Anthony Rapp and Wilson Cruz Talk the Messy Family Dynamics in Star Trek: Discovery

Rapp and Cruz.
Rapp and Cruz.
Image: CBS

Lt. Commander Stamets (Anthony Rapp) and Dr. Culber (Wilson Cruz) have had a long, challenging journey. Now, they’re together, but they’re not in the best of circumstances. In an interesting conversation, Rapp and Cruz discuss the way Discovery has developed its crew dynamics and how Stamets and Culber’s love story factors into it.


In a short but intriguing conversation with Wil Wheaton on Discovery’s “The Ready Room” debriefing, Cruz and Rapp talk about the way conflict is handled among the show’s ship crew and how the show’s approach to mental health is starting to play out. This isn’t the clean, cooperative crew of The Next Generation, after all; this is a messy family group pushed to the very edge. In this clip, Wheaton lays out the stakes and Rapp and Cruz muse on what the development means for the show and its characters.

Wheaton hogs a bit of the screentime here, but what I find compelling is the suggestion that Discovery might be dramatizing how Starfleet evolved its approach to mental health. Supposing they ever return to their normal timeline, this crew will come back with some insights about operating under extreme duress, and, as Cruz and Wheaton point out, Dr. Culber is stepping up into a more counselor-like role that prefigures other characters in later parts of the timeline. Seeing those ideas coalesce and end up as part of the character evolution is an enticing prospect.

Star Trek: Discovery is still in the midst of its third season, which streams on CBS All Access.

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io9 Weekend Editor. Videogame writer at other places. Queer nerd girl.


I’m late to the party here (just caught up on all S3 this weekend). This whole season arc is dumb right?

  • Dilithium isn’t the only warp fuel on Trek. Romulans use an artificial singularity for example.
  • Even if it was, or we argue its popular enough that the Burn would have been problematic, its impossible to think 930 years in the future we would still be so reliant on a non-renewable resource like this. That’s like saying in 930 from today (2950) we are still using fossil fuels.
  • The federation ‘tried’ other means of travel that didn’t pan out? So again, in 930 years, the entire galaxy never did better than warp? No Trans Warp, no Slip Stream, no long-distance transporters, no artificial worm holes? Again, thats like saying in 1400 we never did better than horseback!
  • Similar to my previous point, in 930 years no one in the galaxy every invented a spore drive again? 2 dudes from Starfleet (pre Kirk) invented it and no one else ever did it again? How? Everyone invents warp drive on their own (its the literal trigger for first contact). Yet no one ever invents this?