Star Trek Discovery: Sonequa Martin-Green on taking the captain’s chair: ‘So impactful’

Star Trek: Discovery stars Sonequa Martin-Green in teaser

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Michael Burnham (played by Sonequa Martin-Green) still has a long road ahead of her, but Star Trek Discovery finally promoted her to captain at the end of season three. As production gets underway for the fourth instalment on CBS, the former Walking Dead star and current queen of sci-fi has spoken about what it means to helm her own starship.

Series lead Sonequa Martin-Green has revealed more about what it meant to get promoted to starship captain at the end of Star Trek Discovery season three.

Her character Michael Burnham has always been the central protagonist of the series, but was previously outranked by the likes of Christopher Pike (Anson Mount) and Saru (Doug Jones).

Discovery’s third season wrapped up at the start of this year, and concluded with Burnham taking over the mantle after saving the Federation.

Martin-Green recently spoke to Deadline about what it was like to finally join the likes of Kirk and Picard as a space-faring captain of her own starship.

She recalled: “Oh my God, it’s just so perfectly culminating, it’s so impactful to me, personally.”

Her role as Michael Burnham marked the star’s first lead role in a television series, having previously appeared as Sasha Williams in The Walking Dead.

Burnham is also the first Black woman to become captain in a live-action Star Trek series since the franchise began back in 1966.

The star continued: “The barriers that we’ve broken with our iteration of the show, and the barriers that this franchise has broken since the mid-60s, it’s hard for me to talk about it without crying.”

Gene Roddenberry’s original series already broke ground with its diverse cast and progressive themes over 50 years ago.

Now, the franchise is more inclusive than ever, and Martin-Green was overjoyed that so many people are now able to see themselves represented on-screen.

She explained: “I think about Michelle [Yeoh], I think about Avery (Brooks) and I think about Cleveland [Booker].

“I think about the young girls and boys, and I just think about what it represents.”

The Star Trek universe was finally resurrected for the small screen with Discovery, following a trilogy of films launched by JJ Abrams back in 2009.

As the franchise hopes to continue well into the 21st Century, Discovery’s stellar production values made Burnham’s development from specialist to captain even more impressive.

Martin-Green added: “I’m also just so moved by how it was written, I’m moved by the journey to the chair. I just appreciate how it was written and shot this entire time.”

Although Trekkies have been characteristically divided in their reactions to the new series, Discovery has nevertheless breathed new life into the iconic space opera.

Fans have yet to see Burnham take her first steps as captain, but season three’s explosive cliffhanger will certainly convince viewers to come back for more.

Finally, the star summarised: “It means a lot. I can’t put it into words.”

Production is currently underway on season four, and could be eying a return to CBS in late 2021.

Star Trek: Discovery is available to stream on CBS All Access and Netflix.

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