Star Trek: Strange New Worlds features fan favorites as audiences explore the Enterprise‘s years under Christopher Pike’s command.
“Space. The Final Frontier. These are the voyages of the starship Enterprise. Its five-year mission to explore strange new worlds. To seek out new life and new civilizations. To boldly go where no one has gone before!”
We hardly ever see the years under Christopher Pike’s (Anson Mount) command on screen. Recently, there is a brief glimpse in the 2009 Star Trek reboot. No matter which universe, Pike’s fate is never good. His fate is one that he foresaw while picking up the time crystal during season 2 of Star Trek: Discovery. This same fate keeps haunting Pike throughout the season with flashes of his face in the future. Because this series is set in the Prime Timeline, changing his future is not going to happen. The gist of the series is that we get to see what happens before Kirk captains the Enterprise. Pike has his own leadership style and the writers make sure to incorporate Mount’s own traits into the show.
Fan favorites Anson Mount, Rebecca Romijn, and Ethan Peck make their return following appearances during season 2 of Star Trek: Discovery. Several new cast members also join them in the series. Most of them are playing characters who were in the original series. Pike, Spock (Ethan Peck), and Una (Rebecca Romijn) are among the characters with a bigger focus during the five episodes made available for press. But with this being said, it is a true ensemble series and we get to know the other essential crew members. Above all, the Enterprise is a character in and of itself. We get to know the other crew members, including Uhura (Celia Rose Gooding). I like how they include La’an Noonien-Singh (Christina Chong) in the cast, which make Khan references inevitable.
Strange New Worlds takes a different approach than Discovery. Instead of an arc that takes the course of an entire season, the series has a true episodic feel to it. This is a nice way of making the series different while getting closer to the look and feel of a classic Star Trek series with a contemporary feel. If you’re a newcomer, the series is very accessible but I would still recommend watching Discovery‘s second season. Even though the finale ends the way it does, the events are very crucial to watching Strange New Worlds. The events have an impact on the characters that cannot be ignored. Minimal, of course, but important nevertheless. The season is not without some easter eggs but I’ll let you find out for yourselves.
The production design is a bridge between Discovery and The Original Series. Again, by setting the series as a prequel, it means having to work with what came before. Obviously, they take advantage of the modern technology but in terms of costumes and such, they’re between a rock and a hard place. There’s still some time before everything must appear as it did in The Original Series. I don’t think it would be necessary to make the series look like it is from the 1960s. Honestly, I like that it has a modern vibe like the recent films–it’s the best of both worlds as we get sci-fi action, adventure, and nostalgia.
Jeff Russo returns to provide the theme for the series and incorporates the well-known Enterprise theme. But otherwise, Nami Melumad takes over scoring duties and gives it a cinematic feel. I love what Melumad does with the score by bringing in new motifs and incorporating classic themes when possible. If you’re going to make a series about the Enterprise, you have to incorporate the classic theme!
While Star Trek: Strange New Worlds must stick to canon and Pike’s fate, the show offers a contemporary vibe as fans get to visit new worlds and cultures. Given the point in the Star Trek timeline when Kirk takes over the Enterprise and when Pike gets disfigured, we should be able to get a few seasons of Star Trek: Strange New Worlds. There’s so much potential here and I can’t wait to see what develops. If the four seasons of Star Trek: Discovery are any indication, I’ll be tuning in every week.
CREATORS: Akiva Goldsman & Alex Kurtzman & Jenny Lumet
SHOWRUNNERS: Akiva Goldsman and Henry Alonso Myers
EXECUTIVE PRODUCERS: Alex Kurtzman, Akiva Goldsman, Jenny Lumet, Henry Alonso Myers, Heather Kadin, Frank Siracusa, John Weber, Rod Roddenberry, Trevor Roth, and Aaron Baiers
CAST: Anson Mount, Ethan Peck, Jess Bush, Christina Chong, Celia Rose Gooding, Babs Olusanmokun, Melissa Navia, Bruce Horak, and Rebecca Romijn
Paramount+ will launch Star Trek Strange New Worlds on May 5, 2022. Weekly episodes will follow. Grade: 4/5
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