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Star Trek: Discovery, “The Butcher’s Knife Cares Not for the Lamb’s Cry”, Recap!

J’Dan Jondee here at Corvan II,

STAR TREK: DISCOVERY – “The Butcher’s Knife Cares Not for the Lamb’s Cry” – Jan Thijs/CBS.

Last episode, which I thought was one of the best Trek episodes, is now topped by this episode! It covered the introduction of the Discovery, a Starfleet vessel that was intended for science experiments and exploration, but turned into a war time ship. The ship’s captain, Lorca, is driven to end the war. He has brought the prisoner, Michael Burnham, to help with the Discovery’s efforts. The engineer, Lt. Stamets, was developing a biological drive to propel ships anywhere in the galaxy. The sister ship, the Glenn, was drifting, Klingons tried to scavenge it, and all onboard were killed! It turned out to be some creature that was on the ship. At the end of the episode, we saw that Lorca has the creature contained on the Discovery! We pick up with surreal imagery of lightning strikes that bring up geysers of energy that form into columns, a strange planet?, it pulls back through the clouds and energy to – the science uniform of Michael Burnham! We have never seen the replicator work at the microscopic level, it just shows up, so this is the best use of effects to see ST tech at work! The computer gives her assignment with the description, “Rank, none.”  I like that Michael is at her lowest point and has to prove herself.

She looks at herself in uniform with the computer’s holographic mirror, another great Trek tech, when she is interrupted by the peppy Cadet Tilly. Her roommate gives her a case which contains the last will and testament of her former captain, Georgiou. Michael places it underneath her bed and is called to the bridge. She enters the turbo lift and there of course is Saru. His threat ganglia start to go wild with Michael telling him she was invited by Captain Lorca. They enter a bridge at red alert! The crew are frantically at their controls, a Klingon bird-of-prey is destroyed, but another fires a torpedo at the bridge. Lorca announces, “We’re all dead” and ends the battle simulation. He explains that the new drive will allow them to reach the Klingon home world, but they will be alone. I love that Star Trek was an exploration show, but was somehow also warriors and here they are scientists turned into warriors.  Lorca has Saru run the simulation and brings along Michael. He takes her to a darkened corridor that slowly lights their way. Lorca has brought her to his “menagerie” with what Burnham says has “some of the deadliest weapons in the galaxy.”  I sense that his weapons will come into play somewhere in the story.

He shows her the dark room, I know what’s in there, but the anticipation! The creature lunges at them, provoked by the light, Lorca wants Michael to “weaponize” the beastie. This is on the same level as the company with the Alien! In the debris of the Battle of the Binary Stars from the start of the series, the albino Klingon, Voq, is in command of T’Kuvma’s bird-of-prey, but after six months they haven’t been able to get it operational. The crew is starving and desperate. The woman, L’Rell (Mary Chieffo), points out that the dilithium processing unit they need is on the Shenzhou. Voq finds using parts from that ship is not very Klingon. She adds that he was happy when they ate Captain Georgiou. T’Rell says she is from the same house as T’Kuvma, but also the House Mokai, known as deceivers. Voq doesn’t get it, he should be running away from this woman! Commander Landry, from security, has joined Michael studying the “monster”, she has dubbed, “The Ripper.” Michael compares it to an oceanic, micro organism from Earth, a Tardigrade, which is docile. It looks like a multiple legged, mole-like creature. Michael stresses to Landry that it only attacks in self-defense.  The struggle in this episode is to somehow find out the nature of the Tardigrade.

Lorca is having a meal when the hologram of Admiral Cornwell (Jayne Brook) appears. She informs him that there was a distress signal from Corvan II, a mining colony that supplies 40% of Starfleet’s dilithium! There is no ship in the area and Lorca assures her that Discovery is ready. Lt. Stamets tells him that they are not prepared without a super computer to calculate a long jump. He also has a device from the Glenn in the spore chamber, but doesn’t know it’s function. Lorca only wants results. Kol transports aboard T’Kuvma’s ship and begs forgiveness because he wants the ship’s cloaking tech. Voq explains their situation and welcomes Kol aboard. Kol was the one who had contempt for T’Kuvma so he really has only one goal in mind.  On the Discovery, Lorca orders a Black Alert, they use the spore drive to travel, and ring around the hull starts to rotate, another awesome feature of the Discovery! Michael can see the Ripper going into a rage. The spore drive has the Discovery twirling and then end up hurtling toward a star! They are caught in the gravity well of the star, Lt. Stamets’ face gets slammed into his console, but they manage to break free! Lorca orders the ship into warp.  The Spore Drive is interesting, but we don’t seem to see it in TOS or other series, could it be only used in the Klingon War?

Landry meets with Michael who explains that the spore drive affected the Ripper. Lt. Stamets is in Sick Bay, his nose is being reconstructed by the ship’s doctor, Dr. Hugh Culber (Wilson Cruz). Another crew member who is introduced. He is trying to restore Lt. Stamets and Lorca breaks up their argument. Lorca says to Stamets “How do you want to be remembered? Alongside the Wright Brothers, Elon Musk, and Zephram Cochrane?” The captain plays the distress message ship wide to motivate all of the crew. Landry gets a phaser rifle and tries to sedate the Ripper with gruesome results. Lorca wants results from Michael. Voq and L’Rell take EV suits to board the Shenzou. There seems to be some sparks between them removing the dilithium unit, it’s like the mold from Ghost (1990), but I think L’Rell sees him as a means to an end. Time is running out for the mining colony and Michael has to bring in Saru and Tilly to help her understand the Tardigrade. The behavior of an alien creature was a long time part of Star Trek and it is tied to the Spore Drive. The story of the Klingon War is progressing, but there is still time to explore the fun alien life in the galaxy!

Five Communicators out of Five!

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