Star Trek Discovery trailer – second-by-second breakdown

The new two-minute Discovery trailer reveals plenty about what to expect – so what did you miss?

Today bought us a new preview for what’s coming up in Star Trek Discovery, so we decided to break it down and see exactly what it revealed. So here’s our second-by-second guide. Let’s dive in! Be warned, though, there are plenty of potential spoilers ahead…

Here’s the trailer again.

And here’s our break-down.

0:03-0:06 – Burnham is shown travelling at Warp, revealed as infamous for her mutiny aboard the Shenzhou. The two men speaking include Damon Runyan’s character Ujilli – listed as a regular in the show.

0:07-0:12 – Flashback to the events in Battle At The Binary Stars, including death of Cpt. Georgiou.

0:13-0:18 – Burnham is confronted about her role in over 8,000 deaths at the start of the war with the Klingons. She replies with the exact number that died – “8,186”. Presumably the passengers on the shuttle are prisoners because the character to whom she is speaking is listed in the cast as ‘Psycho’.

0:19-0:20 – Burnham looks out of shuttle window at flashing red light, strange glowing particles appear on right hand side of the screen – pay attention, they turn up again  later.

0:21-0:25 – Presumably, this is the shuttle we’ve already seen docking with NCC-1031, the Discovery. Followed by rear-to-fore tracking shot of the ship

0:26-0:28 – Dialogue: “Welcome to Discovery”. Burnham escorted in cuffs, and under armed guard, from the shuttle bay of the ship.

0:28-0:30 – “I’m Captain Gabriel Lorca” – presumably a continuation of the previous dialogue as Cpt. Lorca introduces himself to Burnham, who in turn questions why she is aboard the ship.

0:31-0:33 – Cut to what looks like an engineering or science area with Lorca opening a secure door, then inserting a containment vessel into a console.

0:34-0:35 – Burnham examines glowing particles inside a containment area – could these be what was in the vessel? Dialogue: “I have something on deck that requires every trained mind available”. Hints that whatever is being shown here is important to the ongoing plot and Burnham’s presence.

0:36-0:37 – Crew walking hallways.

0:37-0.39 – Burnham, still in her ‘prisoner’ jumpsuit, with her face reflected in mirrored surface watching liquid floating in what appears to be an anti-gravity field, liquid drops to surface.

0.39-0:41 – Dialogue: “What the hell is going on on this ship?”. A shadowy Burnham stands in silhouette behind a uniformed character – possibly Sam Vartholomeos’ Ensign Conner (also a member of the Shenzhou crew) – that is lying down, but is not asleep.

0:41-0:42 – Tracking shot of bridge exterior.

0:42-0:44 – Burnham, now in blue fatigues, walks corridor while other crew look on suspiciously. Dialogue, spoken by female Star Fleet officer – high-ranking, possibly Admiral, judging by amount of gold on her shoulders: “Burnham is viewed by many as the cause of our conflict”.

0:44- 0:46 – Burnham, back in ‘prisoner’ costume lays a smackdown on two of the other passengers of the shuttle craft from earlier scenes… Dialogue continues: “This does nothing for morale”

0:46-0:47 – Lorca retorts: “It’s my ship, my way”

0.48-0:51 – Burnham, in Star Fleet uniform, seemingly on an away mission in a forest, scanning with some sort of Tricorder. Dialogue, deliver by Saru to Burnham initially off-screen: “You are a valuable asset, but you are dangerous.”

0:52-0:53 – Saru walks past Burnham, seemingly leaving her to reflect on his comments.

0:51-0:54 – Fast zoom towards Discovery bridge exterior.

0:55 – Cpt Lorca: “Shields up!” while walking towards view screen from his Captain’s chair. Heavy dutch tilt.

0:57-58 – Close up of Lorca looking intense. Ship shakes around him. Shot of concerned looking crew, ship still shaking. Dialogue begins., delivered by female Klingon: “You seek to destroy the Klingon empire”.

0:58-1:00 – We see the Klingon complete the dialogue above. A freeze frame reveals that she is speaking the dialogue to a seemingly restrained Cpt. Lorca.

1:00-1.02 Three unknown Star Fleet crew – including a female Captain, stand in a room ‘guarded’ by what appear to be lighter-hued Klingons as camera pans down. Dialogue begins, which appears to be being delivered by an unseen female Klingon in some sort of large arena: “The glory must be earned through sacrifice.”

1:02-1.04 – Close up of Voq, dagger drawn.

1:04-1:05 – Low shot looking up at Voq as Burham picks up Dagger.

1:05-1:06 – Burnham attacks Voq, who defends himself.

1:07-1:10 – Shot begins with Lorca looking out of window, and pans out to show Discovery in space.

1:10-1:00 – We see Rainn Wilson’s character Harry mud, in what appears to be a cell. Dialogue: “Have you ever bothered to look out of your spaceships at the little guys below?”

1.11-1.13 – Burnham, in away mission uniform, drops in from ceiling of a shuttle to the floor in front of Lt. Stamets (Anthony Rapp), Cadet Tilley (Mary Wiseman) and Commander Landry (Rekha Sharmer). The latter has gun drawn. Upon landing Burnham shouts “Go!”.

1.13-1.14 Shot of shuttle leaving shuttle bay at speed.

1.14-1:16 – Shot of Emily Coutts as Keyla Detmer, then Anthony Rapp as Lt. Stamets – the latter looking with concern and sadness at a screen, Rainn Wilson dialogue continues: “There’s a lot more of us down there than there are you up here.” Burnham, back in the blue jumpsuit from earlier, looks on in wonder at what appear to be glittering plants growing in some sort of lab setting. Possibly, the area where she was examining the glowing particles earlier in the trailer.

1:17-1:18 – In what appears to be a lab, Cpt. Lorca taps a containment field, that glows blue.

1:18-1:19 – Flash cut of a fight between what appears to be Klingon female and the unnamed Captain we saw being guarded at 1:00.

1.19-1:20 – Crew run through torch-lit ship hallways seemingly being pursued by an armadillo-type alien creature. Rainn Wilson dialogue continues: “And we’re sick of getting caught in your crossfire.”

1.21 – Harry Mudd bites on a biscuit as he finishes his speech.

1:21-1:23 – Brief shots of Cpt. Lorca sliding on the floor firing a phaser, a Klingon – probably Voq – examining a Star Fleet badge, Saru running while on the forest planet from 0:48.

1:23-1:24 – Burnham – now in full Star Fleet uniform – engaged in hand-to-hand combat with an unknown Vulcan.

1:25 – A shuttle in Discovery’s tractor beam

1:26 – Ujilli hitting a Klingon.

1:26-1:27 – A finger taps a screen. Text on screen read “[Unclear] Drive” and “Cycle Destinations”.

1:27-1.28 – Burnham, back in her original ‘prisoner’ fatigues, again surrounded by the glowing particles, as they coalesce and appear to form a hyperspace-type tunnel around her. They now appear to be connected to the ‘Drive’ technology from the previous shot.

1.28 – Harry Mudd points finger.

1.29-1.31 – Discovery appears to be hit by torpedoes, and explodes at a point just behind the bridge area – possibly the connection to the dish.

1:31-1:34 – Doors slide open to reveal a bloodied Burnham and Lt. Tyler (Shazad Latin) emerging into bright sunlight. Dialogue (from Burnham): “I think about what happened all the time”.

1:34-1:37 – Close up looking up at still-bloodied Burnham. Dialogue (appears contiguous): “And I’m hurt”.

1:37-1:39 – Close up of Star Fleet badge (perhaps, probably, the same badge examined by Voq at 1:21. Inscription reads: “GEORGIOU PHILLIPA / SC 0025 / 0128SHN”. Dialogue (appears contiguous): “But there’s hope”.

1:40 – Lorca gazing out into space

1:41-1:43 – Close up of Lorca with stars reflected in his eye. Dialogue (Lorca): “We must win this war.”

1:44-1:46 – Shot of Discovery approaching a sun. Dialogue (appears to be Lorca, continuing): “And that’s just the beginning”.

1:46-1:50 – Flashes of Burnham running on the forest away mission, Saru looking concerned, Lorca apparently at the same containment field as a creature attempts to break through from the other side. Lorca doesn’t flinch. An albino Klingon, not Voq, screaming, Burnham on the floor in away mission garb with her phaser drawn and aimed, Discovery going to warp.

1:51 – Lorca close up. Dialogue: “Imagine the possibilities.”

1:54 – Logo and title.

Phew, so much to break down. Here’s what we think we the most important tells from what we’ve seen.

  • Burnham ends up on the Discovery because her expertise is needed – or, perhaps because such expertise is in short supply with a war on.
  • She’s infamous for her actions aboard the Shenzhou, and thus viewed with something bordering on disgust.
  • The reason for her being there is to do with those glowing particles. We initially thought it may be some sort of terraforming technology a la the Genesis device from Wrath of Khan, but it appears to be linked to the ‘Drive’ technology seen on the screen. Honestly, we really have no idea right now, but that would appear to be a major element driving the early plot.
  • It would also appear to tie into Lorca’s drive to win the war with the Klingon’s, and may not be completely Star Fleet-approved (that’s conjecture, but we get that impression).
  • Some poor Star Fleet crew are going to have to battle Klingons, possibly in an arena/gladiatorial scenario.
  • Some sort of alien creature gets loose on the ship – possibly something that was captured during the away mission to the forest planet.
  • Burnham will get a showdown with Voq, and is presumably victorious if she managed to retrieve Georgiou’s Star Fleet insignia from him – we’ve considered that the shots are out of order, but that would seem to be the only way for her to get hold of it, as she was warped to safety before she reached her Captain’s body.

If I personally had to put my name to what I think the narrative drive of Discovery will be in this series, it will be seeking out technological and tactical advantages to help win a war against the Klingons. In an attempt to match the suspiciously advance technologies T’Kuvma had. Where, perhaps, the Romulans bankrolling him in the hope of disrupting both the Klingons and the Federation? That’s

The Discovery may be seeking a specific McGuffin, or trawling through possibilities handed to them by Star Fleet – but it would seem like we’re going to find out just how important those particles are very soon.

Let us know what you think in the comments.