Star Trek: Discovery Showrunner Explains Why Spock Had To Appear In Season 2


Season 1 of Star Trek: Discovery didn’t feature any of the franchise’s most iconic figures, but it did encourage connections with them through the character of Lieutenant Michael Burnham, explained as the hitherto-unknown adoptive human sister of Spock. Now, season 2’s going ahead and bringing the Vulcan on board the U.S.S. Discovery, with Ethan Peck becoming the third actor to play the Enterprise’s science officer.

So, why was the decision made to include Spock in the show’s sophomore run? Trek Movie caught up with showrunner Alex Kurtzman who explained what got him so excited about featuring the character, and it’s all to do with how the prequel nature of Discovery allows the series to get a look at Spock before he became… well, Spock. Or rather, the person we know from The Original Series.

“What gets me so excited about the story that we get to tell with Spock this season is that it’s the unwritten chapter of Spock. This is not the Spock that you know from the beginning of TOS, this is pre-TOS. He is not that formed Vulcan yet. His experience with the Red Angel and the signals has fried his logical brain. He cannot make sense of it. And he is emotionally ill-equipped to deal with it. So both logic and emotion are failing him, totally.

And he is totally unsure of himself and trying to figure out how to make sense of the mystery and where he fits into the world. And it’s through his complicated relationship with his sister that he’s able to figure out how to become and actualize himself as the Spock that we know from TOS. And that’s really exciting to us because it in no way violates canon, it just builds on what’s been set before.”

As the recent trailer for season 2 made clear, the story will be spurred along by the presence of strange red phenomena in space. Spock went AWOL trying to investigate their origins and is eventually found by the crew of the Discovery. Kurtzman teases that his experiences looking into the mysterious “Red Angel” will test Spock’s logical Vulcan brain and also his limited emotional range.

Apparently, his sister will help him through this. If Michael’s so important to him, though, then why does he never mention her in any of his previous appearances? Well, we can’t say for sure, but we’ve been promised that this enigma, which has been bugging fans since the first season, will be addressed in the new run. In fact, Sonequa Martin-Green has assured us that “every one of those questions [that fans have] gets answered.”

Star Trek: Discovery – which will also introduce us to Anson Mount’s Captain Pike and Rebecca Romijn’s Number One – returns for its second season on CBS All Access in the new year.

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Christian Bone

Christian Bone is a Staff Writer/Editor at We Got This Covered and has been cluttering up the internet with his thoughts on movies and TV for a full decade, ever since graduating with a Creative Writing degree from the University of Winchester. He can usually be found writing about anything Marvel or DC. And yet, if you asked him, he'd probably say his favorite superhero film is 'The Incredibles'.