It’s been a while since my last review but fear not, I’ve got my latest Twin Peaks semi-analysis (mostly conjecture and tangents) nearly in the bag. ‘Just got the third act of that particular episode and then I’m done. Apologies. I’ve been visiting old southern French villages, looking for Captain Picard’s ancestors and you know what? I think I know why Jean-Luc Picard (despite being apparently French) has an English accent?
France is a country on the verge of losing its cultural identity, the youth have absconded from the quaint little villages and the elderly are succumbing to Prof. Brian Cox’ favourite law of thermodynamics – leaving said quaint villages and hamlets at the mercy of British expats.
By the 24th Century every French person will be descended from British immigrants!
The once-youth would have succumbed to the onslaught of English-language pop culture and thus; Captain Picard will obviously have an English accent! YOU KAY! YOU KAY! YOU KAY!
Stick it, Napoleon ya time-travelling, ice-cream eating, water-sliding French mother-fucker!
Anyway, I’m going to talk, not about Captain Picard but of Captain Lorca and his USS Discovery.
Star Trek Discovery is due to hit our screens in late September and Jesus, you’d think it was the worst thing since that misogynistic episode of the Original Series where Kirk declares that a “woman can’t be a starship Captain”…
… Then his consciousness ends up being swapped with a woman, hell-bent on messing everything up with her terrible driving and… periods, eurgh! Even Doctor Who has gone all “mixed-chromosome”, probably the TARDIS will end up being Malibu Barbie Pink(TM) instead of manly, manly blue because… “girls”!
Shake your fists in the air, men fore we are going to be phased out!Woman will no longer need our wondrous phallic members of pleasure because soon, very soon they’ll all get fed up with our shit and end up inventing vibrators that are so much better than our dicks and they’ll be able to plant baby-seeds too! Just look at the new Star Trek Discovery, it’s all skirts and tampons now! Who was Captain Janeway? Fuck knows? Probably a man in a dress?
How should I know?
Yeah, obviously I’m being facetious but my dumbass rambling is fairly similar to a lot of the negative comments I’ve read on various forums. People complaining that it; “doesn’t look like Star Trek”, “meh, Discovery looks like shit but I lack the attention span to write a fully formed critique on why I think it looks like shit”, “black woman… groan, political correctness gone made” and the always classic; “it’s not PRIME!!! I want it to look like a failed pilot for a sci-fi show from 1965”.
Hindsight is always 20/20 and I’m about to stick my Trekkie-cap on so allow me to explain something; that failed pilot episode, the one that doesn’t have Captain Kirk or McCoy. It wasn’t even broadcast in its entirely until the late 80’s. Bits of that episode were recycled and used for later episodes to save on budget. The uniforms and even the Enterprise look different and not fully-fleshed out. Funny thing is, there’s a Trekkie, right now, reading these words and they’re getting really, really frustrated. They’re the same type of emotionally-stunted and irrationally-minded individuals that actually “rage-quit” computer games way into their mid-to-late thirties. They’re now sending me a private message, telling me that I’m a “ass hat” or something, I don’t know? It’ll be less incoherent that this bullshit, anyway!
“IDIC” is an acronym for “Infinite Diversity in Infinite Combinations”, the basis of Vulcan philosophy and despite it being sci-fi nonsense, it’s quite a good philosophy to have. Maybe this is the reason I’m so accepting of this new and “shitty” Star Trek Discovery? Maybe I’m willing to look past all the aesthetic incongruities? Who gives a fuck about my opinion?
Anyway, the meat of this article is about my claim and arrogance-fuelled bragging rights because I think I know what this show is going to be about! (Note: Please keep in mind that most of this was written before the most recent trailer from San Diego Comic Con.)
I’ve drunk enough and caressed Twitter-posted images upon images until I’ve drawn my conclusion; and I believe that Jason Isaacs’ Captain Lorca is the Star Trek equivalent of Kurtz from Joseph Conrad’s book; Heart of Darkness.
If you’ve seen Apocalypse Now or played Far Cry 2 then you kinda know the plot.
In that book; Charles Marlow, the narrator of that story recants his endeavour to find the illusive ivory trader’ Mr. Kurtz who has gone quite, quite mad in the Congo.
How does this relate to Star Trek Discovery?
Lieutenant Commander Burnham, played by Sonequa Martin-Green is stationed aboard the USS Shenzhou as First Officer to Captain Georgiou (Michelle Yeoh) where a new threat appears as an even more aggressive and expansive Klingon armada. My prediction is that we follow the crew of the Shenzhou in their attempts to find a rogue Captain, a man with near crazed ambitions to… something to do… with the Klingons? Probably? Maybe he’s trying to cause a war? Or stop it? I think his intentions will be morally ambiguous, regardless.
Look, I’m utilising basic abstract reasoning here! The last trailer we saw didn’t even feature the eponymous USS Discovery and Jason Isaac was surprisingly absent. What we did see was Martin-Green’s Burnham and she was demanding that they fire against an aggressive force of fancy glam-rock’ Klingons. We know from the lawsuit surrounding the Axanar fan film by Christian Gossett that their initially planned 90 minute feature had to have several elements removed upon CBS request. CBS own the rights to Star Trek so it has been widely speculated that Discovery will be about the prelude to Axanar.
To the uninitiated, what the fuck is “Axanar”? Well, Axanar or the Battle of Axanar is mentioned a couple of times throughout the Original Series. Captain Kirk had hero-worshipped the notable Captain Garth of Izar, who fought against the Klingons and ended up becoming a war hero… well, until the episode; “Whom Gods Destroy” when Garth of Izar, now imbued with superpowers causes all manner of mischief for Kirk and crew. He’s a really great villain and funnily enough, one of my favourites (he’s got a slight Richard E. Grant’s Withnail quality). On display is a man who is a kind of Caligula-type. His morals have been warped by the corruption of power. Many different interpretations exist within Star Trek lore and Gossett’s Axanar film is often regarded by fans as being the best representation of this particular snippet of Star Trek history.
This would account for the CBS lawsuit against the Axanar fan film.
Mr. Kurtz from Heart of Darkness is such a man, corrupted by power and driven mad by his environment… this shares more than a slight narrative element to that of Garth of Izar. But what if, this Captain Garth was just one of many? Maybe he’s not the only man twisted by conflict?
Could it be that this is a conflict that began with Captain Lorca and his USS Discovery? What if our lead character’ Lt. Cmdr. Burnham and the rest of the crew of the USS Shenzhou was, to use the tired ‘Trek trope; “the only ship in range” and said ship was tasked with stopping a charismatic Captain who has, completely gone mad?
We know from the the trailer that was released a few months ago that the fleet of Klingon vessels descend upon the Shenzhou, maybe this is in retaliation of an unprovoked attack by Lorca’s Discovery?
Sure makes for an interesting take, doesn’t it? And what if this Klingon threat was something ancient and until now, “unseen” judging by the production sketches of a “Sarcophagus ship”. This could be a possible Klingon interpretation of Khan’s cryogenic sleeper ship. There’s that lazy production company ideal of taking popular aspects from a franchise and recycling it and what are two of the most popular entries in the Star Trek franchise; “Space Seed” and “Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan”? (Obviously The Dominion War, Riker’s beard and Seven of Nine would be in that list of popular Trek-things, as well).
Anyway, that’s my prediction and if it’s wrong then will I care? Of course not! It’s new fucking Star Trek and I, personally think it looks awesome… plus Martin-Green’s Burnham is sexy as fuck and I’m just a stupid man with an erection for a brain.
Talking about “brains”, isn’t it great that Steven Moffat has fucked off from Doctor Who?… God, he sucks doesn’t he? Imagine how terribly written his interpretation of a female Doctor would be? That guy knows shit about writing female characters and just look at his stupid Brillo pad hair! He fucked up Capaldi’s Doctor so thank fuck there’s a new show runner and you know what? A female Doctor will probably make me watch the next series!
Isn’t science fiction awesome?
… There’s more, at SDCC a new trailer was released and there’s a load of really cool visual elements but one thing really stood out to me. Burnham can be seen wearing a classic gold top, maybe a re-design of the Original Series uniform? It’s very brief and it occurs during the clip of Burnham looking at water floating about in micro gravity.
Also, Burnham totally does a Deadpool aping “hero land”. The USS Shenzhou has very recognisable escape pod hatches (you can see a load of pods being ejected out). I believe the Shenzhou will end up becoming heavily damaged but not necessarily destroyed. We also see a brief glimpse of the Discovery as she warps in a moment that is very familiar to any (not-so cynical) Star Trek fan.
We hear the Klingon commander speak and despite his course vocals, he sounds very stoic but he still looks a bit like a space vampire.
We also learn that Burnham is actually Spock’s adopted sister. Sure, loads of people will go to great length about how “Spock doesn’t have an adopted sister, he never mentions it, like EVER”. Well, he didn’t mention his brother’ Sybok to Kirk until Kirk met Sybok in Star Trek V. Hell, Spock’s father’ Sarek first appeared in the episode; “Journey to Babel” and even then Kirk was unaware that Sarek was Spock’s father… Spock and Kirk are supposed to be BBF’s FFS!
It’s worth mentioning that Sarek will be played by Orphan Black actor; James Frain and while I’ve never really liked his acting in Orphan Black, mainly because he seems almost emotionally detached, maybe that detachment will work as he plays a Vulcan.
I also really like the moment where Burnham is trapped in a containment field, effectively saving her from the vacuum of space. It looks really cool and it’s an interesting idea.
This leads me on to what I hope this series might do.
My prediction is more for the general season story arc but I’m hoping we get self contained episodes and it’s possible we may get that because we see Harry Mudd’s return. Harry Mudd appeared in two episodes of the Original Series where he was a mischievous con artist… though he was a threat, he was more like comic relief.
I really can’t see him being used in any capacity other than being a self-serving career criminal and his episode might not even have much to do with the overall season arc.
I’d like to see intelligent ideas for already existing aspects of the series, such as the containment field that was shown.
What I don’t want to see is liberal handfuls of nostalgia shit being thrown all over the place. I don’t want a doctor-character saying; “I’m a doctor, not an [insert thing here]” or references to Romulan Ale being fucking illegal. And please, no Tribbles. I don’t want someone drinking a Chateau Picard
So, what are your thoughts on this new Star Trek series? Will you do the rational thing and wait for the actual episodes to air before making a judgement? Are you going to bitch and whine even if this show ends up being the greatest thing since Picard took an interest in playing an alien flute?
And just how long before Michelle Yeoh’s character is killed off? She’s totally got the longevity of a Disney parent or any father figure in a video game!