The season three finale of Star Trek: Discovery is just a few days away. Last week’s episode “There is a Tide…” was a fast paced, emotional, action-packed adventure, and the finale promises the same level of intensity.
The penultimate episode of this eventful season saw the bridge crew of Discovery held hostage by Osyraa, her vicious Regulators and some of her top operatives. As Book, Ryn, Tilly, Detmer, Owo, and the rest of the bridge crew attempted to take back the ship, Burnham spent most of the episode crawling through Jefferies tubes in an attempt to reach Engineering. With the knowledge that Osyraa wanted to steal the Spore technology, she knew her primary mission had to be getting Stamets off the ship.
This mission was more essential than Burnham could know since Stamets was being examined by an Emerald Chain scientist named Aurellio. He was determined to extract the spore technology from Stamets in spite of his pleas for mercy.
Meanwhile, Osyraa headed to Federation headquarters on a mission no one expected — brokering an alliance between the Federation and the Emerald Chain. She was willing to make a lot of concessions to get the armistice signed, and Admiral Vance seemed willing to move forward. However, the deal fell apart when Vance made one request that Osyraa just couldn’t stomach.
The episode ended with Burnham launching Stamets into space then getting captured, Osyraa preparing to do battle with the Federation, and the bridge crew encountering some DOT-23s that somehow contained the Sphere data.
The episode was a lot to take in, and fans were left with a plethora of questions, some of which they’ll hopefully get answers to in the final episode of the season.
Here are some of the top questions on fans’ minds right now:
What’s the Deal with Aurellio and Osyraa?
The Emerald Chain scientist was introduced for the first time in “There is a Tide…” and fans have several questions about who he is and his significance to Osyraa. There was a fair amount of information about the character given in the episode.
He’s a researcher at the Science Institute run and funded by the Emerald Chain. He was either born into the Chain or they took over his home planet when he was young. He was born with a genetic defect and when he was ten years old and about to die, his parents begged Osyraa to save him. Though an act of compassion like that doesn’t seem like something Osyraa would do, she did save his life. She also ordered the scientists at the Institute to build him a special wheelchair, which he still uses. Aurellio told Stamets that Osyraa believed in his potential and that’s why she saved him. She recruited him for the Science Institute and they apparently developed a close relationship.
Throughout the episode, Osyraa acted in uncharacteristic ways every time she interacted with Aurellio. She spoke to him with softness and kindness. She made sure his favorite opera was playing while he worked. She even showed a bit of vulnerability by telling him that she was nervous about the negotiations with the Federation. In short, Osyraa acted like a completely different person when she was with Aurellio. She certainly didn’t act like the woman who had killed her brother and nephew because they’d messed with her business dealings.
These interactions have fans wondering who Aurellio really is and what he means to Osyraa. A few Redditors have posited that Aurellio is actually Osyraa’s husband. At one point during the episode Aurellio confirmed that he is married to an Orion and they have three children together, so this seems fairly plausible. One Redditor pointed out that it would explain her softness and tolerance toward him, especially as she’s proven that’s she’s willing to be brutal with everyone but him.
Fans seem pretty excited to see more of Aurellio and learn more of his story in the finale and hopefully season four as well.
What’s Up with the Sphere Data?
Throughout the season, the Sphere Data has been interacting with the crew in a very different way than most ship’s computers do, other than the few times the Enterprise gained some level of sentience. In the episode “Forget me Not,” the Sphere Data spoke to Saru directly, giving him advice about what he should do to help his traumatized crew. The voice heard in that episode was the same voice as a sentient version of the Discovery, which appeared in an episode of “Short Treks” a few years ago. Some have theorized that the Sphere Data has caused Discovery itself to become sentient, which would enable it to protect itself.
The appearance of the Sphere Data DOT-23s seemed to many fans like a confirmation that the Sphere Data had become its own, fully sentient entity. However, there hasn’t been an outright confirmation of this from anyone associated with the show. In fact, Jonathan Frakes, who directed the episode, dodged the question when he was asked by Wil Wheaton on last week’s episode of “Ready Room.” When Wheaton asked, point blank, whether the DOT-23s meant that Discovery was sentient, Frakes talked around the question, never giving a straight answer.
Though it seems pretty obvious to most fans that this is the case, they’re definitely interested to see what role the “Sphere Robots” play in the finale.
Is Osyraa Headed to the Verubin Nebula?
In an attempt to save Ryn’s life, Book offered to take Osyraa into the Verubin Nebula to mine the dilithium on the planet. Osyraa seemed interested, but she still executed Ryn. She headed to the captain’s chair on Discovery, but it was unclear whether she was planning to attack Federation headquarters or head to the Nebula.
The teaser for the finale showed an epic battle on the Discovery taking place right outside Federation headquarters. It also hinted that the actual space station could under attack, though it’s not clear if all the action is taking place outside. Regardless of where the action is taking place, Osyraa made her intentions clear in the teaser, saying, “I want the Federation obliterated.”
So, Osyraa will definitely be sticking around long enough to fight it out with Federation forces, but will she head to the Nebula after that?
Who’s Going Back to get Adira, Hugh, and Saru?
Fans are definitely worried about the Discovery crew members left inside the Verubin Nebula, especially since it’s very unclear who’s going back to save them.
In an emotion-filled moment toward the end of the episode, Stamets begged Burnham to make the jump to the Nebula so they could rescue Adira, Hugh, and Saru from the dilithium planet before they died of radiation poisoning. Though it clearly pained her, Burnham replied that Discovery needed to stay to protect the Federation and that he needed to get off the ship so Osyraa couldn’t use him for her nefarious purposes.
Since Burnham launched Stamets into space so he could be tractor beamed back to Federation headquarters, it’s clear that Discovery won’t be jumping to the Nebula to save their crew members. At least not until they get Osyraa off the ship and ensure the safety of the Federation.
It’s possible that Osyraa will head to the Nebula after a brief battle with the Federation, guided by Book, who could lead a rogue rescue mission. With the damage Book’s ship sustained flying into Discovery’s shuttle bay, it’s unlikely that it’s in any shape for a mission. So, Book and Burnham escaping to head back to the Nebula doesn’t seem too likely. It’s possible that Adira, Hugh, and Saru will find a way to leave the planet with the help of Su’Kal, but they hadn’t made much progress in convincing him to leave his holodeck world when fans saw them last.
Hopefully, the finale gives fans the answers they’re looking for. For now, they’ll just have to theorize away.