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FIRST LOOK: "Lethe" Photos

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New photos from "Lethe," the sixth episode of Star Trek: Discovery, have just been released featuring an addition to the U.S.S. Discovery crew, Lt. Ash Tyler (Shazad Latif), and the return of Admiral Cornwell (Jayne Brook).

 

star trek discovery, Captain Gabriel Lorca and Admiral Cornwell

Captain Gabriel Lorca (Jason Isaacs) and Admiral Cornwell

star trek discovery, michael burnham

Michael Burnham (Sonequa Martin-Green)

Star Trek Discovery, Captain Gabriel Lorca and Lt. Ash Tyler

Captain Gabriel Lorca and Lt. Ash Tyler

star trek discovery, Captain Gabriel Lorca and Lt. Ash Tyler

Captain Gabriel Lorca and Lt. Ash Tyler

star trek discovery, Captain Gabriel Lorca and Lt. Ash Tyler

Captain Gabriel Lorca and Lt. Ash Tyler

star trek discovery, Captain Gabriel Lorca and Lt. Ash Tyler

Captain Gabriel Lorca and Lt. Ash Tyler

star trek discovery, Lt. Ash Tyler

Lt. Ash Tyler

star trek discovery, Captain Gabriel Lorca

Captain Gabriel Lorca

star trek discovery, Captain Gabriel Lorca and Lt. Ash Tyler

Captain Gabriel Lorca and Lt. Ash Tyler

Star Trek Discovery, Captain Gabriel Lorca and Michael Burnham

Captain Gabriel Lorca and Michael Burnham

star trek discovery, admiral cornwell

Admiral Cornwell


Star Trek: Discovery airs Sunday nights on CBS All Access in the U.S. and Space Channel in Canada. The series airs on Mondays on Netflix in the rest of the world.

Star Trek Discovery CBS All Access

Star Trek Discovery Space Channel CraveTV

Star Trek Discovery Netflix

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It looks promising based on the photos. The introduction of Lt. Ash Tyler in last week's ep was a good move. It came at a crucial time and is one of the better introductions of a major character on a Trek series in a long time. Ash has been through a lot and he seems to mesh well with Captain Lorca who also has been through a lot during his service to Starfleet. Looking forward to this new ep. 

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Spoiler Alert! (Stop, if you haven't seen episode #5 of Star Trek: Discovery, “Choose Your Pain.”)

Last Time on Discovery

Star Trek Discovery, Harry Mudd

Audiences made the acquaintance of Harry Mudd (Rainn Wilson), as did Captain Lorca (Jason Isaacs). Mudd turned out to be a sly, vile human, but he made a few valid points about Lorca and the Federation’s overreach at the expense of the little people down on the planets below. As always, Mudd expressed his love for beloved, sweet Stella.

Star Trek Discovery, Harry Mudd, Captain Lorca

Lorca immediately distrusted Mudd, and rightly so. How is he still alive and barely bruised? As the captain put it, “What’s a civilian like you doing in a Klingon prison?” But we’re not sure who Lorca despised more, Mudd or his little pal, Stuart, who helped Mudd feed info about fellow prisoners to his Klingon captors. As for Mudd, his comment, “I’m a survivor… just like you,” signaled that he knows more about Lorca than we, the audience, know so far.

star trek discovery, ash tyler

We also met Lt. Ash Tyler (Shazad Latif), who’d be wearing a red shirt if Discovery characters wore red shirts. Turns out, he was at the Battle of the Binaries and served on the U.S.S. Yeager under Steven Maranville. Tyler has been imprisoned on the Klingon vessel for seven months, with a particular Klingon (that’d be Mary Chieffo’s L’Rell) apparently taking a liking to him, in all the wrong ways. Lorca appreciated Tyler’s sacrifice and sympathized with his shame. Later, he and Lorca escaped together, proving himself to be adept with a weapon, tough as hell and a superior pilot.

star trek discovery, captain lorca & L'Rell

In a huge development, it was revealed that Lorca, while commanding the U.S.S. Buran, killed his previous crew rather than let them die or be tortured by the Klingons. Is that heroic or psychotic? As the events of “Choose Your Pain” unfolded, L’Rell tortured Lorca, using his extreme photosensitivity against him. And, in another key scene, Admiral Cornwell (Jayne Brook) -- just before the Klingons captured her – pondered whether Lorca, her old friend and lover, was back in command too soon and of too important a ship for his own good… or the good of anyone else.

star trek discovery, michael burnham

Beyond the Lorca-Mudd-Tyler drama, the rest of the U.S.S. Discovery crew raced the clock to save their captain. Saru (Doug Jones) assumed command, while Burnham (Sonequa Martin-Green) teamed with Dr. Culber (Wilson Cruz), and the f-bomb-dropping Tilly (Mary Wiseman) and Stamets (Anthony Rapp) to figure out how to make the spore drive work without further harming the Tardigrade.

star trek discovery, Saru, Michael Burnham

Saru and Burnham were still at odds, with Burham going around him yet again in order to do what she felt necessary. This time, she ignored his order to stand down in the effort to find a substitute for the Tardigrade until Lorca has been recovered. At one point, in front of the crew, he dressed her down harshly, adding, “You wreak havoc and destruction, and your motivations are, as always, entirely selfish. Saving this Tardigrade will neither bring back nor change the fact that this is exactly the kind of behavior that killed Captain Georgiou.”

star trek discovery, harry mudd

Ah, poor Mudd. In a move that surely stirred debate amongst Star Trek fans, Lorca left Mudd behind in the cell when he and Tyler broke out. Is that really the Starfleet way? But we all know Mudd will be back, and he surely won’t be pleased with Lorca.

Stamets ultimately took matters into his own hands and made himself the guinea pig as the Tardigrade’s replacement. He succeeded, but at what cost? Near the episode’s end, Stamets and Dr. Culber stood side by side in the bathroom of their quarters, brushing their teeth and sharing their experiences of the day. Stamets detailed being immersed in an “entire universe of possibilities” he never dreamed existed, while Dr. Culber insisted that he never do anything so stupid again. As they exited the bathroom, Stamets turned back to see his reflection, which didn’t move. Ooooooh!

Next on Discovery

In the new episode called "Lethe,” the U.S.S. Discovery crew is intrigued by their new addition, Lt. Ash Tyler.

star trek discovery, captain lorca, ash tyler

Meanwhile, Sarek (James Frain) seeks Burnham’s help, rekindling memories from her past.

star trek dsicovery, sarek, james frain

And Admiral Cornwell visits the U.S.S. Discovery to question Lorca’s tactics.

star trek discovery, captain lorca, admiral cornwell


Worth Noting…

According to Dictionary.com, Lethe, in Classical Mythology, is a river in Hades whose water caused forgetfulness of the past in those who drank of it. The secondary definition, usually lowercase, is forgetfulness; oblivion.

Douglas Aarniokoski makes his Discovery directing debut with “Lethe.” Aarniokoski, in his career, worked his way up the ranks from second assistant director to first assistant director to director and also producer. His credits as a director include the films Highlander: Endgame and Nurse 3D, and multiple episodes each of such series as Criminal Minds, Sleepy Hollow, Arrow, Limitless and Bull.

After Trek

When Star Trek: Discovery ends, After Trek begins. Joining host Matt Mira will be:

star trek discovery, after trek, glenn hetrick, james frain, gretchen berg, neville page

 

Star Trek: Discovery airs Sunday nights on CBS All Access in the U.S. and Space Channel in Canada. The series airs on Mondays on Netflix in the rest of the world.

Star Trek Discovery CBS All Access

Star Trek Discovery Space Channel CraveTV

Star Trek Discovery Netflix

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About this episode title, does anyone remember Lethe from TOS episode Dagger Of The Mind...

http://memory-alpha.wikia.com/wiki/Lethe

There is speculation around the web Admiral Cornwall might become Lethe.

https://www.inverse.com/article/37820-star-trek-discovery-original-series-lethe-corwnell-theory

I like the idea. I can image Admiral Cornwall becoming Lethe after the Klingons Mind Sift her, cause her to act against the Federation in some way leading to her eventual internment at the Tantalus Colony.

 

Also about this episode, does anyone else see a possible connection between Micheal and Sarek's mindmeld being a huge part of Sarek's Bendii Syndrome?

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I agree that this looks plausible. I felt so sorry for the Admiral when she found herself alone in that trap originally designed for Sarek. But to me it looks like Lorca set her up. It must have crossed her mind.

If the Klingon have the mind sifter, they will use it.

In some of the fan fiction, the Klingons used the mind sifter on Kirk.

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Mission accomplished. Ted Sullivan notched a “Written by” credit – shared with a personal hero of his, Joe Menosky – on last week’s Star Trek: Discovery episode, “Lethe.” StarTrek.com recently caught up with Sullivan, who serves as a Discovery staff writer and executive producer, and who counts among his previous credits Law & Order: Criminal Intent, Rizzoli & Isles, Revenge, Supergirl and Pure Genius. Among the topics: collaborating with Menosky, how to pronounce the episode’s title, his satisfaction at Discovery’s renewal, and more. Here’s what he had to say:

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When we met at Star Trek Las Vegas, back in August, nobody had seen anything yet. So, how has this experience been so far?

We were shooting episode six, and I had been on the show since the last day of November, 2016, so the world hadn't really seen anything other than the trailer. But we have been so deep in it. I think Sonequa had only just recently been announced, too, which was such a weird experience of being on the show and having the lead but not being able to say that we have the lead. It's a unique beast, this show. You're jumping onto a moving train that's going a thousand miles an hour, not just for this production but also for the fact that it has existed in many, many different forms for 51 years, and like a religion, lots of people pick and choose what they think is the most important aspect of it and they will tell you you're doing something wrong, you're doing something right. So, from that standpoint, it's been unlike anything I've ever done. The pressure has been unlike anything I've ever been a part of. I thought doing Supergirl was a big deal. That was community theater compared to this.

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Let’s talk specifically about “Lethe.” You and Joe Menosky co-wrote the teleplay. You’re a huge Trek fan, and he’d worked on worked on multiple Treks in the past. What was the collaboration like?

I've actually never had an experience quite like this, because I'm a huge Joe Menosky fan. In fact, he had a profound impact on me as a writer growing up, because I adored his Trek work. So, I was quite nervous to meet him. I didn't know he was on staff when I came on board, so I was very, very awkward and nervous. We did some work together on polishing. We did some of those together and we really liked working together, and he suggested to Aaron and Gretchen that we write six together. That was a huge honor for me. We're very different. Joe is... he's just so mellow, man. He's just like, "Yeah, that sounds great" or "Yeah, I think that's right." He has this kind of sing-songy, easy-going quality about him that is so the antithesis of me, which is very high-strung, everything's a disaster, everything's a crisis. It's all going to implode. But I think when we mixed together, we really, really enjoyed writing.

The process was we worked individually. Joe writes his scripts on his phone, and sometimes in restaurants. He likes being in the hustle and bustle. I have to write in total silence, at work, in my office. I thought what he did was crazy, and I would stay until three in the morning, working alone in the office, and he thought that was crazy, so we're kind of weird that way. But it worked perfectly. Then we would just trade pages and we kind of "Yes, and…" each other instead of deconstruct each other. There was a lot of, I think, mutual respect for each other's voice, and I think they were very, very complementary. It was really exciting. It was terrific.

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What would you say was the core, the heart of “Lethe”?

Oh, for me, the core of this episode is the A-story. It’s a father-daughter story, but it's primarily a story about an adult woman who sees the flaws of her father figure through adult eyes for the first time. That's a really profound moment when that happens in anyone's life, and I think it's a turning point moment, which is why at the end of the episode, Burnham (Sonequa Martin-Green) re-introduces herself to Tyler (Shazad Latif). I think she's reclaiming her own identity and saying, "Yeah, we haven't met before. This is really who I am." I think it's a turning point moment for the show and a turning point moment for Burnham, who I think you will see, moving forward. She is a different character than she has been for the first five episodes, which was either high-school overachieving A+ student, and then alienated, kind of goth college student, and now I think she's adult, trying to make it on her own.

We’ve heard this debated amongst the fans. How the hell do you pronounce the name of the episode?

(Laughs). Lee-thee. I believe it's Lee-thee, but that title is 100% Joe. I had some other pitches on it, but for the life of me cannot remember it. But there was something very Next Gen about that title. My title for an episode I did later in the season, it was intentionally very TOS, but I thought this episode felt a little TNG to me in certain ways. When Joe came up with that, I thought "Yeah, that works really well."

Star Trek Discovery, Sarek, James Frain

You dipped deep into canon with Amanda (Mia Kirshner), and we saw more of Sarek (James Frain). How fun and how big a responsibility is it to write these iconic characters?

It's only fun in retrospect. When you're writing super-, super-canon characters, who have been so clearly defined for 50 years, it is both a huge responsibility and a heavy, heavy weight. So, it's not fun during the process. We're very, very lucky in the show to have people like Kirsten Beyer, who is world-renowned for being a top-selling Trek novelist and has lived in Trek for 20 years professionally. She knows canon truly better than anyone on the show, by far. It was difficult, but also invaluable to have her there, because you would suggest one pitch for a story, and she'll go "You can't do that because of this…," but she helps guide you through that process. I have to give a special, special shout-out to Kirsten, who is not only a great friend, but a super-talented writer and a true advocate for Trek canon. She knows when to stretch canon and when not to. That was really, really helpful with Sarek and Amanda.

The real thing with the Sarek of it all is we wanted to explore, What was the root of the issue with Sarek and Spock that was exposed in “Journey to Babel?” That's one thing that we wanted to do. Because this is a prequel, how do we tie into that? I think in some ways, this makes him a little bit more empathetic, because he did the best he could, and then he screwed up in retrospect. As Burnham rightly calls him out, "You let me believe a lie.” But there's another element in this story with Sarek, which I think people forget, which is Vulcans feel emotion. They just repress them. And if you look at Mark Lenard's performance in Search for Spock, which is one of my favorite Trek movies, because of all the emotion in it, he is incredibly emotional in that movie. He's trying to be Vulcan and hold it in, but you can see how much this father is hurting that his son is dead, and he's trying to bring him back. He’s going to do anything. He's convincing Kirk to basically commit career suicide to go get his son, because that's more important to him than logic and reason and all those types of things.

So, we wanted to explore that Sarek feels some type of paternal guilt and responsibility for what happened with Burnham. He was the last person to talk to Burnham. Then that kind of sent her off on the path that she took, and this war happened. I think from that standpoint, Sarek feels some guilt and some shame. And that's why he's so desperate to zap the Klingons and hope that he can bring an end to the war, because he wants to start righting this wrong and help Burnham. We don't really vocalize that per se in the episode, but it is something we talked about a lot and is something that I think explains his motivations. Some people have said, "Well, that doesn't seem very Sarek." My response is, "I think it's very Sarek." There are plenty of examples in canon. As he says in Star Trek III, "I am not always logical when it comes to my son," and I think the same applies to Burnham. He clearly has a soft spot in his heart for family and for humans in general. I mean, he married two humans, for crying out loud. So, I think he is a unique Vulcan in that way, and it was interesting to kind of play around with those ideas within the confines of canon.

Star Trek Discovery, Captain Gabriel Lorca and Michael Burnham

The scene with him in sickbay is, pardon the pun, fascinating. He clearly felt shame, a very human emotion.

He basically admits that earlier, exactly. When people said "That doesn't seem very Sarek"… He's on the verge of death. When you're on the verge of death and you're in pain and delusional, of course it comes out then. That's exactly when it would come out. Now that he's healing, that's when you tend to go, "No, no, I don't know what you're talking about." I think that is so interesting and why he's a complex character. In all honesty, we had a very different ending for this story originally. I had pitched a much more touchy-feely ending. They-have-the-breakthrough and they're much closer at the end of the story. But Aaron Harberts very, very wisely said "That's the wrong ending. It's not as messy and it's not complicated." What we needed the story to do is drive a wedge between Sarek and Burnham, and move Burnham closer to Lorca (Jason Isaacs). So, one father figure is replaced with another. I think that's what's the brilliance of Aaron and Gretchen. They're so, so good at looking at a story and going, "Nope, it should be this" and you go, "Right, that's what it should be." Joe is also that way with story, with Trek especially. He can go "Yeah, that's a little too mainstream, it should be this." And you're like, “Holy crap, how did you think of that?” But he's also written more episodes for Star Trek than I think anyone else but one person, so it's in his DNA.

How pleased, if you can be objective, are you with the finished episode?

This is the proudest I've ever been of anything I've ever been a part of. I mean ever.

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Why?

Because the collaboration with not only Joe, but Aaron and Gretchen and the entire writers' room, yielded a story that I feel had a beginning, middle and end, but also pretty deftly maintained serialized elements of the story. I don't think there's a wasted moment in the episode. Even the jogging sequence with Tilly (Mary Wiseman) and Burnham relates to Sarek and Burnham, and that's why there's that final scene with Tilly and Burnham at the end. I think there's more humor in this episode than any other one, which I'm really proud of. I think that Doug Aarniokoski directed the hell out of this episode. It looks beautiful. I think Jeff Russo's music is stunning and I think literally every performance is just spectacular. We’re on a set and working with this group of actors, who are so collaborative, and so intelligent and want to push the work to be deeper than just, "Hey, we're making a sci-fi show." We're trying to make a show that shines a light on the human experience and, like I said, I love the fact that this is a complicated story about a parent and child. I've had complicated relationships with my parents. Joe has too. I think virtually everyone in our writers’ room has. So, it was really interesting to tap into those universal emotions.

And I'm super, super-proud that we got to deal with things like racism and isolationism, which I think are massively important issues that we're dealing with in the world. I think it was really, really important to show that not just uneducated, reactionary people can be racist and close-minded, that the most intelligent characters in Star Trek history can fall prey to those instincts as well. That's important, because I'm always stunned when I see super-well-educated people on TV espousing hate and isolationism and xenophobia, which is deeply troubling and seems to be spreading today.

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How excited are you that Discovery will have a second season?

I am both excited and nervous, because it's overwhelming and I have never worked harder on a show than on this one. So, there's a part of me that is like, "Oh no, it's coming." But I'm super, super-excited, and I'm super-excited to tell different types of stories. Now that we've really found out what the language of the show is, and the actors have really fallen into their roles and they know who they are as characters, I think it's gonna be really, really fun.

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Going back to “Lethe,” any final thoughts on the episode?

It was hysterical when Mia Kirshner got cast as Amanda. We bumped into each other in the makeup trailer, and I said "You're not going to remember this, but 20-some odd years ago, 25 maybe, when I was in college and you were a kid, I was assigned by CAA to be your driver,” That’s what I used to do to make extra money, back in 1990 or something. Her mouth just dropped open. She goes, “Wait, what?" I said "You were at this hotel…," and I started describing the situation. She's like, "Oh my God, I remember that." I was like, "Yeah, I was your driver 25 years ago." It just blew her mind. Flash-forward a quarter of a century later, we're on the set making Star Trek.

Star Trek: Discovery streams Sunday nights on CBS All Access in the U.S. and Space Channel in Canada. The series streams on Mondays on Netflix in the rest of the world.

Star Trek Discovery CBS All Access

Star Trek Discovery Space Channel CraveTV

Star Trek Discovery Netflix

 

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