Star Trek Discovery (S01E14) "The War Without The War Within"

Star Trek Discovery is an absolutely phenomenal show, and I am very excited that I am reviewing such a great piece of sci-fi.
This episode begins with our main characters beginning to process the tremendous ordeal they had just gone through. The shock is just starting to wear off.  We have Captain Saru (Doug Jones) who is doing a great job in dealing with the aftermath. When he sees that Michael Burnham (Sonequa Martin-Green) has brought back none other than Philippa Georgiou (Michelle Yeoh) from the alternate universe, he immediately defers to her as captain, even though she was the emperor in the alternate universe. There is a tense moment with Saru and Philippa, and afterwards Saru questions Burnham about lying to him about not seeing any of his species in the other universe. She had wanted to spare him the pain of knowing that his race was enslaved.

There is a very heated exchange between Lt. Stamets (Anthony Rapp) and Ash Tyler (Shazad Latif) who was now awake and recovering from the Klingon ‘reassignment’, and the emergency surgery performed on him to restore his human side. It was very sad to see how raw Stamets still was over the death of his lover. I don’t think he will ever completely forgive Ash even though it was Voq who killed Hugh (Wilson Cruz).

Now when everyone is trying to figure out how to deal with the fact that the Klingons have won the war, the Discovery gets boarded by Admiral Cornwall (Jayne Brook), Sarek (James Frain) and a small contingency of federation officers. After Sarek confirms that the Discovery is real, he and the Admiral explain what has happened over the past nine months. The Klingon Houses are still divided and they are fighting over who can get the most territory. It’s a disturbing game of one-up manship, where human lives are the spoils.

Admiral Cornwall tells them they need to get to Starbase 01 and regroup. They are unable to travel via the spore drive because it had been depleted when they made to jump to return to their universe, so the ship has to warp there instead. While they are travelling, Burham introduces Cornwall and Sarek to the alternate version of Philippa. After talking with her, it is decided that they would keep her at the Starbase as a ‘guest’ until they could figure out what to do with her.

When they reach Starbase 01 and come out of warp, the crew is shocked to discover that Starbase 01 has been raided and destroyed. Over 80 000 people were dead.  They go back into warp and inform what is left of command, who advises their remaining ships to return to earth to defend the planet.

With the threat of Klingons invading earth, a desperate Burnham goes to Philippa to ask how she conquered the Klingons in her universe. Philippa tells her about the attack on Qo’noS the Klingon Homeworld. A plan is formed to travel there via spore drive  and hide out in the caves to map the terrain and planetary defense grid. To re-activate the spore drive, Stamets takes them to an abandoned moon to terraform the surface to harvest more spores.

While this is happening, Philippa requests to see Sarek. She reveals that she did not tell Burnham all of her plans. Philippa only told her what she could handle. Afterwards another layer of the original plan is formed, and Sarek leaves the ship to get the final pieces in place. Michael had to say goodbye to her father Sarek, and she remarked to Tilly (Mary Wiseman) later that it felt very final to her. Tilly also persuades Michael to go and see Ash.

Now we get to a very emotional part of this episode. Ash is very conflicted about who he is, and Michael cannot forgive him for what he has done when he was Voq. She ends up letting him go and I felt very sad about this. He needs her now more than ever and she just abandons him? I really hope that she comes back to him eventually.

The episode ends with Philippa re-assuming her role as Captain as they venture to the Klingon homeworld. No one but the Admiral and Sarek know the whole truth about the plan.

This episode had lots of good character development, which I quite liked. I think one of my favorite scenes was when Ash was having lunch in the cafeteria. He was alone initially, but Tilly comes to sit with him, and soon most of the crew start talking to him. It speaks volumes that the crew is able to see past his actions as Voq. I am super excited to see the season finale.

The season finale will air on Sun Feb 11
(photo was found from google.)