John Byrne Sets Phasers To Campy In Star Trek: New Visions #15 – Review and 5-page Preview

Review: Star Trek: New Visions #15 – ”The Traveler”
Publisher: IDW Publishing
Photoplay by: John Byrne

The legendary John Byrne is back this month with a campy romp featuring a story and effects so cheesy that it feels like what a season 4 episode would have been. Imagine being in an alternate universe where NBC allowed the Enterprise to actually complete its five-year mission but continued to decrease the budget each year. This story is one of those voyages…

Cover by John Byrne

The Enterprise is on a routine patrol near the border of the Beta Quadrant when they discover an unresponsive ship and board it to investigate. There, they encounter a human-like life form that looks as if they cast a smarmy Bill Nye The Science Guy as the 13th Doctor. “The Traveler” (not to be confused with our friend from Tau Alpha C), as he known, delivers an ominous warning that  ”The Q’al are coming!” Naturally, much like the quick Google search I did, the Enterprise’s computer banks come up empty for any information on the mysterious “Q’al” species. All we know from the Traveler is that they are dangerous and will kill everyone on board unless they listen to him. Why no one is at yellow alert by now is beyond me.

Is ‘The Traveller’ Bill Nye’s descendant?

This is when the story goes absolute bonkers. Smarmy Bill Nye reveals that his answer to the millennium-long war with the Q’al is a robot army that looks like a cross between an alien pod from Prometheus, B-9 from Lost in Space, and a dalek from Doctor Who. If provoked, these robots could destroy the ship. Uh, maybe it’s red alert time? But no – none of this seems strange to anyone and, in fact, they even let this man with robot children actually MAKE CHANGES TO THE SHIP. I think you see where this is going.

I thought the 2Pac hologram at the 2012 Coachella Festival was much better than this

When the Enterprise finally encounters the Q’al, the Traveler reveals his true agenda – to destroy them. Unfortunately, Kirk realizes that this guy is a homicidal madman a little too late and loses control of the ship. The Q’al beam over and Spock makes the fascinating discovery that they bear a resemblance to the Traveler’s robots, hypothesizing that they may indeed come from the same species. I’m surprised Byrne didn’t put an actual light bulb about Kirk’s head when he utters, “It’s all starting to make an insane kind of sense!” That makes one of us, Captain.

This continues to be the strangest Coachella ever

Look, the plot is absolutely preposterous, but if you enjoy the campy TOS episodes and even the 1960’s Batman series, then this issue is for you. I will say that these photonovels are incredible works of art and Byrne totally nails it. A lot of work clearly went into this and to his credit, it doesn’t feel like a distracting rehash of old TOS footage. Even the Traveler, aka Richard Weidlich, feels like he could’ve been a villain in the same vein as Trelane, Finnegan, or even Harry Mudd.

Hello. It’s me.

5-Page Preview: Star Trek New Visions #15

Click thumbnails to enlarge


Star Trek New Visions #15 and Star Trek / Green Lantern #5 available now

John Bryne’s Star Trek New Visions series #15 was released yesterday and retails for $3.99. You can order it at TFAW.

Also out this week is Star Trek / Green Lantern Vol. 2 #5 . You can also order it at TFAW. (see TrekMovie review)



Find Star Trek comics, toys, statues, and collectibles at!

Keep up with all the latest inked Star Trek in TrekMovie’s Comics Category.

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Huh? That looks nothing like Bill Nye the Science Guy.

He kind of resembles Nye, in a MST3K vague-resemblance-to-an-actual-celebrity sort of way.

Looks more like Crispin Glover to me.

Scotty’s pose in that first pic looks painful… as does this story.

Sounds vaguely like “The Alternative Factor,” which was … not one of TOS’s better episodes.

Quite honestly I’ve never cared much for any of Byrne’s New Visions photonovels. I liked the idea behind them but the execution and stories always left a lot to be desired. I don’t think the visuals were ever particularly impressive and the stories always ended up having some simplistic resolution and was introduced and executed too quickly. I don’t see this one turning out any different. Maybe he should try a denser multi-issue story instead of these quick one-shot “episodes”.

Classic trek….bread and circuses!It’s amazing that this show was made when I was in grade school!The sixties.from:betsye j.lee

Please starting drawing comics again because that’s where you true talent shines. Who’s paying good money to read this?