We’ve got high stakes, a real gamble of a play, and we’re “All In” with the midseason opener for Star Trek: Discovery. 10 points to the Disco crew for a solid reentry with this week’s episode. Here are a few of my thoughts on Star Trek: Discovery 4×08 “All In.”
Know When to Hold ‘Em
You all are just going to have to deal with all of my ridiculous poker puns this week. Sorry, not sorry. We’ve got Michael (Sonequa Martin-Green) thrust into an impossible situation, trying to win Book (David Ajala) back over to her side, or be forced to take him and Tarka (Shawn Doyle) down. I love that she uses her instincts and finds a way to work within the parameters of her mission (gather data on unknown species Ten-C), but also to track Book down. Admiral Vance says it himself–“You’re one of the most creative officers in Starfleet.” The creativity in maintaining integrity towards her mission, but also doing what she believes in her heart to be right about Book is so important.
Speaking of creativity, can I just say how much I loved watching Owosekun (Oyin Oladejo) get creative in finding a solution to their need for more latinum when they have no way to contact Starfleet? That was fabulous. We all know Owo’s a badass anyway, but it’s nice to see Joann “Owow!” Owosekun come to the forefront.
Know When to Fold ‘Em
Despite my southern heritage, I promise I’m not going to quote the entirety of “The Gambler” in this article. But the line is apropos here. Michael knows she can’t win against Book in Leonian poker, so she makes sure she will “win” even if she loses. She can’t prevent him from getting the isolynium, but she can track where it is and how to get to him and Tarka. Installing a tracker was a stroke of brilliance. I wonder how much Michael could expect about the situation on the barge. She had been there before and had a history with Haz Mazaro (Daniel Kash), thus the nickname, Right Hook. Did she expect to plant a tracker on the isolynium or did she have an alternate plan to place the tracker on Book? It’s not a question that’s going to keep me up at night, but I love that she’s thinking on her feet regardless.
I also found the exchange here between Tarka and Owosekun to be utterly fascinating. Owosekun is smart and the knowledge she gained here while speaking with Tarka is fascinating. Tarka telling her to step off should make it obvious that she got pretty close to the truth behind his motivation. Both of these ladies knew when to quit before it got too hairy. Know when to fold ‘em, indeed.
While this was more of an action-oriented episode, we still get a bit more of the emotional beats side of things with Dr. Culber. Culber (Wilson Cruz) wants so desperately to help people that, while he wouldn’t call it that, he really wants to save everyone. The burden he puts on himself here is unreasonable, but I get it. I feel that way too. Good for him for getting some quiet time to destress. Good for Stamets for being a good partner in making him go relax.
Finally, I know that the episode title, “All In” is a nod to the casino setting, but I would also venture to say that the idea of “All In” really fits the crew of the Discovery. We’ve got a crew of folks that are all or nothing. They are “all in,” all the time. Michael gets called on this all the time, by both her crew and friends, but the fans of the show as well. However, I think this episode goes to show that the Discovery crew is just as “All In.” There’s no hidden motive. They aren’t acting selfishly. Everyone is in it for the good of the whole.
If that’s not inspiring, I don’t know what is.
What did you think about Star Trek: Discovery 4×08 “All In”? We’ve only got just a handful of episodes left before we’re wrapping this season of Star Trek: Discovery. Do you have speculation for how this season will end? Leave me a comment and let’s talk Trek.