Give Michael a love interest who actually sticks around 

Here’s a thing that’s been a sticking point with a lot of black female TV watchers – it gets annoying to watch genre television show with black ladies as leads, only to see them either get killed or lose a love interest. It’s a trope that reinforces the “Strong Black Woman” archetype. Some feel like that’s happened once again with Michael’s relationship with Ash Tyler.

Michael’s relationship still follows a pattern many black women characters have been subjected to: they find a good man, that man turns out to be not so good (or they die), and the woman is left on her own again with little time to show remorse, regret, or any type of sadness.

Personally, I’m fine with where these characters landed in their relationship. I think the romance was handled as well as it could have been given the arc the writers wanted to use, and I think Michael wasn’t left completely in a place of “strong black womanhood,” so to speak. She’s still quite vulnerable, which was shown when Sarek finally gave her the positive reinforcement she’s been seeking her entire life. She’s also been given a space to show her sadness about Tyler leaving. I’m thinking of that distinct moment where she wishes for what could have been as she holds Tyler’s boating knot, crying as he leaves with L’Rell.

With all of that said, I’d love for the series to finally give Michael a love she can call her own. Frankly, Michael deserves it. She’s been through hell; it’s time she finally got some happiness in her life.

Some of the most enjoyable moments of the series so far involved Michael discovering love with someone else. She was able to discover other facets of herself, like her softer side. Knowing that someone else finds you attractive and worthy does, in fact, help heal a psyche scarred from societal pressures and discrimination. But the wounds get deeper each time you see someone like yourself (even on a television show) get jilted or somehow removed from love. In those first few episodes about Tyler and Michael’s relationship, I felt some of my own emotional baggage lift. I’d hate for the next season to show us a clammed-up version of Michael, still shaken from her time with Tyler.

An update on Tyler

Will the story take us away from Tyler for good? Like with Prime Lorca and the bridge crew, there are a lot of things still left up in the air concerning Tyler, and those loose ends could make for great episodes. Will those opportunities be forgotten? I certainly hope not. Like with everyone on this show, I grew to care about Tyler a great deal, and I’d hate it if we didn’t get an update on where he is and what he’s doing in his long journey towards finding himself.

More backstory and flashbacks on Michael’s parents

Again, an untapped source of storytelling is Michael’s life with her parents before the Klingon attack. I’m surprised we didn’t see a flashback of her parents at all, especially since she was old enough to remember them. We know they were scientists doing research on Vulcan, but what else? What did they look like? What research were they doing and why was it important for Earth? What was Michael like before she became Sarek’s ward, and why did Sarek take her in? So many questions…and not enough answers.

At this point, it’s safe to say that one of the biggest issues with Star Trek: Discovery is the amount of storytelling opportunities left to the viewer’s imagination. I’d like some definite facts told about these characters next season, because it really doesn’t make much sense for us to have a main character whose parents were so integral to her life for the short time they were around, and yet we know next to nothing about them.

Culber in the mycelial network

Culber dropped the knowledge that anything is possible in the mycelial network. So, are we ever going to see him again? That’d be cool. If he’s still in the mycelial network, then perhaps we still can see more of him in the second season. Maybe Culber could even be the Discovery’s guide through other alternate universes.

Culber’s death has been a big source of contention this season, and I’m still not exactly sure where I fall on the issue. I’m definitely leaning towards the side that feels Culber shouldn’t have been killed off. At the very least, Star Trek: Discovery avoided the “bury your gays” trope by allowing Culber to give a proper send-off to his husband. But still, Culber’s dead, and another relationship featuring a marginalized voice is ruined.

To be honest, there were some decisions made during Star Trek: Discovery that are some real head scratchers – Tyler turning evil for a split second, Georgiou dying in the second episode, never seeing Michael’s parents in flashback form, and Culber dying in order to save Stamets and propel him on his journey. These storytelling decisions were made because there has to be drama and conflict, but at the same time, some of them could have been handled better, especially when it comes to something as sensitive as LGBT representation.

Teen Spock

I don’t think anybody thought there would be a possibility of us seeing a teen Spock on a Star Trek show, but here we are. Since the Discovery is attempting to make its way to Vulcan, it only makes sense that we will, at some point, see Sarek and Spock interact. But since Michael is older than Spock, it only stands to reason that we’ll see a teenage Spock. The possibility of seeing the family dynamics between Sarek, Michael and Spock boggle the mind and I hope the show allows us to see this play out on screen.

Also, teen Spock provides yet another opportunity to address real world issues through a sci-fi lens. Throughout the character’s life, Spock has been used by the show and by fans as an allegorical character for biracial, multiracial, and/or multicultural representation on screen. Teen Spock could provide writers a chance to thoughtfully explore the challenges people face when they feel like they don’t fit neatly into any racial or ethnic category. If the writers play their cards right, teen Spock could prove to be one of the most layered and dynamic characters of the second season.

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