Star Trek Discovery Episode 4 Review

“The Butcher’s Knife Cares Not for the Lamb’s Cry”

Ok, I thought that looked like a tardigrade!

I didn’t mention it in my previous post, but the giant murder machine sure struck me as reminiscent of a tardigrade. The six legs, the mouth, the body shape, all evoked the look of those microscopic little tanks. And apparently that’s exactly what they were going for. I was really glad that they revisited the creature as quickly as they did. Given the air of mystery around Lorca and the beast, I assumed the captain was going to keep the thing hidden for most of the season before it’s revealed he had been experimenting on it all along. Turns out, Burnham will be the one doing the experiments! Fun stuff.

But we will get to that. The episode starts off with a literal mystery box arriving for Burnham from the late Captain Georgiou. Oh good. I literally rolled my eyes when that arrived and Burnham shoved it under her bed. What’s in the boooooxxxxxx?! Annoying, but it’s revealed the same episode, so not egregious. It’s a telescope that belonged to Georgiou, which is a knife in the heart to Burnham.

And speaking of Captain Georgiou: the klingons ATE her?! Is that a thing that klingons do? I guess if it wasn’t, it sure is now. Feels pretty gross, but I guess that’s the point.

And everything goes wrong for our klingon protagonist/antagonist/villain, Voq. His ship is taken over by a rival Klingon and he is abandoned on Starfleet wreckage, joined by his follower and confidant, L’rell.

I’m still having trouble becoming invested in Voq and his journey. While klingon society and hierarchy is somewhat interesting, it’s hard to know how to feel about this fella. Am I hoping for a redemption? Are we just looking to understand the enemy? Should I pity him? Right now I just don’t care. Probably because I can’t get over how they all sound like they have a grape stuck in their throat! Their voices all bother me. Strange decision.

Back to the Discovery!

Next up, the dumbest decision a character could possibly make when dealing with a weapons-proof, deadly, unknown creature! Landry decides to gas the creature, open its containment, and try to cut off a piece of it to make a weapon. Genius move. Brilliant. What could go wrong?

So, that dumb idiot dies. It would be comical if it weren’t so gob-smackingly stupid. So stupid it pulled me right out of the story. It was just…ridiculous. Bad writing.

RIP, dummy

But then, after some really hard thinking and noticing that “Ripper,” as they’ve dubbed it, looked like a tardigrade, they realize that the creature probably has some connection to, or is drawn to, the spores! And that The Glenn was using it to help them navigate! So, naturally, they plug the thing into their ship…literally. They stab it with a device that The Glenn had that then uses Ripper to help Discovery navigate. And they are able to arrive at a Federation outpost that’s under attack and save the day just in time. But they have to stab Ripper every time they use the drive. Oof.

Not feeling great about this arrangement.

OK, so I liked how this episode explained Ripper and it gave us some character development with Burnham realizing that the creature wasn’t naturally aggressive. But it also had the dumbest moment so far with the death of Landry. And I’m still struggling to care about the klingon storyline.

But that’s not to say I didn’t enjoy this episode. I liked Burnham analyzing Ripper and realizing that something they thought was a major threat initially actually was, after taking the time to analyze and understand it, a peaceful being who could help them. But, seeing how it gets put to use, we are now feeling morally ambiguous about the help. But the whole journey to get there felt very “Trek” and I liked it.

OK episode, but intrigued as to what will happen next.

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