Star Trek: Discovery: Labyrinths
May 16, 2024 11:01 PM - Season 5, Episode 8 - Subscribe

Discovery takes a trip to the local library to check out a rare book.

Memory Alpha is proud to house the largest known collection of historical and cultural artifacts in the Alpha or Beta Quadrants.

Memorable quotes:

"We don’t actually have a dungeon here. It’s really more of an oubliette." - Hy'Rell, explaining the penalty for not obeying the rules

"How fun to have a Book visit me in the library for a change." - Hy'Rell, flirting with Booker

"May you gain knowledge elsewhere." - Hy'Rell, rejecting the Breen ultimatum

"For what it’s worth, I prefer this version of you that is helpful." - Michael to Mindscape Book

"Tilly would’ve been just as frustrating. For what it’s worth." - Mindscape Book to Michael

"Hysperians really know how to party, by the way" - Jett Reno giving us another little insight into her past

Personal log:

Well. After several episodes with little-to-no Deep Emotional Conversations, Sonequa Martin-Green absolutely DRILLS one out of the park.

Hy'Rell, our Efrosian librarian, is just delightful. Can she get a spin-off series?

Michael's plan to make the Breen think Discovery had been destroyed echoes Data's plan to fool the Ferengi in TOS: "Peak Performance".

Ruhn's a very one-note villain in this one, and his story beats were eminently predictable.
posted by hanov3r (18 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
 
Until I looked her up on Memory Alpha, I thought Hy'Rell was a Klingon (in fairness the Efrosians are a very obscure race previously represented by that one unnamed Federation president, and apparently one unnamed helmsman). While I love the idea of an extremely chipper Klingon who runs away from home to become a librarian, I guess this makes more sense.

Sooooo... Primarch Ruhn really committed to speedrunning that Sudden but Inevitable Betrayal, huh? At first it seemed contrived that this all happened so quickly, but it seems clear that he was pretty unpopular to start with, and his claim to power really did hinge on his nephew. We see from the multiple unforced errors that he commits in this episode that he's not a very good leader. With L'ak dead, he was already hanging on by a thread, nobody seemed very enthusiastic about his pivot to revenge with him still in charge for some reason, and Moll supplied a much better idea. And "let's find the ancient artifact of great power and resurrect your lost prince" is a very compelling and exciting idea! As long as Ruhn seemed to be going along with it, he was acceptable, but when it became clear that he was only interested in half of the plan, his luck ran out.

My headcanon is that the Breen rank-and-file got bored of the endless petty internecine warfare, and once they latched onto Moll's vision of a possible glorious return of the True King, they were unwilling to go back to business as usual, and got a little carried away.
posted by confluency at 12:58 AM on May 17 [4 favorites]


Hysperians were featured in LD: "Where Pleasant Fountains Lie."

Kind of annoyed that they cut away from the Fake-Book reveal to Michael about what the "sixth clue" is. Blatantly hiding stuff like that from the audience but not the protagonist is a tired move. More tired still would be if the sixth clue is love.

Now what I would love would be if all this buildup for the Secret of the Progenitors resulted in an anticlimax a la the one in "The Chase" that led Nu'Daq to blurt out "THAT'S ALL?! If she were not dead, I would kill her!" (In fact, when the last piece of the Holy Hand Grenade got installed and the projection started up, I leaned over to Mrs. CoB and murmured "Be…sure…to…drink…your…Ovaltine!")
posted by CheesesOfBrazil at 5:19 AM on May 17 [5 favorites]


(In fact, when the last piece of the Holy Hand Grenade got installed and the projection started up, I leaned over to Mrs. CoB and murmured "Be…sure…to…drink…your…Ovaltine!")

For me it was "Help me Obi-Wan Kenobi - you're my only hope".

And sheesh, Michael, I mean I know every Betazoid isn't an emotional counsellor, but consider the previous clues you've completed, they've all been proving that you would be a good steward of this technology, and being able to solve a maze doesn't exactly do that, does it?
posted by Kyol at 6:50 AM on May 17 [2 favorites]


Typing up this post, I kept misspelling Hy'Rell as Ly'Rell, and that got me thinking - there are distinct echoes of Disco S1 in the Moll/L'ak storyline, aren't there?
posted by hanov3r at 7:13 AM on May 17 [2 favorites]


I was duly entertained. I liked the set design / CG for the archive.

So those cuttings from the Kwejian World Root: that wasn't just a bit of nice lore to keep Booker occupied in another room for a bit was it? That's going to be the final conflict, whether to use the Progenitor Macguffin on the Kwejian Macguffin or to use it to resurrect L'ak? I'm going to throw something at my TV if they present that as an equal moral choice: "save one person's life" vs "restore an entire destroyed planet and culture".

I continue to love Commander Asshole. It was hilarious seeing him go in and just try to order the librarians around after so much of Michael trying to be very polite but get them to come to the point. Then the Breen just come in and straight up threaten for what they want. It's rough being a space librarian.

Speaking of space librarians: remember Zora? The intelligence born out of a data archive? I bet she found the archive really interesting. Maybe Zora and the archive's computer had a nice subspace chat, an exchange of views and information.
posted by Nelson at 7:31 AM on May 17 [6 favorites]


I liked the set design / CG for the archive

It's a real place! The Thomas Fisher Rare Book Library on the U. Toronto campus. Obviously they extended the existing interior with CGI but at least part of it is a practical location.
posted by nathan_teske at 8:18 AM on May 17 [7 favorites]


We badly misjudged Hy'Rell over here; we were sure she was going to lure Book away and imprison him as a permanent part of the library's Kwejian collection.
posted by jordemort at 9:40 AM on May 17 [9 favorites]


TBH, after the "oubliette" comment, I was kind of hoping that the Breen would discover that the Archive was unfathomably powerful.

Or, at the very least, they could have beamed a Moopsy onto the Breen dreadnaught.
posted by schmod at 6:21 PM on May 17 [5 favorites]


Also, where are the Klingons in this future?
posted by schmod at 6:22 PM on May 17


Or, at the very least, they could have beamed a Moopsy onto the Breen dreadnaught.

Given their gelatinous forms, the Breen may be one of the few species that can survive a Moopsy attack.
posted by bigge at 7:05 PM on May 17 [2 favorites]


Also, where are the Klingons in this future?

Don't mention the Klingons.
posted by fairmettle at 6:42 AM on May 18 [1 favorite]


Still annoyed by the backward structure on the comment by Manic Pixie Dream Librarian on the bridge about “resulting in your failure to comply” rather than “resulting from”

At least we know now what they’ll use to restore Quajon in two weeks!
posted by DoctorFedora at 5:19 PM on May 18 [3 favorites]


man Michael’s Escape Room felt almost like a parody of Star Trek huh
posted by DoctorFedora at 5:31 PM on May 18 [3 favorites]


I'll admit, I find Moll's character more enjoyable when she's manipulating the Breen to bring back L'ak than when her significant other is alive and well. I enjoyed the episode, but was kind of surprised by how relatively defenseless the library was given the irreplaceable nature of its holdings. Maybe the Breen are just that awful.

I will say I loved that the biggest threat the Library Director had was "we'll destroy. your priceless artifacts!" And of course, it was also a bluff.

So those cuttings from the Kwejian World Root: that wasn't just a bit of nice lore to keep Booker occupied in another room for a bit was it? That's going to be the final conflict, whether to use the Progenitor Macguffin on the Kwejian Macguffin or to use it to resurrect L'ak? I'm going to throw something at my TV if they present that as an equal moral choice: "save one person's life" vs "restore an entire destroyed planet and culture"

Yes, to a degree. So last season Book chose his people or at least, revenge for his people, to act against Michael and the Federation. Now he'll have the chance to act again to bring them back, but he won't, because he's not that Book anymore. Granted, he will 100% still get his wish because this is the last season and Star Trek is ultimately built on optimism. I also think it's clear L'ak will come back and unite the Breen into a peaceful coexisting power, if not future ally, to the Federation, too.

Until I looked her up on Memory Alpha, I thought Hy'Rell was a Klingon (in fairness the Efrosians are a very obscure race previously represented by that one unnamed Federation president, and apparently one unnamed helmsman). While I love the idea of an extremely chipper Klingon who runs away from home to become a librarian, I guess this makes more sense.

Honestly, this was my first reaction, and the oversized shoulder pads DID NOT help the matter. Finally I remembered, "Oh, it's Red Foreman's alien from Undiscovered Country!"

I do think Michael's initial response to trying to figure out the clue was a perfect allusion to her childhood being raised on Vulcan. She went with the logical answers, despite the fact the puzzle/whatever was designed by someone who was empathic. In proper Counselor Troi style, she had to have a conscious declaration of her own concerns and realizations.

Also, where are the Klingons in this future?

Well now that you mention it.
posted by Atreides at 8:03 AM on May 20 [2 favorites]


- My guess is that they were saving the 32C Klingons for Something Really Special that won't happen now (AFAWK). Oh, well.

- That library is where I hope to go when I die. Too bad they couldn't have slipped an orangutan in there somewhere.

- I'm feeling a bit better about the Breen now that Ruhn (aka Primarch Jerkass) is gone.
posted by Halloween Jack at 12:07 AM on May 27 [1 favorite]


My guess is that they were saving the 32C Klingons for Something Really Special that won't happen now (AFAWK). Oh, well.

Hey, the Starfleet Academy show is still happening. I'm hoping that any good overflow plot points will end up in there.
posted by confluency at 4:26 AM on May 27 [3 favorites]


- That library is where I hope to go when I die. Too bad they couldn't have slipped an orangutan in there somewhere.

[lowers his TP book and salutes]
posted by Atreides at 2:24 PM on May 29 [1 favorite]


It's a real place! The Thomas Fisher Rare Book Library on the U. Toronto campus. Obviously they extended the existing interior with CGI but at least part of it is a practical location

Yeah! My partner just started his job as the space and stacks manager there three weeks before the shoot, and his new boss asked if he was able to work an upcoming weekend...as the liaison to the production crew working with the collections.
posted by avocet at 5:17 AM on May 30 [3 favorites]


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