Star Trek: Discovery actor Jason Isaacs knows that the show's reinvention of the franchise is likely going to cause controversy among its hardcore fans - and he wouldn't have it any other way.
Star Trek: Discovery is a prequel to the original Star Trek series, taking place ten years before the exploits of Kirk and Spock's Enterprise. The series is ditching many of Star Trek's bedrock tropes: it will be highly-serialized, jettison some of creator Gene Roddenberry's unbreakable rules, and it will revolve around a non-captain - Commander Michael Burnham (The Walking Dead's Sonequa Martin-Green), a young woman who was raised on Vulcan by Sarek and Amanda, Spock's parents.
The insertion of Burnham into such a prominent role in Star Trek lore, as well as design and tonal elements that seemingly contradict what's come before, has led to some pre-release hand wringing among Star Trek fans. In comments made to the New York Daily News, Jason Isaacs - who plays Discovery's captain, Gabriel Lorca - seems to relish the controversy ginned up among the Star Trek faithful.
“I don't mean to sound irreverent when I say I don't care about the die-hard Trek fans. I only ‘don't care’ about them in the sense that I know they’re all going to watch anyway. I look forward to having the fun of them being outraged, so they can sit up all night and talk about it with each other.”
Isaacs also doubles down on the idea that Discovery will take Star Trek down some storytelling avenues it's never visited before:
“It's Star Trek, but not as we know it...there are places obviously where they’ve observed canon to do with things like uniforms and badges and stuff, but there are places where the rules of storytelling are reinvented.”
Despite the success of the J.J. Abrams-led film reboot, Star Trek has been absent from television since Enterprise was unceremoniously cancelled in 2005, and there's a genuine question as to what Star Trek should look like in 2017. CBS seems somewhat unsure themselves, as Discovery has had a long, extended production. Initially spearheaded by Hannibal and American Gods mastermind Bryan Fuller, the popular showrunner butted heads with CBS over the direction of the series, and ultimately departed the project on less-than-amicable terms.
It's both good and expected that Isaacs would be publicly confident about the series, but make no mistake, there's a tremendous amount riding on Star Trek: Discovery, and overcoming all of its pre-release drama is going to be a tall task.
Star Trek: Discovery debuts on CBS All Access on Sunday, September 24.
Source: New York Daily News