The biggest gripe that diehard Trekkers have had about Star Trek : Discovery is that the new series has deviated from classic Trek TV. Perhaps this latest episode will make them all feel much better.
With a standalone plot that does not quite involve the main Klingon war arc, “Magic to Make the Sanest Man Go Mad” takes the clichéd Trek trope of a time loop to not only insert classic TOS villain Harry Mudd (Rainn Wilson) into the picture but also to develop the romantic side of Michael Burnham’s character.
The episode is indeed magical with invention running through its spine even if the plot device is stereotypical.
Lt. Stamets is the key as his interaction with the tardigrade DNA has allowed him to stand outside of the time loop and thus recruit Burnham and Lt. Ash Tyler to come up with a plan to defeat Mudd.
At the same time, the episode builds on the budding romantic relationship between Burnham and Tyler, a new experience for Burnham as she admits to Stamets that she has never been in love (she was raised as a Vulcan, after all!)
Rather special how the episode interweaved the theme of love and relationships also into the ultimate fate of Mudd. Brilliant all round!
… still there’s more …