Spoiler-Free Impressions of Discovery

Just finished both episodes of Star Trek: Discovery, and holy crap was that fun. There’s action, exploration, high stakes, and betrayal. (BTW, despite CBS’ scheduling, “The Vulcan Hello” is only the first half of the pilot. You have to watch “Battle at the Binary Stars” on All-Access to get the second half).

Without giving away too much, the premiere was a tightly-focused, well-done story, but there’s a catch. It works because it functions as a prequel to the actual series, with a small cast that keeps the story from getting derailed by an avalanche of character introductions. The main characters are Michael Burnham, Phillipa Georgiou, and T’Kumvra. Saru is there, too, but for the most part it looks like the rest of the cast won’t appear until episode three or later.

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Some of the dialogue was a bit clunky and, yes, the visuals are quite different from the Trek we’ve seen on TV before, but Discovery’s premiere stayed true to the spirit of the franchise. I can’t wait to see more.

Less enthralling was CBS All Access. Watching the premiere on my 3rd-gen Apple TV (the one before the current design) was a chore, with constant pauses to reload and one bizarre instance where the second episode skipped ahead four minutes and refused to let me go back and see what happened (kind of an important part, too). Restarting my Apple TV cleared up the problems, but I can’t say I was encouraged.

At least the picture and sound were decent (on my 32" TV, at least). CBS All Access’ back catalog of shows aren’t yet on par with Netflix in terms of viewing quality.

Streaming issues aside, this was a great start for Star Trek: Discovery. Trek is back and it doesn’t suck.

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