TrekInk: Early Review – StarTrek II: The Wrath of Khan #3

spockThe long overdue comic book adaptation of Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan from IDW concludes. The last of three issues arrives in comic shops this week. TrekMovie has an exclusive early review, plus a five-page preview of TWOK #3 and a look at a new IDW Omnibus.


StarTrek II: The Wrath of Khan (Comic Adaptation) #3
[written by Andy Schmidt, with art by Chee Yang Ong and color by Moose Baumann.]

Khan aboard Reliant, faces off against Kirk and the Enterprise. Kirk lures Khan into the Mutara Nebula and laughs at Khan’s superior intellect. Although Khan lacks experience, he makes the last move, setting off the Genesis device, dealing a fatal blow to a member of the Enterprise crew, and putting Kirk firmly in the Captain’s chair again.

Andy Schmidt finishes up his adaptation of The Wrath of Khan smoothly. This issue features the most emotional sequences of the story, and is arguably the best issue of the mini-series. We don’t see anything new, just a faithful adaptation of a favorite film.

Khan gets the last word

The art by Chee Yang Ong reflects his background in horror comics. Mortally injured Khan and Spock could easily star in Night of the Living Dead. I don’t imagine this will appeal to many Trekkies, and I have to admit that I’m a little tired of the zombification of the comics industry, but Chee’s dark approach to this story matches my own vision of Khan’s tale.

Spock speaks his last words

Curiously, I have to disagree with Kirk in this last panel. Although I enjoyed the mini-series, probably more than most TrekMovie readers, reading these comics does just the opposite for me, making me feel old. The comics fill a gap in my library, but they retell a 27-year-old story and I’m glad we’re moving on with new films. Before we set aside the past completely, I’ll look back at the other Star Trek comics movie adaptations in a forthcoming article.

… and I feel like making a new movie set in another timeline!

Chee provides covers for all three issues of this series. Issue #3 Cover A features Spock and his hand. Cover B reproduces a publicity photo of the crew. Anyone know why Scotty and Spock are looking in a different direction?

stiitwok3a_tn stiitwok3b_tn
Cover A: Chee Yang Ong, Cover B: Photo Cover

The retailer incentive cover is the last of three interlocking covers by David Deitrick. Spock appears giving the Vulcan greeting. Taking a stab at how the three covers fit together, it looks like Khan is center stage, flanked by Kirk and Spock. Dietrick’s retro covers look very much like his FASA role-playing game work.

Cover RI: David Deitrick 

All 3 RI covers create interlocked image

Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan #3 will be in comic stores this Wednesday. You can order issue #3 at




sold out

sold out

(July 1)

5 Page Preview of TWOK #3
Here are the first five pages of TWOK #3


Star Trek Omnibus 2 coming this week
Also coming July 1st from IDW is their second comic omnibus, this time a collection of the TOS "Early Voyages" comics originally published by Marvel Comics in 1997. "Early Voyages" takes place ten years before Kirk’s five-year mission, showcasing the adventures of Captain Christopher Pike and his team aboard the U.S.S. Enterprise. The omnibus contains all 17 issues. The book can be ordered from Amazon for $19.99.

IDW’s "Early Voyages" Omnibus


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. And yes, he knows that the IDW pages are incomplete. Blame it on IDW for publishing Star Trek comics faster than he can read them.

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What awful art! They should have just left it alone.

Can’t wait for the trade of this one!

I think the zombi-fied Spock is certainly effective in showing just how much damage and injury Spock has sutained (unlike what looks like it could just be a bad cut in the film). I think it might be a bit much for the emotional sensitivity of the scene, though I *do* like his blinded white eyes. The film would be interesting with that aspect.

Khan looks great, as does Spock, but Kirk looks terrible, particularly the “He’s not thinking in three dimensions!!” It looks like he just had an accident. Very un-Kirk, even when he IS tense and nervous in this story.

Zombie Spock says he just wants to be friends, but when you get close enough he’s gonna eat your brain.

Not to mention that two of the three images showing Spock doing the Vulcan hand salute have him doing it incorrectly (i.e., thumb against hand instead of apart from it).

It’s a shame they couldn’t have used a longer comic book series to introduce some of the cut material from the film. An issue devoted to Khan’s massacre of the Regula One scientists would have been great.

You’d think they’d actually finish the last story arc for “Early Voyages” – the comic was cancled mid-story when Marvel lost the TREK Licence!

Holy crap it’s the FASAtrek cover guy.

Wow, it must have taken a high school art class several days to draw these comics. YUCK!

Holy shit! It’s Spock Krueger!
As far as I remember, Spock didn’t suffer any “Raiders of the Lost Ark”-like face melt in the movie…

The reprint omnibus is a must-have for me.

I have to say this…. the art doesn’t match the emotion/mood of the movie. Especially when Kirk and company fools Khan and escapes into the Mutara Nebula. That was supposed to be a fun/funny witty scene. Kirk is supposed to be cocky on the bridge when their making their run for the nebula. Are these new generation of Trek Fans not understanding trek at all ?

Chee Yang Ong should be banned from ever drawing another comic book. Egad, is that art ugly; and not at all evocative of the scenes from the movie that supposedly inspired it. The facial reactions of the characters are not at all indicative of what they’re supposed to be feeling and once again the details are wrong on the Enterprise. Seeing those last panels of Khan and Spock above, I’m not sure if this supposed to be Star Trek or Night of the Living Dead.

David Deitrick also deserves a dishonorable mention for his lousy cover art; I guess the tribble on Kirk’s head is his “tribute” to Shatner’s hairpieces over the years.

I’m usually not a hater, but seeing just what a poor, take the money and run job this product is makes me really angry.

Holy crap, it’s Zombie Spock.

This again looks piss poor!

Honestly, the run to the Nebula is a fun little scene. It started when Kirk and Co. are beamed up from that cave and you can tell that Kirk really has his confidence back. Both Kirk and Spock know whats up and they are re-assuring a crew ..this doesn’t caputre it all.

“What happens if he doesn’t follow us into the nebula, sir.”

… More importantly, Mr. Saavik, what happened to your face???

Awful. Just plain awful. Don’t let this artist anywhere near another Star Trek comic, EVER.

lousy artwork. just plain awful. why give a lousy artist the best of the trek movies to adapt? none of the panels draws the viewer in to the action. and the character portraits are just so bad. ugh, what more can be said of a lousy comic

Spock looks like Gort from Day the earth stood still. the way he has his hands on the glass looks very simaler. The Art in this is just Terrable and i will simplt stick to the Directors Edition Dvd.

What’s up with all the incorrect Vulcan salutes?! The story artwork still sucks, and it’s not worth spending the money on.

@ #the king in shreds and tatters – June 30, 2009
“Holy crap it’s the FASAtrek cover guy.”

LoL! Yeah, I agree.

And enough with WOK already!

Wow, what’s with all this whining and moaning? I’ve never seen one thread so full of such bitching and complaining. You all act like you own “Star Trek.”

I usually don’t buy adaptations. I’d rather spend that money seeing the movie again. But with the comic that never was produced and IDW”s excellent record with licensed materials (plus the fact that it’s been so long since I saw TWOK (my favorite of the Trek movies) that I bought the mini-series.

I liked the use of the comics format to show the emotional punch of most of the tragic scenes in TWOK. I realize it sets a darker tone than the actual movie itself, but I thought the fight between Kirk and Khan was a classic film, and this is truly well done.

omg, the panel where Kirk says ‘He’s not thinking in three dimensions’…LOL!! AWFUL!! Artist draws Kirk with such a dumbfound look on this face, like he couldnt believe it….ugh, awful!!!! its like making Kirk look like such a doofus! He’s an Admiral and the best Capt of the Enterprise. what was the artist thinking?? ugh awful artwork. IDW, get a hint!

… and a good number of you need to use a spell check before posting your thoughts… or buy a dictionary… your arguments certainly go down in flames when you cannot even spell simple words…


The art for the comic is piss-poor and not even keeping with the mood of the film. For a comic book adaptation, that’s a big gripe. So what are we supposed to do, lavish praise on a crappy adaptation?

This project can do nothing but fail, as it takes a film many of us have memorized and dumbs it down to the ‘funnies’ format.

The visuals thus disappoint, and here, the team’s lack of familiarity with the source material (exterior Kobayashi Maru shots, incorrect hand-salutes, incorrect dialogue, etc.), just makes reading the thing a torturous experience.

Also, as many have mentioned, the artwork is a step backward. I have always hated “Trek” comics because the ships always looked awful. Nacelles are parallel to each other, for Pete’s sake. After David Messina’s fine work in “Countdown,” the ships here once again look like they were drawn without a ruler.

A good comic would be to re-do STV, as Paramount won’t go near it as a new project. Get Shatner on board to flesh out all those scenes that didn’t get in, add a bit of depth (What is the ‘Planet of Galactic Peace?’, more background on Sybok’s youth, and his mother, Klaa’s job, and, perhaps “God’s” reason for being in his current pickle), and it could be interesting.

This TWOK thing just looks like they sat in front of the VCR pressing ‘pause’ every 30 seconds.

27. AJ

They should adapt JM Dillard’s novelisation of TFF. Like Vonda McIntyre’s three novelisations, it included loads more background characterisation and subplots!

A ‘prosaic’ comicbook rendering of a movie strikes me as pointless!

The scene before the Genesis cave always made me wonder. If Kirk already knows they’re going to be rescued by Spock- why is he so intensely glum? Perhaps he’s trying to make a little time with C. Marcus?

I like the radiation damge shown, more realistic… but that would never fly in a Trek movie at the time.

#29. Either he’s still not positive that things are going to go according to plan, or he’s actually glum about David’s hostility toard him, rather than the apparently hopeless situation.

“I spit my last BREATHE at thee?” Seriously? Not only does the art suck, but no body thought to use spell check on this beast?

Not so much interested in a TWOK comic, but am eager to read Nero and Spock: Reflections. When do those come out?

#32 – Agreed, that stood out as well to me.

Is there a line where Kirk says “I don’t like to loose”?

And the hand salute, just plain sloppy and even more embarrassing that it’s on the *cover*! Doubly insulting since Nimoy invented it!

@3: “I think the zombi-fied Spock is certainly effective in showing just how much damage and injury Spock has sutained (unlike what looks like it could just be a bad cut in the film).”

According to Leonard Nimoy in I Am Spock, they wanted to have a similar effect in the movie — Nicholas Meyer kept loading up Nimoy’s hand with blood, hoping to get a big green handprint and smear down the glass.

Nimoy, who admitted to being stressed and suffering from a slight depression at having Spock die, blew up at Meyer at this, and demanded the blood be seriously toned down.

“Is there a line where Kirk says “I don’t like to loose?”

You do mean lose, don’t you?

love the Omnibus V2 – wish they were doing the DC 80’s comics but at least they collected all the early voyages in one book….

To the excellence that IDW brought to Star Trek comics, especially with John Byrne’s work…

…has been flushed away by this GARBAGE.

Seriously. This was a horrible, amateurish production by IDW. It’s one thing to fill the void by publishing movie-related comics. But how about doing it right next time??

I’d love to see the *expanded* version of Star Trek II. Meaning: IDW can re-release the issues by another creative team who actually delivers excellence. Right now, IDW stands tarnished in my eyes. (And I’ve witnessed a few buyers who dissed the book as they thumbed through it. But they were buying Star Trek Crew…)


No, we don’t own Star Trek, but is it so wrong to want a little quality when it comes to things like this? I mean, are you actually LOOKING at the artwork? And while you’re nitpicking spelling errors in the comments here, how about taking a look at the “I spit my last breathe” image at the beginning of the article? Explain to me how that’s acceptable for a published work.

The Wrath of Khan is considered sacrosanct by many in Trek fandom (myself at least partially included), so seeing this shoddy artwork is especially brutal.

#37 – Yes, I was pointing out the bad grammar editing (breath vs. breathe)

Look at sample panels #1 and 2. What motivated him to redesign (badly) the most beautiful ship in science fiction?

#23: You are right. I do not own Star Trek. And I will not own this poorly done comic, either!

The Pike comic looks MUCH better than the poorly drawn TWOK one.

#37 I could see Kirk saying, “I don’t like too loose” as well. But that’s a different movie…


This isnt very nice to look at.
It’s like a teenager has watched WOK for the first and only time, told to go about their daily life for a month, then come back and draw what they can remember.

Epic Fail

Usually after this many comments I refrain –
but I have to say……YUCK YUCK and more YUCK.
Honestly, what were the producers thinking?

Folks – if you’re going to take on an endeavor of
this magnitude, do it brilliantly, not pathetically. The
fans, like myself, who regard ST2 as the best (or
second best) movie in the franchise, deserve ALOT
better than this. Sorry it’s harsh but. . . .damn.

yeeze calm down guys!! i dont think ive ever seen so much negativity in a thread before – even the previous TWOK comic threads!…

yeah they couldve expanded abit on stuff like torture scenes etc but i for one am grateful i can finally slide these inbetween my TMP and TSFS adaptations!

as i said b4 in another thread – i think its been sorta drawn etc as if it was done in 1982…

its just a novelty thing for us older fans who appriciate that theres finally a WOK adaptation…

#48? Calm down?? This TWOK comic has less production value than some of the worst of the Gold Key era. As a matter of fact, perhaps that’s what this is… a “Gold Key” take on TWOK! :)

No “sauce for the goose,” no sale.