Real World article
(written from a Production point of view)

Star Trek Discovery Season 2 poster.jpg

This page contains information specifically pertaining to the second season of Star Trek: Discovery, whose episode premieres were consecutively streamed on CBS All Access for the USA and broadcast on Space/Z for Canada from 17 January 2019 through 18 April 2019, with the rest of the world following suit with one day delay through streaming service Netflix.

Episodes

Title Episode Prodno. Stardate Original Airdate
Brother 2x01 201 1025.19 2019-01-17
New Eden 2x02 202 1027.32 2019-01-24
Point of Light 2x03 203 1029.46 2019-01-31
An Obol for Charon 2x04 204 1834.2512 2019-02-07
Saints of Imperfection 2x05 205 Unknown 2019-02-14
The Sound of Thunder 2x06 206 1035.86 2019-02-21
Light and Shadows 2x07 207 Unknown 2019-02-28
If Memory Serves 2x08 208 1532.9 2019-03-07
Project Daedalus 2x09 209 Unknown 2019-03-14
The Red Angel 2x10 210 Unknown 2019-03-21
Perpetual Infinity 2x11 211 Unknown 2019-03-28
Through the Valley of Shadows 2x12 212 1048.66 2019-04-04
Such Sweet Sorrow 2x13 213 1050.8-1051.8 2019-04-11
Such Sweet Sorrow, Part 2 2x14 214 1201.7 2019-04-18

Summary

Background information

  • Even before Star Trek: Discovery started to be released, Aaron Harberts was already hopeful that this season could tie up some of the loose ends of continuity as regards how the series related to the rest of the Star Trek franchise, thereby answering inevitable questions about that aspect of the show. "What I hope happens is [...] [in the] second season, we'll start creating our own slice of it," he said, "so that we're adding to canon in our way, and those questions come up less and less." [1]
  • In this, Harberts had to an extent already undone the emphatic statement his colleague Akiva Goldsman later made at the October 2017 New York Comic Con, shortly after the series had premiered, that "(...)Discovery will exist within its own universe," and while "[w]e are wildly aware of everything that appears to be a deviation from canon and we will close out all of those issues before they arrive at the 10-year period and hit The Original Series," adding that "Discovery viewers will never see Spock". [2] The apparently premature second season introduction of Christopher Pike and his ship and crew (including Spock) after all, was therefore indicative of the producers' reconsideration of their position in the wake of fan criticism regarding canon/(Roddenberry) philosophy/(visual) continuity issues, conceded as such at a later point in time by co-creator, show runner and Executive Producer Alex Kurtzman himself in his 2019 podcast interview (see: below).
  • Harberts also expressed hope that this season might include many episodes which Goldsman would direct. [3]
  • On 23 October 2017, it was announced that the series had been renewed for a second season. [4]
  • Filming for Season 2 began on 16 April 2018, with Shazad Latif stating that he would begin filming in May 2018. [5] [6] [7]
  • It was originally reported that Season 2 would have two fewer episodes than Season 1, but Anson Mount revealed on 8 December 2018 that an additional episode had been added. [8] [9]
  • In May 2018, co-creator Alex Kurtzman stated that season two wouldn't be broadcast until 2019 at the earliest. "Breaking story is, in some ways, the easier and faster thing; it's the ability to execute on it that's much harder. We want to take the right amount of time and don't want to rush," he stated. [10] In July 2018, he confirmed that the season premiere was being targeted for release in January 2019. [11]
  • Harberts and Gretchen J. Berg resigned as showrunners after production on the fifth episode, after the budget for the season premiere overran, and reports that they had become abusive towards the show's writers, [12] though in the latter case, independent corroboration from any "abusee" has, as of 2020, yet to materialize anywhere.
  • The season premiere date was announced at the New York Comic Con Discovery panel on 6 October 2018, [13] and a trailer for the season was shown there, being released online immediately afterwards. [14]
  • As had been the case with the first season, episodes were released internationally on Netflix the day after their CBS All Access debut. [15]
  • Unlike the first season, however, there was not a mid-season break. [16]
  • Characters which 'cross over' from other incarnations of Star Trek: Christopher Pike and Spock ("Brother"), Una ("An Obol for Charon"), Vina and The Keeper ("If Memory Serves"), Siranna ("The Sound of Thunder"), and Me Hani Ika Hali Ka Po ("Such Sweet Sorrow").

Reception

The critical review site Rotten Tomatoes has given the second season of Discovery a score of 81%, with an average rating of 7.32 out of 10, similar to the score for the preceding season. However, it has also recorded a worsening audience score of 36%, with an average rating of 2.33 out of 5, indicative of the developing rift between critics and viewers/fans growing even stronger after Season 1. [17] Unlike with that initial season, Rotten Tomatoes' audience findings were not corroborated for this season by the customer reviews on Amazon.com, which showed a substantially higher audience rating of 3.8 out of 5, as well as a higher rough 70/30 like/dislike divide within the viewership/fanbase itself. [18]

On the other hand, the critical review site Metacritic did corroborate Rotten Tomatoes' critical findings by quoting the equal 73% critics' rating score for the second season – against Tomatoes' 73.2% average rating – and also reported a similar viewership rating of 5.3 out of 10, with the like/dislike divide showing a rough 52/48 split, a very slight improvement over the first season. [19]

What both Amazon and Metacritic had in common though, was that the from season one carried over like/dislike divide remained rather sharp in all reported cases, with fans pitted against each other at either end of the spectrum with very few positioned in the middle. The what Kurtzman had hereafter called "course-correct" had not resulted in the hoped-for improvement of the series' overall perception by fans.

…thanking the "nerds"…

Exemplary of the deep fan divide was the one-minute homage clip initially made for the Apple TV app and also featured in a Carpool Karaoke episode (Season 2, Episode 11, 31 January 2019) in which the uniform-clad primary cast of Discovery were singing a song (adapted from a song featured in the musical Rent) on the bridge set, profusely thanking the "nerds" – "nerds" being emphasized with flashy, sing-along captions – for keeping the franchise alive for all these decades. As reactions to this presumably well-meant clip have shown, Discovery fans loved the homage, whereas the critical fans took offense, considering it a derogatory slur – and an intentional one at that, in their opinion. [20] [21] [22] The clip has not been included in any of the special features of the later released second season home video formats.

After the second season had concluded its run, showrunner Alex Kurtzman did concede the fan base split in a 17 June 2019 Deadline podcast, though he endeavored to put a positive spin on it by stating that "(...) if you are at a 50/50 split, then you're doing well. It's when you're at 90/10 then you're in real trouble." In the same podcast Kurtzman concurrently added, "I can definitely start by saying that I have, and this isn't just lip service, I actually...the fan's point of view has become necessary for me, because the fans have kept Trek alive for fifty-three years. And the internet has now made it possible for me in real time to know how people are receiving our choices and as you're writing you can suddenly course-correct you know." [23] In this, Kurtzman distanced himself from the "Old Guard" racial/gender bias assumptions critics put forward after the conclusion of season one, but rather addressed concerns those fans had with what they perceived as canon/(Roddenberry) philosophy/continuity violations, something only a handful of critics actually touched upon, though simultaneously maintaining that, in their opinion, white male racial/gender bigotry was still the actual root cause. [24] [25] Kurtzman referred to the "course-correct" again when he made the later released remark, "We make huge moves in the [second season] finale. So both synchronize with canon and then free ourselves from it". (DIS Season 2 Blu-ray-special features, "Putting It Together") He thereby confirmed in his closing remark that Goldsman's aforementioned "arrival" at The Original Series was definitively off the table, something that had already been implied in the Star Trek: Short Treks season one episode "Calypso" which streamed two months before the second season of Discovery did.

Even though the producers had bowed in to the fan's concerns about the series, fans remained sharply divided in their opinions of the series proper as not only evidenced by the ratings and Kurtzman's concession, but also by the impromptu polls organized on several Star Trek (fan) websites, among others those on the reference website Ex Astris Scientia. However, fans were by and large unanimous in their praise for the Original Series characters introduction, Anson Mount's Christopher Pike in particular, which infused the series with some, what they deemed, much needed Star Trek spirit, in no small measure due to the way Mount played the role. Kurtzman had actually implied at the end of season one that the introduction of the Original Series characters had from the very start been part of his master plan all along, when he stated in AT: "Will You Take My Hand?" that, "(...)the whole season was reverse-engineered knowing really at the beginning where we wanted to end," [26] contridicting not only his own, later made "course-correct" statement, but also his producer collegues. Mount's Christopher Pike was so well received that at least two separate online fan petitions were organized for his very own Star Trek series, with several petition signers in their motivations to do so, preferring it to become a replacement for Discovery altogether. [27] [28]

In the wake of the December 2019 "reunification" of the Star Trek film, and television franchises, reports started to surface that this option had indeed come under consideration with both CBS All Access Head of Original Content Julie McNamara and showrunner Kurtzman on record stating that "fans have been heard", though concurrently stressing that if it came to pass, as an addition to the Star Trek line-up (at the time already consisting of three more series, beyond Discovery, Short Treks, and Star Trek: Picard alone), and not as a replacement. [29] [30] [31]

Initially, the producers intended the introduction of the Original Series characters to be a temporary one, as they were signed for season two only. [32] [33] It prompted Anson Mount to quip with a "#WillActForFood" hashtag on his Twitter account that he and fellow Spock performer Ethan Peck were on the job market again shortly after live-action production on season two had wrapped. [34] It solicited a fan outpouring in support for his own series instead of Discovery, which provided the spark for the online petitions in the first place, [35] as a happy aside not something Mount was likely and intentionally after when he made the humorous posting on his account – even though he was by then well aware of the favorable reception of his character (reiterating how "humbled and deeply touched by this amount of love" he was on his 14 April 2019 Facebook entry [36]) as the season had already premiered when he made his posting on 27 January 2019. He and Peck subsequently did reprise their roles in three late 2019 season two episodes of Short Treks (as did Una performer Rebecca Romijn), all three of them taking place outside the Discovery framework, and therefore arguably conceived as preambles for a potential "Christopher Pike" series.

On 15 May 2020, CBS formally announced Star Trek: Strange New Worlds, featuring all three characters, along with a video message recorded by Mount, Peck, and Romijn uploaded to social media channels, all three of them expressing their gratitude for the fan support. Aside from emphatically restating his April 2019 Facebook posting, Mount additionally stated that they were going to get "(...)to work on a classic Star Trek show, that deals with optimism and the future," indirectly referring to the perceived Roddenberry-philosophy violations in Discovery, critical fans had put forward. [37]

Incidentally and his favorable fan reception notwithstanding, Mount has, unlike colleague Peck, not received a single nomination for his performance in any of the hereafter mentioned actor award categories.

Awards

Several industry award nomination announcements have followed suit in the wake of the series' second season, such as for five Saturn Awards on 15 July 2019, [38] and for four of the prestigious Emmy Awards on 16 July 2019, [39] in the latter case doubling its number of nominations in comparison to the first season. Three other award nominations were added to the array, but no others, bringing the total for the second season up to twelve, in contrast to the twenty-three the preceding season had received.

Still, having won five out of twelve award nominations, including the series' first Emmy Award, it actually meant that Season 2 achieved a much higher success rate than the preceding one – 42% versus 13%.

2019 Star Trek: Discovery Season 2 awards and honors
Award Category Nominee(s) Result
CDG Awards Outstanding Sci-Fi/Fantasy Television Series Gersha Phillips Nominated
Directors Guild of Canada Awards Outstanding Achievement in Production Design - Dramatic Series ("Such Sweet Sorrow, Part 2") Tamara Deverell Won [40]
Dragon Awards Best Science Fiction or Fantasy TV Series Bryan Fuller and Alex Kurtzman Nominated
Emmy Awards Outstanding Main Title Design Ana Criado-Zahonero (creative director), Nader Husseini (animator), Francisco Sanchez de Cañete (art director), Zachary Kinney (animator), Christian Antolin (designer), and Kyle Cooper (creative director)
Outstanding Special Visual Effects ("Such Sweet Sorrow, Part 2") Jason Michael Zimmerman (VFX supervisor), Ante Dekovic (VFX supervisor), Ivan Kondrup Jensen (VFX supervisor), Mahmoud Rahnama (associate VFX supervisor), Alexander Wood (VFX plate supervisor), Aleksandra Kochoska (VFX producer), Charles Collyer (lead VFX artist), Fausto Tejeda (CG supervisor), and Darcy Callaghan (special effects coordinator)
Outstanding Sound Editing for a One Hour Comedy or Drama Series ("Such Sweet Sorrow, Part 2") Matthew E. Taylor (sound supervisor), Tim Farrell (sound designer), Michael Schapiro (sound effects editor), Clayton Weber (sound effects editor), Dan Kenyon (sound effects editor), Rickley W. Dumm (adr editor), Sean Heissinger (dialogue editor), Bob Jackson (dialogue editor), Matt Decker (music editor), Alyson Dee Moore (Foley artist), and Christopher Moriana (Foley artist)
Outstanding Prosthetic Makeup for a Series, Limited Series, Movie or Special ("If Memory Serves") Glenn Hetrick (special makeup effects department head), James MacKinnon (special makeup effects department head), Hugo Villasenor (special makeup effects artist), Rocky Faulkner (special makeup effects artist), Chris Bridges (additional makeup effects artist), Nicola Bendrey (special makeup effects artist), Neville Page (prosthetic designer), and Michael O'Brien (prosthetic designer) Won
Saturn Awards Best Streaming Science Fiction, Action & Fantasy Series Accepted on behalf of CBS All Access by showrunner Michelle Paradise, and writer/producers Bo Yeon Kim and Erika Lippoldt [41]
Best Actress in Streaming Presentation Sonequa Martin-Green
Best Supporting Actor in Streaming Presentation Doug Jones
Wilson Cruz Nominated
Ethan Peck

Credits

Starring

Sonequa Martin-Green as Michael Burnham
Doug Jones as Saru
Anthony Rapp as Paul Stamets
Mary Wiseman as Sylvia Tilly ("Brother"–"Perpetual Infinity", "Such Sweet Sorrow", "Such Sweet Sorrow, Part 2")
Wilson Cruz as Hugh Culber ("Brother", "Saints of Imperfection"–"The Sounds of Thunder", "If Memory Serves", "The Red Angel", "Through the Valley of Shadows"–"Such Sweet Sorrow, Part 2")
Shazad Latif as Ash Tyler ("Point of Light", "Saints of Imperfection"–"If Memory Serves", "The Red Angel"–"Such Sweet Sorrow, Part 2")
And
Anson Mount as Christopher Pike

Crew

Casting by
Margery Simkin, CSA
Orly Sitowitz, CSA
Music and Theme by
Jeff Russo
Costume Designer
Gersha Phillips
Visual Effects Supervisor
Jason Zimmerman
Edited by
Jon Dudkowski, A.C.E. ("Brother", "An Obol for Charon", "Light and Shadows", "The Red Angel", "Such Sweet Sorrow")
Scott Gamzon, A.C.E. ("New Eden", "Saints of Imperfection", "If Memory Serves", "Perpetual Infinity")
Andrew Coutts, C.C.E. ("Point of Light", "The Sounds of Thunder", "Project Daedalus", "Through the Valley of Shadows", "Such Sweet Sorrow, Part 2")
Matthew Kovach ("The Red Angel")
John Mullin ("Perpetual Infinity")
Production Designer
Tamara Deverell
Director of Photography
Glen Keenan, C.S.C. ("Brother", "Point of Light", "Saints of Imperfection", "Light and Shadows", "Project Daedalus", "Perpetual Infinity", "Such Sweet Sorrow", "Such Sweet Sorrow, Part 2")
Colin Hoult, C.S.C. ("New Eden", "An Obol for Charon")
Philip Lanyon ("The Sounds of Thunder")
Tico Poulakakis, C.S.C. ("If Memory Serves", "The Red Angel", "Through the Valley of Shadows")
Co-Producers
Bo Yeon Kim
Erika Lippoldt
Producers
Alan McElroy
April Nocifora
Produced by
Thom J. Pretak
Consulting Producer
Dan Dworkin ("Light and Shadows"–"Such Sweet Sorrow, Part 2")
Jay Beattie ("Light and Shadows"–"Such Sweet Sorrow, Part 2")
Akiva Goldsman
Co-Executive Producers
Andrew Colville
Jenny Lumet
Jordon Nardino ("Brother"–"Saints of Imperfection")
Michelle Paradise ("An Obol for Charon"–"Such Sweet Sorrow, Part 2")
Ted Sullivan
Vaun Wilmott ("Brother"–"Light and Shadows")
Aaron Baiers
Executive Producers
Olatunde Osunsanmi
Frank Siracusa
John Weber
Eugene Roddenberry
Trevor Roth
James Duff ("Light and Shadows"–"Such Sweet Sorrow, Part 2")
Heather Kadin
Gretchen J. Berg ("Brother"–"The Sounds of Thunder")
Aaron Harberts ("Brother"–"The Sounds of Thunder")
Alex Kurtzman
Based Upon Star Trek Created by
Gene Roddenberry
Created by
Bryan Fuller
Alex Kurtzman
Supervising Associate Producer
Dana N. Wilson
Associate Producer
Emma Sampson
Production Managers
David Till
B.E. Sharp
First Assistant Director
Woody Sidarous ("Brother")
Patrick Tidy ("New Eden")
Second Assistant Director
Ben Marrello ("Brother")
Jeff Muhsoldt ("New Eden")
Executive Story Editor
Kirsten Beyer
Story Editor
Sean Cochran
Executive Consultant
Bryan Fuller
Canadian Casting by
Lisa Parasyn, CSA
Jon Comerford, CSA
Original Star Trek Theme by
Alexander Courage
Set Decorator
Peter Nicolakakos
Property Master
Mario Moreira
Supervising Art Director
Joshu De Cartier
Art Directors
Matt Middleton
Jody Clement
First Assistant Art Directors - Motion Graphics
Timothy Peel
Stephanie Chris
Matthew Harris
Nicola Rose
First Assistant Art Director - Graphics
Andy Tsang
First Assistant Art Director - Illustration
Chris Penna
First Assistant Art Director - Illustrator (Costumes)
Bartol Rendulic ("Brother")
First Assistant Art Directors - Set Design
Michael Stanek
Hayley Isaacs
John Kim
Matt Morgan
Dan Norton ("Brother")
Emilie Poulin
Shirin Rashid
Monica Navarrette
Itsuko Kurono
Robert Emery
James Usas
Third Assistant Directors
Ross Vivian
Brooke Fifield
Script Supervisor
R. Emerson John
A Camera Operator
Francois Daignault
B Camera Operator
JP Locherer
Sound Mixer
Ao Loo
Boom Operator
Sean Armstrong
Casting Associate
Gina Gallego
Canadian Casting Assistants
Emily Johnston
Sara Dang ("New Eden")
Location Manager
Tim Owen ("Brother")
Melissa Warry-Smith ("New Eden")
Assistant Location Manager
Justin Cossette ("New Eden")
Studio Manager
Tom Nicholls ("Brother")
Robert Jones ("New Eden")
Assistant Studio Manager
Tom Nicholls ("New Eden")
Location Production Assistants
Ramin Radnik
Dan Potter
Costume Supervisor
Karen Lee
Assistant Costume Designers
Carly Nicodemo
Sydney Cavanaugh
Daina Valiulis ("Brother")
Lead Creature Designer
Neville Page
Department Head Make-Up
Shauna Llewellyn
Department Head Hair
Sandy Sokolowski
Make-Up Effects Department Heads
Glenn Hetrick
James MacKinnon
Prosthetic Makeup Special Effects and Specialty Armor Designed and Created by
Glenn Hetrick and Neville Page's Alchemy Studios
Production Accountant
Joanne Barrington
First Assistant Accountants - General
Rose Lister
Tim Hay
First Assistant Accountants - Payroll
Melanie Foley
Jesse Rupert
First Assistant Accountant - Construction
Emily Halfon
Second Assistant Accountants
Rebecca Pearson
Vanna Roopchand
Lighting Design by
Franco Tata
First Company Grip
Robert Daprato
1st Assistant A Camera
Andrew Stretch
1st Assistant B Camera
Rob Mountjoy
1st Assistant C Camera
Andrew Macklin
2nd Assistant A Camera
Stephen Gould
Digital Imaging Technician
Ron Schlueter
Production Coordinator
Alison Waxman
Script Coordinator
Dan Hindmarch
First Assistant Production Coordinators
Allison Lahav
Taylor Danton
Second Assistant Production Coordinator
Laura Miles
Office Production Assistants
Chris Stiebel
Tom Fitzpatrick
Kevin Hazlehurst
Storyboard Artist
Rob McCallum
First Assistant Art Director - Concepts
Lucas Wareing ("Brother")
First Assistant Art Directors
Jane Stoiacico ("Brother")
Tijana Petrovic ("Brother")
Digital Asset Manager
James Jarvis
Art Department Coordinators
Taylor Flook
Jennifer Jozwiak ("New Eden")
Stunt Coordinator
Christopher McGuire
Fight Coordinator
Hubert Boorder
Special Effects Coordinator
Darcy Callaghan
Special Effects Key
Mike Kavanagh
Lead Dresser
Mark Pellar
Contact Lens Supervisor
Mandy Ketcheson
Key Scenic
Jason Kirk
Head Painters
Tim Campbell
Clinton Guitard
On Set Painter
Gregory Aquila
Construction Coordinator
Marc Kuitenbrouwer
Head Carpenter
Traceley Young
On Set Carpenter
Peter Constantenides
Transportation Coordinator
Rob Davis
Transportation Captain
Andrew Langevin
Transportation Co-Captain
Craig Dwyer
VFX Supervisor
Ante Dekovic
VFX Producer
Aleksandra Kochoska
VFX Lead Artist
Charles Collyer
Lead VFX Coordinator
Julie Rothfarb
VFX Coordinators
Shawn Ewashko
Chelsea Wynne
Valeria Rocha
VFX Plate Supervisor
Alex Wood
Associate VFX Supervisor
Mahmoud Rahnama
VFX Previs Supervisor
Stephen J. Pavelski
Additional Editing by
John Mullin ("New Eden")
Assistant Editor
Matthew Kovach ("Brother")
VFX Editor
Jason Sikora
VFX Assistant Editors
Kevin Laneave
Greg Minihan
Post Production Coordinator
Ruben Michael Molina
Post Production Assistant
Ryan Miles
Researcher
Anthony Maranville
Assistants to the Writers
Chris Silvestri
Brandon Schultz
Dialect Coach
Rea Nolan
Additional Dialect Coach
Jeffrey Simlett
Translator
Robyn Stewart
Craft Services
Star Grazing Inc.
Servers
Darlene Ibbitson
Monica Madden
On Set Caterers
Gourmet Catering
Assistants to A. Kurtzman
Robyn Johnson
May Darmon
Monica Shapiro ("New Eden")
Assistant to G. Berg and A. Harberts
Chris Danby
Assistant to H. Kadin
Megan Talmidge
Assistant to A. Baiers
Kristen Gross
Executive Assistant Toronto
Cornelia Audrey
Sound Services by
Warner Bros. Post Production Creative Services
Sound Supervisor
Matthew E. Taylor
Sound Designer
Tim Farrell
Re-Recording Mixers
Alexander Gruzdev
Brad Sherman
Mix Tech
Brad Bell
Dialogue Editor
Sean Heissinger
Sound Effects Editor
Michael Schapiro
Foley Artists
Hilda Hodges ("Brother")
Chris Moriana
Alyson Moore ("New Eden")
Foley Mixer
John Sanacore, MPSE, C.A.S.
Sound Assistant Editors
Deron Street
Damon Cohoon ("New Eden")
Music Editor
Matt Decker
Score Engineer and Mixer
Michael Perfitt
Scoring Assistant
Perrine Virgile
Orchestrator
Amie Doherty
MIDI Tech
Tracie Turnbull
Score Wrangler
Matea Prljevic
Camera, Lenses, and Post Production Services by
SIM
SIM Supervising Producer
Byron Smith
SIM Online Editor
Chad Cole
Final Colorist
Todd Bochner
Editing Systems
Pacific Post
Grip and Lighting Equipment by
Sim Lighting and Grip
Main Title Design by
Prologue
Visual Effects by
Pixomondo
Crafty Apes
Ghost VFX
FX3X ("Brother")
Produced with the Participation of the
Canadian Production Services Tax Credit
Secret Hideout
Roddenberry Entertainment
CBS All Access Originals
CBS Television Studios
Netflix

Uncredited

See also

External link


Previous Season:
DIS Season 1
Seasons of
Star Trek: Discovery
Next Season:
DIS Season 3
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