Discovery and Star Trek’s Past

Discovery is benefitting from being in the future, now. But at the same time it's done a good job of re-establishing Star Trek's past
Star Trek's Past

Discovery is benefitting from being in the future. But at the same time, it’s done a good job of re-establishing Star Trek’s past. In last month’s feature Finding Its Feet in The Future we weighed the benefits of leaving the established territory. Michael Burnham (Sonequa Martin-Green) and the crew have a chance to branch out on their own. Reading Burnham and The Burn will fill you in on our thoughts/predictions. Furthermore, we reassessed some of our forecastings in Story so Far written just after the series halfway point.

Star Trek’s past was very much the focus of last week’s episode. And indeed, the week before, in Terra Firma Part 1. Following the first of a two-part story, we focused on the identity of “Carl” (Paul Gilfoyle). In Q Continuum Continued. As it turned out, Carl wasn’t a Q. But was very much from Star Trek’s Past. With that in mind, we thought we’d have a look at who/what else the crew might meet/come up against. We’ve split it, We’ll look at three species from the Trek canon. And then look at three beings that resemble the Q Continuum. To a degree. Whether they’ll feature or not remains to be seen. Let’s explore how it might happen if it were to occur.



Other than the Vulcans, the Klingons are the most well-known of Trek’s aliens. Yep. That time again. The Klingons were utterly botched by the creators of Star Trek: Discovery. We’ll never forgive. Or forget. It’s a blood feud! Anyway, it could be that they’re done with, for now. But we might at least have expected them to be mentioned. We can assume they survived and are a presence in the future. It seems more likely they’d be friends, not foes. But with the events of “The Burn”, they may well have descended into chaos once again.



Another species in Star Trek’s past. Originally intended as central antagonists of Star Trek: Next Generation, they were deemed not scary enough. Probably unlikely to make a return in Discovery. Even less so in this season. Though, they may appear. Given that there’s lots of trading and dealing going on, The Ferengi would be a prime species to resurrect. That’s assuming they’re still the same, now.


There’s every reason to believe we might see The Gorn, again. Way back in “That Hope is You” they were referenced. So far, it was just a nod to the aliens made famous in “Arena”, an iconic episode of TOS. In that episode, it was stated that they were as technologically advanced as humanity. So, a good match. Certainly, they’ll have developed further. The Gorn have a bigger presence in non-canonical Trek lore. Novels and comics. The Gorn Crisis is one of the most famous. They could be a great species to explore further, in Discovery.

Another way in for The Gorn might be via the upcoming show Star Trek: Strange New Worlds. When we heard who would be the crew of that show, we had something to say. Our feature, Casting and Character Concerns dealt with that. We also wrote about things we’d like to see in Strange New Worlds. We didn’t identify The Gorn as one. But maybe an early incident with them could work. Perhaps Captain Pike (Anson Mount) going toe to toe would explain why they’re hostile to humans. And it could also feed into events in the future, tying it to Discovery. Definitely a species primed to be re-explored. Sadly, without the iconic green rubber masks, we all love.

The Traveller

The return of The Guardian of Forever (“Carl”) proved something. Star Trek Still has a use for powerful entities. And the “character” of the week concept does still work. Great for plot devices. Furthermore, beings that can traverse time are even more important. Because of Discovery’s setting. The Traveller is most commonly associated with Wesley Crusher from TNG (Wil Wheaton). Could he possibly return?

The Emissary

Potentially, a fascinating concept. Benjamin Sisko’s (Avery Brooks) “Emissary arc” is a vital part of Star Trek’s past. Discovery has already established links with DS9 by re-introducing The Trills. Specifically, Adira (Blu Del Barrio), in Forget Me Not. The significance of their inclusion was the topic of Representation: Needs of The Many, Not Just the Few. It’s entirely feasible Sisko could return. His spirit still lives. As a real presence.  So, it really wouldn’t be that big a stretch to write him into things. That’s a truly exciting prospect.


Okay, a bit of a push. Maybe. Though now Tilly is Number One, anything is possible . . . Star Trek isn’t without references to God. Star Trek V: The Final Frontier (1989) is maybe the most famous example. But the only one. Season Two of Discovery had the “New Eden” episode. It might not be “God” in the traditional sense. A religious cult/sect might be cool to see. Something the show badly needs is character development. At this rate, it might take a miracle. Maybe from God, to let us finally see more of Lieutenant Detmer (Emily Coutts), who we made a case for developing, in Starfleet’s Rank and File: Lt. Detmer. Who knows, stranger things have happened?



Star Trek: Discovery airs weekly. Thursdays on CBS All Access in the U.S. Fridays on Netflix in the U.K. and Europe. Read your weekly review and associated features here at SciFiPulse. And you can tune into our Podcast too, where we discuss season three’s events.

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