With just the right amount of 60s-level cheesiness, STAR TREK: STRANGE NEW WORLDS pulls off its second episode with confidence in its characters, setting, and tone.
If I were to describe the plot of this episode, it would sound like a vaguely GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY-esque story. Yet, the tone of CHILDREN OF THE COMET seems to encapsulate the series’ title of strange, new worlds. There is more than a superficial nod to the acceptance and beliefs of others, which, while they may conflict with your own, often are simply a different perspective than the one you hold.
By far, the standout character of this episode is Uhura (Celia Rose Gooding). CHILDREN OF THE COMET shows how diversity in all forms bolsters a team. Uhura’s vast knowledge of linguistics and her Kenyan cultural background allows the Enterprise crew to solve a complex problem (the odds of which were slim, as Spock lets you know).
Why is it crucial for STRANGE NEW WORLDS to pull off Uhura well? While doing some research on the character, I learned that Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. had urged Nichelle Nichols (the first black actress on a major television show) to stay on STAR TREK, claiming “this is the only show that my wife Coretta and I will allow our little children to stay up and watch.” Gooding has some big shoes to fill, but she’s on the right track.
CHILDREN OF THE COMET is available to stream on Paramount+.