Star Trek Discovery season 2 episode recap - and everything else you need to know

After what feels like a very long wait, Star Trek Discovery season 2 is finally here and we've been reunited with Burnham and co in a specular first episode full of action, intrigue, and family drama. If you haven't seen the Star Trek Discovery season 2 premiere yet then it might be time to go boot up CBS All Access or Netflix (depending on where you are) and watch it, as we're about the recap everything that happened in the first Star Trek Discovery season 2 episode in time for the second episode, which airs tonight in the US and tomorrow in the UK. 

We'll be keeping our Star Trek Discovery season 2 episode recap up-to-date each week with a short summary of what happens in each episode, so you can give yourself a little refresher before watching the next instalment - and we've also got everything else you might want to know about the show here as well. Can't remember when and where Star Trek Discovery season 2 airs? Here's how to watch Star Trek Discovery online. Want to watch all the Star Trek Discovery season 2 trailers in one place? They're all here. Trying to remember all the new Star Trek Discovery season 2 cast members? We've got you covered. 

Read on and catch up on everything that's happened so far with our Star Trek Discovery season 2 episode recap and more.

Fast Facts:

  • Star Trek Discovery season 2 release date: Every Thursday on CBS All Access (US)/Every Friday in Netflix (UK)
  • Star Trek Discovery season 2 episodes: 14
  • Star Trek Discovery season 2 cast: Sonequa Martin-Green, Doug Jones, Shazad Latif, Anthony Rapp, Mary Wiseman, Wilson Cruz, Anson Mount, Mary Chieffo, James Frain, Rebecca Romijn, Ethan Peck, Michelle Yeoh, and more
  • Star Trek Discovery season 2 showrunner: Alex Kurtzman
  • Star Trek Discovery season 2 writer(s): Bryan Fuller, Alex Kurtzman, Kirsten Beyer, Gene Roddenberry, and more

Star Trek Discovery season 2 episode recap

Star Trek Discovery S2.01 - Brother

An image from Star Trek Discovery season 2

Star Trek Discovery season 2, episode 1 kicks off with a flashback of Michael Burnham (Sonequa Martin-Green) coming to live with her adopted parents Sarek (James Frain) and Amanda (Mia Kirshner) and meeting her brother Spock (Ethan Peck). We then snap back to the finale of season 1, which sees the Discovery receiving a distress call from the USS Enterprise. Captain Pike comes aboard and takes command of the Discovery to track down some mysterious red signals after the Enterprise is incapacitated. Burnham and Sarek expect to see Spock after many years of estrangement as he’s stationed on the Enterprise but he’s nowhere to be found. Stamets (Anthony Rapp) reveals to Tilly (Mary Wiseman) that he’s transferring off Discovery after Pike’s mission is complete. The Discovery travels to the location of one of the red signals only to find that it’s disappeared. In its place, an asteroid with a Starfleet medical vessel crash landed on it. Pike, Burnham, and his two Enterprise crewmen travel down to the asteroid to see if anyone needs rescuing, but not before Tilly asks Burnham to bring back a sample of the asteroid as it’s giving off a huge mycelial spike.

After a bumpy ride, in which one of the Enterprise crewmen dies, they meet Commander Jett Reno (Tig Notaro) who’s been hold up, keeping the remaining patients alive, and waiting for help. Burnham and co beam everyone off the asteroid, but Burnham accidentally gets left behind. She’s injured as sees a red angel coming towards her before Pike returns to rescue her and bring her back to the Discovery. Burnham tries to grab a piece of the asteroid for Tilly, but the transporter fails to beam it abroad indicating it’s of unknown origin. Tilly, Stamets and the rest of the crew use a gravity simulator to capture a piece of the asteroid and bring it aboard the Discovery for tests. The episode ends with Pike staying aboard the Discovery to try and figure out what the red signals are, and Burnham asking to go aboard the Enterprise to see Spock. Pike reveals that Spock isn’t aboard the Enterprise anymore as he asked to take some leave a while ago. Burnham goes to Spock’s cabin and finds his personal log, which reveals he’s has been having visions of the red signals.

Read more: "Three minutes in and I’m already emotional" – The internet reacts to the Star Trek Discovery season 2 premiere

Star Trek Discovery season 2 release date

An image from Star Trek Discovery season 2

The Star Trek Discovery season 2 release date was January 17, 2019, but now the season has started, each new episode airs weekly on a Thursday. US viewers are able to watch Star Trek Discovery via CBS All Access, while UK fans have to wait an extra day for the most recent episode to hit Netflix UK.

The Initial work on Star Trek Discovery season 2 began in December 2016, when the showrunners began hashing out the Star Trek Discovery season 2 plot, but actual production on the season didn't began until April 2017. It's been a long wait for the Star Trek Discovery season 2 release date - the Star Trek Discovery season 1 ending aired on February 11, 2018, almost a full year ago - but we won't have much longer to go before the series returns. 

Read more: The hottest new TV shows you don't want to miss

Star Trek Discovery season 2 trailer

With the show very nearly here, there's plenty of Star Trek Discovery season 2 trailers to feast your eyes on and none of them are too spoilerific so you don't have to worry about having anything ruined for you ahead of the premiere. 

The first Star Trek Discovery season 2 trailer (above) gives us a tantalising look at the plot. The last season ended with the Discovery face-to-face with the USS Enterprise. This trailer introduces its commander - Captain Christopher Pike, complete with a nice, traditional mustard yellow Starfleet uniform - while also showing enough hints of action to suggest that, while the war may be over, things haven’t quietened down for Michael and the Discovery crew. We also get our first glimpse of Burnham’s adopted brother - one Mr Spock…

The second Star Trek Discovery season 2 trailer (above), debuted at San Diego Comic Con 2018. It gives us a slightly more in-depth look at the Star Trek Discovery season 2 episodes, confirming the return of Michael and Spock's Father Sarek (James Frain), Michelle Yeoh’s Mirror Georgiou (now with a Section 31 badge...), and gives us a slightly longer glimpse of Spock who has a beard now – and he's not even evil!

The third and final Star Trek Discovery season 2 trailer (above) is short, at just under 30 seconds, but shows off some of the season’s action set pieces - including a disastrous asteroid collision. It also gives us a longer look at Spock, performing the famous Vulcan nerve pinch and even cracking a smile… weird.

Read more: 5 questions we have after watching the first Star Trek Discovery season 2 trailer

Star Trek Discovery season 2 cast

An image from Star Trek Discovery season 2

While almost everyone who survived the events of the first season will be back (more on that in a moment), the Star Trek Discovery season 2 cast also includes some exciting new additions. Taking control of the Discovery will be the USS Enterprise’s Captain Christopher Pike, as played by Inhumans-actor Anson Mount.

Pike is an important part of Trek lore, being the Captain in the very first episode from 1965 and Kirk’s predecessor in the command chair of the Enterprise. He was played by Jeffrey Hunter and Sean Kenney in the original series, and Bruce Greenwood in the Kelvin-verse movies. 

Don’t expect Pike to instantly fit in, however. While Sonequa Martin-Green (AKA Michael Burnham) has said that Pike will help heal the Disco crew after their betrayal by Lorca, she also reveals via "There’s a little bit of distrust there because of what we’ve gone through and because we had someone who manipulated us and sought to kill us for his own gain."

Pike will, at least, have some support in the form of Number One, played by Rebecca Romijn (Mystique in Bryan Singer's original X-Men movie). The character was originally played by Majel Barrett Roddenberry (wife of Trek creator Gene).

An image from Star Trek Discovery season 2

Most exciting, however, is the debut of Ethan Peck as the young Spock. The actor (who is, incidentally, the grandson of the legendary Gregory Peck) said of donning the Vulcan’s ears via Instagram: “It is with great honour and a sense of immense responsibility that I take on the iconic role that Leonard gave to us and that Zachary did brilliant justice to."

He's also done his research telling our sister publication SFX magazine: "I’ve been spending so much time with Nimoy Spock. I read [1975 autobiography] I Am Not Spock, and I’m reading [1995 autobiography] I Am Spock now. In I Am Not Spock he covers who Spock was to him, and how he’s become a part of him."

The core surviving Star Trek Discovery cast will all be returning as well. That is: Sonequa Martin-Green as Michael Burnham; Doug Jones as Saru; Mary Wiseman as Tilly and Anthony Rapp as Stamets. Emily Coutts and Oyin Oladejo will be returning to the bridge as crewmembers Detmer and Owosekun - hopefully with more to do this time around. And it’s known that Mary Chieffo will be back in the make-up chair as the Klingon L’Rell - now with added hair!

There are also a number of recurring characters who will be back in Star Trek Discovery season 2 in some capacity, though we’re not sure how. Currently dead doc, Hugh Culber (Wilson Cruz) is definitely returning. "I'm not here just to say hello," he told an audience at SDCC 2018, back in July, suggesting that he won’t just be appearing in flashback. "We knew it was the first chapter in a long love story. This was just a bump in the road… in my neck." So: Mirror counterpart? Clone? Phantasm inside Stamets' big brain? Place your bets now…

An image from Star Trek Discovery season 2

Conflicted human/Klingon Ash Tyler/Voq (Shazad Latif) will also be back. While nothing has been officially confirmed, showrunner Kurtzman has all but stated that we will see more of him, stating: "We love Shazad. He's capable of absolutely everything we throw at him, and we have great plans for his character in season 2."

By the end of season 1, Mirror universe Georgiou (Michelle Yeoh) was alive and seemingly free in ‘our’ universe. She’s back for season 2, and thanks to a deleted scene from season 1 we know she's been recruited by Section 31 - Starfleet's morally dubious black ops division - something that the NYCC trailer seems to confirm, with her holding a black Section 31 badge. 

Much less certain is the fate of the Prime universe Lorca (Jason Isaacs). Season 1 saw us get to know his evil Mirror counterpart, but the fate of the 'real' Lorca is tantalisingly oblique. Isaacs was a big hit and seemed to enjoy the role, so we'd lay money that his return at some point - perhaps this season, perhaps the next - is more a case of when, than if. Certainly, Kurstman isn’t writing the idea off. When asked at SDCC 2018 if Prime Lorca was coming back, he simply said: “Maybe”.

Read more: Every Star Trek Discovery Easter egg and secret reference hidden in season 1

Continue to Page 2 for everything we know about the Star Trek Discovery plot, uniforms, and more

Lauren O'Callaghan

Lauren O'Callaghan is the former Entertainment Editor of GamesRadar+. You'd typically find Lauren writing features and reviews about the latest and greatest in pop culture and entertainment, and assisting the teams at Total Film and SFX to bring their excellent content onto GamesRadar+. Lauren is now the digital marketing manager at the National Trust.