Since Star Trek: Discovery began, the show has been polarizing for Star Trek fans on the grounds of canon. For a series that is said to take place a decade prior to the events of Star Trek: The Original Series, it looks like it could include technology from beyond even what Star Trek: The Next Generation and its contemporaries featured.
At least one fan had a creative way of reconciling this notion and offered it to the Star Trek: Discovery showrunners, Gretchen J. Berg and Aaron Harberts, during a panel at WonderCon. The fan suggested that Discovery could be taking place a parallel dimension that is just slightly different from the prime timeline.
While the showrunners were impressed with the fan’s creativity, they reaffirmed that they are committed to the idea that Discovery takes place in the same timeline as every Star Trek television series that came before it.
"When Gretchen and I signed on, which was when Bryan Fuller and Alex Kurtzman were initially working up the pilot, the idea was always to be in the Prime timeline,” Harberts said. “Obviously, there are questions and concerns and things that are different. Our technology is a little different. We have a ship that runs very differently. We’re our own show in a lot of ways. Season Two is really exciting for us because this is our opportunity to really show how Discovery fits into this prime timeline. We are firmly committed to that. But I do like the idea of seeing other universes from time to time."
Berg and Harberts have touched on this notion before, and noted that the introduction of the USS Enterprise in the first Discovery season finale, “Will You Take My Hand?”, will help to clarify how Star Trek: Discovery fits into Star Trek canon.
“I think one of the biggest things [the Enterprise is] going to allow us to do is start to develop how Discovery fits into canon,” Harberts told TV Line following the finale. “One of the big things that’s been polarizing for fans is, ‘We’ve never heard about Discovery! How does it fit? She’s related to Spock?’ All those things. And what it’ll allow us to do is hit that straight-on. We see it as an exciting opportunity to say, ‘This is exactly how Discovery fits into the timeline. This is exactly how we can reconcile the choices we have made.’ Because at this period in time, the Discovery and the Enterprise are the crown jewels in the fleet, so they should be face-to-face.”
The first season of Star Trek: Discovery is available to stream in its entirety on CBS All Access in the United States, through CraveTV in Canada, and through Netflix in other international markets. Star Trek: Discovery Season Two begins filming in Toronto in April.