Star Trek: Strange New Worlds Season 2 Episode 6 Review – Lost in Translation

Uhura and the Kirk brothers team up against a new enemy in the latest episode of Star Trek: Strange New Worlds! Our review…

Kirk and Uhura in Star Trek: Strange New Worlds Season 2
Photo: Michael Gibson/Paramount+

This Star Trek: Strange New Worlds review contains spoilers.

Star Trek: Strange New Worlds Season 2 Episode 6

While the adventures the crew of the Enterprise find themselves in from week to week on Star Trek: Strange New Worlds are always fun, they’re often the least important part of the show we’re watching. Instead, the missions of the week are almost always explicitly tied to the larger themes at work in the various emotional journeys of the show’s characters and their relationships with one another. Such is the case in the season 2 episode “Lost in Translation,” an hour that’s technically about discovering a new alien species, but that’s really a larger story about loss, empathy, and the power of listening to others, even when you don’t always understand what they’re trying to say, at first. 

A largely Uhura-focused episode, “Lost in Translation” also gives several other characters key moments to shine, including Carol Kane’s Pelia and Paul Wesley’s James Kirk, who is at long last officially part of Strange New Worlds’ primary timeline. Sorry, Kirk/La’an shippers, there’s minimal progress on the romantic front this week, but the hour does feature his first meeting with Spock, in a ridiculously brief and strangely perfect coda that lands like a thunderclap infused with all our affection for what that bond will one day become. Yes, the close-up on the handshake was kind of cheesy. Did I care? Not even a little bit.

After two previous appearances in episodes that took place in alternate timelines, Wesley finally gets a crack at the “real” Kirk, and I…kind of love it. Don’t get me wrong, I remain as surprised by this fact as anyone else, given that I still don’t believe Strange New Worlds technically needs any version of Kirk to be great. And on some level I do still wish this screen time were going to characters like Chapel or Ortegas. But Wesley’s a relentlessly charming performer, and somehow manages to strike a decent balance between youthful hubris and the thoughtful leadership smarts we know his character will one day possess. Plus, if we have to have some variation of the franchise’s most famous figure on our screen, then I appreciate the deliberate way that the show has gone about introducing this Kirk to its canvas and the obvious care that’s been taken in crafting a space for him that doesn’t feel exploitive, pointlessly nostalgic, or as though it’s somehow crowding out the other characters we care about. 


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