Real World article
(written from a Production point of view)
For the DS9 episode with a similar title, please see "Past Prologue".

Lorca plans to move forward with a coup against the Emperor, propelling Burnham to make a quick decision to save not only herself, but the USS Discovery.

Summary Edit

Act One Edit

ISS Charon central orb

Discovery realizes the damage the Charon is doing to the mycelial network.

In the mirror universe, aboard the Terran emperor's flagship, the ISS Charon, Gabriel Lorca frees his followers from a chamber filled with agony booths, including his loyal partner Commander Ellen Landry. Lorca and his men seek out Stamets, and use his bioweapon to start killing the Emperor's crew.

Michael Burnham advises the Emperor to allow her to contact USS Discovery again, but is forced to flee to avoid being imprisoned in the brig.

Aboard Discovery, Airiam detects mycelium in the central orb aboard the Charon, which Stamets diagnoses as pulling power and poisoning the mycelial network.

Aboard the Charon, Lorca taunts Georgiou, and invites her crew to join his rebellion to preserve the empire. Georgiou identifies his location in the main labs, and leads her troops to "take the fight to him."

Act Two Edit

Emperor Georgiou leads her troops

Emperor Georgiou leads her troops into battle.

Emperor Georgiou's forces come head to head with Lorca's, where she alone escapes being killed using an emergency transport system.

Burnham accesses the Charon's communications system to contact the Discovery, warning them that Lorca is in fact from the mirror universe. The crew convey the importance of bringing down the containment field around the energy orb powering the palace ship.

Entering the throne room, Lorca's confidence that fate had brought him to this point grows, before killing the mirror universe Stamets.

Act Three Edit

Gabriel Lorca Mirror Universe

Lorca asks Burnham to consider that the Federation is an experiment destined for failure.

Lorca tracks Burnham to level 3, and attempts to convince her to join him in his rebellion against the emperor by describing his past with the Burnham from his universe. Landry attempts to capture her while Lorca is distracting her, only to find Burnham had rerouted the communications feed masking her location.

Michael Burnham mirror badge

The Emperor thinks back to her relationship with Burnham from her own universe.

The emperor, too, is thinking back to her relationship with the mirror Burnham, when Commander Burnham finds her. Burnham explains the parallels between her betrayal of her Georgiou, and the mirror Burnham's betrayal of the emperor. Together, the two discuss the plan to defeat Lorca.

Aboard Discovery, the crew discuss options to destroy the energy orb, but the only option seems as though it will also result in the Discovery's destruction. Saru rallies the senior officers, indicating he does not sense death in their future and that they will defeat this "no-win scenario."

In the throne room aboard the Charon, Landry reports to Lorca that the emperor's crew has either been killed or joined their movement. Lorca's guards capture and bring Burnham and Georgiou to Lorca. Burnham agrees to offer Georgiou and herself, her mind only, in exchange for letting Discovery return to their universe.

Act Four Edit

Tilly and Stamets discover a way to escape destruction, if they ride the mycelial explosion in conjunction with the warp drive.

Discovery receives a message from the Charon and drops out of warp, to receive a hail from Lorca. Burnham sends a coded indicator to attack, and the Discovery launches its attack, kicking off a hand-to-hand battle between Lorca and Georgiou, and Burnham and Landry. Georgiou eventually defeats Lorca by stabbing him through the heart with her sword, before kicking him through a force field out into space to be vaporized in the ship's mycelial sun.

Lorca defeated, Georgiou prepares to buy Burnham time by fighting off Lorca's remaining followers. Burnham grabs Georgiou, pulling her into the transporter beam and bringing her to Discovery.

Mycelial network

Stamets navigates the mycelial network.

Discovery attacks the Charon's energy orb - setting off the mycelial shockwave, which Discovery combines with its strategy to jump to warp to ride back to the prime universe. Stamets struggles to navigate the recovering mycelial network until he can remember Hugh's advice.

Klingons have won the war map 2257

"If the map is to be believed, it appears, the Klingons have won the war..."

Discovery seeks to confirm the date and location they've returned to, with no response from Starfleet. Stamets finds that they've returned nine months ahead of the point that they left, to which Saru immediately asks Rhys to update their map of the war effort. The map reveals a major expansion of Klingon territory, with Starfleet having all but lost.

Memorable quotes Edit

"What the hell are they doing?... Is the containment field up?!"

- Ellen Landry, seconds before the USS Discovery destroys the ISS Charon

Log entries Edit

Background information Edit

Production history Edit

Links and references Edit

Starring Edit


Special guest star Edit

Guest starring Edit

Co-stars Edit

Uncredited co-stars Edit

Stunt doubles Edit

Stand-in Edit

References Edit

agony booth; alpha quadrant; ambush; battalion; Battle of the Binary Stars; bioweapon; black alert; border; brig; Buran, ISS; carrier address; Charon, ISS; clearing; containment field; coup d'état; emergency transport; emperor; energy dispersal; flash grenade; forest; Georgiou, Philippa; hack; Harlak; hypergravity; ion storm; life sign; lord; magnetic field; mirror universe; multiverse; mycelial energy; mycelial network; mycelial shockwave; mycelial spore; mycelium; nanometer; noose; no-win scenario; parallel universe; pathway; photon torpedo; physics; pillow talk; poison; Priors World; race; rebellion; revolution; sanctuary; senior officer; Starbase 46; subatomic analysis; super-mycelial reactor; superstructure; sword; terahertz; throne room; torture; transporter signature; United Federation of Planets; vaporize setting

Rhys' tactical star chart Edit

Acamar; Carraya; Celes; Paulson Nebula; Starbase 157

External links Edit

Previous episode:
"Vaulting Ambition"
Star Trek: Discovery
Season 1
Next episode:
"The War Without, The War Within"