Star Trek Guide

Star Trek: Discovery season 2 episode 3 review: Klingons return at maximum warp

Warning: Contains spoilers for Star Trek: Discovery season two.

An accelerated stream of revelations and surprise twists provided an exciting foundation in packed episode Point Of Light, which harked back to what we’ve come to expect from Discovery.

So far, this season feels caught between drawing inspiration from Star Trek of yesteryear and channelling what made Discovery’s dynamic tick. The past two episodes have leaned towards the former – feeling like self-contained adventures with Captain Pike (Anson Mount) largely steering the ship through asteroid fields and landing parties on doomed planets.

Point Of Light adjusts course to something more in-step with Discovery’s original vision. Here, we catch up with Ash Tyler, also known as half-Voq, after he decided to stay with the Klingons who operated on him to appear human. With L’Rell (Mary Chieffo) by his side, other members of the Klingon empire have become suspicious of his intentions – questioning whether he truly has their best interests at heart.

Captain Burnham, meanwhile, is joined by adoptive mother Amanda Grayson (Mia Kirshner) aboard Discovery after she attempts to visit Spock who resides in a medical asylum facility. Mysteriously though, she’s unable to see him – later finding out Spock’s accused of murdering three doctors in the medical wing and is on the run.

Not convinced of this version of events, Burnham shatters his mother’s view of their history together – admitting how she forced away ‘little shadow’ Spock via an unknown, unspeakable act to protect him from ‘logic extremists’ on Vulcan. Burnham believes this is what started his decline into his path today, prompting a shaken Amanda to pursue Spock via her own means solo.

While we’ll have to see if the decision to hold back showing Spock will become an annoyance down the line, Discovery is doing an admirable job of creating a fascinating new mythos around a character we’re so familiar with. It’s a smart play on people’s expectations which, at this point, will either live or die on its execution when Ethan Peck is put under the spotlight.

The main bulk of this episode, however, focuses on the relationship between Ash Tyler and L’Rell, as the latter struggles to reignite romance with Klingon Voq under the Tyler exterior. The discovery of a surprise baby between Voq and L’Rell changes this dynamic, with Tyler promising to give their relationship a go for the sake of their child. L’Rell is fully aware of Tyler’s secret messages to Burnham though – laying groundwork for a potentially messy love triangle.

This was further complicated by the arrival of Philippa Georgiou (Michelle Yeoh), who saved them from a Klingon who stole their baby and attempted to seize control of the empire. Georgiou basically gives L’Rell an ultimatum, explaining how she’ll never be able to unite the Klingon empire with Ash Tyler and their baby knocking around. Despite her initial disregard, L’Rell sees her reasoning – seen later presenting a fake dismembered head of Ash to the Klingon leaders as a display of her dedication.

Ash and their baby, meanwhile, travelled with Georgiou who is working for Section 31 (presumably the groundwork for her planned spin-off). Ash decides to give away their baby to be raised as a monk on another planet with Georgiou’s help, knowing the child’s existence could destabilise L’Rell’s authority with the Klingons. The sheer amount of big decisions within this episode felt slightly too condensed to comprehend at times, leaving little room for the big emotional beats to really sink in.

We haven’t even mentioned Tilly’s mental delusions with deceased childhood friend May, who we discovered was actually a result of a fungus organism tapping into her memories. Burnham, who pointed out how she also touched the dark matter, deduced Tilly was affected due to her surprise connection with the Spore drive. If you hadn’t already gathered, there was a lot to pick up here – and Tilly’s already marmite character didn’t always gel with the other, occasionally brutally violent, arcs running alongside.

Complaints about pacing aside, this latest episode was another positive sign of season two’s improved direction. It feels like we’re only scratching the surface considering the number of hanging questions, the handling of Spock being a pivotal obstacle to come, but Star Trek: Discovery continues to warp forwards with admirable, promising confidence. Let’s just hope we’re given the chance to smell the roses.

Star Trek: Discovery airs Thursdays on CBS All Access in the US, with episodes releasing Friday on Netflix in the UK.

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