In the last season of Star Trek: Discovery, the least professional member of Starfleet, Lieutenant Tilly (played by Mary Wiseman), was sent off-screen for large swaths of time as she helped students train at the newly reopened Starfleet Academy. It seems that that entire plotline, which didn’t quite fit in with the rest of the season, may have been an attempt to kick off the newly announced teen spinoff series Star Trek: Starfleet Academy.
The new series, which is coming to Paramount+ alongside all the rest of the Star Trek shows, will be a kind of teenage drama show you might see on The CW but set in the Star Trek universe. While there’s no confirmation on the when and the where of the series, it appears it will be taking place in the 32nd century, where Discovery found itself flung for the last two seasons as the crew helped to rebuild the Federation. That means that Tilly herself could play a role in the show, especially as it was announced that the fifth season of Star Trek: Discovery would be its final season.
The series comes from Alex Kurtzman, the head of all things Trek for Paramount, and writer Noga Landau, and it will focus on a group of new Starfleet recruits as they become one of the first classes in the newly reopened Starfleet Academy. There they’ll deal with normal teenage things like getting homework done, pleasing their instructors, romantic entanglement, and, of course, an enemy that threatens to destroy everything they know and love. Basic high school stuff but in space in the far, far future. Landau is an old hat in this kind of teenage genre TV having written and developed both Nancy Drew and Tom Swift. Kurtzman has delivered the best Trek shows when he’s let others seemingly take over, as with this final season of Picard and the likes of Prodigy and Strange New Worlds. Hopefully, he’s got the right co-showrunner here to deliver something great.
The announcement of Star Trek: Starfleet Academy came with the below text from Kurtzman and Landau, which gives some hint as to what the series will be about:
Admission is now open to Starfleet Academy! Explore the galaxy! Captain your destiny! For the first time in over a century, our campus will be re-opened to admit individuals a minimum of 16 Earth years (or species equivalent) who dream of exceeding their physical, mental and spiritual limits, who value friendship, camaraderie, honor and devotion to a cause greater than themselves. The coursework will be rigorous, the instructors among the brightest lights in their respective fields, and those accepted will live and study side-by-side with the most diverse population of students ever admitted. Today we encourage all who share our dreams, goals and values to join a new generation of visionary cadets as they take their first steps toward creating a bright future for us all. Apply today! Ex Astris, Scientia!
There’s no release date for the series, but production is set to begin in 2024.