'Star Trek: Discovery' Gives New Significance to a Classic Klingon Starship

Tonight’s episode of Star Trek: Discovery gives a new significance to a classic Klingon ship that’s been a part of the franchise since The Original Series.

SPOILERS for Star Trek: Discovery Season 2, Episode 3, “Point of Light” follow.

“Point of Light” is the first episode of Discovery’s second season to touch base with the Klingons, who were a major part of the show’s first season. L’Rell, once a follower of T’Kuvma, is now the Chancellor of the Klingon Empire. Ash Tyler, the Klingon Voq who was transformed into a human, serves at her right hand as Torchbearer.

L’Rell’s mission is to keep the 24 house united and to push the idea that the empire collectively is now of more importance than any of the Great Houses were on their own. This means an end to infighting and petty wars.

That’s where the classic D7 Battle Cruiser comes in. The designs for the ship are shown during a meeting of the High Council. L’Rell and Tyler stress that this will be an imperial ship and not a ship belonging to any of the Great Houses. It will bear the imperial insignia and not the flag of any of the Great Houses. It is a symbol of the new unity fo the Klingon Empire.

The D7 ship is now more than just a recognizable Klingon ship design, its a symbol of the Empire. This is just one way that “Point of Light” begins the transformation of Klingons of Discovery’s era into the Klingons of The Original Series era. The episode also notes that Klingons are growing their hair out and includes a tense scene in which Tyler forcibly removes from a council member’s the face paint that was a symbol of that councilmember’s Great House.

Discovery star Mary Chieffo, who plays L'Rell, has spoken previously about the changes coming to Klingon culture and the return of Klingon hair.

“You might have noticed in the trailer, there is a bit of a new aesthetic going on and that is a really exciting addition that has been made and is inspired by Glenn Hetrick, who is our designer and a huge Trek fan himself,” Chieffo said during the Star Trek: Discovery NYCC panel. “He was inspired by season six, episode 23 of The Next Generation, ‘Rightful Heir.’ There is a reference when Kahless is brought back as a clone. The way he proves himself is he tells the story of how he cut off a lock of his hair and dipped it into a volcano and made the first bat’leth, with which he killed Molor, the terrible tyrant who was running Qo’noS at the time.

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“So, in the spirit of Discovery, we took that one little beautiful seed that was planted from an earlier iteration and kind of expanded on that, and we see that in a time of war the Klingons would shave their heads, and in a time of peace, we start to grow it back out. I really love the symbolism of that.”

New Star Trek: Discovery episodes become available to stream Thursdays at 8:30 p.m. Et on CBS All Access.