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Star Trek: Discovery - If Memory Serves - Review

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Burnham and Spock, on the run from the federation, take a trip into the past to explore the origins behind their falling and the Red Angel in another great Star Trek: Discovery episode. Taking the action to Talos IV, the siblings find themselves forced to relieve their memories in a powerful episode on many fronts, opening with a flashback told in the style of the classic series where we met Pike's lost lover, Vina. It was a nice homage to the past and reminded unfamiliar fans just how important Talos IV is to Star Trek.

The character development between Burnham and Spock was great this week, and I loved their back and forth interactions on this episode. It's smart and used in a way that gets the most out of both characters, and it's clear to see that Ethan Peck is doing a good job as the character. All of the new Discovery cast members have done terrific jobs so far, and I love how seamlessly they've been integrated into the series. It doesn't feel like Spock and Pike's inclusion is just to connect audiences to the wider Trek universe. The series has been very good at giving both characters a purpose. Yet at the same time, this episode has echoes of The Menagerie and The Cage, the latter being the unaired 1965 pilot of the original series, as evidenced by its reused footage.

We learnt more about the Red Angel and that it was a witness to the destruction of all life in Federation space. It ups the ante and the stakes and gives the character a good motivation, its methods may be hostile but ultimately it is trying to fight for the future. I was worried that the show would loose its wackiness after the insane first season but Discovery is more than delivering on that premise so far, and if the cliffhanger is anything to go by then we should be in for an even wilder ride in the next episode.

There was always going to be a sense of uneasiness back on the Discovery at Tyler's re-intergration into the ship's crew and as expected, the showdown between him and Culber happened sooner rather than later. It was brutal that went on for longer than expected, he may have put his past as Voq behind him but it's understandable that Culber isn't as willing to let him go. The fight may have been against Starfleet regulations especially given its extended length, but Saru believed it was necessary to happen. It reminded me a lot of Battlestar Galactica's Unfinished Business episode, one of the gems from the brilliant Season 3 (how long before we get a Discovery fight club episode? Whatever the result of the fight it's clear that Culber is not going to embrace his former life that easily, much to Stamets' disappointment, who just wants what they had together to come back.

A mole on the bridge revealed the location of Burnham and Spock to Section 31 and naturally, suspicion falls under Tyler as the obvious choice, yet he insists it isn't him. This doesn't stop the power-play between Section 31 and Pike from taking place, and in the end, it requires an intervention from the Talosians who use telepathic projection to trick Section 31 into thinking that they had the two runaways in their captivity. (On a side note, I loved Georgiou dropping hints about how she dealt with the Talosians in the Mirrorverse after their deception had been revealed, letting her boss know that she knew about them all along. Please never leave Discovery, Michelle Yeoh.)

And now Discovery is on the run from not just the Section 31, but the entire Federation, increasing the stakes even higher in their bid to investigate the Red Angel as it just became the most wanted ship in the entire universe. This show is no stranger to epic cliffhangers, and this might be up their with one of their very best thus so far, capping off If Memory Serves in style.

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