Discovery the brand new Star Trek show gets closer and closer. We have waited a long time for new trek on the small screen. In that time the Kelvin universe has been born and visited 3 times, with varying levels of success. We have had Star Trek online an MMO, Star Trek timelines various books and now Star Trek will finally be back on the tv.
The show is going for a whole new angle, the main focus will be a female human first officer, raised on Vulcan. The show will feature two ships, it will give a new look and feel to established characters, the Klingons will return as the adversary of the federation, a whole new cast will once more tread the halls of a star ship, bringing us new adventures and new characters to enjoy. But who is who in the show.
Sonequa Martin-Green plays the lead, now if you have watched the walking dead she will be a familiar face to you. But as zombies are not for everyone here’s a few details about her.
Sonequa Was born on
March 21, 1985 in Alabama and graduated from university with an acting degree, she has had a variety of roles including;
Law and Order,
The Good Wife,
And of course The Walking Dead.
Her character is, as mentioned. A human, her parents are killed by the Klingons (which has a bearing on the show), she is then raised by Sarek on Vulcan. This gives her an interesting angle, she will obviously have a hatred for the Klingons, ala Kirk.
But she should also have the mental discipline of a Vulcan. She will have the emotional outlook of a human, with our ability to leap beyond possibilities. Yet it will be tempered by Vulcan logic. She will no doubt be a very conflicted person in so many ways, because unlike Spock who was half human. Burman is fully human, with all the baggage that entails. No doubt she is a fine officer, otherwise she would not have risen through the ranks to be second in command on a Star Ship.
I for one think It’ll be interesting to see the show form the view point of the first officer because, while Star Trek isn’t just about the Captain, as a matter of course the Captain is the decision maker. To this end they tend to feature heavily in the show. I’m also sure dear reader, you’ve had the favourite captain chat at least once.
As we know from other shows, the first officer is who all the other departments report to, so this may grant us a chance to see the machine in action and maybe get more of a view than “lower decks” granted us. Of course if Discovery is an all action show, then character pieces may not happen at all, which is a shame and to me a missed opportunity.
Next up let’s turn our attention to the science guy. Anthony Rapp as Paul Stamets.
a Science Officer specialising in astromycology (the study of fungi in space). In Anthony Rapps own words, this guy is seriously intelligent, plus his character is inspired by a real-life mycologist of the same name. The real Paul Stamets, who will probably be amazed when Trek fans start writing to him and recognising him, is an accomplished scientist who has given Ted Talks, he is the first-ever recipient of the Mycological Society of America‘s Gordon and Tina Wasson Award. As well featuring or working on various documentaries.
But back to our science guy. He is the first openly gay character in a Star Trek series and his character will have an interesting role to play in our story. Science officers often feature highly in Star Trek storylines, Spock being the obvious stand out. But also Dax and T’Pol.
As for the actor, well Anthony is an accomplished theatre actor as well as having numerous screen credits. Alongside his theatre and screen work he also released a solo CD entitled “Look Around” in 2000.
As for his theatre work it encompasses, amongst others, “Henry V”, “Rent”, “Your a good man Charlie Brown”, “little shop of horrors” and most recently “If/When”.
His TV work ranges from the “X Files”, “law and order”, “The good fight”, “Spin City”, and more.
For his film work you can see him in “Twister”, the movie adaption of “Rent”, “Six Degrees of Separation”, “A Beautiful Mind”, and most recently “Bwoy”.
But his not done there, as well film,Tv, Stage and musical recordings. He also has a book, “Without You: A Memoir of Love, Loss, and the Musical Rent”.
Anthony is certainly a multi talented guy. He also gave a nice teaser about his character
“It is a wild journey of scientific exploration that I go on. I cannot tell you the specifics at all. But the reason that I am not just the science officer is very specific to a specific project that I am working on.
A man you may be more family with than you think. Doug Jones.
Doug is not stranger to make up and has performed some well know characters in sci-fi and fantasy as well as horror.
It all started for Doug as a mime artist in MIME OVER MATTER (1981).
Since then and apart from tv commercials, (he once did one for Tide where his contortionist abilities came in handy), he has become most well known as an actor under the make up.
From Pans Labyrinth to Hell Boy, from a clown in Batman to the Silver surfer in fantastic 4. Doug Jones has played characters that have made us think, laugh and scream in equal measure. He has an uncanny ability to make the prosthetic make up part of who he is, As a side note in Hellboy 2 he also played the Angel of Death and the Chamberlain.
Finally before we get to his character Doug also has a book, of sorts called Mime Very Own Book, co-written by Adam Mock and Scott Allen Perry, and photographed by Eric Curtis. His the muse in the photos.
As for his Star Trek character well Jones described him as;
6’8″. I’m the tallest character that’s on the show right now. I’m delicate and gazelle-like in appearance, but I’m also wicked when pushed into a corner. So, he has colors and layers. Every character on the show does, by the way. And the writers are just kickass in creating an onion in each one of us to peel back the layers and see colors and smells that weren’t there before.”
As a Kelpien he can sense the coming of death, this is because he comes from a planet where he’s a ‘prey species.’ So his race is not the dominant species on his planet, clearly there is a stronger predator race.He’s also the first of his kind to make it to Starfleet.
Finally in this blog let’s talk about the Captain of the Discovery. We know that he is a tortured soul, he had spent time as a prisoner. Although if it was as a pow or otherwise we do not know, he is a brilliant gifted tactician. In the actors own words;
““I’m not allowed to say that my Captain will probably be the most f**ked up,” But he has a lot of rough edges.”
That messed up bit may come from his confinement. If that confinement turns out to be at the hands of the Klingons, well that’ll be two officers on Discovery with a score to settle. In another quote Isaccs says;
“He will react in surprising ways in different situations, that he had maybe other agendas at certain points with people that were… that they knew about themselves or they didn’t know about themselves. He’s in denial about certain things.”
Lorca also collects ancient weapons and relics, which I loved. We know Picard was into archeology, while Kirk also collected antiquities including weapons.
As for the man behind the character, well Jason Isaacs has done far more than play a villain in Harry Potter (although he was awesome in that role). He was born in Liverpool in England, UK. Isaacs studied law at Bristol university, this is where he got the acting bug in the drama society. He appeared in over 30 plays and performed each at the Edinburgh fringe. To start with he performed with Bristol University and then, with the National Student Theatre Company.
He then moved to London to train in Drama at Londons central school of speech and drama.
After leaving he carved out a hugely successful tv career, performances varied from comedy to drama. He has appeared in the “Highlander” tv series, on stage in Tony Kushner’s Pulitzer Prize winning Angels in America.
“I am a cringing, neurotic Jewish mess. Can’t I for play that once” was how he secured that role.
His first Hollywood film was in “Event Horizon”. He then appeared in “Armageddon”, played the ruthless English Colonel William Tavington, in “The Patriot”. Before playing a drag queen in “Sweet November”.
He has done voice over work for animated Batman films, played a villain in the very weird ” OA” which is available on Netflix. As well as voices in various video games, including two of the Castlevania series.
He has a wealth of acting experience behind him playing both good and bad guys. So should bring an interesting element to the role of Captain.
I think we will leave it there for now and continue this in another post.
Thanks for reading.