EXCLUSIVE: Next Star Trek Comic Is All About Khan’s Exile – Details & Covers

We still don’t know if Khan Noonien Singh, possibly Star Trek’s ultimate villain, will appear in the next Star Trek movie. But today, TrekMovie has the exclusive reveal that Khan will be the subject of the next new Star Trek comic book from IDW. The "Khan: Ruling in Hell" series kicks off in October. We have details and covers below.


Khan: Ruling in Hell – The Comic

For their next new comic series, IDW has decided to fill a gap in Star Trek lore by exploring Khan’s time on Ceti Alpha V after he was exiled there by James T. Kirk in the original Star Trek episode "Space Seed" and before we meet up with him again in Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan. According to IDW the new "Star Trek: Khan: Ruling in Hell" series will explain how Khan went from "the elegant, proud warrior-king to a grizzled maniac, twisted by loss and an unquenchable thirst for revenge". IDW promises that this new series will answer the question "What has happened between these two points in time to so radically alter what seemed to be an unbreakable will?"

New IDW comic to explain how Khan went from A to B

To take on this task, IDW has turned to their most prolific Star Trek writing team, Scott and David Tipton. The pair have already done a number of original Star Trek comic series for the publisher, including the current "Burden of Knowledge" series and their recent foray into Spock’s backstory in "Spock: Reflections" shows they are up to the challenge of filling in the blanks. The art is being done by Fabio Mantovani ("DS9: Fools Gold"), with covers done by Joe Corroney and Michael Stribling. The first of the four-issue series should be hitting comic ships on October 13, 2010.

Here are exclusive first looks at the two covers for issue 1.

Khan: Ruling in Hell #1 (Stribling Cover)

Khan: Ruling in Hell #1 (Corroney Cover)

Khan in the novels

"Star Trek: Khan: Ruling in Hell" will be the first comic book series focusing on the character of Khan, not counting IDW’s 2009 adaptation of Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan. The title of the comic series borrows from a line from "Space Seed" (borrowed from Milton), that "it is better to rule in hell than serve in heaven." But it also sounds familiar to fans of Trek books. In 2005 Pocket Books released Greg Cox’s "To Reign in Hell: The Exile of Khan Noonien Singh". The book finished off a trilogy about Khan, with the previous two books covering the Eugenics Wars. It isn’t clear if the "Ruling in Hell" comic will tie into anything from the "Reign in Hell" novel, but usually Trek comics and novels have charted their own courses.

2005 Khan exile novel


As for July comics, IDW is packing all their Star Trek comics into the end of the month. That means that Burden of Knowledge #2, McCoy Frontier Doctor #4, and the Star Trek Movie Adaptation #5 all are coming out on July 28th.

New Star Trek comics coming July 28th

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Gawd, how many times do you want to beat this Khan thing to death??

Come up with something NEW, people!!!!!!!

Don’t you know, the film industry has run out of ideas. That is why the new movies are based on old TV shows, cartoons, sequels and relaunching movies.

Oh, I know, and I’m quite disgusted by it! I remember when Hollywood had talent!

Before last Friday I’d completely given up on Hollywood for anything original. Then I saw Inception.

I’m not really into Comics per se, but this looks COOL!

But can they use Ricardo Montalban’s image like that even though he’s deceased without an agreement or compensation to his estate and family? Or have they gone through that process? The rights seem a little iffy and questionable here to me.

Has anyone else read Greg Cox’s “To Reign in Hell”? I think anyone who has taken the time to read that novel (like me) can’t be too thrilled by the prospect of this coming Comic series conflicting with what was laid out in that book.

Not sure how Khan “changed.” He wasn’t so friendly to Kirk the first time around either, remember.

Although I do dislike rehashing old stories, hey whatcha gonna do? COmplain that there’s new Trek content? LOL

BTW: TO ANTHONY: TIME TO ADD another Trek celeb to the Twitterers library: http://twitter.com/JeriLRyan :)

yeah but they only trusted Chris Nolan to make Inception because he made billions rehasing a 70 year old cartoon character done 4 times already- lol

I think they should write around the novels- why do They have to give us their version? why do we need another verion? cant they just illustrate the one we are already familiar with- I dont want STAR TREK to end up like Transformers where their are so mny different versions that contradice each other & stop you experiancing a coheasive fictional universe that you can believe in…

Just Say NO to KHAN in 2012!!!!!!!!!!

# 6.
I think the change in Khan being referenced has to do with the fact that he embraced exiled at the end of “Space Seed” and parted company with Kirk and the Enterprise crew on a somewhat friendly basis, being that Kirk gave him and his people a choice concerning their fate.

I’d really like to see a monthly comic based on the new movie. It would really help me get over the fact that I won’t get to see anything new in Trek for a few years.

#1 – and the same old people making the same old complaints.

How about some NEW and original comments?

this khan comic book looks really interesting. It would be nice to get a new perspective into Khan. I’m still waiting for someone to tell the story of Khan’s time between landing on ceti alpha, until meeting captain terril and chekov. I want to hear their story !!!!

CORRECTION: Scrub my last 2 sentences….. I’m only half awake this morning.


“yeah but they only trusted Chris Nolan to make Inception because he made billions rehasing a 70 year old cartoon character done 4 times already- lol”

And, yeah, “they” trusted Nolan to make Batman Begins because of Memento and Insomnia before it. Granted, Insomnia was a remake of a Norwegian film, but the same certainly couldn’t be said about Memento. And his “rehashing” of the Batman franchise is hardly a retread of Burton’s and Schumacher’s earlier efforts. (Oh, and Batman started as a comic book character, not a cartoon. There is a difference.)

Rant over.


thanks for assuming im speaking from a place of ignorance.

I know batman’s history, he has had many incarnations comic, serials, tv series, cartoon series, a film franchise ect ect & i just picked one- the one I grew up with the cartoon one in super friends

& ur fooling yourself if u think momento’s brilliance had anything to do with inception getting green lit it was the money made from his batman treatments

Different interpretations of characters such as The Joker, The Penguin and Catwoman are commonplace in comics so why not Khan? People need to chill out a bit. There’s nothing wrong with some new stories about the character and I’ve never minded the contradictions between the books in different eras and the comics. I loved Kirk’s corpse’s fate in Spock: Reflections as much as I cheered for Kirk’s rebirth in The Return.

Spock said ‘There are always possibilities’ and the Khan comic explores these. It’s not some covert campaign to get Khan into the next film! I’ll certainly pick up the trade paperback. Enjoy it for what it is and, if you don’t like the idea of it, don’t buy it!

And folks, do you seriously think IDW would have used Ricardo Montalban’s image if they didn’t have the right to. They’re professionals and official licensees!

Any bridge between original Trek and movie-era Trek is bound to be a special creative challenge. If it gets good reviews from folks I respect, I’ll snag the trade and give it a go.

excellent – an adaptation of Greg Coxs novel is long overdue!!

im actually quite stunned at some of the negativity in this thread toward the comic and Khan in general…do you guys even like star trek?! maybe they should do comics on Quark or Harry Kims origins…maybe then youd be happy

Look- will I be a little miffed if Khan is the bad guy in the new movie? Yeah, but the comic world is where we CAN beat any dead horse we want, in several different fashions, and get away with it. I am really looking forward to this version.

Apropos of nothing, just finished the Trek online novel “Needs of the Many” and was VERY pleasantly surprised at how much I enjoyed it. It is my firm opinion based on this and the Romulan War book that Michael Martin is a much better writer when he is not working with Andy Mangels. I did enjoy their work together on the first couple of ENT Season 5 novels, but Martin’s work flows better on its own.

Its painful reading the negative comments on here sometimes, it makes me not want to visit TrekMovie…which does indeed worry me!

Do I care if they’re doing a Khan comic…yes, but only because I really want to read it.

Will I care if Khan is in the next film…no, not especially, because I believe it’ll be a good film!

All I want from the new film is a bit more Trek and a little less hollywood. More external shots of the big E, firing during warp, better engineering set. Less matcho action dialogue and a little more TOS style jibber jabber (the line where Spock doesn’t want to rescue Nero being a bug-bear)

That said, I love Star Trek 2009, I love all new Star Trek in general, I love new comics, I like the linear nature of Trek canon and that anything on screen happened, fact. I like that we don’t have a distorted, muddled universe like Marvel, or indeed Batman. I like that we have created a Universe for ourselves that has a history, and is constantly added to rather then deviated from. That said, I love non-canon, part-canon and canon comics, because I just like read ST stories…

Granted it’ll be nice for comic but readers but imho the book was great. Really made one sympathise with the character yet still shows why he is and always was a monster. Poor Marla! and the book brings the Ceti Eel to a new dimension. A good read even of the first two in the trilogy were tepid.

Theres plenty of unearthed material to produce, instead of re-hashing and recycling, why no movie from Nivens Ringworld? Forwards Starquake? Or any novel from them? Herberts Lazarus series (Destination:Void)?

Even for Trek, there were numerous novelles from the ’70’s that were quite good. Lets see screenplays from those!

With brilliance like “Moon” and “DIstrict 9” there’s no excuse for re-heated leftovers!

How about a Novel from Babylon 5 with the Telepath Wars and how that happened. Or a new Movie to show it. Also. Avatar was a great Scifi film that was new and fresh and Inception was also great. So there is some new things out and coming. Looking forward to reading the IDW Comic with Khan.

Bob Orci. Please No Khan in the next Trek Movie. Make it new and fresh. Please!!!!!!!!

yes I love Star Trek
im happy for new stories & no problem with khan stories just no same universe contradicting stories- im ok with 2 main trek universes/realities but keep the basic histories straight it makes the howl star trek universe harder to get into & believe when there are multiple versions of the same characters or stories.

id like to think Bob Orci will take NO NOTICE WHATSOEVER of all the ‘please no Khan in next movie’ statements

some of us would actually LOVE to see Khan in the sequel!!

maybe there were similar goings on in BatmanMovie.com when the sequel was gearing up after Batman Begins – ‘Whhhaah! i dont wanna see the joker in the sequel..its been done already we need something new and fresh! Whhhaaah!’

I’m genuinely excited for this KHAN series. The Tiptons are great Trek comic writers, so I’m sure they’ll do a great job here.

As far as the comics tying-in with the novels? Who cares? In my view, they should all be free to tell their separate stories. If the stories are good, it doesn’t matter where they fit in canonically.

#28 yeah its been done before a good few times anyway – e.g. Enterprise The First Adventure novel and DCs Annual #1

this Khan series is going to be one of the more essential IDW buys for myself (TPB)

I’m not into comics much but this one is a great idea – wonder why they didn’t think of it sooner?
As for the next film -bringing Khan back is just asking for trouble. New fans won’t buy the idea that he led a huge war in the 1990s that somehow escaped our attention at the time – but if they change the dates the old fans will grumble about canon. i really hope they’re not seriously thinking about it. For one, I wish Star Trek would do what it says on the tin and explore some strange new worlds.

Anthony, can you sneak out one more panel? I just want to see Alpha Ceti VI go KER-BLOOEY!

I agree, don’t bring Khan back. If you want to bring something back or redo a episode, redo The Doomsday Machine. Since Vulcan was destroyed maybe it could destroy Andoria or Mars.

Think about a moment. Khan is got his squeeze, got a planet, his ego is sated. Then the planet goes to hell (no problem). Then his squeese gets the bug in her ear. the suddenly squeeze is very odd, she goes along with EVERYTHING khan says (go shove your head in a blender. She tries too, to Khan’s sudden alarm), she slowly loses it, as does Khan (who probably had second thoughts about Kirk’s idea, when the planet started going to hell). Then Khan goes apesh*t because Kirk (or anybody) doesnt show up for 15 years or so (seems to be starfleet SOP to -not- revisit places needed to revisited often enough)…

thus you got a guy who’s only urge at a chubby is the chance to physically or electronically sodomize your foe… questions?

…but i agree with some, this isn’t a comic book topic to waste time on…

#30 “bringing Khan back is just asking for trouble. New fans won’t buy the idea that he led a huge war in the 1990s that somehow escaped our attention at the time – but if they change the dates the old fans will grumble about canon.”

they dont HAVE to mention it was the 1990s…just have it in earths past, like in the Enterprise Augments 3 parter (even Khan is mentioned) but no mention of the actual year

They can do whatever they want in comics.
I just hope Khan won’t appear in the next movie!

I read the “To Reign In Hell” novel a few years ago, and I’d be hard pressed to believe that anything could possibly top that story. I was so impressed with Greg Cox’s novel, I really wanted to see them do some kind of animated adaptation. It’s basically part of my “personal canon” now. Very good stuff…

Inception just uses the ideas from Dreamscape, doesn’t it?

“Guys get some perspective this is a comic book”

wow I guess Comic-Con is officially over folks.. lol

Some people do seem to be forgetting this is an annoucment for a new comic…not the new film!

The whole thing just shows how Trek fans are so sad that everything has to be told to them. No imagination!

Pass on this comic and the rest of milking of Trek material.


I agree

To Reign in Hell byGreg Cox was an excellent read and would be hard to beat. I kind of put Cox’s novel into canon, it even gave a reason for why Khan kept one glove on throughout TWOK.

I don’t mind another Khan comic, just not keen on him being rehashed in a movie.

Although Khan is one of the best villains in Trek, Trek does not revolve around him.

Because I have read the novel To Reign in Hell, this does seem like a retread that a filling in of gaps.

I grew up with comic books, cartoons, toy ranges and live action movies contradicting one another. My brain can easily separate them. So this is a comic book telling an author’s interpretation of what might have happened. So what? Enjoy it for what it is. I don’t give a flying frak if it contradicts a book I haven’t read! Why do Trekkies have some desperate need to be led by the hand to what is ‘canon?’

As for Khan being in another movie . . . well that’s a different story and it’s unfair of people to launch a tirade against the comic book writers about that.

The way I look at the Trek universes is that the old one is a future based on people’s views in the 1960s and 1980s. The prime one (ie the current one in the movies) is based in a present day view of the future, so Khan in that universe is presumably someone who will emerge in later decades. Hell, I’m Perfectly happy for him to have a completely different origin, given it’s a different universe!

I don’t want to nitpick but they’re not rehashing any stories here. What Khan got up to on the planet was never actually established. I mean we get the gist of it, but that doesn’t mean that stories can’t be told in that time frame.

Jesus, when did people become allergic to storytelling?

Thanks for all the kind words about “To Reign In Hell.” As far as I know, this new comic book is NOT an adaptation of my novel, but I suppose there’s always room for another take on Khan’s life.

I’m definitely going to have to check the comic book version out!

I love the idea of a comic book (or multiple storylines) dealing with Khan.

I mean, why the hell not? He’s a great SF villain — in all of science fiction, not just Trek.

Besides, it adds to the depth of the already amazingly deep universe of Star Trek.

If the “expanded unverse” works for something like Star Wars, there is no reason it cannot work even better for Star Trek, where characters and histories are at least as well respected.

I plan to buy an e-reader of some kind in the near future. (Although I might not, if I buy an iPad, which I haven’t yet.) It would be a pleasure to download on it any number Trek novels and comic books for perusal.

The future is now.

I’m ready for “Zombie Trek” and “Vampire Trek”. How about a version where everyone is assimilated by the Borg….and likes it? What about “Sea Trek”?

To clarify, I am joking.

I still believe that a prequel Khan ala “Space Seed” Khan could make an even more chilling movie villan than TWOK Khan. In TWOK, Khan’s effectiveness was marred by his blood lust for Kirk. He was no longer the controlled mastermind and cold-blooded snake (though he showed a few brief flashes of his old self). He made too many mistakes due solely to his inability to control his base impulse to personally hurt Kirk at all costs (giving Kirk time to regroup on the bridge when he could have just finished him off, following him into the nebula and negating the damaged Enterprise’s profound tactical disadvantages and failing to think through his battle tactics once inside the nebula come to mind).

Before that, Khan was a very controlled, calculating personality. He would make an excellent movie villan and would bear very little resemblance to the Khan we see in TWOK, who has been reducted to a maniac.

Khan is part of the Star Trek mythology, other writers/film makers are going to want to tackle him in their own way. They have that right, LIVE WITH IT!
Oh cover A is awesome!

edit: last line should be “reduced.” I need more coffee.