TL;DR – The Discovery is back and has to decide if going in guns blazing or diplomatic is the way forward
Disclosure – I paid for the Netflix subscription that viewed this series.
Far From Home Review –
We continue powering forward in this soft-reboot of Star Trek Discovery as characters continue to crash land into the 3100s. As we go about this week’s episode, we start to see the way this new world works and how it can be used for exploitation. Which means it is a perfect time for some hope.
So to set the scene, in That Hope Is You, Part 1 we get the story of Michael Burnham (Sonequa Martin-Green) crashing into a planet and trying to re-orientate herself in this new place and time. There was however one big thing missing in the first episode, and that was the USS Discovery itself and all those on-board it. Well, today’s episode wastes no time in revealing what happened to them as they get thrust out on the galaxy onto of a world that was partially blasted. None of the ship’s systems are working, but under the command of Saru (Doug Jones), Lt. Keyla Detmer (Emily Coutts) was able to invert the ship and crash land it on an icy glacier. Now from here, we will be looking at the episode as a whole, so there will be some [SPOILERS] ahead.
One of the first things we see in this episode is just how well the crew have become like a family. They are working together as a team, even in extraordinary circumstances. It also shows what a wonderful job they have done creating all these characters because I had a perpetual fear for Detmer this whole episode, and that would not matter if they have not created characters you care about. We also got to see them build upon the relationships that had been growing or reconciling last season. Hugh (Wilson Cruz) and Paul (Anthony Rapp) are finally back on a firm footing which meant we got some delightful banter as Hugh put him in his place. Also, the bond between Paul and Jett Reno (Tig Notaro) was one of the highlights of the show as she gets him to work through his trauma … in an unorthodox manner.
The other main storyline in this week’s episode revolves around the Discovery needing minerals as they are out of supplies to repair their communications array. They know from some short-range scans that there are some areas of habitation with the minerals they need, so Saru and Tilly (Mary Wiseman) go on a diplomatic mission to find some. This diplomatic stance is at opposition to what Philippa (Michelle Yeoh) thinks is a good idea because they are in a hostile world and she wants to go in guns blazing. However, in what was Saru’s first big command moment, she is overruled, and Nhan (Rachael Ancheril) is left in charge of the repairs. Also, it was a pleasant surprise to see Rachael Ancheril upgraded to the main cast because we had not heard anything about her character in the lead-up to the season.
At the mining settlement, we find out the name of the planet is The Colony, run by Coridanites and who live in fear of Zareh (Jake Weber) their courier. What Zareh did was trash the joint and make everyone dependent on him for supplies and given no one can travel on ships, the protection racket works. Having the first big bad of the show being human was a nice touch to show just how far this world has changed and Zareh did have an excellent menacing quality to him. Entirely unsurprisingly Philippa snuck out and was able to help save them all via a good old fashioned bar fight (they leaned heavily into the western in space aesthetic this week). However, there was still the debate, and I think Saru discovered that they live in a dangerous world, and they should understand this, but also that it should not change them. Also, I think Philippa did gain a little bit of respect for Saru even if him sparing Zareh means that he will 100% came back to haunt them.
We end the episode on the struggle to get the Discovery out of the parasitic ice before it crushes them when a ship comes out of the blue and saves them. On the whole, the parasitic ice was probably one of the weaker elements of this week’s episode which you kind of have to just ignore it and move on. It was also nice that we got to see Michael’s new costume because as we will see, it has been a year since we last left her, and I am sure a lot of things went down in that year.
In the end, do we recommend Far From Home? Yes, yes we do. I am not sure it was as strong as the opener, but it did everything it needed to bring all the other characters up to speed with the world and where they are at. It also had some touching moments with Kal (Jonathan Koensgen) reinforcing that need for this crew. Though I will say, given the title of next week’s episode, I am very apprehensive as to what the Discovery will find there.
By Brian MacNamara: You can follow Brian on Twitter Here, when he’s not chatting about Movies and TV, he’ll be talking about International Relations, or the Solar System.
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Credits – All images were created by the cast, crew, and production companies of Star Trek Discovery
Directed by – Olatunde Osunsanmi
Written by – Michelle Paradise, Jenny Lumet & Alex Kurtzman
Based off – Star Trek created by Gene Roddenberry
Created by – Bryan Fuller & Alex Kurtzman
Production/Distribution Companies – CBS Television Studios, Roddenberry Entertainment, Secret Hideout, CBS All Access & Netflix.
Starring in Season 2 – Sonequa Martin-Green, Doug Jones, Anthony Rapp, Mary Wiseman, Wilson Cruz, Rachael Ancheril with Michelle Yeoh and Jake Weber, Jonathan Koensgen, Lindsay Owen Pierre, Tig Notaro, Emily Coutts, Patrick Kwok-Choon, Oyin Oladejo, Ronnie Rowe Jr., Sara Mitich, Raven Dauda & David Benjamin Tomlinson