USS Discovery

Fan Collective Unimatrix 47 Examines Star Trek: Discovery’s “Lagrange Point” Episode

Marie Brownhill
Game Industry News is running the best blog posts from people writing about the game industry. Articles here may originally appear on Marie's blog, Fan Collective Unimatrix 47.


After having narrowly escaped the Breen at the Archive, Discovery finds itself stranded as the crew conducts repairs. Back at Federation HQ, Saru reunites with T’Rina as they both meet with President Rillak, who only has bad news for them. The Breen are en route to retrieve the technology and likely to arrive first. Captain Burnham pushes Stamets to jump, even if the jump is imperfect.

Discovery lands between two black holes, that may or may not have been put there by the Progenitors, but after some quick calculations by Tilly, the ship avoids the twin gravity wells and makes it to the titular Lagrange point, which is where the technology currently sits. Unfortunately, the Breen are faster because of course they are, and Moll is able to beam the tech aboard what is now her dreadnought. Thinking they’re alone, the Breen scientists discover that what’s inside this primordial box is an interdimensional gateway, but they have no idea where it leads.

A disappointed Burnham resolved that they have to retrieve the technology, so she concocts an insane plan that involves sneaking two teams aboard the Breen ship. One team is in charge of disabling the shields while the other must place a transport lock on the item in question. After braving the exhaust port (stealing an idea from another Star franchise), they successfully drop behind enemy lines.

Back at Federation HQ, Saru, Rillak, and T’Rina realize that Primarch Tahal is on her way, hoping to add the late Primarch Ruhn’s forces to her own in order to solidify her bid for the throne of the Imperium. Collectively, they decide that they need to intercept her with a shuttle, which Saru volunteers to pilot.

Back on the Breen ship, Rhys and Adira are in place, but Burnham and Book cannot clear the security checkpoint due to their not being actually Breen or cleared to be there. They stage a fight and knock out some Breen before sneaking into the shuttlebay. That’s when things start going a touch pear-shaped as the Breen quickly discover that the guards are missing, causing some issues. To buy time, Rayner tries to talk Moll down, but sounding rather like a surly teenager, Moll rebuffs his offer of protection and heads down to the shuttle bay. The Breen capture Burnham who hatches, via code, an even more insane plot to have Discovery ram the shuttlebay to get close enough to beam their people and the barrel receptacle back onto Discovery. Moll, who again demonstrates a peculiar intelligence figures out the plan and flings herself into the gateway. Burnham follows, leaving Book, Rayner, and the rest of the crew to come get her.


“Lagrange Point” is actually a fun episode that reintroduces Saru, and I was glad to see him back. He and T’Rina continue to be the series’ best couple, and they have an absolutely great moment in which Saru gets to invert the conversation they had back at the season’s beginning. T’Rina tries to make a list of potential “volunteers” for the mission to intercept Tahal, but Saru insists on volunteering. He gets the chance to assert that he is neither a damsel nor in distress. T’Rina accepts his reasoning with fondness and grace. However, the real purpose here is to bring Saru back for the final episodes.

Speaking of couples, Burnham and Book share an admittedly poorly timed moment when they realize they both love each other, which anyone with eyes knew. Burnham admits that her timing isn’t great, but she does need to get this off her chest before she jumps into the unknown. This is actually very on-brand for Discovery.

Adira also gets a great moment to shine when they volunteer to go on Burnham’s crazy boarding expedition because they have cracked the Breen’s base-duodeca code. They’ve been struggling a bit with nerves and possibly a touch of imposter-syndrome. However, Adira has been stepping up in a big way during the latter half of this season, and they get a chance to come into their own in “Lagrange Point.” I love how Stamets has a moment of papa bear vibes that he reins in just so Adira can do what they need to do. There’s so much encapsulated in that moment that’s beautifully done. Between Willson Cruz, Anthony Rapp, and Blu del Barrio, the performances are spot on and well done.

However, what isn’t well done is how the episode treats Moll. While we do see her being a competent leader as she directs her borrowed Breen minions, she continues to be a one note antagonist or perhaps two notes. Moll has precisely two modes: competent leader and grumpy adolescent. She transitions between both in this episode, as she taunts the Starfleet officers she views as her enemies and insisting that without L’ak, life isn’t worth living. It’s very Romeo and Juliet of her, but remember, Shakespeare wanted theater patrons to recognize that there was something wrong with both Romeo and Juliet. Her single-minded attachment to L’ak veers far from the romantic boulevard onto the obsession side street.

That said, I suspect her relationship with L’ak will play a significant role as Discovery concludes. There’s been a very real focus on coming together in season five. From Saru and T’Rina’s engagement to Moll and L’ak’s joining to Burnham and Book navigating their issues, we’ve got an unusually stable set of relationships. Don’t worry, I have not forgotten Culber and Stamets. This season has showcased more of their relationship than we’ve seen in a while, but they, too, have provided a solid model of affection. If we take as given that Discovery maintains its emphasis on connection and community in this season, I’d argue that we’re viewing romantic relationships as another aspect of that.

I find myself a little shocked that Discovery’s final episode airs next week. Where did the time go? I may not be ready to get off the ride, but I am very much looking forward to seeing how it ends.

Rating: Four Mystical artifacts of five.

Stray Thoughts From the Couch

  1. I love that our Jemison on the bridge is a reference to Dr. Mae Jemison, a real-life astronaut and TNG alumna.
  2. I can’t quite decide how I feel about Book flirting his way out of detection. I mean, I guess it turns the trope of putting the woman out there. cough, cough Uhura’s fan dance in Star Trek V. cough, cough However, does it always have to be flirting?
  3. How do the somewhat liquid Breen take oil baths? Are they oil baths because the Breen are less dense than oil? I have questions.
  4. Dear sweet, gorgeous nacelles, why didn’t Burnham plan for security? She seemed honestly surprised there was a checkpoint.
  5. Lagrange points are real. They’re the point of equilibrium for small mass bodies caught between two large mass bodies.
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