Star Trek: Discovery Season 5's Start Feels Bittersweet, And Really Drives Home How Much This Show Reminds Me Of Voyager

Star Trek: Discovery Season 5 feels like the show's best season yet, and that's incredibly bittersweet. I was only given the first four episodes to screen of the upcoming Star Trek show, but it's clear that the final adventure of the Sonequa Martin-Green-led series is primed to be the best of the run. While watching, I couldn't help but feel it's bittersweet and be reminded of the same feelings I had when watching Voyager Season 5. 

I think in the years to come, a lot of comparisons will be made to both shows, especially since they're both available to stream with a Paramount+ subscription. Beyond the fact that they're both shows with women as captains of vessels, Star Trek: Discovery Season 5 nails the comparison, similar to how I felt when watching the Season 5 episodes of Voyager. As a note, this is a spoiler-free analysis of the final season, so don't worry about having any bits tarnished before the big premiere on April 4th. 

Both Discovery And Voyager Hit Their Stride Late In The Run

If I've had any criticism regarding Star Trek: Discovery since its beginning, it was that it often suffered from uneven storytelling. Seasons 1 through 3 delivered on building anticipation and delivering some great episodes, but it always felt like the ending never quite lived up to the expectation of what was being built towards. Many times I was left feeling that the show reached a climax weeks ahead of the season finale, and the rest was good, but not quite as thrilling. 

Star Trek: Discovery Season 4, in my opinion, was the first time one of this show's seasons appropriately built toward a satisfying ending that peaked at just the right time. Now imagine that same vibe in Season 5, except it's balls-to-the-wall right out the gate. As promised, the series is delivering on action in Season 5, but as Doug Jones told CinemaBlend, it's not sacrificing the parts people love about Discovery in the process. This is the perfect blend of action and emotion, and there's even some episodic fun likely inspired by Strange New Worlds' success

It feels like Discovery finally nailed its formula in Season 5, which is exactly how I felt about Star Trek: Voyager. The show gets a big boost with Jeri Ryan joining as Seven of Nine in Season 4, and then by Season 5, we have strong stories with her, The Doctor, Janeway, and everyone else. There's an argument often made that Season 5 of Voyager is the peak of Star Trek storytelling, even if other shows like The Next Generation were more consistently solid. 

That feeling is the same here with Discovery, in that when this show is good, it's phenomenal. Discovery didn't re-invent itself to find this formula either, it just found what will ultimately be the ideal framework for serialized storytelling in the franchise going forward. There's no denying some fans felt it stumbled along the way, but I'm confident they'll be fully on board with this incredible, thrilling adventure that puts them in search of a powerful artifact. 

The Strength Of Star Trek: Discovery Season 5 Will Have You Wishing We Had More Adventures

The massive downside of Star Trek: Discovery's incredibly strong start to Season 5 is that for every thrill you have, it'll be in the back of your head that this show is ending. I can't tell you the number of times in the first four episodes that I said to myself, "Damn, if they just had another season or two." I very much have the feeling that the show is going to end its run on top and leave audiences begging for a follow-up and when to expect it.

8 WTF Moments In Star Trek: Voyager That Keep Me Up At Night

At the same time, I do have to wonder if Discovery would've kept this strong momentum or struggled in the same way in successive seasons as Voyager did. Voyager Seasons 6 and 7 certainly weren't bad if you overlook the weird Chakotay and Seven romance, but there's no denying Season 5 was the peak. I can't say Discovery would've followed the same pattern as Voyager, but I can say that if it did, I would've gladly watched the next two seasons and sooner had the show ended like that than get this abrupt ending. 

The good news is that while Star Trek: Discovery will end as a series, the story is never truly over for these characters. Assuming the final scene shot that gave Doug Jones closure isn't the entire crew dying in a violent explosion, there will be opportunities in the future for this crew to appear in other projects and adventures. We also already have the first spinoff movie in development, with Star Trek: Section 31's production kicking off, so it's not like the franchise is shying away from developing new projects based on it. 

And just to reiterate, these are just my thoughts and feelings on the first four episodes of Star Trek: Discovery Season 5. Paramount+ did not provide the remaining six episodes of the season so far, though based on what is set up in these episodes, I'm optimistic the quality will continue throughout the rest of the season. There are some big surprises in store for viewers that make themselves known from the first episode, and it's the kind of surprise that, again, makes you wish there were just more episodes for more moments like this to happen. 

Star Trek: Voyager has yet to get a movie, though I'd argue now is the perfect time for one. Star Trek: The Original Series, however, ended up getting six movies years after its cancellation. I can't say for sure what's possible in the modern streaming market, but I would wager that if the fans want it and the cast is available and willing, there are going to be opportunities in the future to bring back the Discovery crew for movies set in the 32nd century. For now, we have ten more episodes to enjoy, and I think fans definitely will like them. 

Star Trek fans can stream the first two episodes of Discovery Season 5 when they premiere on Paramount+ Thursday, April 4th. Keep with CinemaBlend in the coming weeks as we talk more about the upcoming season and share all we learned from the cast in our interviews about the past, present and future of Discovery!

Mick Joest
Content Producer

Mick Joest is a Content Producer for CinemaBlend with his hand in an eclectic mix of television goodness. Star Trek is his main jam, but he also regularly reports on happenings in the world of Star Trek, WWE, Doctor Who, 90 Day Fiancé, Quantum Leap, and Big Brother. He graduated from the University of Southern Indiana with a degree in Journalism and a minor in Radio and Television. He's great at hosting panels and appearing on podcasts if given the chance as well.