Trekkies rejoice: A new Star Trek series premieres later this month and it promises to be one of the franchise’s most ambitious outings yet. For one, its 15-episode first season is embracing serialized storytelling more than most of its predecessors. Secondly, it’s incorporating present-day conflicts into its storytelling, most notably the cultural divide in America exacerbated by the Trump presidency.
“The allegory is that we really started working on the show in earnest around the time the election was happening,” showrunner Aaron Harberts told Entertainment Weekly. “The Klingons are going to help us really look at certain sides of ourselves and our country. Isolationism is a big theme. Racial purity is a big theme. The Klingons are not the enemy, but they do have a different view on things. It raises big questions: Should we let people in? Do we want to change? There’s also the question of just because you reach your hand out to someone, do they have to take it? Sometimes, they don’t want to take it. It’s been interesting to see how the times have become more of a mirror than we even thought they were going to be.”
The series will take place a decade before the events of 1966’s original series, and will find the Federation and the Klingon race at war. Harberts confirmed to EW that our current situation with North Korea will have an impact on the show’s storytelling.
“North Korea is in our thoughts as we finish the series,” he says. “What began as a commentary on our own divided nation — in terms of Trump supporters and non-Trump supporters — has blown out to North Korea and how we’re right on the brink. [The U.S. is] actually right at the place where Starfleet finds itself in episode one and we couldn’t have anticipated that happening. But how do you end conflict when both sides have such strong opinions?”
Sonequa Martin-Green stars as First Officer Michael Burnham, who will face off against Klingon leader T’Kuvma, played by Chris Obi. The CBS All Access series will premiere on September 24th. Watch its latest trailer below.