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

On the planet Kaminar, the young Kelpien Saru lives a simple and restricted life with his family but is eager to explore the universe far beyond. His ingenuity and his desire to learn more lead him to a future he never expected.


On the planet Kaminar, a young Saru and his sister farm seaweed.

The Kelpien race performs ritual self-sacrifice to maintain a sort of balance. However, Saru does not wish to participate in this ritual. He runs afoul of his father.

Saru also discovers an advanced piece of technology. He utilizes it to contact people from other worlds. He decides it is his fate to live among the stars, rather than among his people, doomed to die for reasons with which he disagrees.

He and his sister go far from their community, and after he bids farewell to her, Saru meets a representative of the world towards which he had reached; Lieutenant Philippa Georgiou. She tells him she had to get special permission by Starfleet to come here at all, and if he leaves now he can never return. Saru decides his place is no longer on Kaminar, and they leave in a shuttlecraft.

Memorable quotes

"Look down every now and then. There's beauty there as well."

- Siranna, to Saru

"My place is no longer here"

- Saru, to Georgiou accepting her proposal to leave

"I saw hope in the stars. It was stronger than fear, and I went towards it."

- Saru, final monologue

Background information

The Brightest Star teaser

Teaser image for "The Brightest Star"

  • The episode's title, synopsis, and airdate were announced on 20 September 2018. [1]
  • On the topic of the Kelpien's prey nature, Doug Jones said in an interview with The Hollywood Reporter: "When talking about it in season one, I pictured it more like cattle being herded, more of a farming situation that my people went along with... I looked at the ["Brightest Star"] script and saw it was more ritualistic. That was a bit of a surprise, but a good one that makes more sense. We're sentient beings; we're smart, we're imaginative and emotional beings that can connect and have families. So it wouldn't make sense that we would act like cattle. We accept the ritualistic religious aspect that there’s a great balance to be had, and we're a part of that." [2]
  • The Kelpien language heard in this episode was created by Marc Okrand, who previously crafted the Vulcan language and Klingonese.
  • This short was produced simultaneously with the Star Trek: Discovery episode "The Sound of Thunder", utilizing Scarborough Bluffs Park in Toronto as the Kelpien village. (TRR: "The Sound of Thunder").


  • Lieutenant Georgiou's shuttle is marked "SHN 03", implying it belongs to the USS Shenzhou. In the flashback sequences to this episode in the Star Trek: Discovery episode "The Sound of Thunder", the shuttle’s designation was changed to only read “03”, removing the “SHN”, and Georgiou is stated to have been assigned to the USS Archimedes at the time this episode of Short Treks is set.
  • Dialogue in "The Sound of Thunder" places Saru's departure from Kaminar eighteen years prior to that episode, and reveals that his attempt to reach out led Starfleet to make first contact with the Ba'ul, who had achieved warp drive two years earlier.

Home video releases

Links and references





Ba'ul; Ba'ul ship; beacon; birds; Class C shuttlecraft; death; fredalia; Great Balance; harvest; hope; Kaminar; kelp; Kelpien; Kelpien language; night-blooming flower; pre-warp civilization; pack; priest; ritual sacrifice; SHN 03; Starfleet; stars; vahar'ai; Watchful Eye; wing

External links

Previous episode:
Star Trek: Short Treks
Season 1
Next episode:
"The Escape Artist"
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