Wednesday, 28 March 2018

Star Trek: Boldly Go #17 - IDW Publishing

STAR TREK: BOLDLY GO No. 17, February 2018
Having previously built-up a somewhat engaging gallery of alternate James Tiberius Kirks in this story-arc’s earlier editions, and then rather savagely eliminated them all with a scratch of his pen, Mike Johnson’s explanation for his actions within Issue Seventeen of “Star Trek: Boldly Go” probably didn’t go down all that well with the book’s audience in March 2017, especially as it hark backs to them having some knowledge of his previously published “Kelvin timeline adaptation” of The Original Series (“TOS”) episode Where No Man Has Gone Before". Indeed, in many ways this twenty-page periodical’s narrative, which frustratingly once again just predominantly flits through numerous incarnations of the U.S.S. Enterprise’s Captain, demonstrates just why the American author should have heeded his own advice when he first started working on the comic book title and ‘promised’ he would just “divide [the] stories up into one-parters, two-parters, [and] three-parters”, stating he “probably won’t do more than that because it would be three months in real time for the story to play out for the reader.”

Sadly however, even a comprehensive understanding of Samuel A. Peeples's original 1965 television pilot and Gary Mitchell’s fearsome telepathic/telekinetic powers arguably doesn’t actually help make this magazine’s script any more enjoyable, as “IDW’s Kelvin Universe scribe” additionally seems to use the formidable scoring Duke-Heidelberg Quotient test subject as a contrived excuse to showcase a plethora of “infinite realities” where “the Federation, the Klingons, and the Romulans conquer each other’s homeworlds, and vice versa”; “I’ve been trying to keep score. The Klingons have a healthy lead so far.” This somewhat short sequence is admittedly rather intriguing and well pencilled by artist Marcus To, yet as with the aforementioned Kirk carousel, doesn’t add anything to an already over-convoluted and punishingly padded out plot, except perhaps the possibility that somewhere ‘out there’ exists a Godzilla-sized James T. battling a blue-skinned giant insectoid across a futuristic cityscape…

To make matters worse, this comic’s cliff-hanger conclusion, which depicts both Starfleet Officers arguing above the mutated lieutenant’s coffin in outer space, appears to have been entirely manufactured just to string out Johnson’s ineffectual “Infinite Diversity In Infinite Combinations” for one further issue. Mitchell makes it clear to his former friend that in his eyes he has the power of a God, and has already used that power to eradicate all the “infinite Gary’s out there”. Considering that he also plans to do the same with all the Kirks, why therefore does he risk everything by willingly giving his hated rival “part of my power” in order to “fight it out”, particularly when he knows full well that he’s being goaded into giving his opponent his “only chance of beating me”..?

‘First published on the "Dawn of Comics" website.'
The regular cover art of "STAR TREK: BOLDLY GO" No. 17 by Marcus To

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