I’m sure by now you have seen the groups of people taking any bit of time and place they can to trash the show. They will say the show is too dark, too violent, too non-canon, too futuristic, and not Star Trek enough. I’m here to tell you that Trekkies, like much of other fandoms too resistance and afraid of change, likes to have selective and often times rose tinted memory.
They want Star Trek to stick to the tired old formula of episodic exploration where the ending of every episode resets everyone to zero like some typical police procedural such as NCIS or Law and Order. They balked at a show that dared to break from tradition and tell a long game of serialized stories in the way that many streaming shows are formatted nowadays because people’s viewing habits of changed since the days when a Star Trek show was consistently on the air.
This show is not too dark nor too violent. What has happened here is a show that has finally not turned away from consequences. That going out into space is dangerous, that life out in the unknown exploring can be dangerous. It no longer is coddling you to reality because darkness and death are parts of life but they are also things we can overcome and bring hope to fight against. This show doesn’t shy away from pain, grief, and trauma, not should it. If Star Trek was always meant to be something for us to hold ourselves up to, then staying strong through adversity is an important lesson Discovery teaches.
The show is not too futuristic. People will harp on this in many reviews. They do not want to accept that time has changed, that the outdated sets can be redesigned to fit in a specific moment in time. They say the tech is too advanced yet if Discovery is a top of the line science vessel that’s suppose to be the cutting edge of science, why is it shocking if it’s designed differently. Starfleet can’t even keep its own uniforms straight in any of the older series anyways and we are suppose to believe that techs can’t be also constantly evolving and changing between ship to ship? I mean, how many different classes of federation starships are we up to now?
And as related to that, you will hear of this show not being canon, of not following canon. People will harp on this greatly, perhaps more than anything else, they’ve held canon to be so sacred as untouchable thing, even though canon has consistently been retconned and changed and modified from show to show and Discovery only is the next one in line. The show doesn’t break canon, in fact, everything people will claim makes it non canon are things that one can easily explain away. Certain people simply don’t want to because they don’t like to change their minds and want something to nitpick. Mostly to feel superior and to validate themselves in their own Trek canon knowledge like it’s a competition.
Star Trek Discovery IS a Star Trek show, just because it takes storytelling differently from the old format and dares to break from tradition that it is being punished by a selective amnesiac fandom. A fandom that has forgotten its own history or better yet is trying to rewrite it. A fandom that has forgotten years spent yelling about TNG not being Trek, about DS9 not being Trek, about VOY not being Trek, and practically tossing ENT under the bus like some unwanted red headed step child to never speak about again. Well, I didn’t forget those days. I didn’t forget the days when Star Trek could have great story and bad story, I’m not the one wearing rose tinted glasses like some and hold up older Trek shows as some paragon on greatness. Every series had its great heights and every series had its lows.
This show has great performances, a great long game, and a different way of looking through the universe that expands the world we already known. Certain people want Trek to always tred the same old roads, they blast Discovery for boldly going beyond the boxes certain sects of fandom have set. Fans don’t want to change, they want complicity. They will say this show is not Star Trek because it has no hope, yet the characters stand strong to hope even through all the trauma and adversity. If nothing else, that is Star Trek at its core.
I will not tell you if you will like it or not - as with all Trek shows, it has its great moments and not so great moments, but I would hope that any viewer will take the chance the watch the show and decide for themselves.