Star Trek Discovery - The Butcher's Knife...

As I catch up on Star Trek Discovery, here are some random thoughts concerning episode four, "The Butcher's Knife Cares Not for the Lamb's Cry."

CBS All-Access

First of all, I'm happy to report I can finally watch Discovery on my large screen TV.   Getting screen-caps from my phone or tablet just wouldn't do and I love using pictures and videos to illustrate my analysis.  CBS All-Access is making their programming available on XBox One and XBox 360.  They just can't make it work.  I contacted CBS about their issues and they gave me a case number acknowledging their system wide failure.  They promised to contact me once service was established.  They never did, but Discovery appeared for XBox this past Sunday so problem solved.

Discipline Issues

To say the universe "Star Trek Discovery" exists in has "discipline issues" would be an understatement.  And I mean this in a micro and macro sense.

We were introduced to a lack of discipline on a personal level in the very first episode when the leading figure of the series committed mutiny.  Michael Burnham disabled her Captain and attempted to usurp her power by attacking the Klingons.

In this episode, Commander Landry makes the mind imploding decision to release the creature that she named The Ripper for it's ferocity into the lab.

Egregiously stupid.  Why not just step into the containment cell yourself and blast away and spare Burnham and the rest of the crew?  Plus, we already knew phasers were ineffective against the beast.  Crazy.

Landry paid for her poor decision making with her life (That's her pictured above.)  

A severe lack of discipline exist on an institutional level too.

As disturbing as this revelation was, the Klingons eat their vanquished, we also learned Star Fleet abandons their broken Starships.  No self-destruct sequence for the Shenzhou?  No obliteration by phasers or torpedoes? No transport of vital Star Fleet tech?  

As much of an outrage that Captain Georgiou was left behind.  (What was the excuse? They couldn't lock on her life signs?  What about her transponder/communicator?  Why couldn't have Burnham grabbed her?)  But leaving valuable tech in the field of battle was ridiculous.

It's Federation space!  Send a force recon party!  Don't let the Klingons salvage your Dilithium.  Ugh!

Sympathy for the Beast


Speaking of "The Ripper".  How long before this whole "Spore Drive" things blows up in their face?   By that I mean, if it doesn't exist in the Kirk future, when does it cease to exist here?

It was pretty clever of Burnham to figure out the link between The Ripper and the Drive.  She also bore witness to how it suffered once the symbiotic link was made.  

Symbiotic?  More like parasitic.

Burnham grew sympathetic for the creature as she saw how it suffered.  Let's take a look at some scenarios where the Spore Drive comes to an untimely end.

  • Burnham releases The Ripper out of sympathy and or sabotages the drive for the same reason.
  • Discovery and her successors exhaust the Ripper's limitations and kill off every last one of them.
  • The Ripper itself commits a form of suicide and communicates to it's brethren to do likewise.
  • The "Symbiotic" relationship backfires and the ship and crew are infected in a terrible way.
  • As in Star Trek The Next Generation, the Spore Drive turns out to be harmful to time and space much like "Warping" it did and the project is terminated.
My money is on Burnham sabotaging the project.  It she has mutiny in her heart then she is certainly capable of that.  This time for more noble reasons?

Spore Drive Depiction


Here's the Discovery achieving "Sporcicity".  (Yes, of course I made that up.)

Interesting how the production team decided to separate themselves from the traditional entry into warp speed.

Here's how that looks.


I was always a big fan of streaking off into space at warp speed.  Leaving a spectrum of colors behind you as your ship bends time and space around it and disappearing into a flash of light in the distance.  It was cool.

Achieving "Sporcicity" is a lot different.  In the above video the Discovery actually corkscrews before it disappears.  An interesting take but I'm sure they had to separate themselves from traditional warping in some way.  (If the Spore drive were to somehow survive to Kirk's era I'm sure there would be the usual jokes about him screwing his way across the quadrant.)

But, is there really any functionality about corkscrewing like that?  

In the Warp Speed depiction at least it suggests moving in a direction or traveling across space.  (You're really just warping space around you.)  So what does the Spore Drive corkscrew suggest?  (Ah, no Kirk jokes.)

Perhaps it means folding time and space over itself.  I'd be interested in your thoughts.

Love is in the Air

What's the hottest romance in this man's/woman's quadrant?  The one between Voq and L'Rell of course!  Seen above is the look on Voq's face when he realizes L'Rell has saved him from certain death.  "You did that for me?"  Don't count your Klingon chickens yet Voq.  (Chickons?)  You still have to join "The Matriarchs" and that doesn't sound good.

What an interesting perspective to see a non-human romance.  Usually we get Kirk and whomever and we've had Riker and Troi etc.  But Klingon romance?  Bring it on.  I really want to see where this is going.

Our last image is of the telescope Georgiou willed to Burnham.  A poignant reminder of her betrayal.  How long will this haunt her?  Forever I would assume.  What will she do to right this wrong?  Anything, I imagine.  (See ya, Sporcicity.)   Salvage this and not the Dilithium?  Of course.


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