Although it hasn't even premiered yet, conversations revolving around Star Trek: Discovery are everywhere. The highly anticipated new CBS All Access series will bring the iconic franchise back to the small screen, likely creating a new generation of Trekkies in the process. And while Star Trek has produced plenty of quality TV programming, it turns out that the Discovery is actually taking notes from one of the most popular shows on television: HBO's Game of Thrones. Specifically, the folks crafting the narrative of the new Star Trek series have been influenced by how artfully Game manages to kill off its main characters.
Ahead of Star Trek: Discovery's impending premiere, the showrunners have been making the rounds to promote the series. In a recent conversation with EW, showrunner Gretchen J. Berg revealed how Game of Thrones flipped the script in regards to character deaths, saying:
Game of Thrones changed television. They almost made it difficult to fall in love with people because you didn't know if they were going to be taken away from you. That show's had an influence on all TV dramas that have come after it.
I've got say, I agree with this assessment. Although I'd also have to put The Walking Dead on the same level when it comes to character deaths, just ask Star Trek: Discovery star Sonequa Martin-Green. In both shows, moments of joy and love for a character are usually met with feelings of anxiety, as the fans fear for the safety for their favorite. I know I'm personally still recovering from Cersei's explosion of the Sept of Baelor, which killed off my favorite Game of Thrones character a year ago.
While Gretchen J. Berg spoke to the importance of Game of Thrones on television, her fellow showrunner Aaron Harberts teased how Star Trek: Discovery will approach killing characters off, saying:
Death isn't treated gratuitously on this show. It's not for shock value. But when it happens we want to make sure that people really feel it.
This is probably a good call. While intergalactic adventures would presumably result in a few crew members being killed in action, casually killing them off would make their deaths far less powerful. Instead, character deaths will be curated on Discovery, and used only when it can pack the biggest emotional punch on the audience. Just another reason to be psyched for the series to finally debut on CBS All Access.
Alas, we'll have to wait another few months before we can finally see the new crew of StarFleet's newest crew of explorers discover new worlds and strange aliens... with a few dying in the process.