1420. Where No Man Has Gone Before (Reboot)
PUBLICATION: Star Trek #1, IDW Comics, September 2011
CREATORS: Mike Johnson (writer), Stephen Molnar (artist)
STARDATE: 2258.5 or .6 (after the Star Trek movie)
PLOT: After finding the S.S. Valiant's black box, Kirk follows the trail through the Galactic Barrier where its strange energies turn his friend Gary Mitchell into a powerful psionic. Gary soon starts to show disdain for the "lesser beings" around him. Meanwhile, the ship must crawl to a dilithium-cracking station to effect repairs.
CONTINUITY: The comic follows the events of the tv episode "Where No Man Has Gone Before", with changes based on the new J.J. Abrams continuity (for anomalies that cannot be accounted for, see Divergences). Scotty's assistant Keenser appears (Star Trek).
DIVERGENCES: The original stardate was 1312.4. Of course, Kirk and co. were supposedly older in the tv episode, but that doesn't account for the number being higher earlier. The Galactic Barrier is green instead of pink.
PANEL OF THE DAY - The anomaly gave Gary Mitchell heightened juggling skills.
REVIEW: Yes, it's based on the Samuel Peeples' script for the second Star Trek pilot, and only gets us halfway through that episode (it takes two comics to tell an hour-long episode). Yes. And I agree that new stories would have been preferable. However! This new Star Trek #1 does more than replay the same story with recast likenesses. For Trekkies, I believe there's still some interest generated by the "What if" nature of the new Trek timeline. We get the same basic events, but twisted by subtle differences because of the new history. For example, the tense relationship between Kirk and Spock means the comic opens with Kirk playing chess with Gary instead of Spock.Gary and Kelso are aboard because Kirk could basically get all his friends on board (stuck on the night shift because of Chekov and Sulu), but psychologist Elizabeth Dehner isn't there because of a failed and unforgiven relationship with McCoy (who, like Chekov and Uhura, is aboard during these events for the first time). Kirk's new characterization also voids all the talk about his shy years and that certain blond research assistant. Scotty gets to play the comedy and the Spock/Uhura relationship is given a moment. I found it to be an intelligent extrapolation of what the story would be with the changes made by the film. The changes are a bit subtle, perhaps too subtle to make this first part all that different, but without Dehner, issue 2 should diverge a lot more from it. So as a fan of classic Trek AND What If stories, I did enjoy it. The art by Stephen Molnar is good, with strong likenesses and cinematic panels, but the new Enterprise interiors prove difficult to translate into comic art. The backgrounds are rather flat and lifeless as a result.