Just when fans were getting into the story of the newest season of “Star Trek: Discovery,” when everything came to a halt. That is, the show went on a mid-season hiatus. This announcement, which went into effect after the streaming of Episode 7, “But To Connect,” meant that fans would have to wait until February 10, 2022, for Episode 8. Starting there, the rest of the season will stream uninterrupted.
Fans, like writer Chad Porto, are understandably grouchy at this stoppage. “There’s really no reason to take a break, especially when you usually have less than half of a full-season order of a conventional television series,” writes Porto. “The worst part about this is that it isn’t the first show to do this.”
‘But To Connect’
While this mid-season break shocked many Trek fans, the practice is done throughout the television industry. According to a post on Stack Exchange, putting a show on hiatus is done on “general purpose is to make the show run longer.” Sometimes this is to delay a popular show until the ratings or sweeps period runs. That is because “advertising companies use ratings to decide how much a 30-second commercial is worth during a certain show, based on how many eyes will actually see that commercial.”
A mid-season break is so typical for many shows that Deadline and other media sites often track which shows will stop airing and when they will start back up.
The sweeps and advertisement explanation do not work for “Discovery” and the other Trek shows on the Paramount+ network. This leaves fans like Porto and Edwin Bailey left to ask why this sort of thing keeps happening.
Bailey posted on the popular Facebook group Star Trek: Discovery (Paramount+), asking why the break had to happen.
“I will ask this again — why is there a mid-season break for a season that has only 11 episodes?” Bailey asked. “We as fans are getting ripped off. We watch and support the shows that used to be anywhere from 20 or more episodes, now we are lucky to get eight or ten.”
“It would be understandable if the season had 20 or more episodes to have a mid-season break, but come on seven episodes, and a month break to finish off with only four left,” Bailey wrote. “You wouldn’t even have a show if it wasn’t for the fans.”
Usually, Bailey would receive the thoughts from other fans, but an unexpected voice joined in the conversation. This person definitely knows why there was a break.
Wilson Cruz as Dr. Culber
“When we finish shooting, there are months of work that have to happen to complete the episodes, and that’s during a normal season that doesn’t require that work to happen during a worldwide pandemic.”
Cruz also clarified one item regarding the length of the season.
“Also, there are 13 episodes this season,” Cruz wrote. Many fans chimed in to support Cruz after his post, and page moderator Ryan T. Husk also gave everyone a few thoughts which also were well-received.
“I think we all have to be a bit more patient during this time of COVID nonsense,” posted Husk. “Nothing goes as planned, everything gets delayed, and we’re all forced to constantly ‘adapt.’ It sucks, yeah, but that’s how it is right now.”
“‘Discovery’ will be right back on in just a few weeks — I believe February 10,” Husk wrote. “Not too bad, and ‘Prodigy’ is actually really good; you should check it out!”