5 Ways to Improve STAR TREK: DISCOVERY in Season 2

Star Trek: Discovery is set to finally make its second season debut this Thursday on CBS All Access. But although there were many things to admire in the show’s first season, we still think it has a long way to go before becoming worthy of the great Star Trek series of the past. Here’s a few of the changes that we hope to see when season two of Discovery launches this week.

The Crew Needs to Become a Family

One of the things that’s a staple of all the Star Trek crews is that they feel like families. Sure, sometimes they’re families that squabble (see: Deep Space Nine), but that’s what comes with a close bond. With the exception of Tilly and Burnham’s relationship, Discovery‘s crew really just feels like everyone on board is just “work friends,” and even that is stretching it a bit. We really need to see this crew form a familial bond in season two.

Less War, More Exploring

Some of the best parts of Star Trek in all its incarnations are the big, exciting battles. On Deep Space Nine, the Dominion War lasted two seasons and was the basis for some of the very best Trek storytelling across both television and film. But at its core, Star Trek is about exploration, “to seek out strange new worlds, and new civilizations.” There was next to none of that in season one of Discovery. I mean, Discovery is the show’s title—let’s do a little more discovering and a little less fighting!

Fewer Gimmicks

There were a lot of gimmicks used in the first season of Discovery—some effective, and some less so. Using the Mirror Universe, an element from the original series, in season one felt like a way to tie into the greater Trek lore late in the game. And although it provided some fun moments, it ultimately felt like a stunt. The use of Section 31 also felt like leaning into an aspect of Trek history without really understanding what it meant. Even the appearance of Captain Pike’s Enterprise at the end of the season felt a bit forced, although we’ll see how that plays out in season two.

Repair the Canon, or Just Toss It Out

Discovery is ostensibly a prequel to the original series, taking place a decade prior to the adventures of Kirk and Spock. But it’s tough to connect those dots given all that we see in the show. Effects technology aside, the aesthetic of Discovery is completely different that that of the original series. It seems they are trying to close that gap in season two, with the Enterprise officers uniforms looking more like those of TOS, and Klingons more closely matching their classic looks. But maybe the best option is to stop trying to shoehorn this into existing continuity, and just say it’s a parallel timeline.

Find a Permanent Captain

In the show’s first season, the Captain of the Discovery was Jason Isaacs’ Captain Lorca, who, as it turned out, was a total jerk and from the evil Mirror Universe. Judging from the trailers for season two, Captain Pike ( Anson Mount) will be the captain in season two, although we know he has to go back to the Enterprise at some point, if only for continuity’s sake.I get that this series is the first Trek show to focus on someone other than the Captain as the lead, but it makes the show feel rudderless. The position of commanding officer can’t be like Spinal Tap’s drummer—a ship needs steady leadership. It would be a stretch, story-wise, to have Sonequa Martin-Green’s Michael Burhnam take command, given that she is Starfleet’s first mutineer, but she is the show’s lead character. Just bite the bullet and make her the Captain as well.Star Trek: Discovery season two drops on CBS All Access on Thursday at 8:30PM ET/5:30PM PT.

Images: CBS All Access

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