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This page contains information regarding Star Trek: Discovery, and thus may contain spoilers.

"We choose our own pain. Mine helps me remember."
– Gabriel Lorca to Ash Tyler, 2256 ("Choose Your Pain")

Captain Gabriel Lorca was a male Human Starfleet officer who lived during the mid-23rd century. He served as the commanding officer on board at least two Federation starships – the USS Buran, and the USS Discovery in 2256. (DIS: "Context Is for Kings", "Choose Your Pain")

Personal lifeEdit

In the 22nd century, Lorca's family ran a business that produced fortune cookies. He was in possession of at least one tribble, which he kept on his desk in his ready room. (DIS: "Context Is for Kings")

Starfleet careerEdit

Commanding officer of the USS BuranEdit

At some point prior to 2256, Lorca was assigned as the captain of the USS Buran.

In 2256, during a battle in the Federation-Klingon War, he destroyed the Buran rather than allow the ship's crew to be kidnapped by the Klingons. He was the only survivor from the Buran, but the vessel's destruction injured his eyes, causing him to have to adjust to light change slowly from then on. The fact that he had been the only survivor caused him to get a negative reputation among other Starfleet personnel, as typically captains were expected to go down with their ships. (DIS: "Choose Your Pain")

Commanding officer of the USS DiscoveryEdit

Lorca was subsequently given command of the USS Discovery. Under his command, the Discovery rescued Michael Burnham and other prisoners after their prison shuttle was nearly destroyed by Species GS54, a species that fed on electricity. It was later revealed that the rescue was not by chance, as Lorca wished to recruit Burnham per Starfleet Regulation 13982 to aid him in winning the war. (DIS: "Context Is for Kings").

Under his command, Discovery was able to destroy the Klingon Ship of the Dead with a barrage of photon torpedoes after strategically placing two sensors on the ship, and performing 133 spore jumps to collect enough data to devise an algorithm to crack the Klingon's cloaking frequency. After the victory, Discovery was ordered back to Starbase 46. However, for undetermined reasons, Lorca performed an override on his console before the spore jump that sent Discovery into unknown space surrounded by starship debris. (DIS: "Into the Forest I Go")

Relationships Edit

Romances Edit

Katrina Cornwell Edit

Lorca and Katrina Cornwell seem to have had a sexual relationship in the past despite their differences in ranks. (DIS: "Choose Your Pain", "Lethe")

Key dates Edit

  • 2250s2256: Commanding officer of the USS Buran. Later destroys the Buran to prevent his crew from falling into Klingon hands and is the only survivor. This also causes permanent damage to his eyes, leaving a lasting photosensitivity in them.
  • 2256:
    • Appointed captain of the USS Discovery.
    • Leads the Discovery to victory against the Klingons during the Attack on Corvan II.
    • Returning from a conference, his shuttle is attacked and he is captured by a Klingon boarding party. After being tortured, he orchestrates an escape with the help of Lieutenant Ash Tyler. Using a stolen Klingon shuttle, both make it to the Discovery, which has arrived to mount a rescue.

Memorable quotes Edit

"No matter how deep in space you are, always feel like you can see home. Don't you think? Maybe it's just me. Forgive the lighting. The lack thereof. A recent battle injury. There's nothing they can do if I want to keep my own eyes, and I do. I have to suffer light change slowly. I like to think it makes me mysterious. No?"

- Gabriel Lorca's introductory words to Michael Burnham (DIS: "Context Is for Kings")

"Captain Gabriel Lorca. Welcome to Discovery."

- Gabriel Lorca, welcoming Michael Burnham to Discovery (DIS: "Context Is for Kings")

"Until your vessel's repaired, you'll be assigned to quarters and put to work. I'm not a chauffeur. There's no free rides on my ship. You were once a Starfleet officer. I will use you, or anything else I can, to achieve my mission."

- Gabriel Lorca, to Michael Burnham (DIS: "Context Is for Kings")

"We are creating a new way to fly."

- Gabriel Lorca, explaining his mission to Michael Burnham (DIS: "Context Is for Kings")

"Hold tight. Blink: you're in Ilari. Blink: the moons of Andoria. Blink: you missed Romulus. All those planets, all those places, all those species seen and yet to be seen. And you're home like it never happened."

- Gabriel Lorca, showing Michael Burnham the spore drive (DIS: "Context Is for Kings")

"Universal law is for lackeys. Context... is for kings."

- Gabriel Lorca to Michael Burnham (DIS: "Context Is for Kings")

"So, what's it to be, Michael? What's in your future? What do you wish for? Atonement? Redemption? Maybe... the assurance that the captain you lost didn't die in vain? You helped start a war. Don't you want to help me end it?"

- Gabriel Lorca, to Michael Burnham about her future (DIS: "Context Is for Kings")

"Let's send our Klingon friends a message they won't forget."

- Gabriel Lorca, before the USS Discovery destroys multiple Klingon ships (DIS: "The Butcher's Knife Cares Not for the Lamb's Cry")

"We were ambushed, and I did... escape. But I didn't let my crew die. I blew them up. I knew what awaited them on Qo'noS-- degradation, torture, slow, public death. It's the Klingon way. To spread terror. Not my crew. Not on my watch."

- Gabriel Lorca, regarding the fate of the USS Buran (DIS: "Choose Your Pain")

"Your eyes-- that happened when you destroyed the Buran, didn't it?"
"We choose our own pain. Mine helps me remember."

- Ash Tyler and Gabriel Lorca on Lorca's eye injury (DIS: "Choose Your Pain")

"I can't leave Starfleet's most powerful weapon in the hands of a broken man."
"Don't take my ship away from me. She's all I've got. Please, I'm begging you."

- Katrina Cornwell and Gabriel Lorca on Lorca's ability to command the USS Discovery (DIS: "Lethe")

"We are about to face the most difficult challenge we have ever attempted. Today, we stare down the bow of the Ship of the Dead, the very same ship that took thousands of our own at the Battle of the Binary Stars. When I took command of this vessel, you were a crew of polite scientists. Now, I look at you. You are fierce warriors all. No other Federation vessel would have a chance of pulling this off. Just us. Because mark my words: you will look back proudly and tell the world you were there the day the USS Discovery saved Pahvo and ended the Klingon War."

- Gabriel Lorca, addressing the crew of the USS Discovery (DIS: "Into the Forest I Go")


"Hold tight."

- His way of telling his crew to get ready (Star Trek: Discovery)


- His way of ordering something done (DIS: "The Butcher's Knife Cares Not for the Lamb's Cry")

Appendices Edit

Appearances Edit

Background informationEdit

Gabriel Lorca was played by Jason Isaacs.

Holding Star Trek: The Original Series in remarkably high esteem, Jason Isaacs' initial reaction to being asked to appear in Star Trek: Discovery was to turn down the offer, adamant that he didn't want to participate in a horribly diluted version of the series that he respected so much. "But then," he continued, "I set up a Skype, a slightly reluctant Skype, with these guys, and they had a great story to tell. They had a great character to play. And so, I shrugged off any of the yolk [sic] of the past and just jumped in to play this, to do this story." [1]

On 1 September 2017, Captain Lorca, in collaboration with the dance troupe Diversity, switched on the Blackpool Illuminations, the start of that year's annual festival of lights in Blackpool, UK. This was the first time Star Trek was involved in the highly celebrated switching-on ceremony.

External linksEdit

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