Star Trek Discovery admitted had a shaky start, but I enjoy the show. I try to avoid making knee-jerk conclusions about media. I'm a huge Star Trek fan, but more than that I'm a fan of black excellence. I'm going to support the show because the lead character is played by a black woman. I have no shame in that. "I'm rooting for everybody black" (Issa Rae). I support black creatives as often as I can. However, after watching all the episodes, I came to a conclusions. Star Trek Discovery AMAZING, but...it's not actually Star Trek. Not in the traditional sense. The focus here seems to be to redefine Star Trek, much like the portrayal of Heath Ledger's Joker redefined the criminally insane clown.
And for that, I have concerns...
After Captain Lorca said "This is not a science vessel. This is a warship." That was a clear message to the fans of of the franchise that expected Discovery to be more like classic Trek. To me, it roughly translated as "This ain't ya granddaddy's Trek."
Historically, Star Trek has reserved the role of lead character to an individual who symbolizes the different components of leadership. Kirk was the cowboy, and Picard was the philosopher. Sisko was the warrior, and Janeway the sineater. Archer, while my least favorite captain, was the type of leader who would do whatever it took to protect his people and get the job done. These characters usually have a strong moral compass which is of course challenged throughout their story.
Michael Burnham is very different. She has no leadership skills and her moral compass is all but broken. She is an awful person. She's not likable, at all. She constantly ignores every order given to her and repeatedly endangers the lives of her comrades on a hunch. The writers attempt to justify her actions by making her insubordination lead to a new truth.
"Correct" is not equivalent to "Right".
Discovery lacks the cerebral storytelling of its predecessors. I have the strongest personal connection to Star Trek Deep Space Nice because the story is about a people attempting to heal after slavery. I enjoyed how they explored the subject. It was tasteful. Creative. Illuminating. Star Trek Discovery enslaved the life form they called Ripper to heroic music and cheers from the crew...I understand that it was necessary for the rescue mission and that Michael wasn't happy with the decision, but there's always a really good reason to justify deplorable actions. Always.
There's no need to even discuss the continuity issues. If they had placed this series after the events of Voyager, it could have made perfect sense. The new Klingons could have been a subspecies much like the Reman were to the Romulan.
It saddens me to watch this show clumsily force itself into the franchise. It would have been quality sci-fi on its on. I know it bares the same names, but there's very little of Roddenberry's vision in it. Sure, they use sound effects and a series visual cues, but the core, the heart, the soul of Star Trek is simply not there.
There are several theories floating around the interwebs about why this show is the way it is, the most interesting being that this is the origin story for Section 31. That'd explain a few things.
We'll all just have to wait and see.
Live long, and prosper.