Ethan Peck has finally been seen in a Discovery episode as Spock on last night’s Light and Shadows, and he spoke about what makes Spock the character we know and love, and how this earlier version of Spock will get to that point. Note: Spoilers below.
Peck described his take on the character. “Spock is, to me, is wisdom,” he said. “He’s deeply empathetic and highly logical, obviously, as we know, and I think that makes such a wonderful combination. He’s often there to offer a profound answer or observation because of his unique perspective, which is both half-human and half-Vulcan, or half-alien. And to have these two conflicting modes of operation within this one being is so compelling, and I think that’s why he’s been such a special character for so long.”
According to Peck, Spock was “broken before the Red Angel. I shouldn’t say broken. I think he was unrealized before the Red Angel, and his experience with the Red Angel has really exposed him to himself. I think he’s compartmentalized his emotional half for most of his life, and we’ll really explore at what point he starts to compartmentalize his emotional side in this season.
“But I think that this breaking is necessary for him to become the Spock that we have gotten to know from The Original Series that was so beautifully portrayed by Leonard Nimoy.”
Playing the distressed Spock was tough for Peck. “It was really challenging,” he said, “because, as I said, there’s not an exact reference point for where Spock is in this second season of Discovery, in the other material with Spock. Getting acclimated to how much he emotes, how much he internalizes, it was definitely a trial and error.
“But I think I was surrounded by people that cared as deeply as I did about it, and really took care of me during that process, and helped guide me. He’s so disturbed at [the] beginning of his appearances on Discovery.”
So what about near future of Spock? “It’s not for a few episodes that I really got to play with that conflict of emotion and logic,” said Peck. “You’ll start to see it play out in the dialogue. Jonathan Frakes directed my third episode, and I think there we really started to get into balance and where that balance is truthful and authentic for Spock.”