Star Trek: Discovery is the first series in Star Trek franchise history to count a gay couple among its main cast of characters.
In a new video released on the official Star Trek YouTube page, Star Trek: Discovery stars Anthony Rapp and Wilson Cruz discuss their groundbreaking characters.
“I play Lt. Paul Stamets, a science officer aboard Discovery,” Rapp says as an introduction.
“I play Dr. Hugh Culber, a medical officer and the life partner of Paul Stamets,” says Cruz.
The stars go on to discuss how Stamets and Culber compliment each other in their relationship.
“My character’s partner in the show, he has such an incredible moral center,” Rapp says of Culber, “and such respect and regard for his colleagues.”
“Opposites attract,” Cruz says. “He’s very focused on his work. I try to balance his work life by infusing some love and support. Their relationship is one of mutual admiration and respect for each other’s genius.”
They also mention how important bringing a gay relationship to Star Trek is for the community of fans who have followed the franchise.
“In the Star Trek community, they’ve been hungry for that kind of representation,” Rapp says.
“Our culture is diverse, and so why shouldn’t our stories reflect that?” says Cruz.
Stamets and Culber are likely entering a difficult period in their relationship based on the state of Stamets in the midseason finale of Star Trek: Discovery. After performing a series of 133 jumps using the Discovery’s experimental spore drive, Stamets’ 134th jump left him nearly catatonic and with milky white eyes. It also left Star Trek: Discovery stranded in an uncharted region of space.
While Stamets and Culber are the first gay couple to be regulars on a Star Trek television series, Star Trek Beyond did confirm that the Hikaru Sulu of the Kelvin timeline is also gay, with a husband and a child.
Star Trek: Discovery will return to CBS All Access on January 7, 2017.