Star Trek Guide

Star Trek: Discovery’s David Ajala teases darker side of Cleveland Booker: ‘His story will unravel’

Star Trek: Discovery’s Michael Burnham (Sonequa Martin-Green) seemed to land on her feet in season 3, after crash landing nearly 1000 years in the future and running into Cleveland Booker (David Ajala). 

A ‘courier’ by trade, Booker and his pet cat Grudge became quick allies for the stranded Burnham, who was left desperately searching for her fleet, who were meant to arrive behind her through a wormhole but never arrived. 

Despite an initial fight between the two, it seems that Booker is a good man to know, and formed a bond with Burnham as she navigates this new world. 

In fact, possibly too good – and David has confirmed there is definitely more to this stranger than meets the eye. 

Speaking exclusively to, David teased: ‘It’s fun with a character like Cleveland Booker, because when we first meet him, he’s in a very high stakes situation. So his sensitivity levels are heightened, and his survival levels are heightened. 

‘One would say that when you meet someone in a circumstance like that, you’re getting a better idea of who they are, because a lot of things are stripped down because they’re in survival mode. 

‘Throughout the episodes, we do start to see some things unravel and see new layers of Cleveland Booker, which some questions are left unanswered, but throughout the season, we’ll start to understand more and more of Cleveland Booker’s history and his past.’ 

‘I don’t want to say too much or give away anything!,’ he then laughed. ‘I think there’s something really cool for the audience to be able, from episode to episode, to just discover, excuse the pun, this character and the layers and what makes him tick. 

‘I think that’s gonna be cool. And just out of respect and pure excitement, I want the fans to embrace that as purely as possible.’ 

The British actor is a new addition to the team, with Booker tying in closely to Burnham after spending a year with her before she was able to find the Discovery ship. 

With the gang reuniting at the end of episode two, Far From Home, Booker now has a new task – finding his place within the Discovery, if he has one, and what that means for him and Burnham. 

It’s something the Supergirl actor can relate to – as he was initially intimidated by the idea of joining the firmly established and ever-expanding world that is the Star Trek Universe. 

‘Star Trek is amazing, but I didn’t understand how I would fit within that world, if I would be a part of Starfleet, or what,’ he told us.

‘Where I was in my mind, it just didn’t seem like something in my peripheral. Cut to – I’m having a phone call/zoom session with Alex Kurtzman and Michelle Paradise, the two co-showrunners of Star Trek: Discovery. 

‘They pitched this idea and this character that was so cool, and challenging in a good way, I thought if I don’t say yes to this, and I see someone else doing it, I’m gonna feel that. I’d definitely be gutted.’ 

Can’t wait to see what the rest of the team feel about the new addition to the Discovery fleet…

Star Trek: Discovery airs Thursdays on CBS All Access in the US, and Fridays on Netflix in the UK.

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