(written from a Production point of view)
The USS Discovery battles against Control in a fight not only for their lives but for the future, with a little help from some unexpected friends. Spock and Burnham discern vital new connections between the red signals while Burnham faces one of life’s harshest truths: the right decisions are often the hardest to make. (Season finale)
The USS Discovery and the USS Enterprise, leading a fleet of armed shuttles and other small craft, are at red alert, ready for battle with Control and its Section 31 fleet. As Burnham and Spock rush into action, Captain Pike, commanding the fleet from the Enterprise, orders a channel open to all ships, reminding them that they had one job: to get Burnham and the Discovery through the wormhole into the future. Once Burnham launched with the Daedalus Project suit, one squadron of shuttles would cover her, while two more would be on the front line of defense against Control's fleet. The Enterprise would maintain fire to distract them, but once Burnham launched, her safety would be priority. "This is Starfleet," he reminds them. "Get it done." He then asks Saru, commanding the Discovery, for an update on the suit; Saru reports that they are synthesizing the components now. In the Discovery's engine room, the crew scrambles to synthesize and assemble the individual components of the suit. Detmer and Una Chin-Riley calculate the distance Burnham needs to be from the battle in order to avoid pulling any Section 31 ships into the future with her or destroying any of the ships in their own fleet in the wormhole's event horizon. Spock would be on comms throughout to guide her. Burnham asks Reno how long before the time crystal is charged; the engineer gives an estimate under of a little over four minutes, and informs Burnham that she can't make it any faster than that.
Rhys scans the Section 31 fleet, and only finds one life sign: Leland. The rest of the ships appear to be empty, and Georgiou confirms that they are being controlled by drones, "nasty ones." Bryce reports the subspace relays are still down, leaving them unable to contact Starfleet, but he is attempting to circumvent. Saru realizes that it was just the two ships and their fleet of small craft. When Tilly asks if he has any words of wisdom, Saru replies: "Be extremely subtle, even to the point of formlessness. Be extremely mysterious, even to the point of soundlessness." Georgiou finishes the quote: "Thereby you can be the director of your opponent's fate." She expresses surprise that a Kelpien "of all beings" had studied Sun Tzu, to which Saru reports he is surprised a Terran is surprised at anything. Bryce then reports an incoming transmission from Leland. Saru makes clear to the crew that while they will see a Human face, Leland was not Human anymore. The crew acknowledges, and Saru orders the channel opened. Georgiou mockingly congratulates Leland: everyone hated him now. "Give me what I've come for, or die for it," Leland threatens. Saru demands that, under authority granted him by the Articles of the Federation and the Starfleet Charter, Leland is to surrender his ships without terms. Leland makes his ultimatum again: transmit the Sphere data to him, or be destroyed. Georgiou points out that by her count, they had approximately two hundred ships to Leland's thirty. "Count again," is his chilling reply, as the Section 31 ships launch thousands of drones.
Rhys warns of multiple photon torpedo locks on the Discovery, and Saru orders evasive maneuvers; Pike orders the Enterprise to reroute power to forward shields and fire a full spread of phasers. The Enterprise and the Discovery are surrounded by a fireworks display of weapons fire that causes hull breaches on both ships. Reno reports the crystal charge is at 98 percent: one more minute will charge it fully. As Pike orders all squadrons to attack the drones, Po hails from DSC 12, one of the shuttles in the fleet, which is positioned directly beneath the Section 31 ships. After admitting she stole the shuttle and was invoking diplomatic immunity for the crime, Po warns that she noticed something "off-key" about the Section 31 drones, and explains they had a refracted lattice shield design, and that they could not be taken out one-on-one; they had to be taken out by two ships, attacking the port and starboard shield emitters simultaneously. Pike asks if she's sure; Po emphasizes she would put her life on it. Pike instructs all ships to team up and "follow the queen." Po leads the charge, blasting through the drones threatening the Discovery.
Saru orders Rhys to set all phasers to automatic targeting and maximum power, and then instructs Owosekun to bring the emergency generators online. Georgiou reminds Saru that Leland would not destroy the ship immediately – he would take the data, and then break the ship down for parts. When Saru impatiently asks if she had anything relevant to add, Georgiou suggests inviting Leland aboard. Saru indignantly replies that it was not a two-pronged mission, and that whatever her intentions, first priority was getting the Discovery to safety with Burnham. "For you, perhaps," Georgiou retorts, pointing out that Saru should know her well enough to know that she left little to chance, especially with revenge. Just then, Reno emerges with the fully-charged time crystal. Saru sends Tilly down to engineering with her to make sure it gets safely to Burnham; Reno cheerfully explains to Tilly that he meant "in case one of us gets dead along the way."
A group of drones cease their attack and take position off the Discovery's port bow; Pike realizes they intended to make a run on the Discovery and weaken her shields. He orders power diverted to the starboard shields, and to place the Enterprise between the drones and the Discovery. The Enterprise takes a great deal of the incoming fire, but so too does the Discovery. Pike recognizes that Leland is controlling the drones from the lead ship, and orders weapons locked on its shield generators. At the same time, aboard Discovery, Burnham, Spock, Stamets, Nhan, Nilsson, Tilly, and Reno rush the suit to the shuttlebay. A hull breach damages the turbolift shafts and causes debris to smash through into the corridor, knocking them all off their feet. Stamets is seriously injured, and Tilly and Nilsson take him to sickbay; Reno hands Burnham the crystal and remains behind to repair the damage, while Burnham, Spock, and Nhan continue to the shuttlebay. Sickbay has become overloaded, and Dr. Pollard asks Saru if any free hands could help them; Saru apologetically responds that he had no one to spare, and tells her simply to do her best.
In the shuttlebay, the suit is ready. Spock reminds Burnham that it was both her mother and herself, and encourages her to trust in what they have done together. Burnham firmly replies that she does, as she hands the crystal to Spock, who puts it inside the suit. Burnham then steps forward and dons the suit. Spock will go out in a shuttle and guide her in, to Burnham's protests, as he had been intended only to guide her on comms. Spock makes clear there was no time for debate, and that he would return to the Discovery as soon as the wormhole was open. Spock raises his right hand in the Vulcan salute, while Burnham raises her left, before they touch palms – as siblings – before Spock tells her to stay in his wake. Burnham activates the helmet of her suit and moves towards the shuttlebay force field. Spock informs the Discovery bridge that they were preparing to launch, and asks the shuttlebay force field and the aft shields to be lowered. Saru relays their readiness to Pike, remarking that covering fire would be "most appreciated". Pike hails all ships, telling them that the calculated time for Burnham to reach safe distance and open the wormhole was two minutes, 47 seconds, and instructs all ships to form a "cocoon" around Burnham until she reached her destination. Po acknowledges: if Burnham didn't make it far enough from the battlefield to open the wormhole, they wouldn't either.
As Saru counts down, Burnham readies herself; at "one", Spock's shuttle launches, and Burnham takes off running before the suit propels her into the maelstrom of battle. The shuttles and attack flyers surround her at all angles, ensuring that she is not hit by enemy fire. Getting used to the suit controls and narrowly avoiding being hit by flying debris (and shuttles being knocked back by enemy attack), Burnham powers through. Pike orders all ships to form a protective barrier, with the Enterprise and the Discovery taking the lead, to ensure Burnham reaches her target. As Spock and Burnham continue on, Owosekun reports that something beamed aboard while the shields were down; just then, Leland enters the bridge, phaser rifle in hand, and begins firing. The bridge crew ducks for cover, while Georgiou draws her own phaser and fires at Leland. Several crew members are blasted down, and Owosekun takes a hit at her station, before Leland locks himself in the science lab, going for the Sphere data. Amin reports to Pike that Leland was aboard the Discovery. Both the Enterprise and the Discovery would have to lower shields for a team to beam aboard; both Pike and Admiral Cornwell know they can't do that. Georgiou tries to override the security codes, while Nhan tries to unlock the door manually. As they work, Georgiou cheerfully invites Nhan to join her in "making Leland scream" once they broke through.
Spock and Burnham reach safe distance, landing on a large piece of debris nearby. However, the suit computer indicates that there were "insufficient vertices" calculated; the suit's navigation system appears to be stuck in the present, and Burnham frustratedly tries to figure out why. The Enterprise's saucer section is breached by an undetonated photon torpedo; if the warhead went off, it would blow a hole in the saucer four decks wide. Burnham realizes that this is what she saw when she touched the crystal – this was how it all began.
Amin reports that the torpedo is lodged on Deck 5, Section 2, and the warhead was live. Pike orders blast shields activated in those sections, and orders Mann to deploy the DOT-7 repair drones. Amin warns that only one of the blast doors in that section will activate; the other is jammed. Cornwell and Number One both leave to try and disarm the torpedo themselves, with the admiral telling Nicola to get her schematics of the weapon. The Discovery is not on any steadier ground, with shields failing. They would not survive a trip in the wormhole without shields, if they were able to get there at all. Burnham is having no luck with the temporal navigation, either; she frantically tries to figure out how to send them forward. She supposedly sent out seven red burst signals, but they had only encountered five, asking why would she bring them all that way to get stuck in that moment, to die there.
Nhan and Georgiou are close to getting the door open, but the ship is being torn apart around them; life support is down on multiple decks, and the shields are about to fail completely. Owosekun suddenly detects a massive energy signature – as a Klingon cleave ship suddenly decloaks, tearing several Section 31 vessels apart. Rhys detects non-Klingon power signatures as well, and Saru is shocked to recognize Ba'ul fighters. A transmission comes in, and adding to Saru's shock, it's from his sister Siranna, piloting one of the fighters. She received his message, and promises he will never fight alone again. Saru is surprised that she has learned how to fly a fighter. Siranna explains that one of their crew called on them to join the fight. As if to answer Saru's question who, the Enterprise is hailed by the Klingons, and Pike is relieved to see Chancellor L'Rell with Tyler at her side. Tyler apologizes for being late, but Pike is grateful for the help, and points out they brought friends. L'Rell remarks that they were not the friends she would choose, but that the Klingon Empire would fight to preserve the future. The D7 would arrive momentarily, and L'Rell requests tactical analysis of all enemy ships. She orders her forces to destroy the enemy armada, declaring "today is a good day to die". Saru warns Siranna that the Section 31 ships have altered course to intercept her fleet, and asks her to promise she will stay safe; Siranna replies she promises to fight as a Kelpien, as she leads the "warriors of Kaminar" into battle.
As he listens to Saru explaining about the Klingons and Kelpiens joining the fight, Spock realizes that this was what the signal on Kaminar was intended for: not simply to liberate the Kelpiens from the Ba'ul, but to prepare them for the battle to come. The signals brought them to what they would need for the battle in the present: to the asteroid, for Reno; to Boreth, to obtain the time crystal; to Xahea, for Po, the one person who could power it; and to Terralysium, for safe harbor once they made it through the wormhole. Burnham admits she had seen them fail, had seen them all die. Spock reminds her that the crystal had shown her a possible future… in order to avoid it. Burnham realizes that they didn't know from where in the future she jumped to send the signals, but now she is certain that it was from that very moment, during the battle, that she had traveled. In order for them to go forward, Burnham first had to go back – to send the five earlier signals, which she had not done yet. They had been stuck in an open loop, and now Burnham had all the pieces to close it… and once she did, Control could not evolve. Burnham would start at the asteroid and go from there; Spock promises to lead her back to the present, but as to whether they would get to the future they wanted, he was not certain. Spock was asking Burnham to take "a leap of faith" – one, he adds, that was only logical. Burnham begins setting the coordinates accordingly.
Aboard the Discovery, Leland/Control is unable to access the Sphere data, just as Georgiou and Nhan force open the doors and fire on him. They comment that he looks well "for a couple of batteries and a data core stuffed in a meat sack", which Georgiou compares to an "AI sausage" (much to Nhan's disgust). Georgiou holds up a quantum signal amplifier, which Leland had given to Georgiou to transmit the Sphere data - which was why he wouldn't be able to find it anywhere in the Discovery's data banks. Leland/Control becomes impatient, asking where he would access "his" data, to which Nhan cheerfully replies there were "so many fun ways" to answer. The ship shudders from weapons fire, distracting Leland/Control long enough for Georgiou and Nhan to break off running. Meanwhile, on the Enterprise, Cornwell and Number One arrive on Deck 5 just as Pike asks for an update. Number One reports the blast door is jammed, and she is attempting to reroute power to the secondary systems. Cornwell adds the situation is "bad", and when asked to clarify, explains that the torpedo's secondary detonation has been triggered; in fifteen minutes, the torpedo would go off and destroy half the ship.
In the Discovery's sickbay, Tilly and Nilsson bring Stamets in, and Dr. Pollard asks for another pair of hands. Nilsson volunteers, and tells Tilly to get back to the bridge. Tilly apologizes to Stamets before she leaves. As Stamets becomes delirious from the pain, Dr. Culber approaches and examines him; due to the severity of his injuries, Culber would have to induce a coma, but he promises Stamets he would be fine. He admits he thought he could make his home on the Enterprise, but realized that Stamets was his home, and so he came back, and that everything always came back around Stamets; he was just sorry it took him so long to see it. As Stamets fades into unconsciousness, Culber promises that wherever they went from there, they would go together.
Burnham has calculated all five of the jumps; Spock reminds her the future is still unwritten, and that the outcome could still change – just as a weapon impact smashes through the piece of debris, knocking Burnham aside and damaging the shuttle. Spock urges Burnham to go immediately, and Burnham activates the first jump. The wings of her suit extend, and the battle around her comes to a stop, frozen in time. The wormhole opens in front of her and pulls Burnham into it. The Red Angel has taken flight.
Appearing alone in a black void at first, Burnham is propelled through space and time, her terror at the journey becoming awe as she begins to approach the first signal: the USS Hiawatha. Burnham appears before her past, injured self in the wreckage of the Hiawatha, just as she had seen. She is then yanked back to the second signal on Terralysium – the red burst detected in orbit, and the Discovery arriving to save the planet from nuclear winter. From there, it's on to the third signal.
Back aboard the Discovery, Leland/Control demands "his" data and fights both Georgiou and Nhan as the ship is being torn apart around them. The shields have failed in zone four; Tilly is in the zone, and goes to make the necessary repairs, which she admits she has only done once, and it was while blindfolded for a drinking game. Meanwhile, artificial gravity begins to fail in the area where Georgiou and Nhan fight with Leland/Control, being rolled through the corridors and even standing on the ceiling. Leland/Control comments that it does not need to be this hard, to which Georgiou retorts that "not hard is boring" and she hates boring. She is able to momentarily distract him with a phaser blast to the face which distorts his features, allowing her to flee while he recovers. Meanwhile, Burnham arrives on Kaminar during the confrontation with the Ba'ul, flying down to the surface, where she is seen by Saru in the Ba'ul stronghold.
On the Enterprise, Cornwell and Number One work on the torpedo. The matter/antimatter intermix regulator is still functional, so Cornwell cannot disable the torpedo. Number One, unable to repair the blast door, suggests inputting a conflicting command in the torpedo's guidance system to shut it down until it acquires another target. She reports to Pike that they were in the "Hail Mary" part of the operation, sometime Pike remarks they had been in all day; he asks for an estimated time until the torpedo detonates, and Number One reports less than five minutes. Pike orders Number One back to the bridge, as he's turning the conn over to her, and will come down to join Cornwell. Aboard the Klingon cleave ship, as the battle rages, L'Rell takes a glancing injury to her head, causing her to laugh; she had thought her Chancellorship would be bloodless. Tyler orders the weapons officer to return fire and destroy those who would harm their Chancellor. L'Rell orders the D7s to target the drone fleet, promising they would "wade knee deep in the ruin of our enemies".
Burnham arrives at the fourth and fifth signals, on Boreth and Xahea, and then returns to the present. She recalls that her mother's anchor point was on Terralysium, 950 years in the future from where she left on Doctari Alpha twenty years earlier. She hails Discovery and tells them to set coordinates for Terralysium, 930 years in the future. Saru warns that the quantum fluctuations within the wormhole makes it difficult to track her with standard sensors, and asks how she plans to guide them through. Burnham replies that she would send a signal – a sixth signal, like the North Star, which would let them follow her to the other side. On the Enterprise, Pike is approaching the briefing room, and Number One stands by to assist. On the Discovery, the fight between Georgiou and Leland/Control has now reached the engine room, where Georgiou locks him inside the reaction cube for the spore drive.
Pike and Cornwell continue to work feverishly on the torpedo, but nothing they have tried is working; the torpedo will detonate in ninety seconds. Cornwell volunteers to pull the emergency lever for the blast door, sacrificing herself to seal off the ship and contain the damage once the torpedo detonated. Pike refuses, but Cornwell points out they had no time – if they don't contain the damage, the torpedo will go off and likely kill everyone on the ship. Pike retorts that if she does it, she would die, reminding her that the Enterprise was his ship, his responsibility. Cornwell replies that his story won't end there, and he knows it. Pike, knowing from the time crystal what his future would be, speculates that if he did have a different future, the torpedo wouldn't go off with him in there. Cornwell concedes this, but asks how many people would pay the price if he was wrong. Reluctantly, Pike gives in, and returns to the turbolift. Cornwell tells him that whatever his path may be, he could handle it. She then triggers the blast door, sealing herself inside with the torpedo. Pike watches through the window of the blast door as Cornwell is vaporized by the torpedo detonation, which breaches the saucer. The Discovery sees the detonation, and Saru worriedly calls to the Enterprise. Pike grimly reports they are alright, but that the admiral has been lost.
Saru calls to Burnham, telling her they have run out of time. Burnham is prepared, and tells Spock to return to the Discovery. Spock, however, cannot leave; the shuttle's engines were disabled by the weapon impact, and the Discovery is too damaged to risk lowering her shields to bring him aboard. Burnham is shaken; she has just gotten Spock back in her life, and doesn't want to lose him again. Spock admits he feels the same, but that she had never lost him: she had taught him that he could walk in the worlds of both his father and his mother. He calls Burnham his "balance", and admits he is afraid he will not be able to find it again without her. Burnham offers her "last advice" to her little brother, telling him that there was a galaxy of people who would reach for him, and that he had to let them – and to find the person who seems farthest from him, and reach for them, and let them guide him. Spock promises he will, and wishes he could be certain of her safety. Burnham assures him that he will be – she will send the last signal to confirm it.
As Leland/Control continues to try breaking out of the reaction cube, Georgiou magnetizes it, just as Spock had done to Gant on the abandoned Section 31 ship. At the same time, Pike returns to the bridge of the Enterprise, as Spock reports that his shuttle is disabled and he cannot return to the Discovery. Pike orders him to hold position, and asks Saru on the status of the Discovery's shields. Tilly is able to bring the shields back up to 40% – more than enough to see them through. Spock is beamed back to the Enterprise, and Burnham activates the suit for the jump. As the battle continues to rage, the Red Angel takes flight once again, and Saru orders Detmer to follow her signal. Pike orders all ships to clear a path as the drone ships attempt to stop Discovery, and bids farewell to his friend Saru and his family aboard the Discovery. In sickbay, Culber tells the unconscious Stamets that they were on their way; in engineering, Leland/Control tells Georgiou that it will not end there. Georgiou smugly corrects him, and also tells him that the magnetization will be painful… and that she would like to hear him start screaming. As the nanotechnology in Leland's body is pulled to the floor, Control obliges her. With Leland/Control disabled, the Section 31 fleet is dead in the water, and Pike orders Amin to open fire. Using Enterprise's phasers, Amin finishes off the defenseless drone ships. Georgiou reports to the bridge that Leland is dead, and Control is neutralized.
All around, those who were brought together for the battle watch the Red Angel guide the Discovery into the wormhole – Po, from her shuttle, Siranna, from her Ba'ul fighter, L'Rell and Tyler, from the cleave ship, and Pike and Spock, from the Enterprise. The Discovery crew begins to feel the wormhole effects as they follow Burnham in. As the Discovery enters, the wormhole closes. The Enterprise – a portion of her saucer destroyed – flies past, joining the rest of the fleet.
At Starfleet Headquarters in San Francisco, Pike, Number One, Spock, and Tyler are debriefed by Starfleet Command, where they report that the Discovery was destroyed during the battle. The Starfleet interviewers tell them that just before the Discovery disappeared, they detected high energy gamma radiation and gravitational waves consistent with a quantum singularity. All four of them have no answer for that, all saying they saw the Discovery explode. When asked about Burnham, Pike replies that she went "above and beyond" before her death, and blames Section 31 for the whole catastrophe. Starfleet Command agrees, promising to reform Section 31 to make it more transparent; they name Tyler as its new commander, as both his unique dual existence as Tyler and Voq and his rational thinking made him ideal for the job and reassure him that they have destroyed all that remains of Control completely. Spock warns that the destruction of the Discovery does not entirely eliminate the problem, and suggests that to ensure nothing of this type can happen again, all participants in the event will be barred from ever speaking of the Discovery, her crew, or the spore drive again, under penalty of prosecution for treason.
- "Personal log, stardate 1201.7. 124 days have passed since your disappearance. It has been difficult, but we've managed not to reveal the truth of Discovery's fate to Starfleet. To have done so was to have risked rendering your sacrifice meaningless. If we learned anything, we learned we're not yet ready to learn everything. Mother and Father are diplomatically immune from interrogation, and they fully understand our silence is meant to keep you safe. We have sworn never to speak your name in the presence of others. Yet I feel you with me, always. With every moment, I grow more sure-footed in this… in-between place, more certain of who I am becoming. You teach me, sister, even now. Every night, I look to the stars for your signal, and every night, I have to remind myself of the scientific truth that time is relative. One hundred and twenty-four days for one is the blink of an eye for another. It is difficult to reconcile logically, but to paraphrase an Earth physicist: 'The universe is under no obligation to make sense to me.' I believe that you were successful. I choose to believe it. That is the only gift I have left to give you. It may not be logical, but I am.… proud to bear it."
Some four months later, in Earth orbit, the Enterprise is in Drydock, having been repaired from the battle. Spock – now clean-shaven and back in uniform – arrives on the bridge, remarking that Number One had detected an anomaly. Pike confirms they have located the seventh and final signal in the Beta Quadrant, fifty-one thousand light years away. Spock goes to run the analytics, while Pike remarks a new moon has been found at Edrin II; Number One confirms this. Pike suggests they take the Enterprise out for a spin, and asks Spock if that sounded good to him. Spock replies that it does: "Let us see what the future holds." Number One reports they were ready for warp, and Pike gives the order. The Enterprise sets out to continue its mission, as a red burst of light flashes in the stars.
- "Personal log, stardate 1201.7. 124 days have passed since your disappearance. It has been difficult, but we've managed not to reveal the truth of Discovery's fate to Starfleet. To have done so was to have risked rendering your sacrifice meaningless. If we learned anything, we learned we're not yet ready to learn everything. Mother and Father are diplomatically immune from interrogation, and they fully understand our silence is meant to keep you safe. We have sworn never to speak your name in the presence of others. Yet I feel you with me, always. With every moment, I grow more sure-footed in this… in-between place, more certain of who I am becoming. You teach me, sister, even now. Every night, I look to the stars for your signal, and every night, I have to remind myself of the scientific truth that time is relative. 124 days for one is the blink of an eye for another. It is difficult to reconcile logically, but to paraphrase an Earth physicist: 'The universe is under no obligation to make sense to me.' I believe that you were successful. I choose to believe it. That is the only gift I have left to give you. It may not be logical, but I am… proud to bear it."
"This is Captain Pike. We have one job: To get Commander Burnham and Discovery through the wormhole. Section 31 is in our way. Once Burnham launches in the suit, second squadron will match course and speed to cover her and defend her perimeter. Squadrons three and four will be the front line of defense against the Section 31 fleet. You will lead the attack and draw their fire to give us the time we need. Enterprise will maintain fire on the fleet to cause distraction as long as we can, but as soon as Burnham is detected out there… we have to keep her safe. All shuttles and pods, use attack formation Gamma Six. Squadrons one and three, coordinate positions to disrupt and target all main enemy vessels. This is Starfleet. Get it done."
- - Pike, addressing the fleet
"In English please. I can't blow a path through what you're saying."
- - Number One, reacting to Lt. Detmer
"Any words of wisdom?"
"'Be extremely subtle, even to the point of formlessness. Be extremely mysterious, even to the point of soundlessness.'"
"'Thereby you can be the director of your opponent's fate.' I'm surprised a Kelpien, of all beings, has studied Sun Tzu."
"I am surprised a Terran is surprised by anything."
- - Sylvia Tilly, Saru, and Philippa Georgiou
"Leland. We were just talking about you. Everybody hates you. Congratulations."
- - Georgiou, when Leland hails the fleet
"By authority granted me under the Articles of the Federation and Starfleet Charter, I order you to surrender your vessels! No terms, no deals!"
- - Saru, to Leland
"Good to go. Crystal's fully charged."
"Ensign Tilly, go with her and make sure it gets to Commander Burnham safely."
(aside, to Tilly) "He means in case one of us gets dead along the way."
"I'm going, I'm going! Get off my ass! Sir. Get off my ass, sir."
- - Reno and Saru
"No, I'm gonna do a half-assed job because now's the perfect time."
- - Dr. Pollard's sarcastic opinion of Saru telling her to "do her best"
"Today is a good day to die!"
- - L'Rell and the crew of the Klingon cleave ship
"Leland, you look well."
"For a couple of batteries and a data core stuffed in a meat sack."
"Kind of like an AI sausage."
- - Georgiou and Nhan, on Leland/Control's Human form
"Captain, plans A and B didn't work. We're now into the 'Hail Mary' part of the operation."
"That's been just about everything today."
- Number One and Pike
"Tell the D7 to target the drone fleet that attacks Discovery. We will wade knee deep through the ruin of our enemies."
- - L'Rell
- This episode is part two of a two-part season finale.
- The title of this episode comes from William Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet: "Parting is such sweet sorrow that I shall say goodnight till it be morrow."
Story and script
- Aaron Harberts considered several alternative ways to explain how the spore drive would reconcile with Star Trek: The Original Series. While working on this issue, he recognized that it could be classified although he was aware there were many other options. (Star Trek Magazine issue 192, p. 6)
Cast and characters
- This marks the final episode of Star Trek: Discovery to feature both Anson Mount ("Christopher Pike") and Shazad Latif ("Ash Tyler") as series regulars.
- The creative staff decided to achieve the effect of Burnham traveling through the wormhole using a combination of practical elements, including sparks, and CGI. "It was actually Alex [Kurtzman] who had this […] idea about having these live sparks instead of doing the whole thing CG," stated Jason Zimmerman, "and then using CG to really elevate it further with the wide body shots." 
Music and sound
- Composer Jeff Russo had to write music for the sequence where Burnham goes through a wormhole, traveling back in time. "I don't know what it would feel like to time travel, but all I needed to concern myself with was 'How would she feel?' I know how it would feel to see something that you've never seen before; you feel your heart beat faster, you hear yourself screaming inside your head, with awe, and all of those things can be embodied in music," he reasoned. "And that was really what I needed to be concerned with there. How is she taking all this in? I started with the tempo of your heartbeat about 72 BPM, and I started to increase that tempo as we got farther and farther into the wormhole, because I kind of felt like her heartbeat would probably get faster and faster and faster and faster and faster, until all of the sudden she was there, and then tempo drops back down and she's calm again… because she's now seeing something that she had already seen." 
- A few musical cues from this episode were released in the soundtrack collection Star Trek: Discovery - Season 2. The first, "Ready", accompanies Burnham making final preparations to depart from Discovery in the Red Angel suit. However, the album version of the track features a percussive intro which, in the episode, is actually a brief excerpt from a cue which is audible in the scene that depicts Cornwell and Chin-Riley working on the as-yet-undetonated photon torpedo. Another cue, "Time Traveler", accompanies the start of Burnham's voyage through the wormhole and her revisits to the events on the asteroid and Terralysium. Another of the compositions, "Change", serves as accompaniment for the scene in which Cornwell sacrifices herself in order to save the Enterprise. The scenes in which, firstly, Pike responds to a call from Spock by planning to beam him from his shuttle to the Enterprise and, secondly, Tilly restores Discovery's shields to forty percent reprise part of a cue which was used in the Season 2 opener "Brother", in which case it was called "Lost Communication". Another of the cues in the soundtrack collection, "Goodbye, Pike", accompanies Discovery's departure into the future and the thwarting of Control, whereas another cue, "Spock's Personal Log", plays over the episode's final scenes. This episode features a unique end credits theme, which combines the DIS theme tune with the Alexander Courage theme from Star Trek: The Original Series, as sung by a soprano vocalist, and this composition is included in the soundtrack collection too.
- This episode picks up where DIS: "Such Sweet Sorrow" left off.
- Burnham's suit computer gives the stardates of the missions to the five signals previously detected by the Discovery: The Hiawatha ("Brother", stardate 1025.19), Terralysium ("New Eden", stardate 1027.32), Kaminar ("The Sound of Thunder", stardate 1035.86), Boreth ("Through the Valley of Shadows", stardate 1048.66), and Xahea ("Such Sweet Sorrow", stardate 1050.8).
- This episode features several clips from previous episodes of the season, including scenes from each episode of the time jump sequence listed above, as well as "Light and Shadows".
- At the end of the episode, Pike orders the ship to warp, the bridge crew is shown from overhead before the camera pans out "through" the bridge ceiling, revealing the USS Enterprise in space. This technique is reminiscent of, or may be an homage to, the very first scene in the Star Trek pilot "The Cage", where the camera zooms toward the Enterprise, into the top of the saucer section, "through" the bridge dome and introduces Captain Pike and the bridge crew.
- TRR: "Such Sweet Sorrow, Part 2" discusses the making of, and events in, this episode.
- For her work on this episode, Production Designer Tamara Deverell won a Directors Guild of Canada Award in the category of Best Production Design - Dramatic Series. The installment was also nominated for an Emmy Award for Outstanding Special Visual Effects.
- Alex Kurtzman described Olatunde Osunsanmi's work on this episode as "an unbelievable job in a crazy-short period of time." In turn, Osunsanmi referred to Kurtzman's idea of combining CGI and live-action to portray Burnham's journey through the wormhole as "wonderful." 
- 12 April 2019: Title publicly revealed 
- 18 April 2019: Premiere airdate on CBS All Access
- 19 April 2019: International release date (outside Canada and the USA)
Links and references
- Sonequa Martin-Green as Michael Burnham
- Doug Jones as Saru
- Anthony Rapp as Paul Stamets
- Mary Wiseman as Sylvia Tilly
- Wilson Cruz as Hugh Culber
- Shazad Latif as Ash Tyler
Special guest star
- Jayne Brook as Katrina Cornwell
- Mary Chieffo as L'Rell
- Yadira Guevara-Prip as Me Hani Ika Hali Ka Po
- Mia Kirshner as Amanda Grayson
- Tig Notaro as Jett Reno
- Ethan Peck as Spock
- Rebecca Romijn as Una Chin-Riley
- Alan van Sprang as Leland (Control)
- Rachael Ancheril as Nhan
- Emily Coutts as Lt. Keyla Detmer
- Patrick Kwok-Choon as Lt. Gen Rhys
- Oyin Oladejo as Lt. Joann Owosekun
- Ronnie Rowe Jr. as Lt. R.A. Bryce
- Sara Mitich as Lt. Nilsson
- Raven Dauda as Dr. Tracy Pollard
- Julianne Grossman as Discovery Computer
- Zarrin Darnell-Martin as Nurse
- Glenn Hetrick as K'Vort
- Thom Marriott as Council Member
- Hannah Spear as Siranna
- Samora Smallwood as Lt. Amin
- Hanneke Talbot as Lt. Mann
- Kyana Teresa as Doctor
- Chai Valladares as Lt. Nicola
- Nicole Dickinson as Yeoman Colt
- Arista Arhin as Young Michael Burnham (archive footage)
- Avaah Blackwell as Alien bridge officer
- Hannah Cheesman as Airiam (archive footage)
- Ante Dekovic as Kroad
- Liam Hughes as Young Spock (archive footage)
- Kevin Lee as Enterprise operations crewmember
- Pamela Mars as Discovery bridge crewmember
- Taylor Martin as Klingon pilot
- Unknown performers as
- Christine Ebadi as stunt double for Rachael Ancheril
- Shara Kim as stunt double for Michelle Yeoh
- Geoff Meech as stunt double for Ethan Peck
- Daryl Patchett as stunt double for Alan van Sprang
antimatter; antimatter pod; algorithm; arcsecond; Articles of the Federation; Ba'ul fighter; battery; Battle near Xahea; bayonet joint; beer; Beta Quadrant; blast door; Boreth; D7-class; coma; composite material; Control; data core; diplomatic immunity; Discovery, USS; DOT-7; drinking game; drydock; DSC 12; DSC 23; Earth; Edrin II; emergency bulkhead; engineering coupler; Enterprise, USS; evasive maneuvers; event horizon; family; gamma ray; gravitational wave; guidance system; Hail Mary; Human; hybrid; Kaminar; Kelpien; Klingon cleave ship; landing pod; long-range sensor; magnetism; matter-antimatter intermix regulator; moon; patent; north star; oxygen sensor; particle matrix; patent; photon torpedo; quantum signal amplifier; quantum singularity; Red Angel; red burst; refracted lattice shield; sailboat; San Francisco; Sarek; sausage; Section 31; Section 31 drone ship; saucer section; shield generator; shields; silicone injector; spore cube; spore console; spore drive; SPT 21; squadron; Starfleet; Starfleet Charter; Sun Tzu; surgical spanner; Tactical flyer; Terralysium; time crystal; time travel; treason; Vulcan; Vulcan language; Tyson, Neil deGrasse; wave pattern; Xahea; worker bee; wormhole
Star Chart References
59 Eridani; Ajilon; Alhena (Gamma Geminorum); Alpha Monocerotis; Amar; Ardana; Beta Rigel; Beta Thoridar; Cursa (Beta Eridani); Boreth; Davlos (Nu Tauri); Deep Space K-7; Delta Outposts; Donatu; Elas; Epsilon Hydrae (Epsilon IV); Epsilon Monocerotis; Epsilon Outposts; Gamma 400 star system; Gamma Eridon; Ganalda; Gorath (Theta Hydrae); H'atoria; Iota Geminorum; Khitomer; Morska; No'Mat (Omicron Leonis); Organia system; Psi Cancri; Praxis; Qo'nos; Regulus; Risa (Epsilon Ceti); Rura Penthe; Sherman's Planet; Sigma Geminorum; Sol; Starbase G-6; Starbase 12; Starbase 23; Starbase 24; Starbase 157; Starbase 343; Tellun system; Troyius; Vulcan; Xarantine (Zeta Leporis); Yridia
- "Such Sweet Sorrow, Part 2 (episode)" at Memory Beta, the wiki for licensed Star Trek works
- "Discovering Such Sweet Sorrow, Part II" at MissionLogPodcast.com, a Roddenberry Star Trek podcast
"Such Sweet Sorrow"
|Star Trek: Discovery
"That Hope Is You, Part 1"