Star Trek: Discovery Season 3 Episode 6 recap: The search for answers continues

Burnham’s hunt for the origins of the Burn is at odds with Saru’s desire to follow Starfleet rules in Star Trek: Discovery Season 3 Episode 6.

The characters’ motivations and intentions continue to be eked out over the course of Star Trek: Discovery Season 3. Now that we’re just past the halfway mark of the season, a few clear plotlines emerge in Star Trek: Discovery Season 3 Episode 6.

Burnham is convinced that discovering the origins of the Burn will stabilize the remainder of the Federation. When she receives a message from Book hinting that he’s found a black box with possible answers, Burnham’s itching to retrieve it—and Book.

On the other hand, now that Discovery is officially part of Starfleet again in Star Trek: Discovery Season 3 Episode 6, Saru doesn’t wish to rock the boat with Admiral Charles Vance. Vance’s trust in Discovery is already on shaky ground.

Moreover, Adira is still talking to her dead boyfriend, Gray, and something’s not right with Philippa.

Star Trek: Discovery Season 3 Episode 6 – New beginnings for the crew

Discovery is now an official member of Starfleet. She’s got an ‘A’ added to her registration, perhaps to signify the start of her new legacy. The ship is also augmented with programmable material from the future, and the crew is outfitted with new badges.

These badges don’t just look cool, but they come with a host of new features, including holographic interfaces, in-built tricorders, and personal transporters. I love the look of wonder and delight on the Bridge crew’s faces. Every time they interact with the future tech, they’re giddy with excitement. It brings a huge smile to my face.

While Starfleet has been retrofitting the ship, Adira’s been tinkering as well. She reconfigures the spore drive so that it’s operated by green goo (more programmable material). Adira also helps remove the shafts in Stamets’ arms. She is exceptional, and Stamets clearly warms to her after these gestures of kindness.

Gray deserves better than to be dead, for sure. And I’m willing to accept any mumbo jumbo to let the Star Trek universe’s first out transgender actor get a complete role for himself.

Star Trek: Discovery Season 3 Episode 6 – Grudge Returns

Here’s the thing about Michael—it seems a year without rules has reset her personality. She’s reckless but adamant. Burnham is so convinced that the truth behind the Burn will help reform the Federation that she refuses to see reason.

Saru’s terrified of losing face in front of Vance, and it’s leading to him being even more conservative than before. Episodes like Star Trek: Discovery Season 3 Episode 6 reminds me why Saru isn’t suited for the big chair.

Star Trek: Discovery Season 3 Episode 6 – Going AWOL

Burnham defies Saru’s orders to stand down and instead invites Philippa to join her on the unsanctioned rescue mission. Philippa doesn’t need much convincing.

Tilly and Saru realize that Burnham’s done a runner, and both conclude that Burnham’s changed. They sacrificed their lives for her, and now they can no longer trust Burnham. Tilly urges Saru to report Burnham’s insubordination to Vance, to nip any accusations in the bud. Vance has other concerns.

Though Tilly believes she would have done the same in Burnham’s shoes, Saru is convinced that Tilly wouldn’t break the rules quite so blatantly. I like that we’re discovering these characters’ gray areas. I’m also surprised at how self-assured Tilly has become. She should get a command position soon.

Star Trek: Discovery Season 3 Episode 6 – Rescuing Book

Michelle Yeoh as Georgiou and Sonequa Martin-Green on Star Trek: Discovery Season 3 Episode 6

Burnham and Philippa locate Book in a Work-Camp. It’s run by an Orion bully who takes pleasure in terrorizing the inhabitants and giving them the hope of escape, only to watch them get vaporized by electric pylons.

Book has been stuck in this Work-Camp for three weeks. He’s trying to survive while also protecting the black box. The Work-Camp is reminiscent of old Star Trek scenes, but the general air of despair is very similar to Star Trek: Voyager episode, ‘The Chute.’

Philippa is able to inveigle her way into the Camp to ‘shop’ for goods in exchange for the dilithium crystals aboard Book’s ship. Burnham immediately spots Book and asks Philippa to buy time as she hatches a plan to help Book and the rest of the inmates escape.

Despite Burnham and Book’s insistence that they’re not together, the pair are obviously in love and have a shared history that they’re unwilling to share with the rest of the crew. You can feel the untold connection between these two characters, which is a testament to the writing. But I have to ask again, where is this going?

Star Trek: Discovery Season 3 Episode 6 – What’s going on with Philippa?

Michelle Yeoh as Georgiou and Sonequa Martin-Green on Star Trek: Discovery Season 3 Episode 6

I think it’s quite evident how much I enjoy watching Philippa. She is a woman of action and fierce intellect. Philippa may not be a good person, but she is an astute observer of people. The writers have created this character to be the best and worst of humanity, and I’m living for every moment of Philippa’s screen time.

But Philippa isn’t herself. Ever since her interrogation by Kovich, Philippa seems to be distracted. In this episode, we see that she’s either hallucinating or having flashbacks. But what is she seeing?

There’s a Klingon knife, a dying body, and a bloodied hand. Did Kovich’s appearance trigger memories in Philippa? It’s possible that Kovich’s Terran counterpart was close to her, or he looks like someone close to her.

Interestingly, Philippa’s first flashback follows her first mention of Burnham’s ex, Ash Tyler (Shazad Latif). Is it wishful thinking that the two are connected? I loved Ash Tyler as a character, and the two worked together for Section 31.

Philippa’s condition is impairing her competence, but she refuses to have herself examined. Burnham believes pride is getting in Philippa’s way, but I believe she already knows what’s wrong with her, and she’s trying to work it out herself. I worry that this season will be the last we see of Philippa. And I’m not ready for that.

Star Trek: Discovery Season 3 Episode 6 – Consequences and final thoughts

With Book safe, Discovery needs to unlock the secrets of the black box. But first, Burnham must face the music. Surprisingly, Vance dresses down both Saru and Burnham. He feels that Burnham’s mission warranted investigation had Saru brought it up with Vance.

But Burnham endangered her crew by abandoning her post in the Federation’s hour of need. Vance doesn’t micro-manage Discovery, which is an intelligent move by the writers. Also, shout out to Oded Fehr for owning this role. After Michelle Yeoh, Fehr is another actor who seems to belong in the Star Trek universe.

Saru demotes Burnham to science officer, and she’s not even mad about it. This seems to be a theme with Burnham. Is she self-sabotaging, or is Burnham just done with Starfleet’s inflexible rules? Whatever the case, I hope she’s able to regain the faith, love and trust of her friends. Without these, there won’t be a Federation worth fighting for.

The season has been compelling, but the characters’ underlying motivations should have been spelled out by the third episode. I also feel like there are plot holes languishing. Aditya Sahil was introduced as the keeper of the Starfleet flame in the season premiere, but why hasn’t Discovery gone back to retrieve him? He should be allowed to join the organization he’s been desperately waiting for.

New episodes of Star Trek: Discovery Season 3 are available every Thursday on CBS All Access.

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