Star Trek: Discovery Season 1 Episode 14 Review: The War Within, the War Without

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I have taken some massive leaps of faith in this inaugural season of Star Trek: Discovery but Star Trek: Discovery Season 1 Episode 14 really took my disbelief, suspended it, hosed it down with Romulan Ale, and set it on fire.

Emperor Georgiou In Prime Universe - Star Trek: Discovery Season 1 Episode 14

Although, to be fair, it was rather gratifying to have my prediction come true about Saru finding out about Burnham's lies about Kelpians in the Terran Empire BEFORE the opening credits even ran.

Yesterday, you dined on the entrails of his brethren and today, you seek his favor?

Emperor

Also, it was kind of cool that Emperor Georgiou proved to be more than just another non-Federation tag-along passenger like L'Rell. 

(Yeah, I know that L'Rell did the super-important Voq-removal procedure on Tyler but, other than that, she's been a broken record in a brig box this whole time.)

L'Rell of House Mokai - Star Trek: Discovery Season 1 Episode 4

I've never been a fan of the Tyler-Burnham romance and the Voq-ler thing just made things incredibly convoluted. 

But to have the writers follow that up with a Voq-excisement which leaves us with a body that started out as Voq but was turned into Tyler containing a Tyler consciousness that was originally "written" over top of Voq's and expect us to believe the crew would be okay with that?

Facing the Enemy - Star Trek: Discovery

It's kind of insulting, really.

Burnham spent WEEKS getting the stink-eye from the Discovery crew when she first came aboard. Even Tilly was uncomfortable with her roommate's infamy.

Tyler comes out of his procedure after KILLING Culber and being a freakin' KLINGON for months and everything's hunky-dory? No way.

Stamets: You killed a good man. A man that I loved. Do you remember that?
Tyler: I do now.
Stamets: And does it gut you? Does it sicken you? Good. Maybe you're still human after all.

Even his run-in with Stamets was just too ... REASONABLE. From the Stamets' perspective, that is.

Kudos to Anthony Rapp for conveying the pain and intensity of Stamets' emotions but no one carries on such a circumspect conversation with the person who killed the love of your life then walks away calmly and the writers should know that.

Finally, when Burnham has The Talk with Tyler, I could've thrown something at the screen. 

Tyler Seeing Ghosts - Star Trek: Discovery Season 1 Episode 9

Did he REALLY think she would come back to him?

Was this a side-effect of L'Rell's consciousness-adjustment? He's just stupid now?

It was every sort of terrible relationship conversation.

"Sorry I was housing that Voq guy but don't worry, he's gone now." Like knowing that's going to erase the trauma of being attacked?

Burnham Thoughts - Star Trek: Discovery Season 1 Episode 6

It all sounded a little too much like the standard abuser's line of "I promise it won't happen again."

Then he accuses her of being afraid of the relationship in the first place, throwing her dead parents in her face. Seriously?

When none of that has her falling into his arms (can't imagine why not), he insists that she's the only thing that can save him, that his love for her disrupted the sleeper programming, that he needs her to heal.

Co-dependency, thy name is Ash Tyler.

Taking a Hard Look - Star Trek: Discovery Season 1 Episode 13

Praise The Powers That Be that she walked away from that.

Current theories out there are that Tyler will redeem himself through sacrifice. If it means we don't have to be dragged through a relationship re-hash next season, I'm all for it. Go ahead, find your peace, dude.

Burnham: He killed a Starfleet officer. And he tried to kill me.
Tilly: And those crimes are reprehensible. But Tyler is not the person who did that. At least, he's not anymore. He's something other. Someone new. What we do now, the way that we treat him, that is who he'll become. I know you still care about him.
Burnham: I do. But that does not mean that I should.

Okay, (main) rant over. Feel free to rant back. I'm clearly not Team Tyler but if you're a Tilly-convert about this, that's awesome and I'd love to hear your reasons for it.

Moving on, I'm not super keen on the Emperor's whole "Hey, I do war really well. Let me win this one for you" strategy but it's an efficient means to an end and it'll keep Michelle Yeoh on my screen so, yay!

Emperor Georgiou Close Up - Star Trek: Discovery Season 1 Episode 14

The scene that truly sang for me was Sarek and the Emperor having their "my Michael is better than your Michael" pissing contest. Nothing like parental ego to spice up a conversation about war strategy.

Emperor Georgiou: My daughter was a singular example of brilliance until one foolish choice doomed her world. Sound familiar?
Sarek: If I understand correctly, my ward saw through the man who brought down, not just your child, but your empire. Perhaps best not to make comparisons.

The war is obviously going badly (and the season is rapidly coming to an end) but is it really believable that Starfleet Command is going to hand their prize vessel to the totalitarian leader of an alternate universe regime?

Maybe the logic of it becomes stronger the more desperate the Federation's position becomes.

Sarek - Star Trek: Discovery Season 1 Episode 14

Another thing that was a little too smoothly put to rest was revealing Lorca's true identity to Command and Cornwell in particular. I get that Sarek's mind-melds are the perfect interrogation technique but it's amazing how easily it was all accepted and then classified.

I wonder how many times Cornwell "slept over" with Mirror-Lorca without realizing it? That can't be a comfortable thought for her.

Admiral Cornwell - Star Trek: Discovery Season 1 Episode 6

Before the finale, be sure to catch up and watch Star Trek: Discovery online. There's a lot to digest and even more to speculate on before we're left for months without a ship to cheer for.

Captain Saru - Star Trek: Discovery Season 1 Episode 14

What are you most interested in seeing happen next?

Will they manage to pull off the attack on Kronos?

Does Emperor Georgiou actually want "freedom" or does she have a secret plan?

Did anyone else catch the Genesis-esqueness of the terraforming Stamets managed to do on the moon?

And that leads directly to the big question: WILL WE SEE SPOCK?

The War Within, the War Without Review

Editor Rating: 3.0 / 5.0
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Rating: 4.5 / 5.0 (11 Votes)

Diana Keng is a staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow her on Twitter.

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Star Trek: Discovery Season 1 Episode 14 Quotes

I could offer excuses. I was trying to destabilize the Terran Empire. I thought Starfleet could benefit from learning about an alternate universe. The truth is that I just couldn't watch her die again, Saru. I wanted to offer her more.

Burnham

Yesterday, you dined on the entrails of his brethren and today, you seek his favor?

Emperor