Today CBS Announced that Michelle Yeoh will reprise her role as former Emperor, and phony Captain Phillipa Georgiou in the upcoming Star Trek Discovery Spin-off Star Trek Section 31.
We had explored the possibility of a Section 31 series a couple of months ago in The Search for Story: Birth of the Federation, and again recently covered the concept for the upcoming series starring Michelle Yeoh in our breakdown of the seven Star Trek series to be on the air by 2020.
Season 2 star trek Discovery Agent Gorgiou copyright CBS
By all appearances a part of Season 2 of Star Trek: Discovery will serve as a backdoor pilot for the series in which the mirror doppelgänger of Captain Georgiou will complete missions for the secret espionage branch of Starfleet. Likely to be for an older audience with violence and questionable moral decisions it’s an interesting way to move forward with a part of the universe good moral citizens may not feel comfortable working in. It’s being called something of a Jack Bauer meets Star Trek type series.
The powers behind the Star Trek franchise have long wanted to delve deeper into the stories of Section 31, as far back as 1998 there was rumoured interest in pursuing a series that would follow the exploits of their operatives who would seem on both Star Trek Deep Space Nine and Star Trek Enterprise before returning last year to Star Trek Discovery.
Why the Emperor was the only way to make this series work
The real problem with developing a series around an organization like Section 31 is that the main character is instantly at odds with either the series or the franchise.
At its core Star Trek is about the true good nature of people, so to take one of these redeemable or generally good people and put them into a situation where they do bad things or grey things leads them to either try to take the organization down, or to at least somehow actively work against them.
As much as Alias was a good show for its time I’m not sure we want to actually watch a series about a character like Malcolm Reed, or Julian Bashir recruited from their regular jobs into their fantasy job of being a spy just to watch them ultimately subvert the system they’re joining and take down the entire origination.
The upshot to starting off with a character from the mirror universe is that she doesn’t have to be a good person, in fact we know she’s a cruel, evil, murderer, slave driver, and the list of bad things goes on and on, so going to just being a monster is already a redemption for her by our standards.
This means we can have a series about a person enjoying doing bad things in the Star Trek universe and actually root for them. When you take that into context, it’s really the only way it would work.
A great lead actress to take on the role
Outside of the character issues that they’ve already tackled by casting the former emperor in the role, and regardless of your personal feelings about Star Trek Discovery, it’s a big win for the franchise to land an actress the calibre of Michelle Yeoh to anchor this series. We here at Redshirts Always Die are thrilled at the prospect of this series moving forward and look forward to providing you coverage as news and eventually episodes are released.