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Star Trek: Prodigy’s Brett Gray and Ella Purnell on Their Starfleet Journey and Personal Transformations

The series stars give us a glimpse of what to expect from the mid-season return!

Illustrated banner of Star Trek: Prodigy's stars Brett Gray and Ella Purnell along with their animated characters Dal and Gwyn

Getty Images / - Rob DeHart

Star Trek: Prodigy returns for its mid-season this October 27, with ten brand-new episodes rolling out each week.

In the remaining second half of Season 1, the hopeful crew makes their way toward Starfleet, however, their dreams are threatened when they discover the U.S.S. Protostar harbors a weapon designed to tear the United Federation of Planets apart. To make matters worse, the U.S.S. Dauntless is on a manhunt for the Protostar as the real Vice Admiral Janeway is eager to uncover what happened to her missing former First Officer Chakotay. With these two ships on a collision course and destruction on the horizon, the fate of the Alpha Quadrant hangs in the balance.

Earlier this month, had the opportunity to speak with series stars Brett Gray (Dal R’El) and EllaPurnell (Gwyndala) ahead of the mid-season return.

Rok-Tahk, Jankom Pog, Gwyn, Zero, and Dal deboarding the Protostar dock in Star Trek: Prodigy

It was already hard enough putting distance between the U.S.S. Protostar with Tars Lamora and its ruthless tyrant, The Diviner (aka Gwyn’s father); but now, they’ve got the real Starfleet and Vice Admiral Janeway in hot pursuit of them as she searches for Chakotay.

During the mid-season finale, The Diviner reveals to his daughter that he’s from 50 years into the future. As the last of their kind, he blames Starfleet and their first contact for their home world’s destruction. His mission was to seek out the Protostar, install a weapon on it, and tear Starfleet apart, wiping them out, to save and ensure a future for their people.

As a ragtag group of kids in a stolen Federation starship, what does Gray and Purnell think of the situation we find the Protostar crew in? According to Purnell, “They’re very worried. This threatens everything that they want.”

Gwyn pilots a small shuttlecraft underwater in Star Trek: Prodigy

“What’s interesting and very smart about the writing on this series is that it’s almost come full circle,” continued Purnell. “They start in a place where they are trapped and trying to escape, trying to find a solution. They’re unable to communicate with each other. And that’s where we pretty much find them again; this time, they can’t communicate with Starfleet. They’re still trying to find solutions to some new problems, and they’re still trapped in their own way.”

Echoing Purnell, Gray added, “I agree; they very much are in a full circle moment. They’re also worried about not coming across as these Protostar thieves and not some sort of threat. They’re trying to work out a plan around introducing themselves properly to Starfleet.”

NYCC 2022 | Star Trek: Prodigy — Official Mid-Season Trailer

Over the course of the first season, and the upcoming remaining episodes, the young crew aboard the Protostar will be tested in numerous ways. If The Diviner and Starfleet weren’t enough, they’ve got to tend with Klingons, Romulans, and the Borg. In what other ways can we anticipate Gwyn and Dal being tested?

“For Gwyn, the second half is very much an emotional journey; it’s facing the reality of who her father is, having to let go of her idea of him, and finding her own identity outside of her family,” explained Purnell. “She also has to learn how to really truly connect with others. Gwyn's never had friends. She's never had anybody her age that she's allowed to connect with.

Dal stands in front of a monitor on the Protostar in Star Trek: Prodigy

“While she and Dal were on friendly terms when he was a prisoner on Tars Lemora, she's never really had a crew or a chosen family in this way,” noted Purnell. “She’s learning how to actually act her age and have fun, let her hair down, while still in these serious situations where she needs to take control and utilize the skills that she does have. It's a lot to balance; there's a lot on her plate.”

As for Dal, Gray shared, “Gwyn and Dal are sort of crossing paths at this point, where now he's coming from the fun and sort of easygoing type of world to learning to become a leader. He's now going on the journey of self-discovery, taking on a leadership position and really making sure that everyone in the crew has what they need.”

“After everything happened, he became sort of a supportive role for Gwyn,” added Gray. “She really teaches him a lot as well throughout the next phase as well.

Star Trek: Prodigy returns on October 27!