Star Trek: Discovery's Showrunner Teased A Big Change For Season 5, And I'm Ready For It

Sonequa Martin-Green in Star Trek: Discovery
(Image credit: Paramount+)

Star Trek: Discovery is gearing up for Season 5, and the early word is this season will be different from the earlier ones. Following the epic ending to Season 4, showrunner Michelle Paradise revealed that a big change is coming for the upcoming episodes, and I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t ready for it. A tonal shift is on tap, which will make things less heavy in the new season. 

Should Star Trek fans revisit old Discovery episodes with their Paramount+ subscription, chances are they’ll be quickly reminded of just how heavy and dark the series can get. It’s a natural consequence when Captain Michael Burnham and the crew constantly help determine the fate of the galaxy, though that will change in Season 5. Showrunner Michelle Paradise revealed in an interview with EW that this season will shift the tone of Discovery a bit, especially after how heavy Season 3 and 4 were:  

We do have a bit of a tonal shift this season. We try to keep every season feeling fresh and new. Coming into the season Alex (Kurtzman) and I talked about shifting the tone a little bit because there was a bit of heaviness in season three and particularly in four with the DMA. So this is more of an action-adventure sort of season. There is a mystery. There’s a quest, and this mysterious power… It is a quest that our heroes are on and they do have a chance to go on quite a few adventures this season, which will be fun.

Based on the trailer, Star Trek: Discovery Season 5 certainly looks like it has an adventurous vibe to it, especially based on what we know about the season so far. Michael Burnham and crew are headed off in search of an ancient power and will essentially race against others interested in the artifact who hope to use it for their own gain. It all sounds like some sort of Indiana Jones-type adventure, which certainly sounds different from past seasons but in a great way. 

One particular thing I like about this new information is that Michelle Paradise teased quite a few adventures, which may mean seeing characters like Stamets and Culber getting to contribute a bit more to away missions. These characters are often mixed into the story and get a good deal of screen time, but it’s fair to say they don’t do a ton of action-heavy scenes. The same goes for many who typically film all their scenes aboard the Discovery, so perhaps this will be a chance to see some beloved characters in new situations. 

For those wondering if Star Trek: Discovery is just going to abandon its past storylines and start fresh, I wouldn’t count on it. Doug Jones already hinted that Season 5 will revisit the romance of Saru and President T’Rina, which many were fond of in Season 4. We also know from the trailer that David Ajala’s Cleveland Booker will return, so maybe there are going to be some answers on where things stand with him and Michael? I’m not sure the fan in me can stand Michael suffering another heartbreak, so hopefully, things work out with him. 

Star Trek: Discovery Season 5 is in the works, and is believed to be coming in 2023. Hopefully, we’ll get a few more details about what to expect ahead of its premiere, and maybe even some teases about how this tonal change will impact the show.  

Mick Joest
Content Producer

Mick likes good television, but also reality television. He grew up on Star Wars, DC, Marvel, and pro wrestling and loves to discuss and dissect most of it. He’s been writing online for over a decade and never dreamed he’d be in the position he is today.