Star Trek Guide

Star Trek: Discovery Reveals THAT Strange Music's Origin

WARNING: The following contains spoilers for Star Trek: Discovery Season 3, Episode 8, "The Sanctuary," now streaming on CBS All Access.

Since the start of Season 3, there have been two central mysteries at the core of Star Trek: Discovery: the Burn, an event which took place over a hundred years ago that caused the simultaneous explosion of every dilithium-powered spaceship in the universe, and a strange melody that appears to be recurring throughout the cosmos. Now, with the series' latest episode, fans learn that both mysteries may actually be connected.

"The Sanctuary" reveals the point of origin of the Burn, as well as the source of that strange music, which, as it turns out, is something no one expected: a Federation distress signal.

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Shortly after her arrival in the 32nd century, Michael Burnham started collecting black boxes from destroyed Federation starships in order to learn more information about the Burn. In "Scavengers," Burnham finally had enough data to theorize that while the Burn was initially believed to be a simultaneous event, there was actually a time discrepancy between explosions that hinted there was actually a point of origin to the event. Then, in "Unification III," Burnham was given the SB-19 data from Ni'Var, which contained even more information about the explosion.

Now, in "The Sanctuary," Stamets and Adira use all of the information available to conclude that the Burn actually originated in the Verubin Nebula. When they show their findings to Captain Saru and First Officer Tilly, they explain that there is an audio signal coming from the center of the Nebula -- a sound that they have actually heard before, in the mission aboard the U.S.S. Tikhov and in Adira's own cello sessions.

Together, all four Starfleet officers combine their knowledge to modify the signal. By removing the distortion, they eventually find a Federation distress signal at the heart of it. So, at the heart of the Burn, there is someone or something that survived the explosion -- and it's been there for a very long time.

Right now, the crew doesn't learn more about that distress signal, but Adira creates an algorithm that is meant to find an encoded message embedded inside it. As the episode comes to a close, the algorithm is still processing through the signal, which means the message isn't revealed just yet. Once the recorded message is accessed, however, the Discovery will hopefully find all answers inside the Verubin Nebula.

Streaming on CBS All Access, Star Trek: Discovery stars Sonequa Martin-Green as Commander Michael Burnham, Doug Jones as Commander Saru, Anthony Rapp as Lt. Commander Paul Stamets, Mary Wiseman as Ensign Sylvia Tilly, Wilson Cruz as Dr. Hugh Culber, David Ajala as Cleveland "Book" Booker, Blu del Barrio as Adira, Ian Alexander as Gray, Tig Notaro as Chief Engineer Reno and Michelle Yeoh as Philippa Georgiou. New episodes of Season 3 air on Thursdays.

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