Wait, does Burnham know Sybok from Star Trek: Discovery?

Sybok’s reintroduction in Star Trek: Strange New Worlds raises an old question: what does Michael Burnham know about Spock’s older half-brother?

Warning: SPOILERS for Star Trek: Strange New Worlds Episode 7 – “The Serene Squall”

Does captain Michael Burnham (Sonequa Martin-Green) know Sybok on Star Trek: Discovery? The older Vulcan half-brother of Spock (Ethan Peck), Sybok was shockingly reintroduced in Star Trek: Strange New Worlds episode 7, “The serene squall”. Sybok was revealed to be one of the Vulcan prisoners at Ankeshtan K’Til Vulcan Rehabilitation Center, a facility overseen by T’Pring (Gia Sandhu), Spock’s fiancée. But Sybok’s re-emergence raises the question of what Michael Burnham knows about Sarek’s (James Frain) eldest son.

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Sybok (Lawrence Luckinbill) was created by William Shatner as the villain of Star Trek V: The Final Frontier, which Shatner made from his own original story. Originally named Zar, Shatner conceived Sybok as a Vulcan holy man he based on 1980s televangelists like Jim and Tammy Bakker and Jimmy Swaggert. Sybok was a madman who believed God spoke to him and he hijacked the USS Enterprise-A to find God on a mythical planet called Sha-Ka-Ree beyond the Great Barrier at the center of the universe. At first, Shatner wanted Spock (Leonard Nimoy) and Sybok to be old friends at Vulcan seminary, but producer Harve Bennett decided that Sybok should be Spock’s previously unknown older half-brother. As Spock told Captain James T. Kirk in Star Trek V, Sybok was the eldest son of Sarek (Mark Lenard) and a Vulcan priestess born out of wedlock. Sybok came to live with Sarek for a while and he and Spock were “raised like brothers” before Sybok left to pursue his destiny, which involved embracing emotion instead of logic.


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Star Trek: Discovery added new facets to Spock’s family by making Michael Burnham his adoptive sister. Burnham came to live with Sarek and his wife, Amanda Grayson (Mia Kirshner), on Vulcan when she was 10 after her own parents were murdered by Klingons. Michael is about 4 years older than Spock, but oddly Sybok was already gone when young Burnham moved to Vulcan. Sybok is never mentioned in any of Michael and Spock’s childhood flashbacks on Star Trek: Discovery, but did Burnham know that Spock had an older half-brother? Although there is no canonical evidence, it is safe to assume that given Michael’s closeness to Sarek, she is at least aware of Sybok, although there is no indication that Burnham’s eldest son and Sarek, who was already considered a thug in Vulcan culture, has ever met .



Michael Burnham Sarek discovery of Star Trek

Sybok is about 13 years older than Spock, so it stands to reason that he left Sarek’s house, perhaps for Vulcan seminary or some other intellectual pursuit as a young man, before Michael Burnham was adopted. . Strange new worlds Season 1, set in the year 2259, contains some fascinating new details about Sybok: he lived beyond the border of the United Federation planets under the alias of Xaverius, and Sybok has a wife, Captain Angel. (Jesse James Keitel). Sybok was part of the crew of the pirate ship, the Serene Squall, but he was apprehended and imprisoned by the Vulcans for logical rehabilitation under T’Pring’s custody. After impersonating former Starfleet adviser Dr. Aspen and infiltrating the Enterprise, Angel apprehended Spock and attempted to force a prisoner exchange for Sybok with T’Pring, but they failed. Meanwhile, Spock has been warned all his life to stay away from his dangerous older brother, Sybok.


Of course, Michael Burnham is now definitely in the 32nd century after the events of Star Trek: Discovery season 2, which means she’s missed everything that’s happened to Spock since then, including Star Trek V: The Final Frontier. But since Michael lives almost a thousand years in the future, the lives of Spock and his Vulcan family are now a thing of the past. Theoretically, Michael could have accessed the Starfleet archives and learned all about Sybok and his failed quest to find God in Star Trek V. Although there is no indication in Star Trek: Discovery that Michael researched Sybok in the 32nd century, it is reasonable to assume that she has knowledge of Spock’s older half-brother and his misdeeds. In the meantime, it also makes sense that Sybok knows all about Michael Burnham.


Next: Strange New Worlds Continues a Weird Corporate Trend

Star Trek: Strange New Worlds airs Thursdays on Paramount+. Star Trek: Discovery seasons 1-4 are available to stream on Paramount+.

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