I’ve just finished watching the first two episodes of the new Star Trek: Discovery series. Fortunately, I was in to catch it and watch it live, otherwise I probably would have missed it. While Space Channel here in Canada is airing it, it seems that for some reason they delayed the start time by 18 minutes. Of course, many PVRs only download their guide data once a day, so would not have updated themselves for the delayed start time. Not a very good start to a premiere, really.
Taking a look on Twitter, I’ve seen many positive comments about it. I’m going to be one of the seemingly few negatives.
Let’s start off with the “elephant in the room” first of all – the technology. This series is meant to be in the ‘prime’ timeline (that is to say, what the original series back in the 1960’s gave us). Interviews with the show-runners have said that they couldn’t go back and give us a look that was along the lines of The Original Series because audiences today will turn off and expect better. Perhaps so. I’m all for updating the look of things, but the technology of where things are in the Discovery series now seems at a level that rivals that of The Next Generation. The main guilty piece of tech here is the emergency forcefield technology all over the place. It stuck out like a sore thumb.
Another part that I’m having issue with is the relation of central character – Michael Burnham – to Sarek of Vulcan; aka, Spock’s father. In this series, Burnham is Sarek’s ward, living with him – and presumably Amanda Grayon and Spock. Unless there is some acknowledgement of Spock in this series, this link is going to seem ‘forced-in’ and out of place.
Now the Klingons: I’m still having a tough time reconciling with their new appearance. If this group had been just one sect of them, I could have been fine with it, but when all the other houses apparently make an appearance and they’re all looking the same… I’m finding it harder to believe. Especially when we need to consider that during the events of Enterprise the reasons for their more humanoid appearance in TOS is somewhat explained. Now we have this, set 10 years before TOS and they’re looking more Klingony than they should? Eh…
Finally, what seems to be missing is the underlying philosophy of studying humanity that is Star Trekis. There didn’t seem to be any of that in these first two opening episodes.
So, thus far… a lacking of “Star Trek”, and an even more obvious lacking of the starship “Discovery” itself.
Perhaps next week we might actually see the true premiere of Star Trek: Discovery. Until then, I’m not sold on it.