Happy Birthday To Our Favorite Intergalactic Animal Rights Activist David Ajala

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Ever since we saw David Ajala on screen beginning in the opening moments of Star Trek: Discovery season 3, epsiode 1, “That Hope Is You, Part 1,” we’ve been captivated.

In that and the first handful of episodes we weren’t always sure what to make of his character, Cleveland “Book” Booker, a righteous animal rights activist who also moonlit as a courier on a seedier side of the Trek future we’d rarely seen.

We knew he owned a very cool ship that could morph.


He also owned a very large cat named Grudge and had the ability to connect empathically with plants and animals, during which a glowing orange pattern appeared on his forehead.

Ajala just celebrated a birthday, writing on Instagram: “Yesterday was a blessed day…At 21:05 the date and time read as follows…21:05 21-05-21 This will never happen again…I’m ok with that…I guess…but oh what a blessed, blessed day it was. Next chapter. Glory. Stand tall. Special salutations to Queen @terri_presenter_ cut from a different cloth.”

When Commander Michael Burnham (Sonequa Martin-Greene) snuck off on an unsanctioned mission with Philippa Georgiou (Michelle Yeoh) in tow on the episode “Scavengers,”  to save Book, we knew that she had indeed loved with him on his ship and he was here to stay.

By the time the whole crew was on its way to his home planet of Kweijan, we learned that Booker, was born Tareckx.

It’s their time on Ni’Var (formerly Vulcan) where we get just how deep is their love as we realize that Burnham’s relationship with Book is pivotal to her ability to navigate her new life in the 32nd century. In fact Burnham is only finally able to reconnect with her crew vis-a-vis Book [Booker Cleveland] (Michael Alaja) when they both confess that when together, “they feel like home.”


Memory Alpha: “As an adult, Booker worked as a courier, using his ship to ferry goods between buyers and sellers out of the exchanges, including the Mercantile on Hima. Doing so provided him with necessary dilithium for clandestine conservation activities, including rescuing trance worms and delivering them to wildlife sanctuaries. His ability to connect telepathically with plants and animals appeared to aid his quests. Michael Burnham commented that he was effectively enforcing the Endangered Species Act after the Federation’s collapse following the Burn. Some time before he met Michael Burnham, he was mentee to a man named Cleveland Booker. The real Booker had such an impact on Tareckx that he would adopt his name as his own.”

By the end of the season, the maverick who was wary of the “true believers” of the Federation, said to Burnham, “I want  what means something.”

Below, Ajala is joyously accosted by fellow cast members in a trailer on the set of Star Trek: Discovery season four.


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via GIPHYIn the end, Black Gay vet said it perfectly, “Star Trek Discovery really gave us an entire season of a Black couple saving the universe!”

Happy Birthday David Ajala and we hope many, many more episodes as Book!


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