'Star Trek: Discovery' Season 3 Episode 4: Adira and Gray's queer love story is a powerful, heartwarming tale

The new transgender and non-binary characters on 'Star Trek: Discovery' have their story told on the latest episode


                            'Star Trek: Discovery' Season 3 Episode 4: Adira and Gray's queer love story is a powerful, heartwarming tale
(CBS)

Spoilers for 'Star Trek: Discovery' Season 3 Episode 4 'Forget Me Not'

'Star Trek' has always boldly gone where none have gone before — and it's been no different in terms of representation. From the very first episode of the original series, it's strived to present a more accepting universe, manned by people from all over the globe. The series famously featured the first interracial kiss on American television, and 'Star Trek: Discovery' Season 3 is going full steam ahead with prioritizing representation — especially in the latest episode of the series.

With the introduction of Paul Stamets (Anthony Rapp) and Hugh Culber (Wilson Cruz), 'Star Trek' took an important step forward in terms of queer representation, and with Adira's (Blu del Barrio) plotline in 'Forget Me Not', they go a step further. There's been a lot of buzz about the Discovery's newest non-binary and transgender character on the show, and on this episode we finally get to learn their story.

Adira has had trouble unlocking her memories — the memories of the Trill minds attached to the symbiote that she now is host to. Michael Burnham (Sonequa Martin-Green) takes her to the Trill planet to help her unlock these memories, which has proven challenging as Adira is the first human to host a Trill symbiote in their recorded history, and is seen as an abomination for it. However, it turns out that it's not Adira's human side that's keeping her from being able to access her memories. It's the trauma of how she got the symbiote in the first place. It was during an intimate moment shared between her and her boyfriend, Gray (Ian Alexander), who is notably the first transgender character in 'Star Trek' history.

Every now and again, science fiction is able to tell a story in a manner that just would not be possible in any other medium. Immersed deep in a representation of her own neural network, we see threads of Adira's memories literally reaching out to her, unlocking her memories with Gray one by one. It's a beautiful telling of a romance, one tragically cut short by an errant asteroid, but a story that's not yet done.

After having recovered her memories — and inspiring an important path forward for the Trill — a moment alone back on the Discovery reveals that Gray is somehow still alive and well in Adira's mind, able to manifest himself in front of her as if he's physically there. With this, 'Discovery' has its second queer couple. Though Adira hasn't yet identified herself as non-binary, it's something the show has been promising will happen. Similarly, while Gray hasn't been identified as transgender, it's been confirmed that his character is in announcements prior to the season's release.

Stamets and Culber are already a fan-favorite couple, who have beaten death in order to be together, and Adira and Gray's heartwarming story may just make them just as popular. The story of their romance is certainly unconventional, but when it comes to the Discovery, it appears that there's no other way for a romance to be.

The next episode of 'Star Trek: Discovery' airs November 12, on CBS All Access.

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