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Heartwarming / Star Trek: Strange New Worlds

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     Episode 1: Strange New Worlds 
  • Stamets gets a shuttlecraft named after him (and, according to Memory Alpha, all TOS-era shuttlecraft are Stamets-type).
  • On Picard, the cast were a Ragtag Band of Misfits that had difficulty working together at times and part of the first season of Discovery was about Michael's struggle to be accepted after her mutiny. By contrast, the crew of the Enterprise feels much like a well-oiled machine to the point of being like a family. Pike gives his Medical Officer a Man Hug after being reunited after three months, and he later greets Sam Kirk with similar warmth.
  • Pike is spending some romantic downtime with a fellow captain, Batel, who is about to ship out for a month.
    Pike: I might still be here. So... give me a call, and we'll get together...
    Batel: That'd be nice. I'd like that. (kisses Pike) But I hope you're not. You've got better places to be.
  • In the turbolift after returning to the Enterprise, Spock and Pike have a quiet moment where the Vulcan admits that he is struggling with his grief for his sister Michael. Pike sympathizes and admits that he misses her too despite only knowing her a short time.
  • Its a Foregone Conclusion that things won't work out but Spock and T'Pring's relationship is quite sweet for two members of a species that actively work to suppress their emotions. Especially the scene where she proposes to him and his response:
    Spock: I was beginning to believe that you would never ask.
  • Upon being rescued, Una and La'an are revealed to know each other and even friendly. Turns out that she was an Ensign aboard the Martin Luther King Jr. which was the vessel that found La'an after being left for dead by the Gorn. As well as the inspiration for La'an to join Starfleet. In a roundabout way, La'an is just returning the favor Number One did her all those years ago...
    La'an Yeah, she found me once, when I was in a bad spot.
    Number One: Didn't I tell you to stop being brave?
  • Pike telling La'an the backstory behind Starbase 1: just before and during WWIII, scientists sent hundreds of plant seeds into space for preservation. When Earth was rebuilt, the resulting forests had grown to the point that it made more sense to build humanity's first space station around the biodomes. Symbolizing how in space there is literally endless room for growth and possibility, Pike ends the story by formally offering La'an a permanent position as Enterprise's Security Chief.
  • Pike, upon realizing that the Kileans only have the technology due to the events of the battle against Control of which Pike was a part of, has this to say: "Screw General Order One". He proceeds to successfully convince the two waring political factions that the escalating conflict will only lead to the destruction of their world.
    Pike: (beams down directly between the opposing leaders) Hi. Sorry to interrupt. I'm Christopher Pike. My world is called Earth. And though it's far from here, uh, my people and yours are, uh, very much alike. (shows an orbital view of Earth) This is my world today. But we were not always peaceful. This is Earth in our 21st century. (shows vistas of 21st-century Earth) Before everything went wrong. It's a lot like your world today. Recently I was treated to a glimpse of my future. It was not all I'd hoped. After all, what good is there in knowing your future? A friend of mine asked me that recently and... didn't understand what he meant. (short chuckle) Until now. I've seen my future. Let me show you yours. (shows videos of conflict and strife) Our conflict also started with a fight for freedoms. We called it the Second Civil War, then the Eugenics War, and finally just World War III. This was our last day. The day the Earth we knew ceased to exist. (shows videos of super-bombs exploding) What began as an eruption in one nation, ended in the eradication of 600,000 species of animals and plants and 30% of Earth's population. Global suicide. What we gave you is the means to exterminate yourselves. And from the looks of you, you're gonna do it. You'll use competing ideas of liberty to bomb each other to rubble, just like we did, and then your last day will look just like this. Perhaps, somewhere, all your ends are written as indelibly as mine. But I choose to believe that your destinies are still your own. Maybe that's why I'm here— to remind you of the power... of possibility. Maybe that's the good in-in seeing my future— that I might remind you that, right up until the very end, life is to be worn gloriously. Because, till our last moment... the future's what we make it. So... go to war with each other. Or... join our Federation of Planets... and reach for the stars. The choice is yours.
    • The Kileans are shown to be neither right nor wrong in the conflict, with Pike outright noting it's more an escalating conflict between the people (who simply want to protect their freedoms) and the government (who are just trying to keep the peace while dealing with the more radical members of the other faction).

     Episode 2: Children of the Comet 
  • While Uhura is initially put off by Ortegas' hazing, the Lieutenant treats her with good humor and makes it apparent that this is a ritual every new crewmember on the Enterprise have all likely been through, Ortegas included.
  • Pike hosting a dinner in his quarters and inviting not only the experienced crew but cadets like Uhura is incredibly heartwarming, and he genuinely seems to enjoy preparing a meal for the people under his command.
  • The episode being an Uhura episode as we learn about her backstory, specifically why she joined Starfleet, and going on her first away mission that involves saving a planet and kickstarting the development of an alien civilization.
    • Spock being supportive of Cadet Uhura throughout the episode even if his Vulcan-ness makes it hard to realize at times what he's trying to convey.
    • Uhura's first away mission is to travel to a comet that has apparently been converted into a starship; knew the landing party first arrives, she is struck with awe that she's standing on the surface of a comet as it hurtles through space.

     Episode 3: Ghosts Of Illyria 
  • Commander Una gets put into her most troubling situation yet. The crew is infected with a disease that's causing them to become addicted to light (and are doing very dangerous things to get at it), Pike and Spock are stranded on the surface of a planet and under threat from a massive ion storm, and as the crew discovers, she's an Illyrian—a species of whom the Federation dislikes for performing various genetic modifications on themselves. And in spite of all of that, she not only saves the day, but Pike refuses to allow her to resign or be disciplined, despite of her breaking numerous Federation Laws; as far as he's concerned, she's the best first officer Starfleet has to offer. Of course, it does lead into tearjerker territory when she confides in her private log whether or not Pike would have such praise for her if she had failed.
  • Dr. M'Benga is privately confronted by Una when Hemmer's diagnostic determines it was the private medical transporter that caused the bio filters to fail in the main transporter system. He confesses that his daughter is in there, kept immaterialized for her own safety until he can find a cure for the currently incurable disease she's afflicted with. At that point, he's prepared to face discipline and let his kid live out her final days for his mistake...only for Una to inform him that she'll be giving the transporter its own private power source so it won't happen again. He then pulls her out of the transporter so he can read her a bedtime story, which she listens in on with wonder and awe.
    • Better still, that same methodology M'Benga is using to keep his daughter alive? It's exactly what Mr. Scott did all those years later on TNG. Looks like the Miracle Worker picked up that trick from him.
  • The Energy Beings that used to be the Illyrian colonists use their new forms to shield Pike and Spock from the ion storm.

     Episode 4: Memento Mori 
  • Pike has to reluctantly seal the bulkheads to save the ship, killing an unfortunate blue shirt who doesn't make it past the line. As he ruminates on what feels like a bad choice, Spock assures him that it was the logical decision, and the reason he made it is the same reason he's so broken up about it:
    Spock: Because you value life.
  • Hemmer's plot with Uhura showcases his softer side. The last episodes painted him as an irritable Insufferable Genius, but he has hidden depths. He tells Uhura about his pacifism and his spirituality. He even tells Uhura his purpose in life, and suggests she should find a purpose too.
    Hemmer: I fix what it is broken.
  • Spock's mindmeld with La'an exposes her to his memories of Burnham, and how he grieves her disappearance. La'an, who'd lost her brother to the Gorn, isn't concerned that Spock just let classified information leak. Rather, she sympathizes with him because he lost a sibling just like she did.
  • Upon hearing that Uhura and Hemmer survived the venting of the cargo hold, Pike is so relieved he sags for a moment, while the remaining bridge crew (save Spock and La'an) smile.

     Episode 5: Spock Amok 
  • The body-swapping hijinks finally encourages Spock to come clean and not only admit his fears to T'Pring, but say that part of why he continues to serve in Starfleet is because none of his fellow officers care that he's half-human/half-Vulcan. He finally gets to be just "Spock." And after briefly experiencing the prejudice Spock endures from other Vulcans, T'Pring is much more understanding.
  • As the negotiations take an ill turn Pike steps in to passionately defend Spock (who is actually T'Pring), and in doing so emphasizes how much Spock contributes to Starfleet, citing his sacrifice of leaving his culture behind, getting to know so many alien cultures and maintaining high intellectual standards.
  • And then Pike wins over the R'ongovians by simply being Pike — i.e., making it clear that he understands their concerns about joining the Federation.
    • The R'ongovians are an empathetic race who attempt to see the point of view of whomever they are currently speaking to. Pike won them over by trying to see things from their perspective.
  • It's hard to see, but if you pause at the right moment while La'an and Una are signing the Scorch, you can spot Lucille Ball's signature among the other names on the plate. Lucille famously took a chance on The Original Series by agreeing to produce it through her company, Desilu Studios; it's very possible that without her, Star Trek as we know it would never have been made. Seeing her name on the Enterprise's hull is a sweet tribute.
  • La'an gazing up in awe as she and Una watch the R'ongovian flagship sail overhead, flying the Federation flag. It's lovely to see that even the stoic badass is still capable of wonder.

     Episode 7: The Serene Squall 
  • Even though they're faking it, Nurse Chapel actually gets to kiss Spock. Even T'Pring notes that Spock's human side enabled him to kiss Chapel with convincing passion. Bittersweet as she cannot express her true feelings for him, and this is the closest she can come to doing so.
  • Despite threatening to kill Spock earlier, when Captain Angel realises they've lost, they give him genuinely heartfelt advice on dealing with his human and vulcan natures.
    • It's later revealed that Angel's husband is Sybok, who despite their enforced estrangement seems to think highly of his brother.

     Episode 8: The Elysian Kingdom 
  • The aftermath of M'Benga's Sadistic Choice proves it was the right one: A few moments after she leaves, a now-grown Rukiya appears to reassure him that she is happy, healthy, and thriving. she tells her father that she's going to be fine with her "friend" in the nebula, who she's named for her mother, (who is implied to be dead based on M'Benga's reaction to the news) and that she wants him to move forward with his life and find happiness.
  • A small retroactive one to Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, we see that "The Kingdom Elysian" was written by Benny Russell, the artist Sisko becomes in a vision in Far Among The Stars. Which confirms Benny Russell was a real person, and that no matter what he went through, he wrote a book that's still being read over 300 years later.

     Episode 9: All Those Who Wander 
  • Hemmer's final words before his Heroic Sacrifice manage to be beautiful and poignant, giving fond farewells to Spock and especially Uhura.
    • Uhura was preparing to disembark from the Enterprise at the beginning of the episode. It's heavily implied at the end she decided to stay to honor Hemmer's memory, staring fondly at what would become her station on the bridge for years to come.

     Episode 10: A Quality of Mercy 
  • Kirk immediately recognizes Spock's skill and insight, a subtle hint at their future friendship.
  • Sam Kirk doesn't mince words about his brother's flaws, but he also states in no uncertain terms that Jim Kirk is one of the finest captains in Starfleet.
    Pike: Should we be worried that he's going to start a war?
    Sam Kirk: Look, I'm not gonna say that Jim isn't a pain in the ass. He is. He's a huge pain in the ass. But the truth is, he's as fine a Captain as Starfleet has.
  • Jim and Sam Kirk giving each other a genuine Bro Hug when they re-unite on the Enterprise.
  • Admiral Pike and Captain Pike talk about how important it is that Pike gives his life to preserve Spock's:
  • Pike opts to do one last thing before heading back to his original timeline; sharing a drink and a friendly chat with Kirk, his eventual successor, who he never got to know on a personal level (in the original timeline at least).
    Pike: Y'know, I don't think I can explain it, but I think I was supposed to meet you.
    Kirk: I get that feeling, too.
    Pike: You're a good captain, Jim Kirk. Enterprise would be lucky to have you.
  • Spock's actions in "The Menagerie" take on even greater meaning in the context of this episode. He deduces from Pike's reaction that Pike's sacrifice somehow saves his life, and is in his debt for that. It's no wonder he'd go to such lengths for a man who was not only his captain and friend, but willing to give up everything for him.
    Spock: I believe I may owe you a debt of gratitude, Captain, although for precisely what, I don't know.
    Pike: Spock, you are... You are very important to me.
    Spock: As are you to me, Captain. Chris.


  • For fans of the older Treks, seeing the title sequence of the Enterprise flying through space as it explores the galaxy with the "Coming the Season" promo promising it to be the "different adventure per episode" format. It really invokes Gene Roddenberry's idea of the original series about the beauty and endless possibilities of space travel.
  • The reveal that Lt. Samuel Kirk, James T. Kirk's brother, has joined the Enterprise as a Science Officer, especially when it's revealed that his brother will be joining the cast in season 2.