Star Trek Discovery: Terra Firma

Copyright CBS

By Owen Quinn author of the Time Warriors and Zombie Blues

One thing I love is a What If? scenario. So Star Trek’s Mirror Universe is always and forever a firm favourite for me. Deep Space 9 did it best and Star Trek Discovery continues that tradition in absolute delicious style. Indeed Discovery has grabbed the concept by the throat and made it ripr than ever.

Terra firma parts one and two see Emperor Philippa Georgiou actress Michelle Yeoh who has not only crossed over from the other universe into ours but been transported 900 years into the future along with the rest of the crew. Yeou has delighted audiences with her fiery portrayal of a ruthless dictator whose only vulnerability is her love for ‘daughter’ Michael burnham played by the Walking Dead’s Sonequa Martin- Green. In the Mirror Universe Philippa lost her Michael. In our universe Michael caused her captain’s death when she disobeyed orders. In the battle with Control, Philippa teamed up with Section 31, the dark secret of the Federation to suit her own needs.

To save everyone the Discovery crew travelled 900 years into the future only to find a shattered Federation and an universe very different from what they assumed it would be. Philippa has been suffering convulsions and phasing. It turns out she is being ripped apart because she is out of time and space. Both universes have drifted apart and pulling hr with it. She will die unless they find a cure.

Travelling to a barren world with Michael in hopes of a cure they find a man in a bowler hat reading a newspaper beside a door; a door Philippa must walk through if she has any chance of surviving. To her surprise she finds herself back in the Mirror Universe where she grabs the chance to put right what went wrong. This time she is going to save Michael from death.

Terra Firma beautifully weaves not only Deep Space 9 and the JJ Abrams’ alternative Star Trek universe into the tale to great effect. Yeou gives the performance of a lifetime. Her experiences with the Discovery crew have changed her and this time she tries to set things right with not only Michael but Saru too. The scenes between the two are electric as she gives the Kelpien hope that his life as a slave and food is so much more. Treachery is the currency of the Mirror Universe and here it comes in abundance. The fight scenes are brillaint as Philippa tries to put right what once went wrong. But to say any more would be to spoil it for you. Th episode’s reveal of just who the man in the bowler hat is just blew me away and forever cemented this show as the Trek we all needed. As I said it weaves many Trek threads together and this one is fantastic and also adds to the overall story.

Just watch it and be ready for a what is probably the most satisfying two parter in trek history alongside the Picard showcase Chain of Command.

Stunning television that is not to be missed.

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