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Though it had its doubters at first, in two seasons Star Trek: Discovery has firmly established itself as a solid entry to the Star Trek franchise and one of the top shows on CBS All Access. Now, the series is headed in a bold new direction in Season 3, and, man, are there some exciting things on the horizon.
So, for those that are unaware of what's happening with Star Trek: Discovery Season 3, here's what we know so far. Additionally, we have a recap of what happened to the characters in Season 2, and where they may be headed in Season 3. As an aside, there are spoilers ahead for those who haven't seen Season 2, so maybe watch that first and check out our guide for that season before diving in here.
When Will Star Trek: Discovery Season 3 Be Released?
Figuring out Star Trek: Discovery's timetable is tricky, and with more Star Trek shows on the horizon, its release date could be pushed back to prevent overshadowing a newer Star Trek show that CBS All Access has planned. What we do know is that the Star Trek: Discovery hasn't had a year since its Season 1 premiere where a new episode hasn't been shown, so 2020 sounds like a solid guess for its return.
A report from Production Weekly alleged that production on Star Trek: Discovery Season 3 will start in July 2019. If the production time of this coming season is like the rest, then production won't wrap until Spring 2020. If it's late spring, one would think CBS All Access would hold off until fall to air the new season. Then again, streaming services have begun to embrace summer as a viable release season for big shows, so, right now, who can say for sure?
What Will Star Trek: Discovery Season 3 Be About?
Star Trek: Discovery Season 2 left little to the imagination on where Season 3 is headed, as the Discovery crew ended up making a jump to the future. In order to keep the data they obtained away from enemies, Discovery took its advanced ship and time-traveling suit into the future in an effort to make things more difficult for any other time travelers who may want to find the data.
One would imagine loss will be a part of Star Trek: Discovery Season 3, as many on the ship made the decision to say goodbye to the lives they once knew. It was for a good cause, sure, but it wouldn't be surprising if there will be many crew members questioning if there wasn't a way to protect the data that didn't mean they could never see their loved ones again.
Another question worth considering ahead of Star Trek: Discovery Season 3: is Control really defeated? The crew was able to neutralize Leland, but that doesn't mean there's zero chance of Control making a comeback, via that vessel or otherwise. Protecting the data and stopping the destruction of sentient life will probably be a continuing arc for Star Trek: Discovery, or at least throughout Season 3. They should probably find a way to destroy that data!
What Have We Seen From Star Trek: Discovery Season 3
While it's not officially a Star Trek: Discovery episode, the Short Treks episode "Calypso" may have given viewers their first look at Season 3 before they understood it. The episode featured a man 1000 years in the future who stumbled upon the Discovery. Once on board, he is greeted by a sentient A.I. named Zora, who informed him that the Discovery crew is "away."
At first, it seemed as though something happened to Discovery's crew in the past, and that the ship had sat vacant with its sentient upgrade for over 1000 years. Given the context of what happened at the end of Season 2 though, it's entirely possible the crew is off-ship attending to some other business while the ship holds things down.
It's also possible time travel didn't go as expected, and the crew has somehow been removed from the ship during the process. After all, it is really weird the entire crew is missing, as mission parties only tend to have a handful of people attend. What could be the reason for the entire crew leaving the ship? We can speculate all day, but obviously we may not know the answer until Season 3 is here.
What Happened At The End Of Star Trek: Discovery Season 2?
As previously touched on, Michael Burnham and the Discovery crew jumped into the future with the massive amount of data in order to thwart any future attempts by Control to obtain it. Those left behind agree to erase all mention of Discovery in Starfleet vocabulary, and mentions of its crew. As for the off-the-record story, the Enterprise crew told Starfleet's elite the crew is presumed dead.
This conveniently explained why Star Trek: Discovery's high tech equipment is nowhere to be found in Star Trek, and why there are no mentions of the Discovery or Spock's adopted sister Michael. Basically, it's as if Discovery never existed, which is exactly how it should be, according to what we see in Star Trek: The Original Series and all the shows and movies that followed until Discovery came along. That would explain how someone like Captain Kirk didn't know about Discovery, despite its integral role in the Starfleet and Klingon war.
What's Going On With Star Trek: Discovery's Characters?
Star Trek: Discovery Season 2 changed things for a lot of its characters, so perhaps it's best to recap what all went down for the major characters, and what their future may hold for them.
Michael led the charge into the future, and said goodbye to her adopted family and her sexy brother Spock. She also said goodbye to Ash Tyler, the one person she had a romantic connection to in the series thus far. It was a huge sacrifice, although one that Star Trek: Discovery fans no doubt believed Burnham would take.
Of course, it's fair to say that while Michael Burnham left behind a handful of people she loved, she's still surrounded by a lot of people she cares for deeply. Tilly, Saru, Stamets, and the rest of the Discovery crew have become her family. Her impact on Starfleet may have been scrubbed from their files, but her re-emergence in the future means a chance to rebuild her name and become one of the greater characters in Star Trek lore.
Star Trek: Discovery Season 2 was a huge season for the Kelpian, who underwent a major transformation. At first he thought he was dying in a natural process all Kelpians undergo on his home planet, but are spared from the immense pain of death at the hands of a predatory species on their planet. In actuality, he merely shed his fear receiving ganglia, which made him a much more confident person with very little anxiety.
Viewers saw a bit of Saru's personality shift in Star Trek: Discovery Season 2, and there's reason to believe it could shift even further. After all, there's not a ton of data on Kelpians without their ganglia, and without fear their considerable speed and strength can make them a dominate species in the universe. Will Saru be more of a fighter in Season 3, and will he permanently get the seat as Discovery's captain all to himself?
Tilly was going through training to one day achieve commander status within Starfleet, but obviously, her presumed status as "dead" is going to derail that training. Tilly didn't seem to mind sacrificing that in order to remain alongside her Discovery shipmates, but considering how important moving up within the ranks was to her, it wouldn't be surprising if that has some affect on her in Star Trek: Discovery Season 3.
There's always a chance Starfleet is still kicking around hundreds upon hundreds of years into the future though, so perhaps Tilly will find a way to upgrade her rank yet. Sure, she had that mental break when that fungi found its way inside her body, but she's done more than enough this season to show she's a bit higher on the totem pole than the average member of Starfleet. Hopefully, Michael and crew find a way to make that more evident.
Paul Stamets And Hugh Culber
The Star Trek: Discovery couple had a hell of a Season 2, in which Hugh Culber was brought back from the dead. Unfortunately, starting over for Hugh wasn't as simple as picking up where he left off because of the trauma from being trapped in the Mycelial Network. It changed him as a person, and strained his relationship with Paul.
If there is an upside to the Discovery crew leaving their entire lives behind, it's that it forced Hugh and Paul to realize they still love each other. Things have changed, but both revealed they're committed to finding a way to work through it. The journey to figuring out their new dynamic has only just begun, but it appears that regardless of what happens, these two will find a way to rebuild their relationship.
Ash Tyler And Terran Georgiou
With Leland officially corrupted by Control, Starfleet awarded the command of Section 31 to Ash Tyler. That's quite the upgrade in command, and it will be Ash's decision how Starfleet's shadow organization will operate from this point on.
For those curious as to what Ash will do, Alex Kurtzman told THR it will all be covered at greater length in the Section 31 spinoff featuring Michelle Yeoh's Terran Georgiou. Together, they'll help shape Section 31 to what it eventually became when fans saw it in Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, and more in line with how Section 31 operated in canon. With a spinoff in place, it doesn't seem likely they'll appear in Star Trek: Discovery Season 3.
Anson Mount's Captain Pike ended up playing the hero in Star Trek: Discovery when he obtained a time crystal to help power the Red Angel's suit. Taking the crystal came at the cost of learning his fate, in which he saw the accident that would ultimately leave him heavily scarred and confined to a machine. In a very satisfying scene, Pike accepted his future and said that knowing what happens will not change the person he is.
We already know where the rest of Captain Pike's story goes, which is why Star Trek: Discovery has already announced he won't be around for Season 3. With that said, fans were pretty high up on his performance, so if there's any weird way he can make a cameo somehow, folks would sure be on board.
Sarek, Amanda And Spock
Michael Burnham's adopted family all have their own parts to play in the traditional Star Trek canon, and said their goodbyes to Michael before she jumped off to the future. It's understood that mentioning her or referring to her is highly discouraged, and under Starfleet protocol, a potentially punishable offense. As harsh as that may be, it's better than a scenario in which no one ever mentioned Michael going forward because they didn't care.
All three should be long gone at the point Michael arrives in the future, but it's entirely possible any of them could appear in a flashback that Michael has. That's the hope anyway, as James Frain's performance as Sarek was a standout in Star Trek: Discovery that will be missed in Season 3. Perhaps he really didn't die during Star Trek: The Next Generation and Michael just transported his consciousness across time?
The main antagonist of Season 2, Control did just about everything possible to attempt and steal the data it needed to destroy all sentient life on Earth. Alex Kurtzman confirmed that Control has been successfully neutralized, although he was cryptic on whether or not it will stay that way after the jump to the future.
He did say, however, that Control will be the least of Discovery's problems when they emerge in the future. That's a scary thought, but not entirely surprising as the high tech Discovery may find itself quickly outmatched by just about every other ship in the galaxy so far into the future. Or, maybe not. Season 3 is really headed into some uncharted territory fans don't know about. Perhaps it's best to just expect the unexpected?
What's Going On Behind The Scenes Of Star Trek: Discovery Season 3?
Star Trek: Discovery Season 3 got a new co-showrunner and Alex Kurtzman will be sharing duties of running the show alongside co-executive producer Michelle Paradise. Paradise wrote the final two episodes of the season, as well as the season's acclaimed episode "Project Daedalus."
Kurtzman has been high up on Michelle Paradise since her promotion, and said her deep knowledge of Star Trek lore has been an asset to the CBS All Access series. It will be interesting to see how the entire season plays out under her supervision and guidance.
Star Trek: Discovery Season 3 is headed to CBS All Access, so stick with CinemaBlend in the mean time for updates on that series and more in television, movies and pop culture.