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

Star Trek Discovery season 2 plot

The Star Trek Discovery season 2 plot will see Discovery move away from the gritty tone of the Klingon war and explore more classic science fiction stories, as well as tying the show more firmly into established Trek continuity. This is the season that will see Discovery firmly established as a coherent part of the Star Trek universe.

The Star Trek Discovery season 2 story picks up immediately after the events of last year's finale. The USS Enterprise is investigating a series of mysterious “red bursts” that are being detected around the galaxy. Captain Pike comes aboard the Discovery and takes charge, setting the crew a new mission. As he says in the trailer: "These mysterious signals are beyond anything we understand. Is it a greeting? A declaration of malice? Let's find out..."

Meanwhile, people are experiencing visions of a red angel that has a strange connection to both Michael and her adopted brother Spock. One of the themes of the new season is said to be science versus faith, something that may prove particularly challenging for these two characters, coming from a society that prioritises logic and rationality over emotional intelligence.

An image from Star Trek Discovery season 2

As well as this ongoing thread, Harberts promised "more away missions, newer planets, stories that might fall a little bit more into a framework of allegory that people love to get from Trek," while keeping the serial nature of the first season. While there will be less of a focus on the Klingons than in season 1, they will remain a part of the show, undergoing another redesign of sorts, this time to incorporate the flowing manes of hair seen in previous Trek series.

And what about the mysterious Section 31 and its role in Star Trek Discovery season 2? For Kurtzman, Section 31 introduces an exciting new element to proceedings as he reveals to our sister publication, SFX magazine. “Starfleet is black and white,” he explains, “There are certain things you can’t do. But Section 31 does not operate that way. It operates entirely in the grey area.”

Whether that means more action is up for debate, but Kurtzman’s interesting choice of comparison has us intrigued: “They’re affiliated with Starfleet, but loosely. They’re the Jack Bauer of the Starfleet universe! And what they’re doing to keep people safe is something that bears a lot of scrutiny in [Star Trek Discovery season 2].”

Star Trek Discovery season 2 uniforms

An image from Star Trek Discovery season 2

Is there a new Star Trek Discovery uniform? Actually yes – well, sort of. As we've seen in the trailers, Captain Pike and the Enterprise crew are all rocking the more traditionally coloured uniforms of the original series. But in all the scenes set on the Discovery, Michael and the rest of the regulars are all wearing their blue Disco duds from the first series. 

As this season is said to tie the show firmly into Star Trek continuity we wouldn’t be at all surprised if it ended with the crew getting their new uniforms and whoever ends up Captain of the Discovery (Saru?) squeezing into the old mustard top...

Read more: The best Star Trek episodes every Trekkie should watch

Star Trek Discovery season 2 showrunners

An image from Star Trek Discovery season 2

Star Trek Discovery season 2 finds the show in a slightly strange position with its creative team. Following the huge success of season 1, original showrunners Aaron Harberts and Gretchen Berg continued on into production of a second run, as expected.

However, as The Hollywood Reporter discovered back in June, the pair were fired midway through production, due to allegations of staff mistreatment and a ballooning budget. The rest of the season was taken over by Alex Kurtzman, who was already a producer on the show (as well as a screenwriter on the J.J. Abrams films). 

Another face who won’t be returning for Star Trek Discovery season 2 is Nicholas Meyer. The Trek legend - who directed The Wrath of Khan and The Undiscovered Country, as well as writing The Voyage Home - was involved in Discovery from the start. However, he revealed to Midnight’s Edge that he was not invited to participate in Star Trek Discovery season 2.

An image from Star Trek Discovery season 2

These weren't the first behind the scenes shakeup on the show. The series was originally intended to be run by Pushing Daisies/Hannibal’s acclaimed creator, Bryan Fuller. He departed Star Trek Discovery sometime during the production of season 1.

It should be noted, however, that from all that's been said about the situation, Harberts and Berg’s departure has nothing to do with their creative decisions. CBS were happy with Discovery’s first season and the plans for Star Trek Discovery season 2, which suggests that despite these behind-the-scenes issues, the show is still creatively on course. 

It’s also clear that the show has been a hit for CBS, who reportedly had the budget for the first season (around $8 million per episode) paid for by Netflix, in exchange for the lucrative international distribution rights. That means the show made money for CBS before a single episode had aired, and all the indications are that season 1 was very popular. 

Indeed, a recent report by data firm Parrot Analytics has suggested that Star Trek Discovery is in the top five most in demand digital originals (along with other heavy hitters such as Stranger Things, Black Mirror, Narcos, and 13 Reasons Why). It’s also been nominated for a Global TV Demand award.

Read more: The best shows on Netflix you can watch right now