Star Trek Guide

Why Gabrielle Burnham Should Return In Star Trek: Discovery Season 3

Dr. Gabrielle Burnham, the original Red Angel, is someone we should expect to see on Star Trek: Discovery season 3. If everything's gone according to plan, Michael Burnham led her shipmates right to her mother's front door.

During her years swimming through time, Dr. Burnham covered a lot of ground. In over 800 trips, she bounced back and forth between the future, the past and the present in her attempts to stop Control from enacting its endgame and eliminating all organic life in the galaxy. She tried and failed countless times, due to her inability to stay tethered in one place for long enough to affect the necessary change. To make matters worse, she was bound by a phenomenon called atemporal dysplasia that made it impossible for her to communicate with anyone, until she discovered Spock's unique physiology and atypical neural makeup allowed him to perceive her. Discovery did manage to keep her confined on Essof IV long enough for her to explain her history and situation, but when Control and Leland attacked the planet, Dr. Burnham and her suit were pulled back into the far future with no way to return.

Click the button below to start this article in quick view. Start now

But what seemed like an insurmountable distance between her and daughter could potentially get much more manageable if Discovery wound up where it was supposed to after traveling forward in time in the season finale. Dr. Burnham remained tethered to her first destination, the planet Terralysium, and that's where she would wind up after a trip to the past ended. That's why she was able to transport the group of humans huddled in a church during WWIII to the planet and give them a new life. When Discovery went on its own journey through time, it mirrored Dr. Burnham's destination and set a course for Terralysium in the 32nd century - Dr. Burnham's anchor point. Presumably, she'll still be there when the ship arrives, and that means we could see a more permanent reunion between mother and daughter.

It's worth noting that while nothing appeared to go wrong on Discovery's trip to the past, we didn't actually see them reach their destination. After Michael Burnham led them into the future, audiences only saw the aftermath of their departure in the 23rd century. Captain Pike, Spock and the crew of the Enterprise covered up what actually happened and Ash Tyler got promoted to head up Section 31. While Discovery was slated to get to the 32nd century, specifically at Terralysium, we didn't actually see it happen, so it's possible something could go wrong and see the ship wind up someplace completely unknown. But hopefully that's not the case.

The relationship between Michael and her mother could be mined for rich story given the years they spent apart and the fact that Phillippa Georgiou is also on Discovery and is most definitely the jealous type. Also, Sonja Sohn was a wonderful addition to the cast and her time with them was all too brief. The idea of Dr. Burnham joining the crew or even just the story in a more significant way is very compelling given the relationship dynamics it would allow the show to explore, not to mention raising the bar for talent higher than it already is.

And frankly, the idea of poor Gabrielle condemned to live out a lonely existence nearly 1000 years away from her family after sacrificing her entire life for the Federation (hell, all organic life) feels way too tragic for Star Trek. At the very least the woman deserves to have a few meals with her daughter after spending two decades staring at her through the looking glass.