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Anson Mount is debuting as Star Trek: Discovery's Captain Christopher Pike when Season 2 premieres on CBS All Access, granting the world more adventures with one of the Enterprise's lesser-celebrated Captains. The reveal at the end of Season 1 that Pike would join Season 2 was surprising for fans, but maybe not as surprising as it was to Mount when he made his way onto the series. In his words:
It wasn't the usual, 'You got the job!' because I didn't know which role I was auditioning for. I knew it was for a captain, but I didn't know it was for Pike. As a Star Trek fan, it was sort of a double shock -- a good shock and a tremendous sense of responsibility. But yeah, it was surreal. It was surreal every day I walked on the set.
For Anson Mount, being on a Star Trek set after being a fan since his youth was constantly a wild time, and the fact that he was playing Captain Pike was even more crazy. Mount told ET that he re-introduced himself to the character via the rejected Star Trek pilot "The Cage," as well as Pike's follow-up episode "The Menagerie." To play the Captain who preceded Captain Kirk was an honor, and Mount indicates he intends to do the role justice.
Anson Mount does say that little of his performance imitates that of the character's original portrayer Jeffrey Hunter, and his Pike does things a bit differently than the popular Captains of the franchise's past. Mount explained that this version of the character is introduced in Star Trek: Discovery between the rejected pilot and "The Menagerie," meaning he's responsible for showing a Star Trek audience what the captain is like in his "Second Act." It was a task Mount relished,
For an example of the differences, Captain Pike is not afraid to admit he's in over his head on Discovery. Mount explained that one of Pike's best attributes is his ability to turn the crew into a think tank and utilize the best people to help come up with the best solutions to problems. While it does seem a bit worrisome the Discovery's new head doesn't always have all the answers, at least he's not afraid to admit it and defer to someone who might.
As far as what it was like joining Star Trek: Discovery's existing cast, Anson Mount had nothing but positive things to say. He added the ensemble was especially accommodating when it came to the healthcare of his pet. Here's Mount's touching story that speaks to the Trek community at large.
It was a very welcoming group. They welcomed me with open arms immediately and were excited for me to be there and gave me as much respect as anyone who had already been there already. The entire crew and cast were very welcoming. My dog just recently passed and he was in a tough situation [at the time]. He had developed a degenerative myelopathy, so his back legs were going, and it was suddenly like having a baby. And they really went out of their way to help me figure that out and how to get him to and from daycare and make sure he was looked after while I was on set. It meant an enormous amount to me.
It's good to hear the Star Trek: Discovery cast is just as outstanding a team behind the scenes as they appear to be onscreen. It's also good to hear that newcomers are welcomed with open arms, what with all the fresh faces appearing in Season 2. That includes Ethan Peck's bearded Spock, who is sure to have even more judging eyes on him than Mount's Pike. Hopefully, the welcoming atmosphere gave way to what will be a tremendous Season 2.
Star Trek: Discovery is back on CBS All Access on Thursdays at 8:30 p.m. ET. For a look at what else is on television in 2019, visit our midseason premiere guide.