Star Trek #1441: Assimilation2 Part 4

1441. Assimilation2 Part 4

PUBLICATION: Star Trek: The Next Generation/Doctor Who: Assimilation2 #4, IDW Comics, August 2012

CREATORS:
Scott and David Tipton, with Tony Lee (writers), J.K. Woodward (artist)

STARDATE: Unknown (follows previous issue).

PLOT: When the Enterprise comes out of hiding, they find the Cybermen have betrayed and attacked the Borg.

CONTINUITY: See previous issues (Guinan, Borg, Cybermen, Delta IV). The Borg call Picard Locutus (The Best of Both Worlds, etc.).

DIVERGENCES: None.

PANEL OF THE DAY - Don't we all?
REVIEW: Registering profound disappointment. It's just one briefing after another, isn't it? They talk about the situation with Guinan in the conference room. Then they talk about what might have happened between the Cybermen and Borg down on a planet. And then again in Sickbay. A lot of the information is repeated and there's no real action. Worse, the idea that the Cybermen can defeat the Borg so soundly seems ridiculous. Poetically, the Borg are derivative of the Cybermen and totally deserve it. But even though Who trumps Trek in my book, even I can't believe the Cybermen are the more powerful alien cyborg. It all comes down to the type of shows Who and Trek are. In Trek, we have peak humanity, highly evolved socially and technologically, working as a large crew on a powerful ship. Their opponents have to be super-powerful. Doctor Who is about amateurs saving the universe in a broken down time machine using jammy dodgers and fast talk. That's why Whovian enemies have an "Aw bless!" quality and can be defeated by throwing a coat over them or scraping a badge for mathematical excellence into their chest units. And the Cybermen aren't even the Doctor's GREATEST enemy! So the revelation that they've backstabbed the Borg only serves to undo the fearsome alliance presented in the first three issues, and introduce that old nugget about the Borg asking a Starfleet captain for help. At no point does this issue achieve the whimsical humor that's become Doctor Who's trademark, nor the pithy human moments both shows are known for. And the painted art continues to throw out poor and inconsistent likenesses. This whole series will likely turn out to be a wasted opportunity.

8 comments:

snell said...

I will say that the idea of the Cybermen betraying the Borg works, because that's their motif--the Cybermen always turn on their erstwhile allies.

But of course, you're right, the Borg should come off better than the Brotherhood of Logicians. At the very least they should have been prepared for the betrayal, and even flipped it on their silver nemesis.

And just as importantly, would it have killed them to actually show any of this happening? Dramatically, the complete resetting of the danger coming 100% offscreen is terrible storytelling.

No wonder Tony Lee bailed on this mess...

Siskoid said...

The lesson is that the Enterprise should hide in nebulae more often and just let its enemies take care of each other.

LiamKav said...

They spent weeks filming that nebula for The Wrath Of Kahn and they are bloody well going to use it every chance they get!

karl said...

So was looking forward to this series...and so disapointed!!!!
There is far far far too much talking going on, too much explanatary self-exposition...the art goes round in circles, its obvious the artist/painter is using the same photos over and over as we see the same faces in different settings.
I love the idea of the Borg and the Cybermen teaming up or even joining together...a long-time fanboys dream of both fans of these shows.
So fucking boring!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Siskoid said...

Sadly, the book is all premise. it was good when it was announced, and stopped being good when it was released.

snell said...

I think part of the problem may be that, while the idea of a Dr. Who/TNG team-up is nerd-thrilling, the concepts don't actually go all that well together (although abler hands might have been able to make it work better--Chris Roberson, where are you?).

Unlike Trek/Legion, in which the teams and concepts had some interesting similarities to pair off/play with, TNG just doesn't have a lot of room for the Doctor. There's no real use for the Doctor's companions, and they have nothing to do; his technobabble is already covered by multiple other characters, who shouldn't be so in awe of his genius; and his brand of anarchy is really not one that Picard and the crew would accept so easily (especially after other experiences with con men/time travelers).

LiamKav said...

In the Dr Who universe, military groups are usually incompetent. Even the "good ones" such as UNIT or the ISA from "Dinosaurs on a Spaceship" still end up following the company line, even if it involves killing innocents.

While Starfleet occasionally leans that way, it's usually under the hands of other officers. Kirk would never shoot a missle as a ship full of dinosaurs to save Earth... he'd find another way. Same with Picard. The heroes in Trek may by and large be military characters, but they all have the Doctors independent spirit and gift for improvisation somewhere in there.

On Doctor Who, if UNIT were doing the Kobyoshi Maru, the Doctor (and maybe his companions) would be the only ones who could solve it. On Star Trek, Kirk does it himself.

And as Snell says, Picard and co wouldn't accept his anarchy, because whereas in Doctor Who a military approach is treated as being overly rigid and invariably wrong, on Star Trek the conference room sessions are treated as the right thing to do, and usually result in a character having a good idea who's then supported by everyone else. It takes away the Doctor's specialness to be put in that situation.

Siskoid said...

Truth be told, the Doctor would have been more at home on DS9 where he might have interacted with non-Starfleet personnel.

Plus, the Wormhole's been used to explain away dimensional travel and paradoxes.

 

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