids to kill both Kelpian’s but Saru harnesses his fearless psycho strength and breaks himself free to save Siranna. Saru rigs the Ba’ul’s technology to communicate with Discovery and together they decide to bring all Kelpian in through the “vahari” simultaneously by transmitting a modified version of the sphere lifeforms signal, across the Ba’ul infrastructure on Kaminar, in order to save the Kelpians from annihilation. The Ba’ul attack, powering up the same infrastructure ready to wipe out the Kelpians when something all powerful appears and disrupts the Ba’ul signal. It’s the Red Angel! And thanks to Saru’s enhanced vision we’ve finally learned that is a humanoid in a suit technology unknown to the Federation. The Red Angel is an entity from the future manipulating events. Ben, that was a very brief overview of what happened to these episodes. I couldn’t help but think of you when we first saw the Ba’ul. Did you love this non-humanoid entity?
Ben: Well for a start is it non-humanoid?
Carla: I don’t know!
Ben: I mean the thing it most reminds me of…
Carla: That’s why I said it!
Ben: It was kind of like it was kind of like a mix of like the girl from “The Ring” and the “Skin of Evil” that kills Tasha Yarr. It was like those two things that are mashed together and the guy who is in the suit is a. I think he’s Spanish, he’s worked with Doug Jones before and he’s…
Carla: Was very “Pan’s Labyrinth”.
Ben: Yeah well he’s worked on some of the same stuff with Doug Jones and he played the “Slender Man” in the Slender Man movie, that we just don’t want to go there. But anyway, so super creepy but I’ve got to tell you during that opening monologue when Saru’s is like learning that he’s he is getting superpowers I was right, he’s totally got superpowers! My first thought was oh “You know who the Ba’ul are? They are the Kelpians. Kelpian’s go through the “vahari” and they become the Ba’ul. They’re not a separate species at all. They don’t get killed. They just go to the spaceship.” That’s what I thought was going happen. And that isn’t what happened. But I have to say they look pretty similar, like they’d all be tall and lanky and they’re very skinny and they’ve got long limbs.
Carla: Well they come from the same planet.
Ben: So that does make sense, but it is so creepy like how could those guys be prey species like they’re so gross? And what’s with that tar? I want to know more about them.
Carla: That’s why I say non-humanoid, because is it all just one blob?
Ben: Yeah I was going to say do you think they’re made out of the tar? do you think they just live inside it?
Carla: I think, who knows? We don’t know.
Ben: I mean there’s a pretty good defence mechanism. How the fuck do the Kelpians hunt them down and eat them if they’re like hiding within this weird goop?
Carla: Is it like Odo? Like if their shape shifters or whatever, like why are they choosing to be that shape? So, they’re either non-humanoid tar goo that pop out in gross figures.
Carla: Or they’re gross figures that live in tar goo?
Carla: I mean look I think they make these decisions on purpose so that we can just like make up our own answers and have endless hours of discussion trying to figure it out.
Carla: I mean yes still two arms two legs even though it was dripping in good.
Carla: But I did appreciate that… my big question was it’s such a dumb thing to think about straight away but I’m like “How did they build that spaceship? They’re made out of goo.”
Ben: Well, well they seem to be solid like they move around and stuff. Like they’ve got fingers and glowing red eyes. But is that even really what they look like? Or maybe did they take on a form appropriate like..
Carla: Well that’s what I’m saying. Yeah.
Ben: Yeah. I don’t.
Carla: It’s like Odo.
Ben: But whatever they really are. They really seem to have been at the mercy of the Kelpians once upon a time because the Kelpians kind of get to a point in their lives where they go through adolescence and just like all adolescence they get real angry. But, but also they have, like, fuckin spikes and super strength.
Carla: Well is it super strength or is it just so…
Ben: I guess this is a good question.
Carla: I’ve been thinking about this a lot because I’m studying psychology and so what happens when you have damage to your amygdala, you have a under under performing they say or undeveloped amygdala, is this kind of stuff. Like when you don’t have, when you’re not afraid when you don’t have appropriate fear responses, you have the potential to be able to put yourself into situations – really dangerous risky situations and either not conceptualize it or if you have some sort of psychopathic tendencies or sociopathic tendencies you can really push it to the limit.
Carla: So I think it’s also like hooked in with what’s called “executive function” which is like the frontal lobe, being able to moderate one’s thoughts in one’s actions. But yeah. That’s what it does feel like it feels teenage.
Carla: Like he’s kind of got this power that he can’t mod… he hasn’t learned how to moderate it yet.
Ben: I was really worried where that was going to go because I didn’t want us to lose Saru because that composure and that thoughtfulness and the empathy, which is what we’re talking about two episodes ago, in “An Obol for Charon”, is so much a part of what I love about him as a character. He’s so different from a lot of first officers that we’ve seen before.
Ben: He’s very staid and he’s very, not well he is reserved as well, but he’s also just very “let’s do the right thing, let’s not rush in”. And that is partly out of fear in his case. But I just, yeah, I was really worried that they were going to change him into like Angry Hulk McAngressen or something. And I really that by the end of the episode he already turned it around.
Carla: Sure. And if there’s anything that he was going to be angry about it was it was this.
Carla: You know, like, his whole life has been a lie.
Ben: I’ve got to tell you that there’s still something that doesn’t quite make sense to me about this whole set up.
Carla: What is it?
Ben: So, when Saru is on Discovery we know that for most of the time he’s been in Starfleet he has had this feeling that the Ba’ul are oppressing his people and that they kill them. And we learned through the Short Trek and the couple of episodes you’ve had this season that most Kelpians they believe in this thing called “The Balance” which means they go through the “vahari” and they think they’re going to go insane and die horribly or they can be mercy killed by the Ba’ul. But that’s not really a predator relationship like they’re not eating them all right. And it seems like…
Carla: But I think, I kind of felt like they were. They thought they were. Because Saru mentioned, somewhere, that they’re more like a cattle kind of species.
Ben: Yeah but I, but they’re not though. I mean when you see them like they’re this sort of I mean it is a weird sci-fi kind of concept.
Carla: But I don’t know what happens to them when they go, when they…
Ben: So, this is this is my point. They don’t know right? They told one thing they told that they sort of given this mercy killing. Well we think that’s what they told us it’s not 100% clear what they’re actually told but they believe that they have to submit themselves and they get taken up to wherever the Ba’ul will take them. And then you never see them again. So, you don’t know if they’re dead or what happens to them which is why I thought it was possible that the Ba’ul was like this species of evolved Kelpians but for some reason they keep their unevolved folk like in this primitive, like no technology state, on the planet because they think it’s important for some reason.
Carla: Sort of like reverse Soylent Green.
Ben: Yeah well it is you know.
Carla: We didn’t see what we didn’t but still we don’t know like do they just kill them?
Ben: Yeah we don’t know. We don’t know. I mean that those robot things did seem to be pretty – surely they don’t just stick knives in their face like that robot thing was going to do? I don’t know. So, I thought that was pretty intense. And then there’s the whole question of “Is it really okay to force an entire species to go through this evolution thing?”.
Carla: I’ve got “what the fuck General Order One” written down here.
Ben: Well I mean they kind of get around that a little bit at the start at least in terms of talking to them.
Carla: Yeah but also General Order One is about interfering in a species natural development. That’s the cornerstone of what it is. Right.
Ben: Yeah. And Saru basically has that one line where he says, “Well I think this is what the Red Burst brought us here to do.” and Pike goes “Okay well we’ll do it then”. I think well like hang on a minute, “Do you take your orders from Starfleet or do you take your orders from the mysterious Red Angel?” Like when they did it in New Eden when they interfered they were saving these people without otherwise interfering in their culture, right? They just stopped them from being wiped out by you know fixing the problem with the radioactive rocks falling from space. But in this episode they’re completely changing the evolutionary course of two species.
Carla: But I think they thought that it was either that or that they’d become extinct. So
Ben: I think their justification is good
Ben: You know and about all the other thing is the Ba’ul are a post-warp civilization and they’re kind of keeping the Kelpians in this you know sort of pre-warp state but they’re clearly smart enough to understand post-warp technology because you know well because Saru worked it out for himself from bits that fell off and they’ve seen post-warp technology it’s not like they haven’t been exposed to it. So, and this is what I was saying before like it felt really kind of flimsy that the Federation shouldn’t be interfering with the Ba’ul at least and saying, “this is not okay.” And now we find out that they did try that and the Ba’ul’s said “No fuck off we’re not interested”.
Carla: You what you wish, you were you were side-eyeing this the whole time.
Ben: I was and now it’s still side-eye little bit. I still I still think there’s like a I don’t know it makes sense. I’m being a bit picky but it’s because I love Saru and I want his story to be the best possible and it is great. I really loved it.
Carla: This was an awesome episode for Saru.
Ben: I’m just picking a little bit that’s all, but I really loved it. I had such a good time. I had such good time in this episode it was wonderful, and it was really it was interesting to see it like the “b” plot was almost non-existent.
Ben: Because the “b” plot was Hugh Culber going “Oh look I’m all buff now and I don’t have my scar and I’m conflicted because I’ve come back from the dead.”
Carla: Well the “b” plot really if you want to loosely tie it all together is transformation.
Ben: Yeah that’s right.
Carla: You know. So, you’ve got Saru’s transformation. Interestingly as well Saru finds himself in a similar situation to Michael at the beginning of Discovery. Which is going against all her cultural training, so Michael had that moment to back Saru down off the bridge and Saru was ejected from the bridge and disobeyed orders exactly like Michael and went and did this cataclysmic thing for a whole race of people too.
Ben: Yeah I do, I mean I can see that the differences in the situation and so I can understand why Saru’s is probably not going to get court martial. But still it’s interesting I hadn’t thought about that. That’s a great sort of parallel for them as you know like almost siblings themselves to have gone through now very similar situation.
Carla: And Hugh looks perfect.
Ben: He does, he’s super buff.
Carla: He is, he looks perfect like they’ve got his hair just right and I feel like they just powdered him all over. And they made him just look the best version of Hugh.
Ben: Because they like when, when he came back, like last episode, I really quite enjoyed that the, they made it immediately apparent that this was a weird process because in the network had clearly been like dishevelled and unkempt and he’s like hairs growing out he’s got a beard and he’s all grubby. And then when they remake him he goes he’s he looks exactly like he did when he died he’s got the shaved hair he’s got you know he’s all clean and I’m like “What the.” This also actually this this episode raises questions about that process again for me because the thing I’d forgotten last episode is they made a big deal about DNA, when they were talking to it and they didn’t have his DNA like when he was created in the mycelial network his energy was transferred through but not any kind of…
Carla: Oh no the tear. Did you see it was the tear?
Ben: Well it was you know that was metaphorical tear.
Carla: No wasn’t it real?
Ben: His tear didn’t get transferred into a network.
Carla: I feel like that was what was the bridge.
Ben: Oh well.
Carla: That was what was brought through the network.
Ben: I thought it was an emotional bridge.
Ben: Because it because it’s his energy that gets transferred not anything physical.
Carla: But I think that that was what…
Ben: You think it was his tear.
Ben: That is kind of beautiful in a way.
Carla: Yeah. But that’s a really cheesy…
Ben: But tears don’t have any DNA in them.
Carla: Yes, they do that they everything has DNA in them, off your body.
Ben: No not everything. Just cells there’s no tears aren’t made of cells.
Carla: But they would have cells in them they’re coming out of your eyes.
Ben: I think well yeah they would have like bits of skin cells and stuff in them I guess, it’s just liquid you know just it’s just liquid that is stored in a reservoir in your body.
Carla: Well have to get an anatomist.
Ben: I’ll ask Liz is on Prat Chat. She studied medicine she’ll know she’ll know what tears are. But anyway, we all know what tears are.
Carla: (laughs) What are tears?
Ben: We’ve been watching Discovery. We’ve cried a few but yeah it, they mentioned in this episode the importance of DNA and that the reason that he doesn’t have his scar is that they had a sample of his DNA, some I don’t know where that came from. I can’t remember where that came from. Oh no. Hugh, Stamets had like a hair or something I forget what the deal was.
Carla: They would have it all on file.
Ben: He had some weird DNA thing in the last episode. I forget what it was and so they needed that to properly recreate him using the Transport Pod which doesn’t really make sense given how it’s supposed to work. But anyway, so the idea is he’s been recreated in that moment but also from his DNA which means it’s kind of like in Red Dwarf when Dave Lister like gets his DNA altered and then he gets put back together again and that’s that happens in one episode.
Ben: But there’s an episode previous to that where he mentions he’s had his appendix out and there’s an episode after that where he gets his appendix out again. And the fan explanation is very simply well “when you get your body changed into one thing and then you’ve got rewritten according to your DNA back we DNA says you should have an appendix, so you had another one. And just like the previous one it was likely to get inflamed” so you could be like that. That was the most serious use of a Red Dwarf reference I have ever made. (laughs)
Carla: (laughs) Well I think possible.
Ben: Wow. Anyway I’ve talked about DNA too much but it’s so I thought that was that was curious and I think there’s still a lot to explore there about what the hell is going on and I don’t think as it goes on for me the parallel now with Hugh’s character, I think he’s going to go through, I’m going to be interested to sort of compare it to Buffy’s journey after she dies and comes back from the dead. And how similar it is and what he feels about it and I mean you know he hasn’t been in an afterlife he’s been in a weird kind of another thing but I’m. But yeah. So, it’s hard to know.
Carla: It’s an afterlife of sorts I guess.
Ben: Well it is. Well this is a question actually did he, is he, was he ever actually dead? Or was he like somehow transferred. Because they’re treating it like he was alive and I think… but his body was dead. And how do you know it’s not a copy of him and which doesn’t make him any less real or less Hugh but that means that there is a Hugh who did die, you know, so there’s – it’s one of those weird sci-fi situations where it’s like “wow this is not a thing we’ll ever or probably never have to figure out in real life but it’s such a weird situation that it’s fun to think about”. I say fun. It’s also very sad.
Ben: It’s interesting. Yeah. So yeah I don’t know. I’m really interested to see where that goes.
Carla: I really liked this episodes.
Ben: Me too I had it I really loved it.
Carla: It felt really eventful, but I don’t have much more to say about it actually. Beyond what happens to the Kelpian ends now that they’re all predators?
Ben: And now they’ve all got superpowers. But the Ba’ul’s still have this huge amount of technology but they don’t have the network of the watchful eye.
Carla: So, what’s going to happen to all of them together as predators? I don’t know. Hopefully there’ll still be peaceful.
Ben: I think the implication is that they were predators but they’re talking like thousands of years previous and.
Carla: They’re only predators to that’s species rather than everyone. Yeah there was a Ba’ul/Predator joke in there somewhere, but I couldn’t make it work. (both laugh)
Ben: Ok well I mean I my feeling is that you know they’ve had this and it’s more than 2000 years was like 2400 years or something, I think when they’re looking through the sphere data. But I liked the implication that you know they’ve had this period of peaceful existence now. And even though, they now have this sort of suppression of their fear response and they have this like arguably heightened strength or maybe you know it was just a stressful situation and they’re always as strong as a human being I mean they’re bigger than human beings taller at least.
Ben: But now they have these super powers of like shooting spines and who knows what else. Like I really hope that there’s more than that although that’s that would be enough. That’s pretty cool. But, that they’ve had this experience and that’s changed them culturally. You know because it’s kind of and you know they have evolved in a sense that they’ve evolved in the Pokémon sense rather than in the actual natural selection sense.
Ben: But that’s kind of cool and who knows what they’ll be as people now. But there’s, their culture is still the same and they all happened for them very quickly as well.
Carla: No but their whole ideological structure and framework has been, well destroy it.
Ben: That’s true “The Balance” has gone but they talk about creating a new balance. But the Ba’ul never agrees to that in this episode.
Carla: When they said that made me think of shoes every time “new balance”.
Ben: No. No product placement here. But yes, so I’m, I’m curious to find out what will happen with them. And I don’t know if you will…
Carla: Hopefully we’ll get to check in on them again.
Ben: Well I hope so. I mean I think I think what happens to Saru will be what we mostly get to see, and he’s sort of at the start of that journey too because for him he’s sort of going through it. I don’t know. You get the impression that his process of “vahari” was kind of closer to what the natural one is. It was just triggered early by the spheres signal, but the, everyone on the planet they all had theirs like accelerated so that it happened immediately. And I wonder if there’s something else there that means like they recover from it more quickly as well. I don’t know. There’s a lot of questions there but certainly Siranna doesn’t seem at all different afterwards. Like she’s not angry. She’s quiet, fine. She seems very friendly and nice and she likes looking at her planet from space. How could she by the way?
Carla: So Amazing.
Ben: Yeah. What a great, what a great…
Carla: And they’re all so softly spoken. And it was beautiful.
Ben: I mean now they can just kill you with spikes that fly out of their face.
Carla: That’s right.
Ben: That was pretty awesome. I did not see that coming. It was pretty good. But the Ba’ul have got like force shields and lasers and spaceships and they live in tubs of goo. So, who knows?
Carla: And they may be made of tubs of goo.
Ben: Might be. So, I think that’s going to be interesting. Yeah. The main other thing I want to talk about this episode was it was also a nice episode for Airium.
Carla: Yes indeed. We also get some kind of knowledge that she’s, well we know that she’s mechanoid/AI.
Ben: Part robotic some way.
Carla: But yeah there’s that quote at the beginning where Tilly says “without Airiam it could have taken months.” So, she’s instrumental to crunching the data.
Ben: And we don’t know if that means like she can plug herself in or if she’s just really good at understanding data structures.
Carla: Well she the spore drive operator so we can only assume that she is integrated somehow.
Ben: Yeah. Although whenever we see them activate the spore drive it really consists of pressing one button. So, I don’t know.
Carla: Is that just the dimmer that says, “black alert”? (laughs).
Ben: Yeah I don’t know. But that’s usually Dettmer who gets to press that button.
Carla: Is it?
Ben: Yeah. And Airium’s doing something else.
Carla: I was just making a joke.
Ben: Yeah. No, I know but I’m…
Carla: Shall we Short Chats? I think I think we should
Ben: Now it’s time for re:Discovery Short Chats, where we talk news, trivia and anything related to Discovery and also answer any questions you have for us follow our socials and get in touch.
Ben: Now captain we have a few things to follow up this week.
Carla: Hooly dooly as they say in the Star Fleet. (laughs)
Ben: Do they? (laughs) Yeah I mean I believe Pike says that.
Carla: It’s secret Captain language. We got a tonne of feedback about the last episode and also our reactions to it, more specifically mine. I just want to briefly, we can’t read it all because honestly there was so much we love you. Thank you so much for reaching out to us. There were some heartfelt, beautiful, very long detailed messages and it really made me think about things differently. How about you?
Ben: Oh yeah absolutely.
Ben: And it’s just you know when you do a podcast there’s often no feedback just silently. You just don’t hear. You don’t know how many people are listening because the stats are weird, and you just don’t. And so, hearing from you listeners has been wonderful. And particularly on this subject as you say Carla.
Carla: The gist of it is, is that after Hugh died last year apparently there was a press conference and there was you know a lot of promises made on Twitter and Wilson Cruz saying that “he’s not dead he will be back” and there’s been a lot of kind of interviews and stuff and then now we get and then we had him in the posters. So, there’s been a lot of fans that have been like “but we’ve been known this has been happening for so long” and that’s great that you knew that. But for me I didn’t know any of that back history. I also don’t think it’s necessary to know that kind of level of stuff like I should just have to know what’s presented to me on TV. So, I sort of just take them at their word which is what they present on television. So, I still think it was unnecessary. Yes, everybody on Discovery has had an absolutely shit time of it, like no one has escaped. But I think that this is an area that they could have just left alone, and it would have been fine.
Ben: Mm hmm yeah. And I felt like when he died originally like we didn’t get a funeral.
Ben: There wasn’t a big mourning episode. I mean Stamets went through some stuff but mostly when he was in the network meeting what we all, well I certainly I assumed was like a weird construct of the network in his mind to help guide him through it. I didn’t ever think for a second this is really Hugh.
Ben: Or some version of him that could come back. The strong message from the show now is this is Hugh, he is back. He may have been changed by his experience but it’s the same person. And I agree with you. Like when there’s all this commentary around it outside of the show I shouldn’t need to watch that and read that you know it’s like it’s like when J.K. Rowling says Dumbledore is gay. And then none of the actual on screen or in text stuff in the book ever says that. And so, you like does that count? I don’t think that counts J.K.
Carla: And that what you have to take their word for it? Like and for this it’s like if you do something which is like your most shocking moment of your show you’ve set it up to be you know the pivot of the most shocking moment of the show but then you have to immediately turn around and say that it’s not real and that he isn’t dead and that he is coming back. It just feels very messy and ham fisted to me and that they didn’t really understand like how big the backlash was going to be. And honestly if you have to do that much work in the background you’re doing it wrong.
Ben: Yeah yeah. I mean like I said you know I feel like there’s going to be some sort of Buffy-esque journey and I think really the problem was that he died and then it felt like apart from seeing him in the network. It wasn’t that big a deal.
Ben: I don’t know. And that’s just it never felt like a big deal for anyone except Stamets. I also feel like in a related way they’ve revealed that they were actually married but they’ve done it with two lines of dialogue. Very off hand or even maybe just one line.
Ben: He gets referred to in last episode and I missed it the first time I watched it. He gets referred to as a widower. And I thought that was possibly metaphorical but no apparently now they’re really married and then there’s another line. But he never they never referred to each other as you know “that’s my husband” or you know. I mean and look maybe in the Star Trek future it’s just not really a big deal we don’t hear that much about people who are, I mean what we sometimes do when they’re like Betazoids for example – a big hullabaloo about marriage there. But it’s, and you know Riker and Troi get married, so marriage is still a thing in the future. But I think once you’re married it’s not that nobody really feels like that.
Carla: I think it’s more about couples serving on the same ship.
Ben: Yeah so they keep it low key.
Ben: Yeah that makes sense I guess.
Carla: So, I think let’s just put that to bed. I’m happy he’s back. I’ve still got a bit side-eye. He’s looking beautiful which is you know a good thing. So, let’s see where this goes.
Ben: Yeah I’m excited to see where it goes.
Carla: Yeah me too. I’m happy. I feel like this episode was a real pivot in some kind of other different direction. So, we’ll see what happens.
Carla: Do you have anything that you want to talk about?
Ben: Yeah. Look we heard from Adam Ford, listener of the show. Thank you Adam. Who wants to tell us that while there’s nothing else really on TV that, nothing canon, that is more backstory for Pike and more adventures of him in the Enterprise Pre-Captain Kirk. There is a whole comic book series from back in the day which explores that whole thing and its apparently it’s out of print a bit hard to find but he says it’s really good and I trust his opinion on that so if you’re interested in more adventures of Captain Pike go and search out those comic books. It sounds like they’re really cool. So yeah I’d like to read.
Carla: That sounds awesome. Yeah yeah.
Ben: Yeah. I mean remember there’s written way before Discovery so completely different take on what Captain Pike is like so that could be awesome.
Carla: Yeah I’m keen to read those. Right I have two things I always say this. This was shot at the same time as the Short Trek.
Ben: Oh yeah I did hear that. Yeah.
Carla: Yeah. So that makes sense. So, everything that you’re saying is true. You get a tick this week Ben.
Ben: I did all right didn’t I.
Ben: Thanks Carla.
Carla: And then we need to talk about the nude butts. We had a lot of feedback about #startreknudebutts. Hashtag as well.
Ben: Oh yeah.
Carla: We have to T’Pol and Trip when they sleep together for the first time, slight spoiler for me because I wasn’t up to that but sounds good and verified by a screen caption. We also have apparently Picard when he was tortured. But Ben and I don’t really remember that, so we’ve got to go back and watch it.
Ben: Well I remember it, but I don’t remember seeing the butt. Because I knew he was naked. He’s like strung up, nude and you just see him from behind, but I don’t remember if he sees his arse or if you just see him from like the torso upwards and like that’s not that’s not a fun time to see somebody’s butt that’s not okay.
Carla: Not for you. (laughs).
Ben: That was not consensual torture. Carla, that was not okay.
Carla: Okay. Yes, sorry, excuse me.
Ben: So, I mean look you know we have to say that we don’t want to necessarily objectify our friendly neighbourhood Discovery doctor because it was not he was not having necessarily a great time when he arrived nude either. He was sort of in the foetal position on the floor going “I’ve just been recreated through weird alien technology”.
Carla: No, we’re not objectifying we were just quantifying.
Carla: In actually in Discovery. Oh, really in the first season when they’re all on Klingon and Georgiou’s goes and has a threesome with those two sex workers, he shows his butt.
Ben: That’s right. And he’s like an Orion is he Green.
Ben: Yeah that’s right. Yeah. I’d forgotten about that.
Carla: Yeah. There you go.
Ben: Oh wow.
Carla: And there’s one butt, but it’s only half a butt it’s a cheek.
Ben: Butt cheek. Okay.
Carla: And that was when Q is banished from that continuum and they sent him nude to the Enterprise.
Ben: Oh wow.
Carla: Yeah but we really only see a cheek okay.
Ben: Yeah. Well chronologically it’s nearly the first naked butt. Because you know Trip and T’Pol is earlier and certainly you see them in their underwear all the time.
Carla: I know! It’s just whoa that’s another conversation for another time.
Carla: I just have one more thing. Michael is in a different outfit this episode which was really weird. I don’t know why. Maybe they just like pulled her out off duty, but she in this like white top and grey slacks.
Ben: I noticed that too she does like to get out of the official uniform. It was kind of like I think there’s a white undershirt for the Discovery Star Trek uniform and she’s just sort of got the jacket off because she was kind of like not on official bridge duty. But it still seems a bit weird because everybody else is wearing the full uniform the whole time they’re doing other stuff. So yeah I don’t know. I did notice that too that was that was a bit unusual.
Carla: And also, that Tyler has a beard on Discovery. Beads are not Starfleet regulation?
Ben: I don’t know that they’re not like anti Starfleet regulation.
Carla: I mean feel like everyone is clean shaven.
Ben: Well not well certainly not by the Next Gen Era. Because Riker grows a beard. Nobody’s worried about that. And but you’d be right most people are. I think this is because you know Americans are distrustful of beards. Actually, that reminds me I did want to say something about Ash because he’s super paranoid in this episode. Like he’s really I don’t want to say he’s drunk Section 31 Kool-Aid because I was listening to that scene and thinking he’s much more cynical than I remember but then by the end of that scene he kind of says you know the war is like screwed us up.
Carla: You know I’ve written that down because it was such a cheesy terrible line Ben.
Carla: And it was “some of us are still torn apart.” (cracks up laughing)
Ben: Yeah I was a bit over the top wasn’t it. But. It does seem I mean how do you feel about that? Is that being that do you buy that change in his character because he was such a kind of…
Carla: I was like is he I just think everybody’s sexy for everyone I’m like why does he hate Pike so much but because of the relationship he’s developed with Michael?
Ben: Or Pike doesn’t like him remember because Pike doesn’t like Section 31.
Carla: That’s right. And he’s kind of like commandeered him with no choice so he’s right to be tetchy.
Carla: I just think he’s tetchy because of that.
Ben: Yeah fair.
Carla: I only have one more thing. You know that’s probably like my fifth thing.
Ben: What do you got?
Carla: I hated the direction of this episode.
Ben: Oh really? Tell me.
Carla: The camera direction was like being on a roller coaster.
Ben: Oh yeah.
Carla: It was spinning and around it was wobbly, it was action cam. It was like going back, it was going forward. It was just always moving, and I had serious motion sickness after watching this episode. Yeah it was crap.
Ben: No, I was I’m down with that. And also, they did your hated thing. They splashed water on the lens of the camera.
Carla: Oh, What I did see it, oh that’s good I was probably cause us to nauseous.
Ben: It wasn’t blood. There was water got splashed it was one of the scenes on shit on Kaminar. And the other thing the other thing that I did I noticed this episode is they’ve done this a few times. They had this really long like voiceover monologues.
Carla: Hate it.
Ben: And the first episode one was fine because it’s like let’s set up the whole series and it was that cool story about the girl like throwing the stuff and causing the Milky Way. That’s a worst retelling of that story ever. But it was it was cool right. It was interesting. And now we have these really long heartfelt emotional monologues aren’t they just a bit too long.
Ben: You know what I mean.
Carla: A bit too much.
Ben: I like I like the idea of them, but I feel they’ve outstayed their welcome now and I hope they don’t keep doing those. This one at least was punctuated like they stopped it and then had a bit of a scene like when Saru’s in med bay and he talks to Culber and then he goes and talks to the doctor who very helpfully was like “How do you pronounce that thing that happened to you?” and he’s like ““vahari””. He’s like “Oh thank you for reminding the audience.”
Carla: Yes. Yeah I thought it was so unprofessional.
Ben: Yeah. She’s like I’m like “You’re a Starfleet officer. It’s like learn how to pronounce someone’s culturally important words” like if I can learn to do it.
Carla: That’s exactly what I felt I was like “Jesus, ship shape lady. Come on.”.
Ben: But I agree with you like that. That first scene where it’s like circling around them that just went on forever. I was like “Why are you doing this?” And they’ve done that once or twice this season already, but it was much shorter in the other episodes where they did it. And this one just kept going. Oh man.
Ben: Yeah I did just want to talk about the title of the episode because we haven’t talked about that much before and probably I’ll talk about the episode titles in general when we get towards the end of the season. But I did, I don’t normally look at what the episode title is going to be but I was looking at a list of episodes just to remind myself of the previous episode titles and oddly had two or three of them in advance. And this was one of them and I really thought this was going to be an episode about time travel because one of the really famous influential stories about time travel is called “The Sound of Thunder”.
Carla: Oh, that’s interesting.
Ben: And it’s a story where it’s about a time travel company that sends people back in time to hunt dinosaurs and a guy, it’s where the famous like “treading on a butterfly” thing comes from because this guy goes back and you have to stay on this specially built path that built so that you don’t disrupt any of the lifeforms. And he gets off the path and he treads on a butterfly and completely changes history and then it comes back to the future and everything’s fucked up. So, I thought “Ah so they called it the sounds of thunder it’s going to be a reference to that there’s going to be time travel stuff”.
Carla: Well it was.
Ben: And there was right at the end like they confirmed that the Red Angel is some sort of time traveller.
Ben: Nice work Carla. That’s a tick for you.
Carla: Thank you. Yeah.
Ben: And I had a couple of moments in this episode where I thought things and then almost immediately the show confirmed that my thoughts were correct and I felt so good about myself. And I was like “oh no you knew I was going to think that like that’s not me being clever. That’s you doing their job.”.
Carla: That’s them being very clever.
Ben: “You’re being clever.” And it was when you know Saru looks at the Red Angel and you see the suit and I’m like I’m like” I’m like a suit of armour it’s like. It’s like Iron Man in there. What’s going on there.” And then they go. “Yeah it was a humanoid wearing some sort of armour” and was like “Oh yeah. I wasn’t being clever. They were deliberately showing us that.” But I still felt like validated. Yeah it was good.
Carla: Yeah. Yeah. It’s exciting.
Ben: I got to say I did just do a cheeky Google while we were talking and I found a picture of Picard during that scene. Like during the five lines and I don’t think you see his butt but he is nude and they’re positioned like a little thing on the Cardassian’s desk in such a way that I can’t see you know Patrick Stewart’s actual bits but you can see as one of my friends famously described it to me “the line suggesting penis”. (both laugh) And I got to say I didn’t remember how ripped Patrick Stewart is in this scene.
Carla: Are you sure it’s not a body double?
Ben: No, it’s he can see his face. It’s him. You kind of do see a bit of side butt. In the side of his torso. Sorry I just I just I was just like I’m pretty sure you don’t see his butt I just “I’ll have a quick look”.
Carla: We should just get screenshots and put them on the website.
Ben: We can.
Carla: Butt content.
Ben: You’ve been listening to re:Discovery. You’ll find links to all the creatives involved on our website rediscoverypodcast.com and we’d love to connect with you find us on Twitter and Facebook @rediscoverypod.
Splendid Chaps: re:Discovery is brought to you by Splendid Chaps Productions. Find more entertainment for your ears at splendid chaps dotcom.