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IDW has released their March previews for Star Trek comics and we have the covers and details for you below. Plus TrekMovie catches up on some of the other recent Star Trek comic news to get you up to speed. There has been a lot of activity, including a stunning collection of Star Trek newspaper strips. Spoilers ahead.
March 2013 Star Trek comics solicits
Star Trek #19
Written by Mike Johnson, art by Claudia Balboni, cover art by Tim Bradstreet
As excitement builds for the upcoming film sequel, the ongoing Star Trek comics series shows fans the events that shaped the lives of the beloved Enterprise crew! In this issue we discover what led young Montgomery Scott to devote himself to engineering, as we witness his first steps on the journey that would take him across the galaxy! Overseen by Trek writer/producer Roberto Orci, this all-new tale sheds light on a classic character!
Variant covers: Tim Bradstreet sketch cover and variant Photo Cover
Star Trek: Countdown to Darkness #3 (of 4)
Written by Mike Johnson, art by David Messina
The lead up to this Spring’s Star Trek film sequel continues here, in this official prequel mini-series overseen by writer/producer Roberto Orci. Captain Kirk and his crew will face an all-new adversary that threatens the future of the entire Federation. Don’t miss this exclusive all-new story that sets the stage for the upcoming blockbuster movie!
2 regular covers will be shipped in a 4-to-1 ratio (4 David Messina, 1 Photo)
Variant cover: Unique variant cover, graded by the CGC! Limited strictly to qualifying orders, and guaranteed to be a 9.6 or above!
Star Trek, Volume 4
Written by Mike Johnson, art by Stephen Molnar, cover art by Tim Bradstreet
The countdown to the Star Trek movie sequel continues here! In The Redshirt’s Tale, experience life on the Enterprise through a redshirt’s eyes! Also, find out how Scotty and his alien sidekick Keenser first meet. Plus, an all-new re-imagining of the classic Mirror Universe story!
TPB • FC • $17.99 • 104 pages • ISBN 978-1-61377-590-5
Recently released Star Trek comics
Recent releases include two more issues of the Star Trek ongoing series, more of the Next Generation/Doctor Who crossover, a Next Generation mini-series featuring the Borg, several trade paperback reprints, and the first volume collecting the Star Trek newspaper strip, originally syndicated by the Los Angeles Times back in 1979.
Star Trek #14
Written by Mike Johnson, art by Stephen Molnar, colors by John Rauch, letters by Neil Uyetake, creative consultant Roberto Orci, edited by Scott Dunbier
Star Trek #14 is a standalone story featuring Mr. Scott’s diminutive sidekick, Keenser, who appears to be having difficulty with his duties aboard the Enterprise. Born on Royla and large for his species, he leaves home on the USS Kelvin after first contact with the Federation and was the first Roylan to graduate from Starfleet Academy. Mourning the loss of his friends on the Kelvin, he moves on, assigned to Delta Vega, where he eventually meets Scott. A problem with the Enterprise forces him to delve deeper into the ship than ever before, where he rediscovers his equanimity. I’m not sure if we’ll see more of Keenser in the new film, but learning more about him was an enjoyable read.
Star Trek #15
Written by Mike Johnson, art by Erfan Fajar, colors by Ifansyah and Sakti Tuwono of Stellar Labs, letters by Neil Uyetake, based on the original teleplay of Mirror, Mirror by Jerome Bixby, creative consultant Roberto Orci, edited by Scott Dunbier
Over a couple of drinks, Scotty tries to explain the concept of jumping between alternate timelines to a stubborn McCoy. Even more bothersome is the thought of an infinite number of McCoys. While the good doctor contemplates the horror of an infinite number of Montgomery Scotts who are poets instead of engineers, a victory is celebrated in another timeline. After defeating the Klingons for the Terran Empire, Captain Spock executes Chancellor Gorkon and waits for word from Commander Kirk on the Praxis Front. However, Kirk is on a mission of revenge to Rura Penthe, where his father’s killer is still held, along with the secrets of his ship. This is the first installment of a two-part story and seeing Kirk’s chilling plan unfold is completely believable. A terrific read.
Star Trek, Volume 3
Written by Mike Johnson, art by Stephen Molnar and Claudia Balboni, colors by John Rauch, Ilaria Traversi and Arianna Florean, letters by Neil Uyetake, based on the original teleplays of The Return of the Archons by Boris Sobelman and The Trouble With Tribbles by David Gerrold, creative consultant Roberto Orci, edited by Scott Dunbier
Featuring an introduction by David Gerrold, who wrote the teleplay for The Trouble With Tribbles, this trade paperback collects issues #9-12 of the Star Trek ongoing series. In addition to a fresh take on the Tribble tale, a second original series episode set in the alternate timeline, The Return of the Archons, is also presented. Of the two, I found Tribbles entertaining and Archons less so. Your mileage may vary.
Star Trek: The Next Generation/Doctor Who: Assimilation2 #5 (of 8)
Written by Scott and David Tipton, pencils by Gordon Purcell, painted art by J.K. Woodward, letters by Shawn Lee, edited by Denton J. Tipton
Picard is adamant, refusing to open negotiations with the Borg. He’d like to see the Borg and the Cybermen destroy each other. Neither Guinan nor the Doctor can persuade him otherwise. Counselor Troi suggests to Amy that the Captain needs to hear from someone other than the Doctor. Amy invites Picard on a tour of the TARDIS and the future of the Federation, if the Cybermen aren’t stopped. When he returns, Picard is finally ready to speak with the Borg. The story takes a thoughtful turn in this issue. The deep wounds Picard suffered as Locutus are highlighted, as is Amy’s confidence in the Doctor. This is the calm before the storm, very nicely done. Artist J.K. Woodward is getting a pencilling assist from veteran Star Trek artist Gordon Purcell. Eight issues of painted art is a tremendous amount of work and Purcell’s addition to the art team is a good choice.
Star Trek: The Next Generation/Doctor Who: Assimilation2 #6 (of 8)
Written by Scott and David Tipton, pencils by Gordon Purcell, painted art by J.K. Woodward, letters by Shawn Lee, editorial assists by Jacen Smith, edited by Denton J. Tipton
The Borg representatives are met on a desolate planetoid. The Conduit, a drone designated to speak for the collective, explains that the Borg won’t harm anyone in order to ensure their own continued existence. The Conduit returns to the Enterprise with the away team. Only then does Riker realize that the Conduit is an old friend, recently assimilated. With the Conduit’s assistance, a plan is formulated to stop the Cybermen from converting the Borg homeworld and restore Borg programming. To prepare, the Enterprise must return to Naia VII for help and the Doctor, with his companions, must travel back in time to Wolf 359. So far, I’ve found each episode of this mini-series compelling. I thought the writers might find it difficult to stretch out this story across eight issues, but the backstory of Star Trek and Doctor Who is rich with detail that can be drawn on, so I shouldn’t have worried.
Star Trek: The Next Generation/Doctor Who: Assimilation2 #7 (of 8)
Written by Scott and David Tipton, pencils by Gordon Purcell, painted art by J.K. Woodward, letters by Tom B. Long, editorial assists by Jacen Smith, edited by Denton J. Tipton
Aboard the Borg cube commanded by Locutus at the battle of Wolf 359, the Doctor, Amy and Rory quietly make their way to the central computer. The Doctor explains the insidious nature of the Borg to his companions as he makes a copy of the original Borg programming. Amy is a little shocked at the loss of life that occurred at Wolf 359 and surprised that the Doctor can’t change this fixed point in time. Returning to the Enterprise, the away team is assembled. Amy and Rory refuse to be left behind. Boarding the TARDIS, the away team makes for the Cybermen armada and the Cyber-controller. Unlike a Borg ship, intruders are detected immediately. The team splits up. One group must fight their way to Engineering and stop the ship, while the rest head for the bridge to find the Cyber-controller. Lots of action in this issue. We also see a bit of Doctor Who-style humor to break the tension. One more issue to go. It’s coming next week.
Star Trek: The Next Generation/Doctor Who: Assimilation2, Volume 1
Written by Scott and David Tipton with Tony Lee, art by J.K. Woodward, additional art by The Sharp Brothers (Issue #3) and Gordon Purcell (Issue #4), letters by Shawn Lee and Robbie Robbins, edited by Denton J. Tipton
This trade paperback collects the first four issues of Assimilation2, the Next Generation/Doctor Who crossover. The concluding volume will be published early next year. I’m impressed with J.K. Woodward’s painted art and I’ve enjoyed the story so far. If you’re a fan of Star Trek or Doctor Who, I have no trouble recommending this book.
Star Trek: The Next Generation – Hive #1 (of 4)
Story by Brannon Braga, script by Terry Matalas and Travis Fickett, art by Joe Corroney, colors by Hi-Fi, letters by Shawn Lee, edited by Scott Dunbier
Brannon Braga returns to Star Trek: The Next Generation with a four-issue mini-series titled Hive, featuring the Borg. In the 29th century the Borg have assimilated the entire galaxy without really know if it was worth doing. A spark of what’s left of Jean-Luc Picard awakens in Locutus and knows what must be done, starting 500 years in the past. In the 24th century, Picard is on vacation with Vash when he hears the collective calling. Returning to Starfleet Command, he learns that the Borg are massing and need to speak with Locutus of Borg. The Borg Queen brings news of a new threat, Species 1881, the Voldranaii. Failing to assimilate them, the Borg now find themselves on the run from a Voldranaii fleet with superior technology and a desire to exterminate all potential threats, including humans. The Queen sends her ambassador, Seven of Nine, to meet with Picard. In the 29th century, Locutus resurrects Data to help kill the Queen. Wow! There’s a whole lot of survivor’s guilt going on here, Locutus/Picard seems to be kind of a weenie. He wants a divorce but needs Data to help him. There are five covers for this issue. I’m not sure about the story, but Joe Corroney’s art is exotic and David Messina’s retailer incentive Famous Borg in History cover is the creepiest Star Trek comic cover I’ve ever encountered.
Star Trek: The Next Generation – Hive #2 (of 4)
Story by Brannon Braga, script by Terry Matalas and Travis Fickett, art by Joe Corroney, colors by Hi-Fi, letters by Shawn Lee, edited by Scott Dunbier
Brannon Braga’s Borg story to end all Borg stories continues. Locutus needs Data’s help to destroy the Borg Queen. First order of business is to execute the Queen’s Sentinel, a monstrous drone that is Seven of Nine. 503 years in the past, Picard recruits Annika Hansen to return to the collective as a Federation spy. Three years later, Seven of Nine, the Queen’s ambassador, assures Starfleet that the Voldranaii threat is real. Starfleet and the Borg make plans to intercept the Voldranaii fleet. Worf and a team of Vulcan commandos board a Voldranaii ship to retrieve biological samples of the aliens. Examining the DNA data sent by Worf’s team, Seven learns that the Voldranaii were engineered by Borg nanoprobes. The Queen transmits the Sentinel protocol to Seven who becomes something monstrous. 500 years later, Data kills Seven. Locutus won’t let anyone stand in his way. 500 years in the past, Picard confronts the Queen’s Sentinel. Confused yet? Well, its sort of makes graphic sense if you read the comic. My prose description is inadequate. Still, I can’t help but find this storyline amusing for its melodrama. I’m not sure if that was the intent. That’s okay. The art is terrific. Joe Corroney seems to be drawing Trek while channeling H.R. Giger. David Messina’s Locutus in the style of the Lincoln Memorial is another winner.
Star Trek: The Newspaper Comics – Volume 1: 1979-1981
Stories and art by Thomas Warkentin, Ron Harris and Sharman DiVono. Edited and designed by Dean Mullaney, color restoration by Lorraine Turner, with an introduction by Rich Handley
Rich Handley, who wrote the introduction for this oversize hardcover collection, began researching and collecting the Star Trek newspaper strips many years ago. He also made several unsuccessful attempts to interest publishers in reprinting the strips. IDW Publishing and Library of American Comics editor Dean Mullaney finally made the commitment to reintroduce the world to these lost comics. This volume features Sunday and daily strips from December 2, 1979 to October 25, 1981, plus a few interesting extras. They’ve done an amazing job. If you only buy one Star Trek comic this year, this is the one you want.
Star Trek: The Next Generation Omnibus
This 472-page trade paperback omnibus collection includes four complete Next Generation mini-series from IDW Publishing: The Space Between, Intelligence Gathering, The Last Generation, and Ghosts. If you missed these when they first appeared in your local comic shop, the omnibus editions from IDW are a great bargain.
Kevin Keller #6
Written and penciled by Dan Parent, inked by Rich Koslowski, letters by Jack Morelli, colors by Digikore Studios, edited by Victor Gorelick
George Takei made a cameo appearance this month in Archie Comics ongoing series, Kevin Keller, carrying Star Trek‘s familiar message of IDIC.
Star Trek comics coming soon, plus a few odds and ends
A four-issue movie prequel mini-series, a retailer exclusive edition of the Next Generation/Doctor Who conclusion, a hardcover collection of John Byrne’s Star Trek comics, and a couple of comics-related magazines with a Star Trek twist are coming next year.
Star Trek: Countdown to Darkness #1 and #2 (of 4)
Written by Mike Johnson and Roberto Orci, art by David Messina
Countdown to Darkness is a four-issue mini-series from IDW Publishing that leads into the new film, Star Trek: Into Darkness, and bridges the gap between the previous film. Readers will get an exclusive peek at the mysterious storyline. Variant issues will include photo covers and limited edition CGC-graded comics. What’s the story all about? We’ll have to wait and see. The first issue is scheduled to arrive in local comic shops at the end of January 2013.
Star Trek: The John Byrne Collection
Coming in 2013 is a hardcover collection of John Byrne’s Star Trek comics, including Assignment: Earth, Crew, Leonard McCoy: Frontier Doctor, and Romulans. Byrne will be making corrections and providing new cover art. All of these comics have been collected in trade paperback, but here they are again for your hardcover reading pleasure.
Bleeding Cool Magazine #3
The February 2013 issue of Bleeding Cool’s new print magazine will feature the latest Star Trek news and David Messina’s cover art for Countdown to Darkness #1.
Star Trek: The Official Magazine #44
Issue #44 of Star Trek: The Official Magazine will feature a retro cover design based on Gold Key Star Trek #7, but with a Mirror Universe twist. The newsstand edition will feature Kirk, Spock and McCoy from the new film.
Mark Martinez is an obsessive-compulsive Star Trek comics reader and collector. You can visit his website, the Star Trek Comics Checklist for more than you ever needed to know about Star Trek comics.