‘Star Trek’ has always been defined by its inclusive nature, depicting a peaceful Earth society, where humanity has finally overcome its differences and has taken to the stars to spread this message of hope and unity.
The latest piece of the ‘Trek’ puzzle arrives this fall in the form of ‘Star Trek: Discovery’ which will be coming to the streaming service CBS All Access. Once again, the show will carry on the message of unity by focusing on Sonequa Martin-Green‘s character First Officer Michael Burnham as well as her Captain, Georgiou played by another woman of color played by Michelle Yeoh.
Adding even more diversity is Lt. Stamets, an anastromycologist (fungus expert), who is the first openly gay character on a ‘Trek’ series. He will suitably be played by gay actor Anthony Rapp, perhaps best known for playing Mark on Broadway and in the movie adaptation of ‘Rent’.
But how large a role will Lt. Stamets play in the show? Is he just a token character or something more? As it turns out, Lt. Stamets’ fungal research will play an very important role in the show. In an interview at last week’s San Diego Comic-Con Rapp teased:
“It would be spoiler-heavy to tell you how exactly [the science specialty fits into the plot] except that my field of study is anastromycology – which is the study of space fungus and space mushrooms – has some really interesting applications… It is a wild journey of scientific exploration that I go on. I cannot tell you the specifics at all. But the reason that I am not just the science officer is very specific to a specific project that I am working on.”
Aaron Harberts, the co-showrunner for ‘Discovery’ says:
“We’re at a point in time where people aren’t defined by their sexuality. What’s fascinating about the character is that when we meet him we don’t know who or what he is. He’s so super specific, he’s persnickety and difficult and brilliant, and he isn’t going to give an inch and he has very strong feelings about why he’s on the Discovery. We wanted to roll out that character’s sexuality the way people would roll out their sexuality in life.”
Rapp concurred that his character won’t be the easiest to get along with, saying:
“He’s a really, really smart guy and as smart guys go, he sometimes can be a little difficult to deal with because not everybody’s as smart as he is. So he’s got a little bit of an edge sometimes, which is fun to play.”
He also added:
“I’m really excited and happy when a gay character is a part of a story — especially when a gay character is created in a complex and human and non-stereotypical, interesting way, and that has certainly been the case with Stamets. And you get to see his relationship. There was a little glimpse in Sulu in Beyond, and it was a nice nod. But in this case, we actually get to see me with my partner in conversation, in our living quarters, you get to see our relationship over time, treated as any other relationship would be treated.”
Yes, Stamets’ partner is also a crew member of the Discovery, specifically the ship’s chief medical officer Hugh Culber played by another out actor Wilson Cruz (‘My So Called Life’). And it has already been revealed that this iteration of ‘Trek’ will focus more on the personal interactions between the characters than on their missions.
You can find out more about ‘Star Trek Discovery’, which adorns the cover of ‘Entertainment Weekly’ this week. You can see the cover below:
Set phasers to stun.🖖 @StarTrekCBS is boldly going where no woman has gone before, and it’s the franchise’s boldest and most woke series yet. 💫 Click the link in our bio to go behind-the-scenes of the dramatic struggle to return #StarTrek to the small screen. You can pick up an issue on newsstands starting July 28, plus get the special @therealsonequa solo cover exclusively at @barnesandnoble. #StarTrekDiscovery 📷: @matthiasclamer for EW
Are you excited about ‘Star Trek: Discovery’?
Source: Entertainment Weekly