WARNING: THIS ARTICLE CONTAINS MILD SPOILERS
In the first episode of the new season of Star Trek: Discovery, the character Cleveland “Book” Booker uses a strange power in two instances. Some folks are saying that Star Trek introduced their version of “The Force.” We think that when we learn more about these powers, Book will be more Aquaman than Jedi.
- See our complete wrap-up of the “That Hope Is You, Part 1”
After a rocky start between Book (David Ajala) and Michael Burnham (Sonequa Martin-Green), they eventually join forces against a force that cares only for profit. They must use a “personal transporter” to jump from place to place to escape the bad guys. Eventually, they jump into the water, where they cannot be tracked for a bit.
Michael realized that she was injured, and Book seemed to sit up straight and pray. Red glowing marks appeared on his forehead, ad he chanted softly. Soon a plant rose from the water, which provided a salve to heal Michael’s injured arm.
Toward the end of the episode, Michael and Book are surrounded by the security team again. This time, Book frees his cargo, which was an enormous worm or slug with pincers. The creature ate up a few bad guys, ad the rest scattered.
The beast even went after Michael. It swallowed her whole, but Book did his “magic trick” again. He seemed to communicate with the creature, and the worm spit Michael out… the same way that the swamp monster spit out R2-D2 on Dagobah on The Empire Strikes Back.
Our friends at CBR think that Book might have Jedi-like powers, but we think that his powers are limited to communicating with creatures, much like the DC Comics hero Aquaman does. Or, for viewers of The Boys, think of what The Deep does.
It makes more sense that Trek would have characters that can communicate with non-humanoid creatures, as many of the aliens themselves are non-humanoid.
And, to quote Admiral Motti from Star Wars: A New Hope, the powers of The Force are part of an “ancient religion.” Star Trek does not live in a science fantasy world, and Gene Roddenberry was famously atheist.
With the exception of the Worm Hole Aliens in Deep Space Nine, or creatures like Q, Trek characters don’t possess magical powers with no explanation.
We think that eventually, it will be explained, that Book and his people can communicate with very many non-humanoid beings, much like Spock did with the whales on Star Trek: IV or the Horta in “The Devil in the Dark.”
Star Trek: Discovery is currently streaming on CBS All Access.