Star Trek: Discovery – Who is the Red Angel?

A strange being is attempting to save the future in Star Trek: Discovery’s second season – but what is the Red Angel?

Star Trek Discovery: Red Angel

This Star Trek article contains spoilers. It comes from Den of Geek UK.

The primary mystery of Star Trek: Discovery season 2 has been clear from the very start: what is the Red Angel?

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In recent weeks we’ve been given some important pieces of information about the nature of this apparently strange being. We know that it seems to be benevolent. We know that it appears to be capable of traveling through time. And now, thanks to the latest episode (“If Memory Serves”) we know that who or whatever the Red Angel is, she’s apparently human – at least according to Spock.

So who actually is the Red Angel?

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There are plenty of potential characters the Red Angel could be but at the moment, but our working theory is that the Red Angel is none other than Michael Burnham herself. It might seem like an obvious claim, but it’s worth examining this theory to see if it holds up.

First, let’s try to imagine what the angel cares about. On at least one occasion, the Red Angel has apparently saved Michael from death – we know that it appeared to Spock to tell him where she had run away to on Vulcan. She also appeared on an asteroid where Michael was about to die, perhaps not intervening directly but certainly taking an interest in Michael. So we know the angel cares about keeping Michael alive. A necessity for self-preservation.

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What else? Well, the angel also brought Discovery to Saru’s planet, facilitating the kind of radical overthrow of society only Star Trek crews are capable of. Saru and Michael are, of course, close friends. However Burnham learned the truth about Kelpiens, it’s likely that she’d prefer to free Saru’s planet whether it was useful to her or not.

New Eden is an anomaly in this pattern, apparently having no direct connection to Michael – at least so far. That’s not to say we won’t learn more soon. The angel did seem to appear on New Eden just after Michael had been hit with a grenade, so again, it’s interested in her on some level.

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According to Saru (whose advanced Kelpien eyes got a good look at the angel), the being is wearing an advanced technological suit. When Spock encountered the angel most recently, his telepathy appeared to confirm that the being inside the suit was human. And interestingly, when he attempted to meld with the angel we – the viewers – saw images of Michael. Were they representative of her being on Talos IV with Spock as he relived these memories? Or was that an image of Michael received within Spock’s vision?

Of course, there are reasons why it might not be Burnham, too.

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For starters, if the angel repeatedly saves Burnham, then there’s a paradox involved. Sure, time-travel isn’t an exact science, but given that there are timelines where Burnham dies, it’d be hard for her to prevent her own death if she never reaches adulthood and joins Starfleet.

Furthermore, if Spock mind-melded with the angel, you would expect him to recognize if it was Burnham. He could have been keeping it from her, admittedly, but he genuinely didn’t seem to know who it was. This leaves us with a couple of potential candidates as secondary theories – neither of whom seems likely.

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It could, for example, be Georgiou. She doesn’t seem capable of the “desperation and loneliness” Spock described from his mind-meld, though she does have a strange interest in Michael and keeping her safe.

Alternatively, it could be Tilly. Who better to become the Red Angel than Disco’s own Red-haired Angel? As Michael’s friend, she would be invested in keeping her alive, but her involvement with Saru’s interests are less clear. She’s a lot closer to Stamets, after all.

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And hey, there’s another option: maybe it’s someone we don’t know yet! Some have even suggested that it could be Zora, Discovery’s AI from the Short Trek episode “Calypso.” It wouldn’t be surprising if Zora was involved somehow given that the angel is from the future, but unless she’s found a way to assume human form, we have to rule that one out.

However you unpack the angel’s appearances, Burnham seems like the most logical and likely choice. But let us know what you think?