This penultimate of Discovery was one of the best of the season. One might assume that it was down to the Die Hard Style Burnham commando raid on the Discovery but no, the best parts came from two simple two headers.
Through out the episode we saw Admiral Vance debate with Oyraa this interplay could have been played very differently and I was glad it wasn’t. It started with both sides cautious of the other but as the conversation it appeared each were willing to compromise their philosophies to make an alliance possible, then at the end Vance upheld the finest principles of the Federation and Oyraa showed her true colour and her inability to sacrifice herself for the good of the Emerald Chain.
I m still not sold on the Federation being the one we remembered they do seem colder and more disillusioned by Admiral Vance expressed a willingness to talk and an unwillingness to sign away all principles just to gain a deal.
The second interplay was that between Burnham and Stammets. Again we have Burnham doing what she thinks is right and over riding the choices of a crewmate. Her arrogance this season has been toned down a little but here it came fully to the flaw. The thing is Burnham is portrayed as the hero character and indeed much of what she says and does is heroic. She is passionate about reinstating the Federation and its ideals and yet is unable to meet that criteria herself. She lacks trust, what ever she says, in other people. What the series has shown us thus far is that Burnham is a good character at heart but not a good Starfleet officer, it is this conflict we have seen in her throughout this season. She can sense shes doesn’t fit anymore but has decided to double down on being Starfleet. I think this is a better way of viewing her character.
The raw anger and pain of Stammet’s was powerful as was Burnham’s inability to trust Paul to do the right thing, why can she break orders and rescue who she wants but Stammet’s can’t? I m not sure how this relationship can be saved.
Tilly and the rest of the crew acquitted themselves well and Book and Rhyn had a satisfactory end to their partnership in a way that shows how and why Osyraa is in charge of the Emerald Chain.
Next weeks finale will be interesting, they need to tie up the Dilithium Planet/Burn issue to my satisfaction and we need to see Starfleet in action retaking the Discovery.