This is a transcript of our tenth season two recap, available here.
Michael [From episode]: (punching sound) That’s for my mom, (punching sound) that’s for my dad.
re:Discovery theme plays.
Ben: Hello and welcome to re:Discovery. The Star Trek Recap podcast, whose mum probably won’t show up unexpectedly right at the end. I’m science officer Ben McKenzie and as always, I’m joined by Captain Carla Donnelly. Greetings, Captain.
Carla: Hi, Benjamin. How are you?
Ben: I’m very well. Is your mum going to show up at the end?
Carla: She’d like to, I think.
Ben: Yeah, my mum, I’m sure my mum would love it. She’d be great. She’d be a hoot. But she’s not here, so that’s okay. Well, let’s talk about this episode, “The Red Angel”; which confirms our theories, reveal secrets, heals old wounds and opens new ones before yanking the rug out from under us in a big reveal which may have already made a joke about it. We begin with the funeral service for Commander Airiam, at which we hear moving speeches from Pike, Tilly, Detmer, Stamets and Burnham, watched by the entire crew. Plus, Admiral Cornwell and a newly released Tyler. It concludes with Airiam’s casket being shot into space as Saru sings a Kelpian song of remembrance. In the ready room, they confirm that Control has been destroyed and Airiam memories purged. But that while there’s no sign of the A.I from the future, that doesn’t mean it’s not hiding somewhere. Tilly finds a clue in Airiam’s memories, a Project Daedalus file which says Michael is the Red Angel. In sickbay Dr. Culber confirms the bio neural signature is a definite match to Burnham. But there are still many questions. Leland and Georgiou arrive and drop a bombshell. Project Daedalus is an old Section 31 program researching time travel in response to intel that the Klingon’s were doing the same. The Red Angel suit is their design, but they thought it was destroyed just prior to testing 20 years ago by Klingon spies.
Ben: Thankfully, they’ve been working on a method to recover the suit. A mousetrap which can catch the Angel and stop it going home. A plan to use the trap is developed by Tilly, Stamets and Georgiou. It needs huge amounts of power, so Georgiou offers up Essoff IV, an old Daedalus test site abundant in deuterium to use as an energy source. Hugh arrives during the discussion and Georgiou flirts with Stamets in front of him, revealing that Stamets counterpart in her universe was pansexual. Everyone is confused and uncomfortable. Leland works on a way to close the Angels wormhole and prevent the A.I using it to travel back in time. He’s watched by a suspicious Saru, who knows he’s keeping something from them. Burnham has also picked up on this and tipped off by Georgiou that it’s Leland secret, asks to speak to him alone. He reveals that Burnham’s parents were secretly working on Project Daedalus and that they had a crystal vital to the Angels suit. They lied to Burnham to keep her safe. Leland had stolen the crystal and believed he’d covered his tracks. But the Klingons, who wanted it for their own research were able to find it. And that’s why they were killed. Burnham realizes she wasn’t to blame for their deaths, but that Leland is. And she punches him twice, once for mum and once for dad.
Carla: Cut to Michael’s second, or is it third? uncomfortable conversation that day, where freshly galvanized and enraged, she confronts Tyler about his knowledge about her parents. He swears he did not know anything, and she rightly attacks him on being associated with this organization. But he believes in their mission and that “it’s not quite all black and white”. On the warpath Michael is kicking the shit out of a punching dummy when her fourth uncomfortable conversation comes knocking for the day. It’s Spock and he wants to talk with a capital T. He helps Michael understand that her actions were that of a child and appropriate to everything that happened to her and that he doesn’t blame her for all that has transpired. And as with everything in this season, inexorably linked, Michael and Spock’s reconciliation puts into action what appears to be the conclusion of all the dangling threads thus far. And what continues to be one of the shittiest days ever for Michael Spock convinces the crew that it is Michael the Red Angels seeks to protect, so therefore she must be bait in order to capture it. In what is possibly the most upsetting sequence thus far in Discovery, they slowly torture and suffocate Michael waiting for the Red Angel to appear. On the Section 31 ship Leland is waiting for the wormhole to appear so that he can close it. Michael flatlines. The Red Angel materializes and shoots her with a beam that revives her. Leland retinal scans to authorize the process to close the wormhole and is injected in the eye with something from Control. They capture the Red Angel. She falls out of her suit. We see a black woman that looks like… an older Michael? And Michael gasps and whispers… “Mum?”! Ben, where do we even begin?
Ben: No, I don’t, Carla, there’s so much going on. I love this episode so much.
Carla: Holy shit. We just have to talk about mum, I think.
Ben: I think we do. Although I do, I do just want to say I don’t think. I don’t think Control injected Leland or anything.
Carla: Are you kidding?
Ben: No, I think it just stabbed him right through the eye, into the brain. I think he’s dead.
Ben: Yeah, I think he’s dead.
Carla: Because he’s a whole eye went kind of like all twitchy and milky and there was like some kind of electrical…
Ben: Oh, OK. All right. Well, you look, you might have been you might have seen more there than I anticipated. I just thought he was stabbed through the eye. Like classic…
Carla: Why would Control kill him?
Ben: Sub orbital frontal lobotomy. Well, because it…
Carla: It’s not high enough to do that by the way.
Ben: Oh good. Yeah, we know that that’s true, that’s fair. But I do, and we’ll get back to this, I’m sure, but I do just want to flag…
Carla: It is one of my questions so we can get straight into it.
Ben: Control is a computer, right? It just controls the equipment that it has. Although that seems to be the ship’s computer on his ship rather than Control but infected with whatever it was affecting Control. But that means, right, because Control can’t spontaneously build new bits of computer, so somebody put that spikey injector or stubby thing into the retinal scanner.
Carla: What is even that?
Ben: And I’m like, why would you build that in there?
Carla: That’s exactly right.
Ben: It is actually the kind of thing Section 31 would do, though, isn’t it? So, if somebody scanned and it was a fake retina, they’d get stabbed in the eye.
Carla: There’s such a huge question mark over this. Because also it’s like is the force of that needle literally enough to push that huge-arse men, arse over backwards?
Ben: Sure. Well, maybe, maybe he’s just surprised because it hurts so much.
Carla: Yeah that’s true, it did look like it kind of punched him.
Ben: Yet or, it instantly killed him, and he just fell down because he was twitching, and he didn’t say anything.
Carla: I reckon he’s being “borg-afied” or something.
Ben: Oh shit. Okay. All right. Okay. Well look, that’ll be exciting to find out because I just thought he was dead. But you know…
Carla: Well they’re definitely like imprinting his voice to use it to impersonate him.
Ben: Yeah. I mean that’s why it does it. Right so it can take over.
Carla: (laughs) He’ll live on in that way.
Ben: Yeah. Which presumably means it’s highjacked the beam that Tyler is firing into the rift to close it as well rather than just closing it. Like is it transmitting something?
Carla: Oh no!!! He’s going to like keep it open and then octopus are going to come out.
Ben: Oh shit. Who knows?
Carla: Like I didn’t even think of that.
Ben: I mean we get such a shocking conclusion that it’s like almost like, wait, what’s going on here? Or we don’t have time to worry about that because we need to talk about Michael’s mum. We have to talk about her. I mean, yeah.
Carla: Of course.
Ben: Now, you said you thought she looked… I reckon she looks, she isn’t much older than Michael. I mean, cause that’s the benefits of time travel. Right? I thought she looked pretty young.
Carla: Yeah. But she still looks like she’s in her 50’s to me. Yeah.
Ben: I didn’t think she looked that old. Yeah.
Carla: Not that’s that old but just older.
Ben: No. But like compared to Michael. Like, yes. Michael’s y’know like 30.
Carla: I think it’s because she had more sort of greying hair. That’s the kind it wasn’t you know, like so that that was giving me older person indication.
Ben: Okay. Okay. Yeah, fair, fair. But what a reveal though!
Carla: That was good, I have to I tip my hat to that and I have to be like “holy shit”.
Ben: I didn’t expect that.
Carla: That was great.
Ben: I did… I was hoping it wouldn’t be Michael in the suit though. I was hoping they’d find…
Carla: I thought “that’s basic”.
Ben: Because they… but but they kind of ruled that out earlier on, though, right? Because they said, “look, we know it’s you”.
Carla: “It’s definitely her”.
Ben: “Airiam said it was you. The Project Daedalus file has a bio neural imprint”, whatever that is, “signature bio, neural signature that matches yours exactly”. And then and then Culber’s like “it can’t have been faked like this. All these random elements that a fake thing couldn’t replicate”. I’m like “what do you mean? I don’t understand what that means, but what it means narratively is this is definitely a match for you”. But they never. Yeah. And then it’s not her.
Carla: And then it’s not her
Ben: You know, it’s her mum.
Carla: I guess we’ll find out what it’s all about.
Ben: Yeah. Whether she’s spoofing that or whether Airiam lied.
Carla: Look, they have the ability to time travel. I’m assuming they probably have technologies to do whatever the hell they want.
Carla: I loved it. I love that reveal. I was…
Ben: Yeah, it was great.
Carla: And also, even though it was like a horrible day for Michael. It feels like she’s finally getting…
Ben: It paid off…
Carla: Getting her life back together.
Ben: Yeah. Like she had the worst day ever. And then she gets to meet her mum, who she thought was dead for 20 years.
Carla: And she got to kick the shit out, Leland, which would have been great.
Ben: That would’ve been very satisfying.
Carla: She got back together with Tyler.
Ben: Are they back together?
Carla: I think so.
Ben: I think… I don’t think they need to be, but I think it would be nice if they were. But I also think that, you know…
Carla: If they are just like a one off? Are you kidding?
Ben: Well, not a one off, but they sort of, you know, they needed that moment together. It doesn’t necessarily mean they’re back together, back together. But it’ll be interesting to see where it goes. Yeah. Yeah. Because I think his attitude to Section 31 is going to have to change.
Ben: If she going to…
Carla: It’s a pretty big barrier (laughs) between them.
Carla: Yeah. Hey, can I ask you, did you think that that was like… to me, like when they revealed that about what Leland had done, quote unquote, to her parents, you know, I was like, “Oh, is that it?”.
Ben: Yeah, I was a bit the same because the way that it was kind of being talked about with Georgiou like we talked about a couple of episodes ago, I figured like he had them killed. But no. Like, it’s just…
Carla: I thought that he did it himself.
Ben: Yeah. Yeah. Or that. Yeah. I thought at the very least he would have ordered it or made it happen. But as it turns out, he didn’t do either of those things. He’s just, he just gave them a job and then gave them a thing and thought they’d be safe. But he was wrong. He messed up but he was trying to do his job. He wasn’t like… and the job was not get these people killed. It was like get these people the thing they need to do to make this time machine suit. And then, yeah, the Klingons, found it.
Carla: So, let me get this straight. If this is what you think. So, we’re assuming that Michael’s mum, name unknown currently, took the time crystal and powered up the suit and took off into the future. That’s how she survived?
Ben: Yeah, it’s hard to know if she’s because, because the way they said it was that this happened just before they were ready to test the suit. So, it could have been that it was like all set up and ready to go or not quite ready. But she’s like “fuck we’re going to get killed by Klingons, I’m going to get in the suit and turn it on because what’s the worst that can happen is, I die. That’s going to happen anyway. Let’s give it a shot.” But then also the way they’ve described that it works is that you go through time and it leaves this tether back to where you came from. And then that sort of pulls me back to where you were. And that’s like how the whole mousetrap thing works, is that it cuts that off so that you can’t go back. Which means she’s going back to where she came from. So, is she going back to 20 years ago or did she did she have a first trip that was like into the future and now she’s coming back from the future? She has to have gone to the future. Right. Because she has to know all this stuff to know where to go back in time to.
Ben: Yeah. I don’t know. There’s still a lot of questions, not least about why she went to the places that she went to, like why she cares about the Hiawatha and the Kelpians and why she saved all those people from World War Three. Like it’s not at all clear.
Carla: Well, I’m sure we’re going to find out. We have four episodes left.
Carla: And that’s a lot of time to get the find it all out. You could have it all wrapped up in one episode.
Ben: Well, we could, but I feel like the pacing is good on the mystery this season.
Ben: Like I feel I feel like we’ve had some really good reveals and resolutions along the way. And this feels like the right time to figure out who the Red Angel is. Because last episode we had the whole thing about “oh, it’s probably Michael”. And then at the start of this episode we have “it’s definitely Michael”. And at the end of this episode we had “it’s fucking not Michael guys”.
Carla: And where’s her dad?
Ben: Yeah, that’s a good question. Did he survive to what happened to him? Yeah. Did they really die at all? I mean, did she ever see their bodies?
Carla: No. Well, that’s kind of what I’m thinking now. Like she was just in that cupboard.
Carla: You know, she didn’t see them. She thought she heard them being murdered, but could have just been Klingons, getting freaky on her dinner, you know.
Ben: Yeah. And I mean I think the one of the biggest things for her is not just that she found out that she wasn’t responsible for them dying, but that they’d been lying to her like they’d been working for this organization that she hates and that is responsible for their death, but they were working for that organization. I mean, that’s a lot to discover all in one conversation.
Carla: Yeah, that was really. That was a tough scene.
Carla: Because you can just see the scaffolding just starting to like…
Carla: She. She’s due to go to the asylum.
Ben: Well she’s working it out by punching the shit out of some punching dummy’s as you said. I mean but I got to say those were like MMA style like they had faces on them.
Carla: Yeah. Yeah.
Ben: That seems a bit rough for Starfleet. I would have thought they’d have like faceless things to punch for training.
Carla: You know Starfleet have always been pretty practical I feel like in terms of training.
Ben: Yeah. Okay.
Carla: You know, in the future it’s…
Ben: Yeah. But you don’t need a face.
Carla: Like kicking out… well no in the future they’re doing it on holodecks like with fake people.
Ben: Well that’s true.
Carla: You know, like they’re actually quote unquote killing people on holodecks.
Carla: So, you know…
Ben: I guess I guess the idea…
Carla: That’s as real as it gets.
Ben: Yeah, the more real you can make it the more prepared you are for a real situation.
Ben: I guess that makes sense. Yeah. Yeah, yeah.
Carla: And then she makes up with Spock, so that’s all part of her… that was really nice.
Ben: Yeah. That was a good conversation where he’s like “look it’s basically we’ve all let out all our shit. And I know what I said to you was harsh, but it’s true. And you were just a kid. It’s okay. I forgive you. If that’s what you need. I’m doing it. I mean it”. And it was really nice. Yeah.
Ben: But then he straightaway “also I’ve figured out we have to kill you”.
Ben: Although I gotta say here I find his, his analysis is a bit dodgy Carla.
Carla: Is it?
Ben: Because what he says is… right, his theory is that whenever the Angel shows up without sending a red burst, which is a signal to Starfleet “hey, you should come here” that it’s always to save Michael. But, during the crisis on Kaminar when Saru and his sister were in the Ba’ul’s stronghold, the Angel appears and saves them and doesn’t send a red burst.
Carla: Yeah, but the red burst led them to Kaminar.
Ben: Yeah, but the red burst led them to the Hiawatha and that was one of the places they said an Angel appeared without one to see her. So, I’m like, this is a little bit dodgy Spock. And he and the Angel intervened even more directly on camera because it shut down the Ba’ul’s system.
Carla: I still don’t understand the whole red burst thing. But I’m not even going to go there because that’s just.
Ben: Well, quick, you want the short version that I think it is.
Carla: Yeah, you’ve said it to me before and I’m like, I don’t even think that it’s that so.
Ben: Oh, OK. It’s just a signal.
Carla: Yes, I know. But there were seven. No, I’m not going there. Let’s just stop. What else?
Ben: Lots of things. What about the funeral? Can we…
Carla: I thought you would like that.
Ben: I did. Well, I, I wanted it to happen.
Carla: Because you’re a sad man (laughs).
Ben: Well, I wanted it to be a proper funeral. And I wanted to get let out. I said that last episode, in fact I was quite, I had a few predictions, but I loved the funeral. I thought it was really nice.
Carla: Yeah, it was nice.
Ben: And it was a nice way to wrap up our knowledge of how Airiam had interacted with the rest of the crew.
Carla: It’s so weird that they don’t cremate the bodies, like when they shoot them into space. Where do they go? Just into space?
Ben: Well, into a sun maybe? Maybe they shoot it into a sun or something?
Carla: They’re just going to like float around or something?
Ben: Yeah, but they like space explorers. But I assume that they don’t do that for everyone. It’s just people who said that’s what they want to happen.
Ben: And Airiam’s like, yeah, I just want to float through space forever.
Ben: Yeah. I mean, the problem…
Carla: To me I’m like, that’s just garbage, like you’re putting garbage in space.
Ben: Yeah, but space’s big there’s plenty of room. It’s not like landfill Carla. (both laugh) There’s no… you’re not going to run out of space.
Carla: That’s true.
Ben: Right? I mean you run out of space in orbit around a planet.
Carla: Yeah, I suppose you will go where you’ve never been before.
Carla: That’s true. Although you might… and look, if you go into the atmosphere of a planet, you’ll burn up and then you will get cremated.
Carla: You’ll be like a little ash rain.
Carla: That’s nice.
Ben: Really nice.
Ben: Although I am a bit worried that Airiam’s body obviously has a lot of cybernetics in it. And while her organic bits are clearly dead, dead, dead, maybe like some weird robots could like reanimate her body.
Carla: Oh, that’s a crazy point doesn’t even go there.
Ben: I don’t want it to happen. So, I hope that we don’t go there.
Carla: Yeah, I really liked the funeral. I loved Saru’s song.
Ben: It was beautiful. Yeah, it’s I don’t think it was Doug Jones singing.
Carla: It was him singing.
Ben: Was it really? His singing voice is very different. So, I thought maybe it was someone else. But that’s wonderful. I’m so glad to know he can sing as well.
Carla: I know it’s sickening.
Ben: What can’t he do this man?
Carla: (laughs) Shoot him out of a spaceship.
Ben: So good. That’s amazing. Wow. It was a beautiful song.
Carla: Yeah, it was nice. And it was, you know, it was to the point, but it was, you know, weighty enough as well, which I appreciated.
Ben: Did they…
Carla: It didn’t feel perfunctory?
Ben: No. Did they, did they write like Kelpian language for him to sing in.
Ben: Wow. That’s cool.
Ben: Because we never heard Kelpian. Because you so often don’t hear the foreign or non-human languages on Star Trek shows because everything’s universally translated.
Ben: Well what about, I mean it was nice to see Nhan and Michael makeup.
Ben: In their little corridor scene. You know, she was like, “I’m so sorry. Like, you all loved her so much. I did what I thought was right”. And Michael was like, “no, you did do the right thing. I get it. It was a hard it was a hard call. And I would be dead if you hadn’t”. It was basically she acknowledges that. I thought that was really nice.
Carla: Yeah, I was good. Well, the whole theme of that episode is reconciliation.
Ben: Yeah. Because everybody’s…
Carla: Everyone I meet up with everyone.
Carla: Come back from the dead.
Carla: Making up for dying.
Ben: Yeah. Yeah, yeah. And including Michael and Tyler but not though…
Carla: Michael and Georgiou as well. That was weird.
Ben: Yeah. When she puts a hand on her shoulder…
Carla: What was up there?
Ben: She’s off the wall this episode. Georgiou though. I mean what’s going on in that scene?
Carla: What is happening to her?
Ben: I know she’s just gone.
Carla: Is she just having fun?
Ben: I think she’s having a fun time. We haven’t had much of a chance to see that side of her personality because she hasn’t interacted with that many people. And with Michael, she’s got that kind of motherly kind of relationship. But they want to show her. I mean, it is a little bit trope-y. It’s that “we’re going to show she’s the evil one because she’s sexually aggressive”. But I think at least they’re being fun and playful with-it in. And it’s and it’s not like horrendous, like it’s just making everyone feel uncomfortable. And as Tilly said (whispers) “what just happened?”. (both laugh) That was great. But she I think also she did it deliberately maybe to provoke something happening between Hugh and Stamets. And I don’t know what her game is there, but I you know, she didn’t really turn on the flirting at Stamets until he was in the room.
Carla: She just seems perennially bored, which…
Ben: And horny.
Carla: And horny, which, you know, for a woman like her, you’d expect that with her coming into the Star Fleet universe.
Ben: She’s used to being in charge of doing whatever the fuck she wants as the Emperor. So, you know…
Carla: Having as many orgies as she likes.
Carla: With whoever she likes.
Ben: And whatever she likes.
Carla: She can’t eat Kelpians anymore. There’s no pleasure left for this woman except for the occasional fistfight.
Carla: You know. She’s, you know, even in an incremental way, taking Leland down, I’m sure has become incredibly boring for her.
Ben: I think she’s going to be pissed if he’s dead or taken over by Control. She’s going to be pissed off that she didn’t get to do it, do you reckon? Or is she just she’s not that interested. She just wants to be in charge. But she’s going to be in charge once he’s out of the way. Surely?
Carla: That’s the only thing that she desires.
Carla: But maybe they’ll be like a Control versus Georgiou thing.
Ben: Is it is it still Control or is it some fragment of the future A.I?
Carla: I feel like Control knowing that it was, you know, at the level that it’s at, it has you know, it’s like it’s safeguarded itself. It’s backed itself up.
Carla: You know, in case it was destroyed.
Ben: Yeah. And Pike does break that as a possibility is like, look we destroyed Control. We wiped all the stuff that was in Airiam’s hard drive and we’ve checked all of the Section 31 ships, we’re pretty sure there’s nothing there. But you never know. It could have been something out before we blew it up and it might be hiding somewhere. And it is it’s hiding on the Section 31 ship with Leland.
Carla: I just love that because I work in IT, it’s like. Oh, well, one would hope that advanced A.I in the future like has adequate disaster recovery. (both laugh)
Ben: Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah.
Carla: You’re like okay…
Ben: It’s backed up to the cloud somewhere.
Carla: That’s good. Yeah. Yeah, that’s good. Sticking needles in retina. Retina things.
Ben: Interestingly, that was something else actually, just quickly on Airiam, that you got that sort of x ray of her body and the head.
Carla: Yeah that was cool. Oh my God.
Ben: And you could kind of see how her nervous system is connected up and there’s like bits of it that are still most of us still organic. But there’s like this bit that’s making her brain work or storing her memories. That’s not clear. I mean, again, you know, I’m making it up in my head, but it makes sense to me that most of her brain is still her original organic brain. It’s just like they’ve locked up her motor functions because she had a spinal injury and they’ve hooked up a thing to store her memories because part of her brain was destroyed, and she can’t make memories very easily or at all, maybe. So, I thought that was just interesting to think about that more. I don’t think we need more concrete details and that’s fun to speculate.
Carla: Yeah, I did have one thing. Again, on Spock’s logic. I did have a quote from him. He said, “The one variable we cannot possibly predict is the future”. And I’m like, really, Spock?
Ben: That’s not a variable. That’s like the outcome of that is the outcome when you predict things. Yeah, I remember that line, too.
Carla: I’m like that’s literally prediction. So yes and no?
Ben: Well, I guess what he means is we can’t get any data from the future because we can’t go into the future and we can’t receive information from the future. But someone who’s a time traveller can. Which means they have access to info. I’m going to guess that kind of what he meant. Well, I’m going to say…
Carla: It’s that because they know, and we don’t?
Ben: Otherwise it’s just like it’s just nonsense.
Carla: It’s just garbage.
Ben: Yeah, exactly. Yeah.
Carla: And I’ve got another note that said “love the awks expression. They all exchange around Spock’s takedown of Michael”. (both laugh)
Ben: Oh, yeah. They’re all just try not to laugh.
Carla: I know.
Ben: And even Michael is like not as it’s just kind of embarrassed rather than angry. Which I thought was a nice a nice way to sort of soften that.
Carla: This is a good scene, like this is a good Star Trek franchise of faces.
Ben: Oh, yeah.
Carla: There’s great faces and more subtle acting because we know Americans aren’t really good at that.
Ben: Not really.
Carla: Not acting in that way. But generally, as audiences.
Ben: As audience. Right. Gotcha.
Carla: So that, you know, that’s an evolution.
Carla: Of serialized television.
Ben: People have to say how they feel all the time because they can act it.
Ben: And I know, I know. But you know, some people do need it a bit more explicitly signposting for them and that’s fine. But yeah, I really like that too.
Carla: And one more faces moment, like when Michael is dying – I just like what kind of level of training do you have to get you to be able to be like Cornwell and Pike? You know what I mean? Like, they’re just like handling the situation and everybody’s fuckin spazzing out around them. You know, they just completely go into trauma mode like they can’t even do their roles adequately.
Carla: You know, and they’re just like monitoring the whole situation.
Ben: Well, we know Pike’s had what? We don’t know exactly how long. Probably if you went back to that to “Brother” and looked at his file, it would tell you when he graduated from the academy. But I think he’s been a starship captain for at least a decade.
Carla: Yeah. So, he’s seen a lot of crazy shit.
Ben: Like the Enterprise is not his first time a captain. So, yeah, he’s he’s been through some shit. And we also know he’s had like a bunch of Star Trek style adventures on the Enterprise already because he’s already been to Talos and he’s like, I’m not sure. I don’t show you ever say how many years he is into the five-year mission. But presumably he does two of them because there’s still like, you know, another nine years to go before the Enterprise gets taken off.
Carla: Oh, yeah.
Ben: So, yeah, I mean, he’s been around and Admiral Cornwell. Well, I mean, who knows how long she’s been doing it.
Carla: Well she’s a psychologist so you know.
Ben: Yeah, yeah.
Carla: Well that was just a nice little bit of backstory about her.
Ben: Yeah. Well I mean we knew that from last season. That isn’t new information, but it was nice to see it brought back. I thought.
Carla: Yeah. Just a little reminder.
Ben: What do you think of that scene with her and Hugh?
Carla: I don’t know?
Ben: Is it weird like because surely, they have a ship’s counsellor, right?
Carla: I don’t think they do on Discovery.
Ben: I guess it’s on a small ship like we discovered last episode it’s only got like a 120 or 140 people on it or something.
Carla: Yeah. I don’t think they do.
Ben: So maybe they don’t have. But you’d think, you’d think they’d have to have one though? I mean they see so much weird shit.
Carla: They probably do it virtually like there’d just be resources that you can access virtually.
Ben: Talk to a hologram…
Carla: Yeah. Yeah. Exactly.
Ben: Who’s on a star base somewhere.
Ben: Or you just get on the shuttle and go to the star base and admit yourself like Spock did. I guess.
Carla: There’s that too.
Ben: Yeah. That seems a bit full on.
Carla: I don’t know like I feel like it was kind of giving us a little bit more context that we needed for what Hugh is thinking and feeling and going through. Why is he not in uniform? But he was in that mission. I don’t understand what is happening with him. Is he on sick leave? What is happening?
Ben: Yeah, it’s a bit weird, isn’t it? I mean, Spock’s not wearing uniform either. But then he’s not a member of the crew. But he is still a Starfleet officer. Well, I guess he’s been stood down at the moment because, oh no they said all the charges against him been dropped. I don’t know why he’s not in uniform, but I guess he’s not an official member of the crew.
Ben: And maybe Hugh isn’t either, because he was declared dead. So maybe they can’t just reinstate him, but they’re letting him do stuff because they like him. I don’t know.
Carla: That’s a good point.
Ben: I mean, I don’t know. How do you how do you feel about how much room that storylines being given? Because he hasn’t been in every episode since he came back from the dead. And then this episode he has, you know, has the moment he goes in. And there’s the whole thing, weird thing with Georgiou in the room. Then he talks to Cornwell. And then also there’s him listening to Stamets at this funeral at the start and going “oh, what a beautiful thing” and Stamets tells that great anecdote, which I thought was really quite beautiful about how Airiam felt that…
Carla: Oh, my God, are you kidding? I feel like “hogging the mic much? Like he’s just talking about his own story.
Ben: No, no, no. That was Airiam’s story.
Carla: No, I know. But it’s like literally exactly what just happened to him with Hugh.
Ben: So, sort of look, I didn’t I didn’t feel that.
Carla: But you liked it. That’s nice.
Ben: I liked it. I liked it because it’s that…
Carla: We all project.
Ben: Well, it was that way of using a scientific principle to talk about wonder in the universe, which is I’m just a sucker for that. So, I really enjoyed it. Anyway, you know, Hugh sees him and he has him saying that and then tries to talk to him when the whole crisis with Burnham is going down just before they’re about to kill her to summon the Red Angel. And I don’t know. What do you think of that way that’s going? Cause Stamets seem to be like this isn’t the time for that conversation. Then he says, like it might never be the time. What do you think’s going on?
Carla: I just don’t think he wants to engage with him about it anymore. He’s heartbroken and he doesn’t want to talk about it. That’s fine.
Ben: Yeah, that’s fair.
Carla: You know?
Ben: Like you, I lost you. You came back from the dead and then you told me you weren’t that same person and that I should move on. Now you want to talk to me about it? Make up your fucking mind mate.
Carla: It’s sort just like back…. Like, basically, it’s like “don’t call me, I’ll call you”. That’s essentially what he was saying. Like, if I’m ever ready to talk about this. You’ll hear from me. But fuck off until that day.
Ben: And that’s fair enough really. I can’t fault him for that.
Carla: I don’t know. I think they just kind of building it up to whatever that conclusion is going to be like, whether he leaves Discovery, or he stays, I don’t know, but they’re giving it that groundwork. So, it doesn’t kind of seem odd.
Ben: Yeah, I just felt it was a bit weird because they made such a big deal about his return and then it just feels like they haven’t spent much time on it and it’s going somewhere very emotionally real. But in terms of, you know, and the characters, there’s some interesting stuff happening there, but there’s not a lot of time being spent on it and it’s not interacting with the plot very much. So, I’m just curious to know if it’s going to have like some massive payoff in the next four episodes, which it might.
Carla: It might, the whole thing’s pretty hodgepodge. So, I don’t really, I’m not really reading into it too much. You know what I mean?
Ben: Yeah. Fair enough. Fair enough.
Carla: I did like the way that all these tendrils wrapped up together because I thought it was like a perfectly masochistic final penance for Michael, like for her to go through that in order to kind of like it’s like this rebirth process…
Ben: Yeah. Literally die and be reborn.
Carla: Literally with her mother. Yeah. And with her mother. Reborn by her mother.
Ben: Oh shit! Yeah, that’s true.
Carla: You know, which has been the source had her mother’s death has been the source of all of her pain, you know. And you know, she seems like the kind of person that needs to suffer for anything that’s good that is gained. So, I thought that that was a really smart way of wrapping up her personality and all the things that have happened to her.
Ben: Yeah, I hope she. I mean, this is obviously massive for her. And I hope, hope has some big – I’d like to see some changes for her as a result. But also like, can we just talk about mum’s like life laser?
Carla: (laughs) I know what is that?
Ben: She just shows (buzzing noise) “wake up”. Like I wish I had one of those. That’s like a maybe it’s 500 years in the future defibulator.
Ben: I can’t say that word. That’s like the one with the defibulator or defibrillator?
Ben: Defibrillator. There we go. Yeah, I find it hard. I never get it right the first.
Carla: That’s okay.
Ben: Wait, hang on. Your plan is to let her die like the Angel supposed to arrive and prevent her from dying? But she doesn’t prevent it from dying. She just brings it back to life. I did at the same time, Michael’s got to have horrendous injuries. Like the toxic atmosphere is like burning her face. What’s it doing to the inside of her lungs?
Carla: I know I was expecting like a whole “Total Recall” situation when it was happening.
Ben: Yeah, it was, it was gross. But then when she sort of wakes up and she’s brought back, she’s just kind of like “Mum?!”. And then, yeah, she seems okay. So, I mean, I guess she’ll be yeah. She’ll be brought back to life. I did see somebody on the Internet said “hey, this is my recut of the end of the episode” and they just they just do the bit where she dies and then they just cut to the credits. I’m like whoa! that would be intense. I’m so glad they didn’t do that.
Carla: But not off brand. (laugh)
Ben: (laughs) Yeah, fair. Any other bits of the episode you want to?
Carla: I think we should go to Short Chats.
Carla: All right. Let’s do it.
Ben: Now it’s time for re:Discovery Short Chats, where we talk news trivia and anything related to Discovery and also any questions you have for us, follow our socials and get in touch. Captain, we’ve got a few things. We’ve got a question on Twitter.
Carla: Yeah, hit me.
Ben: Let me find it. So, Darren Lutchner.
Carla: Hi Darren.
Carla: I hope I’m pronouncing you’re name there right. Darren sent in the question, “would you like to see any other characters from the Original Series join Discovery?” and Darren suggests he’d like to see Scotty meet Stamets and think that they would verbally hit it off. I don’t know how I feel about that Scotty would be really young, like he’s not the engineer of the Enterprise, he’d be like an Ensign or something in his career, I think.
Carla: Well it could be one of the ships that they come up on.
Ben: Oh, yeah.
Carla: You know, yeah, that’s really plausible.
Ben: That is that would be fun.
Carla: I would like Sulu.
Ben: Oh, yes. Young Sulu. Yeah. Cool.
Carla: And he could actually be out rather than being inferred.
Ben: Yeah. Yeah, yeah. I mean it’s very well caused the problem it’s kind of. Yeah. There’s a lot of things inferred about Sulu. Because it’s, I mean it’s like…
Carla: It’s a J.K. Rowling type situation.
Ben: It is. Yeah. In the in the prime-time line in the Kelvin timeline he’s explicitly.
Ben: Got a partner and a kid.
Ben: Which is nice but yeah that would be cool. I don’t know. I mean I think I might’ve mentioned it before, but I kind of feel with time travel introduced here and the fact that they’re making like the future Picard show that it would be crazy not to do some kind of crossover like at least once.
Ben: Like just something little like even if it’s just Picard watching holograms of the Discovery crew doing something that becomes that’s a plotline in his show like it wouldn’t even have to be time travel necessarily, but I thought that could be cool. But specifically, Original Series characters, I don’t know. I mean, Spock was my favorite. So, I kind of feel like anything more for me would be greedy, although I would like to see more of Number One. I hope Number One comes back.
Carla: I would like maybe Janice Rand, Yeoman Janice Rand.
Ben: Oh, she’s cool. Yeah.
Carla: Her crazy woven beehive.
Ben: She’d have to be a cadet in Starfleet if she’s even in Starfleet. At this point in time, because she’s like at the start of her career, I think on Star Trek. So, this is, and this is like what did we decide? Like about nine years before that.
Ben: So, yeah. So, she’d probably be in the academy, I guess. I mean how long do you go to Starfleet Academy for?
Carla: I don’t know. Probably a very long time.
Ben: Yeah, maybe. Or we could meet her as a teenage girl. Maybe they inspire her to go into space. That could be a fun little thing…
Carla: Oh, when I went to Starfleet Academy, it was only one day.
Ben: Oh, right.
Carla: But that’s because I was so good at it.
Ben: (laughs) Of course.
Ben: And you got chosen for the command training program.
Carla: And got chosen for the command training program.
Ben: Accelerated entry. Yeah. Yeah, I understand.
Carla: What else do you have Ben?
Ben: Ah now I do. Well, one thing I didn’t talk about this episode. You told me to watch out for butts in Star Trek. And I’ve got to say, Spock’s butt in that space suit.
Carla: Set the Internet on fire.
Ben: Holy moly. It was good.
Carla: Yeah, it was.
Ben: Yeah, I know. I didn’t even see the people on the internet talking about it.
Carla: Are you kidding?
Ben: I was just watching the episode going “that is… That’s a good butt”. Nice one!
Carla: I saw the butt, but then of course you hit the hashtag and it was just all everyone.
Ben: #spocksbutt is that the hashtag? “the search for butt” (both laugh). Star Trek 3… I don’t know. I thought that was cool. I enjoyed that. I enjoyed that a lot.
Carla: People were discussing his workout routine, how it could possibly get to that kind of bubble butt on such a skinny guy, there’s lots of theories bandied around about…
Ben: He’s got padding in the butt of the space suit.
Carla: Squats… What kind of squats…
Ben: That’s too much.
Carla: There was a lot of chat.
Ben: Just enjoy it. Just enjoy it. Yeah, that’s what I say. I did. I enjoyed it. Now, I didn’t predict this on-air last episode, but on Twitter, I did wonder whether we would see…
Carla: Lieutenant Nilsson?
Ben: Lieutenant Nilsson more. Because as we’ve previously mentioned, the actor playing Lieutenant Nilsson is Sarah Mitich, who was the original Airiam who was replaced by Sarah Cheeseman. Is it Sarah?
Carla: No Hannah?
Ben: Hannah Cheeseman. Yeah, for this season, who did a great job, but Sarah Mitich has appeared in the background of a few scenes without really. I mean she had like one background bit of dialogue which is probably not scripted. And then yeah, when the doors open and she comes onto the bridge and it’s Airiam. replacement and everyone’s a bit awkward about it. Yeah, it’s her.
Carla: I was like Airiam 1.
Ben: So, she’s, she’s back on the bridge and I I’m really glad to see her back, you know. Yes. It was nice. It feels like a nice bit of continuity. But also, clearly there’s something…
Carla: It’s probably contractual or something like that.
Ben: Yeah. It’s probably like “we contracted you for like three seasons, but we’ve decided now we want to kill off this character in the second season. So, we’re going to recast that character and give you a new one. Is that alright?” And she’s like “yeah”. It’s like “you can also show your actual face”. “Oh, that’s great”. So, but it is nice to see her still there on the show because, you know, she did a great job as Airiam in the first season. She got like about three lines of dialogue.
Ben: But because of her being there, we felt that emotional attachment to Airiam. much more easily this season, even though it wasn’t her playing the role. So, it’s nice to see her back. So, I really enjoyed that.
Carla: I want more Rhys cause Rhys is the biggest babe on Discovery.
Ben: He’s pretty. He’s great, he’s great. And Bryce though as well.
Ben: Is it Bryce? Who’s the other guy? The other guy on the bridge.
Carla: The black guy?
Ben: Yeah isn’t his name Bryce?
Carla: I don’t know. I’m only all eyes for Rhys.
Ben: I think it is.
Carla: Who is this guy?
Ben: It’s Bryce or something like that.
Carla: Yeah, no he’s nice there.
Ben: But they’re all good. They’re all good. Yeah, but I would like you know, we had that Owo episode, Detmer’s had a few good moments. Obviously, we now had the big Airiam episode. There’s still four episodes left. There could be a Rhys and Bryce episode. Maybe they team up.
Carla: Who knows?
Ben: Maybe, maybe. Yeah, it’ll be fun, and we might see some more of Nilsson as well. I think that’ll be great.
Carla: Yeah, that’ll be good.
Ben: I also like this episode was directed by Hanelle M. Culpepper.
Carla: Yes, is that like a French-Canadian name?
Ben: No, it’s a very, it feels like a very southern American southern United States named to me. It’s like I like when I first hear if I hear the name Culpeper assume like someone’s got a big white beard in there. They’ve got a pipe and they’re like (southern American accent) “oh, yeah, I’ve, uh, directed some Star Trek”. But that is not what is happening because she is an African-American woman. And I got excited to see her name in the credits because I like I see her work because I hadn’t been paying that much attention. If I’m really honest to the director credits until or whenever the first Frakes directed episode was “I’m like, oh, I should be paying attention to this”. She did a great, great job on this episode. And she’s also directing the first two episodes of the new Picard’s show.
Carla: How exciting.
Ben: So first African-American woman to direct the debut of a Star Trek show.
Carla: Hey, hey!
Ben: And yeah, I think that’s really great. And she did such a good job with this. I just feel even better now about the Picard’s show. I think it’s going to be great.
Carla: Next week, we’re going to, I’ll do Short Chats on the costume designer. She’s. African-American woman, her costumes are crazy.
Ben: Oh, they’re off tap. I want I want all of Spock’s clothes. I want to dress like Spock or Hugh, Hugh’s got some great clothes as well.
Carla: I’ll get you the squats formula. (both laugh) The squats formula.
Ben: I’ve got to get on the regime. If I’m going to fill them out the way he does, was there anything else you wanted to talk about?
Carla: No, that’s it from me.
Ben: I’ll see you next time.
Ben: You’ve been listening to re:Discovery. You’ll find links to all the creatives involved on our web site rediscoverypodcast.com. We’d love to connect with you. Find us on Twitter and Facebook @rediscoverypod.
Ben: Oh, before you go, I almost forgot. I’m doing a comedy show. You can catch me in “You Chose Poorly” as part of the Melbourne International Comedy Festival from the 1st to the 7th of April at Campari House in Hardware Lane in Melbourne. You can find details via my website benmckenzie.com.au. But this, as always, is a Splendid Chaps Production.
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