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Star Trek's longtime NASA adviser grades the Discovery premiere

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The 15-episode first season of "Star Trek: Discovery" will be divided into two chapters.

It should be noted that while Discovery may not had reached the pinnacles of its predecessors, the television landscape has changed dramatically in recent years.

Discovery premieres Sunday at 8:30 p.m. ET on CBS as part of a unique two-part roll out that continues on CBS All Access - go here for details on how, when and where to watch. "The first two episodes of @startrekcbs are fantastic; the best start to a Trek series hands-down", wrote user Anthony Darnell.

CBS said the premiere of Star Trek: Discovery pushed its CBS All Access over-the-top subscription service to a record for most subscriber sign ups in a single day.

In addition, the launch of the new series helped CBS achieve its largest sign-up week and month ever for CBS All Access.

And you'll notice all sorts of audio callbacks to older Star Trek series, including the echoing sound of the ship's instruments, the whistling hailing noise and the same red alert effect as numerous older programmes.

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Discovery takes flight tonight at 8:30/7:30c on both CBS and its streaming arm CBS All Access.

"Discovery" had a hard gestation process, and so there are a number of narrative hiccups, likely resulting from the departure of original showrunner Bryan Fuller while Season One was still being mapped out. Burnham has served seven years under Georgiou after being trained at the Vulcan Science Academy by her surrogate father Sarek (James Frain), a character well-known to Trek fans. And no matter what compromises and negotiations were required to get the show on its feet, and despite its many instance of "because we said so" plotting, Discovery doesn't feel compromised.

It was, of course, all entirely misplaced controversy; Star Trek Discovery's diverse casting is a strength of the show.

"Star Trek: Discovery" is the first entry from the "Star Trek" franchise not to make a starship captain the protagonist.

Disclosure: GameSpot's parent company is Star Trek: Discovery producer CBS Interactive. In that specific sense, then, Star Trek: Discovery is now a failure, though that might certainly change. Usually the violent "other" in Star Trek lore, Discovery gives the familiar antagonists their own point of view, backstory, culture, and reasons to fight.

While I appreciate that TV Trek grew stiff and insular over the last few shows - the last show, Enterprise, spent four years mired in an increasingly incomprehensible master plot about an invasion from the future, short-changing the characters in the process - this feels like the wrong kind of fan service. As it stands with this opening episode, however, Star Trek Discovery is perhaps a little too tiresome and a little too indistinguished to really make that impact.

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