Gene Roddenberry envisioned a future that celebrated diversity and inclusion, and Star Trek: Discovery will continue to honor that ideal in Season 3, which premieres Thursday, Oct. 15 on CBS All Access. TV Guide has learned that the new season will introduce the franchise's first non-binary and transgender characters.
New character Adira, who is non-binary, is described as "highly intelligent with a confidence and self-assurance well beyond their years." They'll make a new home on the U.S.S. Discovery and form an unexpected friendship with Lt. Stamets (Anthony Rapp) and Dr. Culber (Wilson Cruz). The role will be played by Blu del Barrio, who is also non-binary and whose pronouns are they/them. Star Trek: Discovery marks their television debut after studying at the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art.
The coming season will also introduce Gray, who is transgender. Gray is described as "empathetic, warm and eager to fulfill his lifelong dream of being a Trill host, but he will have to adapt when his life takes an unexpected turn." The character will be played by Ian Alexander, whom The OA fans might recognize as the social outsider Buck Vu and as Michelle, whose mysterious disappearance set the tone for Season 2. Alexander, whose pronouns are they/them and he/him, advocates for transgender equality, racial justice and mental health awareness for LGBTQ+ youth and is the first out transgender Asian-American to appear in a TV series.
"Star Trek has always made a mission of giving visibility to underrepresented communities because it believes in showing people that a future without division on the basis of race, gender, gender identity or sexual orientation is entirely within our reach," co-showrunner and executive producer Michelle Paradise said in a statement. "We take pride in working closely with Blu del Barrio, Ian Alexander and Nick Adams at GLAAD to create the extraordinary characters of Adira and Gray, and bring their stories to life with empathy, understanding, empowerment and joy."
Season 3 finds Michael Burnham (Sonequa Martin-Green) and the rest of the Discovery crew propelled 930 years into the future. Most of your favorites will be back, including Burnham, Saru (Doug Jones), Stamets (Anthony Rapp), Dr. Culber (Wilson Cruz), Tilly (Mary Wiseman), and even Captain Georgiou (Michelle Yeoh).
Star Trek: Discovery Season 3 arrives Thursday, Oct. 15.
Seasons 1 and 2 are currently streaming exclusively on CBS All Access. Discovery's latest season joins a bevy of other Star Trek content on the streaming platform, including Season 1 of Star Trek: Picard, Seasons 1 and 2 of Discovery's companion series Star Trek: Short Treks, and the animated comedy Star Trek: Lower Decks, which debuts new episodes every Thursday.