In the season two finale of Star Trek: Discovery, the crew of the U.S.S. Discovery jumped 930 years into the future — plunging characters and fans of the show into a future that truly boldly goes where no one has gone before.
When season three premieres on CBS All Access on October 15, the Discovery crew, led by Michael Burnham, find themselves in the year 3188 — a year well past the timeline featured in previous depictions of the far-reaching Star Trek universe. Indeed, the future looks quite different from the Star Trek we’ve come to know and love. According to the trailer for the third season, in 3188 the Federation has been dramatically reduced in size after a mysterious event known as “The Burn.” When the U.S.S. Discovery jumps forward to the future and crash lands on an unknown planet, the team finds themselves amid a new society that needs their help to restore the Federation.
The upcoming third season will introduce new characters, new planets, and new storylines to Star Trek: Discovery, and the 930-year jump marks the perfect time for curious would-be viewers to join in on the fun. To help refresh your memory, or get you up to speed if you’ve never seen an episode, here’s where we last left our favorite U.S.S. Discovery crew members at the end of season two, and what they may be up to when season three begins.
In the season two finale, Burnham (Sonequa Martin-Green) led the U.S.S. Discovery to the future through a wormhole, in order to save the galaxy from Section 31’s Control, a dangerous, rogue AI that threatened to wipe out all sentient life in the galaxy. Because the U.S.S. Discovery contained data that Control needed to fulfill its destructive mission, Burnham proposed that the ship be sent far enough forward in the future that Control wouldn’t be able to find it. With the help of the Discovery crew, Burnham’s foster brother Spock, and her mother, the Red Angel, the plan succeeded, saving the galaxy and transporting the crew nearly 1,000 years away from everything they once knew.
“We traveled into the future, 930 years,” Burnham says in the trailer for Star Trek: Discovery’s season three. “A one-way trip. No going back.” It appears season three will begin with Burnham getting separated from the rest of her team during the jump to the future. As she desperately searches for life on the mysterious planet where she’s landed, she meets up with one of the season’s new main characters: Cleveland “Book” Booker. The trailer teases Burnham’s role in helping to restore the collapsed Federation in the future, and a possible romance between her and Booker.
Saru (Doug Jones), a member of the Kelpien species, helped Burnham and the rest of the U.S.S. Discovery crew defeat Control and transport the ship to the future in the season two finale. In one of that season’s most memorable and important plots, the beloved character’s fate was up in the air, as he underwent a Kelpien biological process called Vahar’ai, believed to be fatal to any Kelpien who experienced it. However, Saru survived the process, losing his threat ganglia (tendrils in the Kelpiens’ heads that help them sense danger), and became stronger in the process.
In season three, Saru has jumped to the future with the rest of the U.S.S. Discovery, and it looks like his calming, compassionate presence will help hold the group together as they face new challenges in the unknown world that they’ve landed in. As he reassures his crew members in the trailer: “We are completely disconnected, but we are also together.”
The last time we saw Stamets (Anthony Rapp), he was heavily injured and being treated in a sickbay onboard the U.S.S. Discovery when it made the jump into the future. Season two wasn’t all bad for Stamets, however. In a mid-season episode, he ventured into the mycelial network (a microscopic network spanning the entire universe, made up of the roots of a fungus) after one of his crew members was abducted. In the network, he found his romantic partner Hugh Culber, who had previously been presumed dead. He rescued Culber, reuniting the fan-favorite couple, and the two were seen embracing in the sickbay right before time traveling to 3188.
It looks like Stamets will live to see another day, despite his season finale injuries; in the season three trailer, his signature humor is on display as he cracks jokes with the rest of the Discovery squad after they jump into the future. With Culber, Saru, Burnham, and the rest of the team (like Sylvia Tilly, Jett Reno, and more of our favorite characters), Stamets will likely help restore the Federation and come to the aid of new planets that need the U.S.S. Discovery’s help.
The Georgiou (Michelle Yeoh) we’ve come to know in two seasons of Star Trek: Discovery isn’t, of course, the actual Georgiou. Georgiou was killed early in the series, but Yeoh stayed on to play a Mirror Universe iteration of the character. Though the mirror Georgiou, who joined the crew of the U.S.S. Discovery, played an antagonistic role at first, she eventually became part of the team, helping to defeat Control in the season two finale and making the jump to the future.
Now that the crew is in a brand new time period on an unknown planet, Georgiou’s future is uncertain. She time traveled with the rest of the main characters listed here, but doesn’t have the same sense of loyalty and community with them to stay connected 930 years later. In the trailer, Georgiou can be seen showing off her combat skills against an unknown enemy, but it’s unclear what’s in store for her character this season.
Adira, Gray, and Cleveland “Book” Booker
The third season of Star Trek: Discovery features at least three new characters — Adira, Gray, and Cleveland “Book” Booker. Not much is shown of Adira and Gray in the trailer for season three, but Adira (Blu del Barrio) will make history as the franchise’s first non-binary character. Del Barrio gave more details about Adira in an interview with GLAAD, saying, “Adira is a wonderfully complex character. Mainly because of this duality they have within them: they’re astonishingly intelligent and yet they’re still a kid … Adira is an introvert, but they keep a few people close to the chest, which I definitely resonate with.”
Meanwhile, Gray (Ian Alexander) is a Trill, a humanoid species that often “hosts” symbiotic organisms inside of its body, and, in another historic first, is also the first transgender character in Star Trek history. Booker (David Ajala) resides in the future, presumably on the planet where Burnham and the U.S.S. Discovery crash land in the year 3188. According to the trailer, Booker and Burnham team up quickly, and Booker is the character who explains the harmful effects of “The Burn” on the galaxy. “The Burn was the day the galaxy took a hard left,” Booker says.
As the time jump transports these beloved characters — and the rest of the U.S.S. Discovery crew — to the future, the third season of Star Trek: Discovery will take place in a year that has never been explored by any Star Trek series. The jump to the year 3188 gives the series a fresh slate, and will make it easy for new and curious viewers to tune in and dip their toes into the vast Star Trek universe.
Watch the new season of Star Trek: Discovery exclusively on CBS All Access, beginning Oct. 15. New episodes will be available on Thursdays.