Interview: David Ajala and Mary Wiseman Talk About New Rivalries and New Paths in Season Four of ‘Star Trek: Discovery’ [EXCLUSIVE]


Strap on your comms badges and lock into your spore drive because we are headed for a DISCO inferno! That’s right! Season four of Star Trek: Discovery premieres today on Paramount+, which means that we had to check in with the Discovery crew and see what strange new worlds they might be exploring this season.

We spoke with David Ajala (Cleveland Booker) and Mary Wiseman (Ensign Tilly) about Book’s new ability to communicate with the spore drive – and potential conflict with resident spore navigator Paul – and what kind of leader Tilly wants to be.

Nerds and Beyond: Now that both Paul and Book can communicate with the spore drive, will they be trading off and taking shifts? How does Book deal with this, and more importantly, what does Grudge think about it?

David Ajala: So in terms of the dynamic between Paul Stamets and Cleveland Booker, that dynamic is definitely explored early on in the season. And it’s really cool the way it’s done, because the two of them are in a situation where they need each other, and there’s no one else around. And because of the close proximity that they have with each other in a specific scene, they have to visit having this conversation. They’re navigating it because they both have skills, but Cleveland Booker has more skills.

Mary Wiseman: (mock gasps) Shots fired!

David Ajala: ​​Shots fired. Man Down. And Grudge doesn’t really care much about all that. Grudge is just a cat. 

Michael Gibson/ViacomCBS

Nerds and Beyond: So Tilly really goes through it in season three. She taps into a lot of her inner strength, develops confidence, and by the end really channels a bad bitch sort of energy. And I was wondering, for season four, how is she going to use this newfound toughness – or perhaps toughness that was always there but hidden – how will it come into play now that it’s at the front?

Mary Wiseman: Yeah, I think it is becoming more a part of her personality that she’s comfortable tapping into. Because her mother was who she was, so she does have a tough bitch in there. But also, it brings up questions of who she wants to be. I don’t think she wants to be the kind of leader that her mom was, and she doesn’t want to be like Lorca. And she can’t be like Saru. She’s got to be whoever Tilly is as a captain. So I think this season, having had a taste of that sort of leadership position, she starts really having to ask herself questions about what it means for her to be a leader? Like: What do I really want? Where am I going to lead from? Why did I want to do this in the first place? And is that a good enough reason? All those things you have to go through and work out so that you’re not working it out on the job. Those are the things that she’s going to be exploring this season.

Nerds and Beyond: Thank you so much!

Star Trek: Discovery Season Four airs Thursdays on Paramount+

Britt is a Los Angeles based writer, burlesque performer, and life long nerd. A former drama kid turned playwright and classic ambivert, (shout out fellow ambiverts! There are dozens of us! Dozens!) her love of books, snacks, and cats makes her a Ravenclaw with Hufflepuff leanings. She is a voracious reader, writer, and unapologetic binge-watcher. Her lifelong obsessions include Lord of the Rings, Star Wars, Star Trek, Harry Potter, Firefly, Battlestar Galactica, Doctor Who, Arrested Development, Neil Gaiman, and Frank Herbert's Dune series. Her current obsessions include: Sherlock, Black Mirror, The Great British Baking Show, RuPaul's Drag Race, and Counterpart. She will also gladly talk people's ears off about graphic novels if they let her, which they usually don't. Find Britt on Twitter @MsGeorgiaOQueef

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