Kobayashi Marie #40: Star Trek Discovery Sn 3 Ep 13 – That Hope Is You Part 2
So we reach the end of our journey of Discovery for Season 3, and we’re given a combination of action, emotion and resolution, alongside a couple of hints as to where Season 4 might be headed.
Diving straight in then (as the episode does); on the dilithium planet, Adira (Blu del Barrio) arrives to buy Hugh Culber (Wilson Cruz) and Saru (Doug Jones) some time with additional medication. Early puzzlement for Kobayashi Marie – when Adira originally transported to the planet, they told Booker (David Ajala) that they had a plan. I’m struggling to recall what that plan turned out to be. They helped Hugh work out what caused The Burn, but none of that was known to them beforehand and I can’t work out if I missed something, or if it’s a tiny plot hole. In any case, they didn’t seem to express any surprise at all to see Saru in human form and Hugh as a Bajoran. The revelation that Su’Kal’s (Bill Irwin) grief caused The Burn was very sad, but made a whole lot more sense than the strange anti-climax which it first seemed to be.
The other notable thing about the time we spend in the holo is that Gray (Ian Alexander) is visible to everyone due to the holo simulation. Now that we know this can happen, I’m wondering if the technology used to allow Voyager’sEMH (played by Robert Picardo) to leave sick bay in later seasons is something which could be employed to allow Gray more interaction with other characters? And will Saru come back after he’s settled Su’Kal in to his new home? He doesn’t seem to have a command anymore, and I wonder if his diplomatic skills might be put to good use at HQ, negotiating with other species as the Federation tries to rebuild itself?
Meanwhile, two other parties are trying to save not only Discovery but also what remains of the Federation – Michael Burnham (Sonequa Martin-Green) and Cleveland Booker on the one hand, and our bridge crew on the other.
Helped in a small way by the Sphere data inside those little bots (although they didn’t really succeed in retaking the ship in the way I was anticipating), the bridge crew are ready to sacrifice themselves to support Michael’s codedly-shared plan. There really did feel like proper jeopardy as they ran out of oxygen, and a sense of who (if anyone) was going to survive – particularly given the propensity for getting rid of people that I’ve talked about repeatedly. But happily, we lose nobody! Well, unless you count a mysterious replacement of Lt Nilsson (Sara Mitich) by Lt Ina (Avaah Blackwell) seemingly out of nowhere. I can only imagine that it was an availability issues for the actors concerned, as Ina just kind of popped up as part of the team, whereas Nilsson was nowhere to be seen.
But of course it falls to Michael Burnham to save the day. It’s all on her. Last episode it was she who took the decision to crash-land on board Discovery. This time she [takes deep breath] persuaded Admiral Vance (Oded Fehr) to trust her (no big deal after what’s happened before); saved Booker from torture; planted the seed with Tilly (Mary Wiseman) to send the bridge crew on their mission; fought her way to the data core; battled and put an end to Osyraa (Janet Kidder); turned Discovery off and on again; and hatched the plan to eject the warp core and use Booker’s empathic abilities to use the spore drive in order to save Saru and the others. It’s so true that she does not believe in the no-win scenario – this girl never gives up!
[Sidenote – at this point I’m claiming that I totally called the ‘Booker and the spore drive’ scenario several weeks ago. It’s here – go read it if you need proof!] We also had yet another tease of the ‘background to Cleveland Booker’s name’ story and at this point it had better turn out to be either something amazing, or something which we never, ever get to know because anything else will be a total anti-climax.
I’ve not read a single thing about next season, so I have no real idea what’s to come – apart from new uniforms, and a new captain for Discovery of course.
What I would like is less of the Big Bad, and more of the, well, discovery. It’s Star Trek and eventually, every villain is going to get their come-uppance so doing that too often stops being engaging after a while. I’m thinking particularly about Osyraa in this season, and the bizarre Romulan sister Narissa in Picard (take a listen to our podcasts about that series to see how pointless we thought she was). What makes for more interesting viewing for me is the exploration side of it – and I do think they have opportunity to go in this direction. With Discovery moving dilithium around the quadrants they are bound to come into contact with other life and other civilisations, giving ample time for adventure without excess aggression, and also for a bit of character development.
And while this season ended with the Original Series theme tune, I’m going to leave you with this thought – David Cronenberg appeared throughout this season and I still don’t know exactly who his character is.