Star Trek Discovery (S02E08) “If Memory Serves”

Good day to all the trekkies out there! It’s time for my latest review of Star Trek Discovery in an episode entitled ‘If Memory Serves’.

kicking it old school

We start off by getting a re-cap done in The Original Series style; it’s going back to Talos IV with Pike and Vina, and what happened there. In the present, we see Pike (Anson Mount) express concern about Section 31.

Section 31 is looking for Spock (Ethan Peck) and Burnham (Sonequa Martin-Green). Georgiou (Michelle Yeoh) reaches out to the Discovery and essentially orders them to stay off the manhunt. Instead, they are to gather more intel about the advanced probe. Pike confronts Ash (Shazad Latif) about what Section 31 has planned. Pike also finds out about the nature of Ash and Burnham’s past relationship.

In the shuttle, Burnham finds out some information about Talos IV. It’s forbidden to travel there by Starfleet. When they reach the planet it is surrounded by what looks like a black hole. Spock steers them right into it. It’s an illusion.


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Stamets and Hugh try to reconnect. Photo courtesy of Google.
making new memories and exploring old ones

Back on the Discovery, Hugh (Wilson Cruz) and Stamets (Anthony Rapp) try and reconnect. It’s proving to be a difficult task for Hugh. Things are very awkward and strained between the couple. On the bridge, when Ash questions Pike about their progress with the probe, Tilly (Mary Wiseman) shows him the work they have been doing.

Burnham and Spock land on Talos IV. Leaving Spock in the shuttle, Burnham goes to look around. They’ve landed in a rocky outcropping. She hears chiming sounds and soon discovers it’s coming from the flowers. Someone approaches the shuttle. It’s a young human girl who seems to know Spock. Her name is Vina (Melissa George). She inquires about Pike, and Burnham explains the situation to her. Vina gives them the coordinates to beam down below the surface.

The Talosians arrive after a fashion. They explain that Spock is experiencing time as fluid rather than linear. The Talosians agree to help Spock in exchange for the memory of what caused the rift between Spock and Burnham. Burnham is resistant at first. Vina tells her to trust the Talosians, showing Burnham the illusion they had given her of a healthy, seemingly ageless body. Burnham agrees and they proceed to show her Spock’s mind and memories.

Adjustments are needed

The Red Angel had shown young Spock Burnham’s death on the night she ran away. He told his parents where she was and Burnham was saved. The Red Angel took Spock to a remote planet and showed him the end of all things.

On Discovery, Hugh and Stamets have dinner. He tells Stamets that he can longer connect to anything. He becomes angry and hostile. Ash and Pike have a conversation. Section 31 is watching the ship. Ash tells Pike to trust Burnham. On the bridge, there are reports of unauthorized transmissions from an unknown source.

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Spock and Burnham on Talos IV. Photo courtesy of Google.

On Talos IV, Spock and Micheal talk. Spock tells Micheal that The Red Angel is a time traveler, and appears to be a human female. She has a quantum field around her suit. Spock shares with Burnham his memories of being in the psych ward. The doctor questions him about the signals. Spock figures that they are an attempt to communicate through time. Spock tries to leave the ward. He is stopped. Desperate, he incapacitates the doctors, thus proving to Burnham that Spock is innocent.

The tension aboard the Discovery reaches critical mass when Hugh finally confronts Ash in the cafeteria.  A physical altercation ensues. Saru (Doug Jones) lets it happen, figuring it was a needed catharsis for the two men. Later, Pike questions Saru’s choice. He tells him that there will be no more fighting. They may have to make things up as they go along though.

let’s go on a rescue mission

Alone in his office, Pike gets a shock when Vina appears to him. He tells her that he thought about her a lot. Pike is glad that she isn’t alone. Vina expands the scene to include Spock and Burnham. Spock asks Pike to pick them up from Talos IV.

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Pike with Vina. Photo courtesy of Google.

Hugh wants to move on, and Stamets is forced to let him go for the time being. Pike goes to the bridge and tells the crew that Spock and Burnham are on Talos IV, a restricted planet. The crew is with him. When they try to use the network to travel, they can’t because the network is down. The crew accuses Ash of sabotage. He swears up and down that he had nothing to do with it. We see Airiam (Hannah Cheesman) look away. Something is going on with her.

Just before Spock and Burnham leave Talos IV, she gives the Talosians the memory of what happened between them. In the memory, Burnham is trying to leave Spock’s home. He doesn’t want her to go. She tries to push him away by saying awful, cruel things to him. The hurtful words eventually work, and young Spock is left heartbroken and confused.

As Discovery reaches Talos IV, they are hailed by Section 31. The two ships fight to transport Spock and Burnham. Vina tells Pike to let them go. He does. It seems like Section 31 has them. The Discovery gets a reading on a nearby shuttle and tow it into their shuttle bay. It’s Spock and Burnham. It had all been an illusion. Section 31 is angry about the deception and now the Discovery is officially on the lam.

final thoughts

Wow, this episode was awesome! This series keeps getting better and better! I am beyond thrilled that Spock has now joined forces with the crew of the Discovery. He may not be the original Spock (RIP Leonard Nimoy), but he does a pretty good job considering. I am worried about Hugh. I really hope he can adjust. Maybe now that he’s gotten his anger at Ash/Voq out of his system, he can finally start to heal and move on. It looks like Section 31 is far shadier than we first thought. I’m curious to see just how far the treachery goes. Overall I give this episode 9/10.