TL;DR – We get a powerful look at Saru and his world, but it does still feel like we are waiting for the other shoe to drop
Score – 3.5 out of 5 stars
Star Trek Discovery is a show that is juggling a lot of different stories all at once. Yes, we have the main drive of the red lights and the red angel. However, we also have The Klingons, The Mycelium Network, Section 31, and more. As the season has gone one, it has been interesting to see how the show brings all these different elements together to help with the central premise or using the central premise as an excuse to look at these different side plots, depending on your perspective. One of those side plots has been the life and biology of Saru’s people and today all of that comes to a head.
So to set the scene, since we were first introduced to Saru (Doug Jones) we knew there was something out of place with him and why he was the only Kelpien in Starfleet. Over Season One we found out that there was a devastating dynamic on his planet where Kelpiens were not the dominant species. We learned about his threat ganglia derived from the biological need to stay safe. All of this fell into place in the Short Trek The Brightest Star, when we discovered that there were two species living on the Kelpian homeworld, one that preys on the other and that a certain point in their lives all Kelpiens are sacrificed to the Ba’ul. It is murder disguised as ideology, as the Kelpiens believe that this is the will of the universe called the great balance, and they are going to die anyway in the Vahar’ai, so what is the matter. However, in An Obol For Charon, we discovered that the biological shift that triggers the culling was not actually fatal, and every part of Kelpien society was a lie. At the start of this week’s episode Saru is discovering just what biological changes are happening to his body now he does not have a threat ganglia, only for another red signal to blare out, only this time it is coming from his homeworld. Now from here, we will be looking at the episode as a whole, so there will be some [SPOILERS] ahead.