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Star Trek: Discovery - discussing S01E12, "Vaulting Ambition"


Thanks Lorcan. I now have the Amok Time fight scene music stuck in my head. :unamused:

With regard to the serialization, I feel that they are taking a novelistic approach to the whole thing. It feels a lot like the Trek books to me. They have a tendency to have a broader and sometimes grittier approach than any of the original series. I am thinking of stuff like the David Mack Section 31 books as a for instance.


The musical side of Saru :wink:


I agree, this feels much more like Trek. The styling is still very Mass Effect but the content itself is beginning to deliver a Federation much more in line with how they’ve always been presented. I’m glad the spore drive is becoming so unfeasible already, I hope (and I think, maybe, based on the credits) that the progression of technology during a time of war is a constant theme and we see the cleaner, sparklier world of TOS come together as the series moves forward.

My fingers are firmly crossed for that after this episode.


I quite liked that Discovery’s transporter room looked more like a modern reinterpretation of the original Enterprise’s, as opposed to Shenzhou’s one.


Yeah, I’ve felt a few parts of the discovery are closer. I’ll take a harder look on rewatch. I thought the end of the episode had the feel of a TNG bathroom scene, somewhat.


This is the opposite end of the spectrum to your usual exhaustive analyses :grin:


Casting for Captain Pike…? Closest I can think of, visually similar is Bryce Larkin.


I’m struggling a bit now.

I quit halfway thru and it’s Lorcan’s review that is making me put this episode aside and come back to it later in the week when I’m feeling less tired and less irritable. I nodded off.

I’m not enjoying the serialisation aspect at all right now, it feels so decompressed already and this is only ep 5.
The Klingon war is already becoming boring to me, and I still hate pretty much every aspect of the Klingons.

I need to come back to this with less tired mind and a more upbeat outlook as I feel I’m going backwards with it.


Oddly, I find that the show’s moving at a breakneck pace. I jokingly compared it elsewhere to Agents of SHIELD in that nothing that brought up in an episode seems to go unresolved for more than a week or two


I loved the moment when Lorca’s transport gets attacked. He doesn’t hesitate for a second. He moves into action straight away.

And I love that he breaks out.

Rainn Wilson was good as Mudd. I am not even going to try to tie him in with the guy from the original series, but he works in context. I like the view that Starfleet isn’t universally beloved. It harps back to some of the stuff that they did in DS9.


I have to admit, if it wasn’t for the pace (I too think it’s fast, plotwise) and things being resolved, I wouldn’t be enjoying the elements as much, but as soon as something is introduced it evolves quickly. AOS is a good comparison, if you stop to look around over there you might see the cracks, but as it’s moving so quickly you get swept up. I’m not sure if that was a good Mudd appearance or not, but I do know I’m enjoying stuff flying by like the stars turning into lines at warp speed.


I enjoyed that. Even a couple of ridiculous explainathons and the creepy smiley bridge 'cos we did a thing didn’t spoil it for me. We’re delving more into some of the characters now, which is always a good thing, though I’m not sure what the “don’t use the best chance of winning this war” conference was about. The show is already finding its feet, so let’s hope the momentum continues.


It appears that even way into the future, with warp speed space travel and teleportation and all, there is still no better way to clean your teeth than with the humble toothbrush.


Black badges; black alert; black toothbrushes… :thinking:


The show has settled into a nice little three-star rhythm now. Nothing great so far but a perfectly fun watch.

Some more random thoughts:

Starfleet really ought to give their captains better protection, especially during wartime. Lorca gets sent out in a rickety, Blue Midget style shuttle with just one pilot as security?

Pretty sure that whole kidnapping was a ruse, with the kid that Lorca rescued really being the Torchbearer Klingon in an elaborate disguise. No way that a Klingon ship captures an important Starfleet captain at this time and then just saunters along, business as usual, without all available warships coming to their side.

I don’t know about the swearing. It just feels wrong for Star Trek, like hearing your teacher swear. Or maybe they should just lean into the curve. Like at the end when Michael ejects the comatose creature into space by itself, it could have not miraculously woken up (having been re-hydrated by the empty void of nothingness) but just get smashed by a passing asteroid. Cut to Tilly - “…fuck.”

What is the deal with Ensign Daft Punk who is always hanging out on the bridge? I want his/her story.

Pretty sure at the end the surly science guy told the friendly medical guy “you are in danger” rather than “you were in danger” - or was I imagining things?


Because of course she already has a Memory Alpha page.


I think it wouldn’t have been so bad if it had been more underplayed, but the way they emphasised it so heavily and repeated it meant that it stood out as odd and unnatural-feeling. It was a bit laughable really.

Although to be honest, I laughed quite a lot throughout the episode - I thought the female Klingon villain was played in quite a camp and absurd way, and the actress who plays the Admiral was so flat that she might as well have been reading the back of a cereal packet.

There is a lot of other stuff to like in the show - I enjoy most scenes with Lorca and/or Saru, the effects are pretty great and a lot of the ideas are interesting. But there are quite a few little things that don’t work as intended and pull me out of the story.


Saru is an interesting character but his scene researching famous captains was rather on the nose. I am fairly certain at some point in his years of academy training and active service the point might have already been raised that Starfleet captains need to display bravery. I get what they were going for but it was quite the waste of that poor computer’s time.


I love that they made it clear that even the computer thought so: “oh, just kill Burnham and stop moping!”

The Discovery’s main computer is clearly Hal’s spiritual granddaughter, and the auntie of M5.


The computer feels like a Greek Chorus at times, the way it announces events. Between the “Warning, we’re being captured by Klingons this week” and “If you look out the starboard window, you can see our pilot floating off into the void” in episode 3, it’s almost perverse.