TrekInk: Review of Star Trek Ongoing #8

“Hello, this is your captain speaking. I’d like to welcome you to today’s flight into the Neutral Zone. Do not worry though, we have a doctor on board for what may ail you. Why head into the Neutral Zone you ask? Well, there is this little red matter we have to deal with…” And that red matter gets dealt with in Star Trek #8, the second part of the “Vulcan’s Vengeance” storyline which is finally in comic book stores. Find out more in the TrekMovie review.



This eighth issue of IDW’s ongoing series presents the second half of the first original storyline in the series, and the first encounter with Romulans. Yes. Romulans. After teasing us and tantalizing us with glimpses of new characters along the way, Mike Johnson and Roberto Orci opened a window into the Romulan Empire of the 2250s.

The story picks up an undetermined amount of time after the first part with the Enterprise near the Neutral Zone and a shuttle carrying Kirk, Bones, and two previously seen red-shirts (Zahra and “Cupcake” Hendorff), along with their prisoner. As expected, the Romulans come across them quickly, and we get our first sight of their vessels and uniforms. Kirk tries to talk their way out of trouble, but as expected, manages quite the opposite, including a trip to Romulus.

The look of the comic draws heavily from the glimpses of Romulan culture seen in the original Star Trek series, with slight stylistic differences to suit the new alternate timeline. The story is heavy with dialogue, but takes its time to show off much of Romulus, and even features a small scene reminiscent of a fight scene in "Return of the Jedi".

Isn’t that the guy that beat Kirk up in a bar in Iowa? Makes you wonder why Kirk still insists on calling him "cupcake"… (click to enlarge)


Joe Phillips picks up from the last issue for the art and this story fits tightly with the prior issue’s. His forms are strong, and the viewing angles and backgrounds suit the story being told quite well. His exterior panels show off the cityscapes and starships well, and the design of the Romulan warbirds is sharp and elegant.

John Rauch and Neil Uyetake continue to do the colors and letters, as they have for every issue in the series thus far. The palate is turquoise-tinged, as much of the issue is set on Romulus, and apparently Romulans like their greens. With only one fight scene, the opportunity for effects is limited, but the amount of dialogue makes up for that, and various bits of that dialogue show emphasis.

You might think that Bones would know to expect imminent death around Kirk… Or maybe not… (click to enlarge)


The primary cover is, like all of the other issues in the series, provided by Tim Bradstreet. The style continues to be the same, based around the Starfleet delta. Like the last issue, this one evokes the movie, showing Spock and his father with the red matter above. There are two retailer incentive covers this month, the first is a black and white version of the main cover, and the second is a photo cover of Bones.

Covers for "Star Trek Ongoing #8"
(click to enlarge)

Available now (finally)

Originally Star Trek Ongoing #8 was to be released two weeks ago, but it was delayed due to #7’s delay, but it should be available in comic stores now. You can order it and future issues from the series from TFAW.

Star Trek Ongoing
Star Trek Ongoing
Star Trek Ongoing



March April May

And to catch up you can pick up the just released trade paperback which collects the first four issues.


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finally got the first trade and read it in one sitting, really digging the alternate take vibe on the TOS stories (I thought the kinda-different Where No Man Has Gone Before was an interesting take) & looking forward to checking out this storyline in the next TPB.

The only real problem I had with this issue was the inconsistent hairstyle of poor ‘Cupcake’, I mean Hendorff. Some frames, he’s bald, and others he has his normal hair. At least they kept his beard consistent.

Tough to write about this without spoiling it.

Oh, yeah. I hope they get the “remember that time on Delta Vega!” we-mist-reference-the-last-movie stuff out of their system in time for the next movie.

@4 I read this issue, Scotty literally references “eating snow on Delta Vega” lol!

Went to the comic store last week, wondering when this issue would be out. Guys there said it was delayed due to a truck accident in Texas and indicated IDW might have to rush more to print in order to get them out.

I’ll get mine, tomorrow. Hard to image how a comic can be ‘heavy on dialog,’ but I appreciate the review.

Just finished reading this. Loved the art, looks great. Some fun scenes but a lame resolution spoils a fairly intriguing setup. Too bad.

So ‘Cupcake’ is still part of Kirk’s crew. I guess he must have completed cleaning latrines to Kirk’s satisfaction…:)

I guess I’ll have to wait a few months before I can get hold of the next four issues…sigh…:(

5. it’s a little heavy, no?

Awww, man. I so wanted a radically reinvented Romulan race* to be the main antagonists in the JJ-verse movies. With a link back to what may have happened later on in Star Trek: Enterprise. I suppose this will have to suffice.

*just try saying that after many glasses of Romulan ale.

i’m just glad they got rid of those ridiculous forehead ridges from tng-era.


I just read this issue and I was wondering if Spock really shaved his head?

So, ‘Cupcake’ is Mr. Hendorf from TOS “The Apple” (Hendorf was one of many redshirts whose deaths Kirk was lamenting to McCoy and Spock). Hope he doesn’t ‘bite the Apple’ this time around (hee hee). He looked far less severe in the original timeline… ;-P

And the Romulans are still trotting out their ‘towel-shoulder’ TOS duds. Guess Nero’s ‘ripple effect’ didn’t reach Romulus’ garment district yet…. ;-D

Re 11. I liked the Tng Romulan ridges helped devine the differences between them and Vulcans.

loved it!

Did anyone notice that in the spin-off Series of ST all the aliens and Feds evolved? No race or aliens had the same clothes or tailor as in ST TOS.

So why would J.J.’s re-imagined with a different reality twist have Romulans in the old ST TOS uniforms?

Would only the Feds up-grade and leave all the rest in the dust?

Would be better to see a new spin/take on up-graded Klingons, Gorn, Romulans, etc.

Let them be legitimate forces to be recconed with!


Even if it is just a comic, the past would not fit in to this new Future.

I think.

Re-vamp. Take it all to the top bar of immagination.

…never did learn to spell… – sorry.

@14 I always figured the explanation was that the Romulans had been interbreeding with Remans… and these mixed race Romulans picked up some Reman features like the more predominant V ridge. Or the Debrune race, either way.

12. It’ll grow back in time for the movie, and probably in time for the next issue. ;)

Yeah, personally, didn’t like the TNG Romulan makeup at all (didn’t like the Westmore forehead getting added to Andorians, either). Just me, but I think it makes for more interesting stories if Vulcans/Romulans are pretty much indistinguishable, physically — not just the impersonation possibilities, but symbolically. I also hope we’ll see a little variety in Romulan hairdos etc. (and Vulcans’ — at least the women in Trek ’09 didn’t have that bad TNG Caesar wig). I liked that Nanclus, the Romulan in VI, had a receding hairline.

I like the way they are using and re-using the supporting cast from TOS and the story was nice, sowing seeds for the future. My biggest criticisms are that two issues are most definitely too brief. The story had no time to gain any traction before it was over. Most super hero comics tell stories in 4 issues and the 2 issue format is becoming increasingly irrititating. 3 issues would be doable but 2 means there is almost no time for any character development and very little time for more than a couple of set pieces.

The rampant sexism is still another source of irritation. I don’t have any major issues with the landing party since they used one male and one female supporting character plus the mains (more generally they need to feature no more than one spare male character and make all the rest female to redress the imbalance where possible – the versions of Where No Man has gone Before and Galileo 7 both had a dreadful imbalance). All the featured Vulcans and Romulans were male. In fact, I did a quick count of the background characters and counted 45 male Romulans and 5 females. WHY?

Regarding hairstyles…I too liked how the TOS movies (V and VI) dealt with the styles of Romulans it makes sense to me if it were the Vulcans–male and female–who had the generic short “V” hairstyle, since they would think the need of anything else would be illogical. Whereas, the Romulans–who embrace their passions and emotions–would have a variety of hairstyles to fit their personalities.

Just 2 cents from someone who, BTW, is bald.

ienyoyed a oringinal story look forward to others

bald Spock was just too handsome……Uhura needs to stop bitching about his apperance.

19. All the featured Vulcans and Romulans were male. In fact, I did a quick count of the background characters and counted 45 male Romulans and 5 females. WHY?

Good question.

20. Just 2 cents from someone who, BTW, is bald.

Ditto. This may be why it interests me.

Sweet now there’s a GI Joe crossover, with Cobra Commander in that first panel.

I hope the next issue will have fuzzy-headed Spock growing his hair out.

@22 Lighten up, Spock said she was displeased, he didn’t say she went into bitchfest.

@25 Yeah, that would be cute. Not to mention that in-between phase were the hair is long enough to stick up all over the place but not enough to gel down properly. :-)

I felt it was rather short and the ending left some things unresolved. I wish Spock and Sarek’s conversation was included. Don’t get me wrong though, I enjoyed it.