Star Trek fans have been anxiously awaiting the arrival of Discovery, the next chapter in the popular science fiction series, but a series of delays has hampered enthusiasm and led to increased speculation across the web.
After news broke that filming began on the new series this week, Star Trek fans flooded the internet with theories about the newest installment of the franchise.
Here’s what we know now.
Set a decade before Captain Kirk and his crew set out on their five-year mission to explore strange new worlds, the new Trek series follows the Federation starship USS Discovery. The new series takes place in the original “prime” universe instead of the “Kelvin Timeline” created in the J.J. Abrams rebooted movies.
The placement of the series in the Trek timeline mean the USS Discovery could be involved in the Federation Klingon war, but it’s been suggested the series will focus on the war with the Romulans instead.
Discovery is the first Trek series not to focus on the captain as the main character. Instead the show will follow Sonequa Martin-Green, Sasha from The Walking Dead, who has been cast in the title role of Number One, the ship’s first officer.
After Sonequa was cast in the lead role, Walking Dead fans began to fear for Sasha’s life, but Discovery showrunner Scott Gimple told Entertainment Weekly she should be able to handle playing both characters.
“Sonequa Martin-Green can do anything. I’ve seen her battle a horde of walkers this year while simultaneously battling a stomach flu that would have had most people crying in the dirt. She can fulfill the duties of a Lieutenant Commander on a Constitution-class starship whilst battling walkers, Saviors, and whatever gets in Sasha’s way. We’ve had to juggle before. I will certainly juggle for Star Trek any day of the week. Okay, maybe not on Sunday.”
— Scott Mantz (@MovieMantz) January 25, 2017
Sonequa’s Number One character is rumored to harken back to the original unaired pilot episode where Christopher Pike was captain of the Enterprise, Spock merely a science officer, and Majel Barret played the ship’s first officer.
Michelle Yeoh has been cast to play the captain of the starship Shenzhou; she’s best known for her roles in Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon and the James Bond film Tomorrow Never Dies.
Doug Jones will be playing Lt. Saura, the science officer aboard the USS Discovery who is a new kind of alien never seen before. Anthony Rapp has been cast as Lt. Stamets, an astromycologist who studies fungus in space, not to mention the first openly gay character in the Star Trek universe.
Spock’s father, Sarek, will be played by James Frain and is slated to be a regular cast member meaning the Enterprise’s science officer probably won’t be making an appearance on the new show because the two aren’t speaking at this point in the timeline.
Was Star Trek: Discovery's Lead Character An Officer in Kirk's Enterprise?
— Merric Mebs (@gyfosiquhug) January 29, 2017
Chris Obi, Shazao Latif, and Mary Chieffo play a trio of Klingons hoping to unite the houses of the homeworld although it’s not clear if they will have forehead ridges or smooth heads as in the original Star Trek series, Fuller told Den of Geek.
“We’re going to try to achieve a new look for Star Trek that is very much Star Trek, but also our interpretation of Star Trek. And I love [for] each of the shows I work on to have a distinct aesthetic.”
Their presence as permanent characters suggest the show could focus on joint Klingon and Federation missions similar to the plot of Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country.
The USS Discovery also appears to look like a merger of a Federation starship and Klingon bird of prey, supporting the idea of joint operations.
Gretchen J. Berg and Aaron Harberts have taken over as showrunners for the new Star Trek series replacing Bryan Fuller, who stepped down in October citing scheduling conflicts.
The Discovery writing staff includes Trek writer and director Nicholas Meyer, series novelist Kristen Beyer, and Academy Award-winner Akiva Goldsmith. Rounding out the staff of writers are Sean Cochran, Tyler Dinucci, Bo Yeon Kim, Erika Lippoldt, Craig Sweeney, and new creative edition Edward “Ted” Sullivan.
We still don’t know when Discovery will air as CBS appears to be taking advantage of the All Access platform, which doesn’t concern itself with season premieres or launch windows. The network seems more interested in turning out a quality product than meeting deadlines, as reported by Digital Trends.
“We will be flexible on a launch date if it’s best for the show. We’ve said from the beginning it’s more important to do this right than to do it fast.”
[Featured Image by CBS]