'Star Trek: Discovery' recap: 'The War Without, the War Within'

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On the latest episode of Star Trek: Discovery, the crew of the Discovery find out what happened during their time in the other universe and tries to figure out what they must do to win the war.

On the previous episode of Star Trek: Discovery, the crew worked on a plan to get the Discovery back to their own time and place. Michael and Georgiou defeated Lorca and his people, and Michael brought the Emperor back with her to the Discovery before they jumped. While the Discovery got home, they find they arrived nine months later than planned.

“The War Without, the War Within” begins moments after the last episode ended, with Michael and Emperor Georgiou still in the transport room. Saru arrives and is shocked to see Georgiou, and she, in turn, is shocked to find a Kelpien in charge. She questions Michael about following a Kelpien after they ate one on her ship. Saru transports the Emperor to a confined room. Saru accuses Michael of lying to him about there being no Kelpien’s in the alternate universe. She wanted to protect him from the pain of knowing his people were enslaved. Saru addresses the transport crew and says Georgiou is classified information.

As Michael and Saru walk together, she says she has various excuses as to why she brought Georgiou back, but the truth is she could not watch another Georgiou die. Saru understands and the two then chat about their situation. They have attempted to contact Federation ships with no success and the Discovery has damage from the journey. Saru then tells her about the medical procedure L’Rell did to Tyler and says he is recovering. They arrive at medical and Saru suggests seeing her might let them know if Tyler is himself or if Voq still lingers. Michael says she cannot see Tyler yet and leaves.

Saru speaks to the doctor and she says Tyler appears to be okay but they are unsure the lasting effects of the procedure. Saru questions Tyler, who says he has Voq’s memories. He says the procedure was the first of its kind and that Voq and L’Rell thought it was the way to win the war. Tyler asks if Michael is okay and is relieved that she survived. He is overcome by what he did to Culber and Michael, but Saru says that was Voq. Tyler says he should be in the brig, but instead is given a monitoring bracelet.

A Federation ship approaches and the crew tries to make contact. Instead, they are boarded by the Starfleet crew, then Admiral Cornwell and Sarek arrive. They ask where Lorca is and override the ship, taking control. Sarek then mindmelds with Saru and announces that he is the real Saru. He tells Cornwell the Discovery has been through a lot and that Lorca is dead.

Saru, Michael, and Stamets meet with Cornwell and Sarek. Cornwell is furious when she learns that Lorca was mirror Lorca all along and shoots his fortune cookie supply, which is a great little moment. Sarek assures her that none of them could have guessed he was from an alternate universe. Cornwell tells them Discovery was destroyed by Klingons nine months ago. Saru confirms it must have been the mirror Discovery which switched places. Cornwell says the real Lorca must be dead.

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Photo Cr: Jan Thijs/CBS © 2017 CBS Interactive. All Rights Reserved.

The information they have about the Klingon shield is being shared. Cornwell tells them the defeats the Federation has suffered in the past nine months, including losing over thirty percent of their forces and thousands of civilization casualties There are no patterns to the attacks because now the Klingon houses are not fighting together. Instead, they compete to see which house will win the war.

Cornwell tells them they need to destroy all knowledge of the Discovery’s trip to an alternate universe. It will be too tempting for people to try to get to the other universe and see dead loved ones according to Sarek. Cornwell wants them to jump to Starbase 1, but Stamets lets her know the spores are gone. Sarek says going at warp is dangerous because of Klingon activity nearby, but Cornwell says they have to take the risk. Michael then shares the last bit of information, taking them to see Georgiou.

The meeting with Georgiou is strained as they all size each other up. Georgiou asks to be sent back. Michael argues against that, saying she should have political asylum. Cornwell says she will be held at Starbase 1 until they can figure out what to do. They are unsure if they can find a way to send her home, and the war is much more important at the moment. Both Cornwell and Sarek are startled by how much she looks like their Georgiou.

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Photo Cr: Jan Thijs/CBS © 2017 CBS Interactive. All Rights Reserved.

Tyler runs into Stamets and apologizes. Stamets asks if he remembers killing Culber and if it makes him sick. Tyler says yes and Stamets replies he might still be a human. Tyler then walks into the cafeteria and similarly to Michael at the beginning of the series, is stared at by everyone. He gets his food and sits down alone. Tilly watches and then sits down at his table. She says she is there for him and then more crew members come to sit at the table as well.

They reach Starbase 1 but receive no answer. Saru’s danger senses tingle right before they drop out of warp. They see debris and a Klingon crest painted on the Starbase. They scan for life and find over two hundred Klingons, and no one else. Cornwell stares in disbelief, saying there were 80 thousand beings living at the Starbase. The crew waits for her orders as they are being scanned, but she is in shock. Saru orders them to warp.

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Photo Cr: Russ Martin/CBS © 2017 CBS Interactive.

After ordering them to stay the course, Cornwell goes to talk to L’Rell. The two acknowledge each other and Cornwell tells L’Rell the Klingons are winning. Cornwell tells her the Klingons are not unified and that they are killing civilians. After Cornwell saying the Klingons are not making demands and are just mindlessly slaughtering everyone, L’Rell says Klingons will not stop unless they are conquered.

Michael goes to Georgiou and tells her she will have to stay aboard a while longer. Georgiou is unfazed because either way, she is locked up. Georgiou questions her about Sarek and Michael admits he is her adoptive father. Michael asks Georgiou how she defeated the Klingons. Georgiou confronts Michael about bringing her to this universe. Georgiou then gives in and mentions Qo’noS (Kronos), the hub of the Klingon Empire.

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Photo Cr: Jan Thijs/CBS © 2017 CBS Interactive. All Rights Reserved.

Cornwell and Sarek address the Federation. Cornwell suggests they attack Kronos and destroy Klingon military there so it forces the Klingons to return home. The others say they need to stay and protect Earth. Sarek replies that Starfleet ideas are not working on the Klingons, but this idea might. The Federation officers say they cannot do it without a map of the area and they would get destroyed before they got the information, but Cornwell disagrees.

Michel, Saru, Stamets, and Cornwell go over their plan. Stamets needs to get spores in order to jump them into the underground caves on Kronos so they can map out their targets. Stamets tells them to head to an uninhabited moon so they can grow the spores needed. He hands Tilly the original spore sample and announces his plan to terraform a moon.

Georgiou confronts Sarek about the plan and Michael. Georgiou says she did not tell Michael everything and that the Klingon’s will not give up trying to destroy the Federation even if the plan succeeds. She wants to help destroy the Klingons in return for her freedom. After, Sarek speaks with Michael. He says he must return to Vulcan and then talks to Michael about Tyler. Before leaving, he tells her “do not regret loving someone.”

Michael joins Tilly in engineering to see how the preparations are going. She confides her fears that she might have spoken to her father for the last time. Tilly confides that she was not expecting so much death and fighting when she joined Starfleet. She talks about the mirror universe, about how important it is to confront dark parts of ourselves and become better people. She then tries to convince Michael to visit Tyler.

The Discovery sends the tech down to the moon’s surface and begins terraforming the planet. The spores take root and grow quickly.

Michael goes to see Tyler, and he apologizes. They have an awkward argument about who she loved and if he is really Tyler. Michael says it does not matter because now when she looks at him she sees Voq. He tells her the only reason he survived and was not overtaken by Voq completely was because of her, because he loved Michael. Tyler wants her help to recover, but she tells him about her own recovery and says it is a battle he must fight on his own. He tries to interrupt and before she leaves, she says it is difficult to let him go.

Cornwell calls Sarek and tells him the spore operation was a success. He tells her the Federation Council has agreed they must do the mission. They then agree the time has come.

Cornwell goes to the bridge and gives a shipwide speech saying they have lost many lives and now they are going into Klingon territory. She then introduces Georgiou, saying she was not killed and was rescued from Klingon’s. Georgiou will be leading the mission. Michael and Saru continue to look at each other as Georgiou takes over command of the Discovery.

This was a decent episode of Star Trek: Discovery. The cafeteria scene was good and made me think with Lorca gone, the crew will open up more and be more kind and accepting. Tilly remains my favorite and I still think her friendship with Michael is one of the best parts of this show. I feel like the discussion between Tyler and Michael was a bit of a letdown both dialogue and acting wise, considering the actors normally have fantastic chemistry. Even though they are running out of options, letting Georgiou lead the mission and take the role of her dead counterpart seems like a really bad idea. I still do not see how this show can fit in with Star Trek canon at this point unless they travel back in time to before the war started and stop it from happening.

Star Trek: Discovery will release the season one finale Sunday at 8:30 p.m. on CBS All Access. It will air at 8 p.m. Sunday on Space in Canada. Other countries can watch the finale on Monday via Netflix.

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