Kobayashi Marie Long Reads/Series

Kobayashi Marie #29: Star Trek Discovery Sn 2 Ep 14

Kobayashi Marie

Kobayashi Marie has completed it’s mission/adventure into the second season that is Star Trek Discovery with the conclusion of two part season finale Episode 14 – Such Sweet Sorrow (Part 2)

This is Starfleet – get it done

This is very definitely a season finale. In fact, there was so much action footage that it put some movies to shame with its ambition and scope.

We do, sadly, have to part from some people this time (for good it would appear) but others apparently get to fight another day. It’s the longest episode of Star Trek Discovery and they pack a lot in.

Let’s get right to it then with Michael Burnham (Sonequa Martin-Green) and her Red Angel mission.  

Everyone, on both ships, is working to protect and support her – so much so that at one point a split screen is required to reinforce the message; perhaps a little clunky in execution compared to the rest of the visuals this time out.

Saru (Doug Jones) spouts terrestrial Eastern philosophy, Leland’s (Alan Van Sprang) armada is greater than anyone had imagined, and Queen Po (Yadira Guevara-Prip) has magnificently stolen a shuttle from Enterprise (it’s OK though, she’s claimed diplomatic immunity). Siranna (Hannah Spear) has learned to pilot a fighter ship to assist her brother Saru, and we discover what Ash Tyler (Shazad Latif) was up to – of course he went to get the support of L’Rell (Mary Chieffo) and the Klingons!

But the greatest support of all comes from Michael’s brother Spock (Ethan Peck). Their adventures this week allow them to perfectly complete their sibling bond, and be the person each needs the other to be. As Michael is preparing to set off on her mission, it’s Spock’s firm but caring voice which keeps her on track when she loses focus, and as they are about to part it is Michael who leaves Spock with some wise words which very clearly pre-empt his friendship with his future captain James T Kirk. Their care for one another is truly something which I have loved to watch grow over this season, and I admit to an involuntary intake of breath when they silently exchanged the Vulcan peace sign.

It’s Spock who works out that the reason Michael’s suit is malfunctioning is because she hasn’t yet – in the timeline we’re currently watching – set the red signals to bring all the necessary parts of the equation together. Once that’s happened, she’s able to clear a way into the future.

But let’s just back up a moment, because I feel a question brewing.

The reason Michael has to take Discovery into the future is so that Control isn’t able to get its hands on all of the data, and thereby end all sentient life in the galaxy.

So once Philippa Georgiou (Michelle Yeoh) and Commander Nhan (Rachael Ancheril) have kicked, tricked and magnetised Leland into submission, and declare that Control is neutralised, then there is no need for Discovery to go anywhere.  Right? This didn’t occur to me until my second viewing, but is this a plot hole? A slip-up? Or has Marie overlooked something? Hmmm.

So, who do we part from this season? Well, it really does look like we have properly lost Admiral Cornwell (Jayne Brook) this time. But at least she went the way an Admiral should go – defending the ship and protecting the crew. It’s a much more noble end than when we thought we had lost her in season 1.

Then there’s Paul Stamets (Anthony Rapp). He doesn’t look too good, but I can’t believe they would put him through everything he’s experienced this season, only for him not to make it. That would be really, really cruel.

We know that we’re not going to see Enterprise and crew anymore either. Having just got to know them and that magnificent bridge it seems a shame, but it’s the right thing. What’s great is that we finally learned that Number One has a name! She is Una which is brilliant, as in Spanish/Italian, una means one.

And Ash Tyler. He was having so much fun aboard that Klingon ship, declaring that today is a good day to die – but because he didn’t go through the wormhole with Discovery, then I’m guessing that we won’t see him in season 3 (much). That’s a disappointment. Or does it mean that he gets to head up the Section 31 series when that begins?

It was great to be in San Francisco at Starfleet HQ, eavesdropping in on the inquisition as to what happened to Discovery. The party line is they’re all gone. “I saw Discovery explode.”

The one final thing to do now is to explain how come the spore drive, the red angel, and Michael Burnham receive no reference at all in Star Trek TOS. I’ve mentioned it a few times, most recently when I wrote about S2E12 Through the Valley of Shadows, and of course it’s Spock who comes up with the perfect explanation – that no one with any knowledge should be allowed to speak of these things on pain of treason. Neat, I guess.

Now. I need to discuss the ending. The ending of a series called Star Trek Discovery in which we do not see Discovery, nor any of her crew. That is a bit odd, don’t you think?

It’s fun to see Spock decide to remove the beard, cut his hair and put on the blue science officer uniform (although that black leather coat he’s been wearing in recent episodes was fabulous), thereby beginning the transformation into the Spock we’ve all known for decades. But by finishing with Enterprise heading out on a mission, it felt like we’d handed the baton over to Pike and crew for the next adventure. And was I the only one waiting for Spock to utter the word ‘Fascinating’ once the seventh red signal appeared?

Why not even give us a close up of that final red signal so that we see Burnham’s outline in the suit?

We’ve enjoyed the collaboration with USS Enterprise – but this should be Discovery’s time, surely?

Kobayashi Marie will be back on after a small break with an all new Columns about Star Trek!!!

You can catch up on the prior columns here!

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