I'm having trouble understanding when the changeover of characters occurred in Star Trek Discovery (I skipped some episodes).

Did he (mirror captain Lorca) replace the real Lorca when the Discovery dropped out of the last spore jump in Episode 12 or did he swap places long before this episode?

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    This question could be answered by just watching the episodes you've skipped, and I imagine that would fall under the minimum prior research we expect here? Commented Feb 24, 2019 at 21:07
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    Why was this flagged as too broad? Voted to leave open.
    – Jenayah
    Commented Feb 24, 2019 at 22:27
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    @Jenayah Probably because "Question is explicitly answered in the Show" is not a VTC option. Lorca literally tells Michael and the viewer where, when and how he swapped universes. Commented Feb 25, 2019 at 9:23
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    He has always been a Cylon. Commented Feb 25, 2019 at 12:19
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    @LightnessRacesinOrbit "insufficiently researched" isn't an expectation as such. It's certainly a reason to downvote, but not to VTC.
    – Rand al'Thor
    Commented Feb 25, 2019 at 14:04

1 Answer 1


We never see the prime universe Lorca.

Lorca is introduced in "Context is for Kings" (episode 3). At this point, he's already light-sensitive. His first line is:

LORCA: Forgive the lighting, or lack thereof. Recent battle injury. There's nothing they can do if I wanna keep my own eyes, and I do.

At the end of "Vaulting Ambition" (episode 12), Michael and Georgiou have this conversation:

MICHAEL: You're sensitive to light.

GEORGIOU: Only compared to a human from your universe. It's the singular biological difference between our two races.

and then Michael realizes that the Lorca she knows is the mirror universe version.

Since he's always been light-sensitive, he must have always been from the mirror universe.

Moreover, when he's talking to Michael in "What's Past is Prologue" (episode 13), he explicitly says:

LORCA: I see you, Michael Burnham. I see your power. And I'm offering you a future. I have since the day I brought you onto the Discovery.

which only makes sense if he's been in command all along.

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    Also he told us in "What's Past Is Prologue" Commented Feb 24, 2019 at 21:11
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    Note also that the alleged battle injury was a total destruction of Lorca's ship; which he appears to have survived beyond all expectations. It's most likely that the real Lorca died there, and the alternate Lorca used it to assume the real Lorca's identity.
    – Flater
    Commented Feb 25, 2019 at 11:11
  • Which is such a shame. Lorca was the best new Star Trek captain since Picard.
    – Stephen
    Commented Mar 25, 2019 at 2:25

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