Over the weekend, it was announced that Star Trek pre-season is getting underway. Before the start of Star Trek: Discovery season two, CBS All Access began releasing short Star Trek episodes. They were isolated and random episodes that gave some characters backstory, teasing what was going to happen, or even just highlight a popular character from the previous season. Short Treks: Q&A is just one of those kind of episodes.
The short introduces us to Spock (Ethan Peck) on his first day on the Enterprise. He is greet by Number One (Rebecca Romijn) and they proceed to get stuck in a turbolift and begin to bond. The episode is particularly pleasant as it focuses on a yet-younger Spock, who isn’t fully disciplined in the ways of total logic. As well as more of a character piece for Romijn’s Number One, who still doesn’t have a name.
Short Treks: Q&A is a nice homage to the original Trek episodes that would have a complete “bottle episode.” That is a term for episodes that use existing sets and very few (if any) new characters. It was a production’s way of saving some money, particularly if an episode previous was more expensive than planned. This would’ve been one of those B-storyline from that type of episode.
Peck’s younger Spock was a delight. Seeming to eagerly impress his superior officers, but a bit undisciplined to his complete Vulcan side. One thing that people may have an issue with was Spock’s smile, which was indicated in the pilot “The Cage”. There on the planet Spock smiles at the sight of “musical plant-life”. That was years later, so his smirking and complete smile is not out-of-character as some may think.
Romijn’s performance as Number One was something we would’ve liked to have seen in season two. However, expanding on her character in the privacy of a turbolift was something to be enjoyed. While some would have found it cheesy, I enjoyed her exhibition of “A Modern Major General” talent. The connection between Spock and Number One, to me, is more of someone finding a kindred spirit that someone finally understands. Or, could be a nod to the original actress (Marjel Barrett), who played bother Number One and went on to play Nurse Chapel, who had an attraction to Spock.
With Short Treks: Q&A, and the upcoming episodes, these will focus on the 23rd century universe with the Enterprise as the backdrop. This makes sense. It is a world that we are familiar with and many fans want to see Pike and the Enterprise in a regular series – but baby steps. Until we get the universal comfort food of Star Trek: Picard in January, we will have to take these to hold us over. Short Treks is exclusively available on CBS All Access.