Star Trek 1287: The Secret

1287. The Secret

PUBLICATION: Star Trek: The Next Generation - The Killing Shadows #4, Wildstorm Comics, February 2001

CREATORS: Scott Ciencin (writer), Andrew Currie (artist)

STARDATE: Unknown (follows the last issue)

PLOT: Arrested by the colony authorities for having killed a young girl (a Bodai Shin agent), Sela and the away team are brought to a prison where they expect the space ninja to attack. When they do, Sela activates her own agents, aliens that hulk out and add to their muscle. In orbit, the Enterprise-E is under attack by Bodai Shin ships and throws escape pods at them as decoys. Picard holds the Bodai Shin at ransom by producing a chip on which the young girl has been saved, revealing he knew Sela would try to kill her so had her beamed away at the same moment. They destroy the chip, making her "at one with the void", and the herald of the void, an energy being, appears and tells them all to withdraw. The Bodai Shin all disappear, and Sela is rewarded for her help with Tasha Yar's personal effects. She destroys them, no longer wishing to be haunted by her mother. Finally, Picard reveals the chip was all a bluff, and has the young girl beamed out of the ship's transporter buffer and into a new life.

CONTINUITY: See previous issues (Sela).

DIVERGENCES: See previous issues (Sela).

PANEL OF THE DAY - Where we differ.
REVIEW: WHAT?!? And it had all started out so well too. What a mess. We never find out why Sela is an outcast working for the Federation (despite an interesting final scene). The techno-virus comes and goes without much resolution. Picard somehow knows Sela will kill the Bodai Shin girl (and thus that she'll be a pliant and relatively innocent pawn) and has her beamed away at the right moment, even though the ship is cut off by a virus and under attack. If he's using the scientist's equipment, it's not made very clear, nor does he have much time to implement his plan between the girl's apparent death and his arrest. If the girl is one of the ninja's daughter, why isn't she green-skinned like they are (a disguise?). Who are those shape-changing alien thugs Sela is using, and how did she know they'd be needed in the prison? Not that they get to do much, since a deus ex machina of the most bizarre kind comes in to stop the action. The sudden withdrawal of the Bodai Shin also undercuts Riker's one interesting strategy up in orbit. The theme of beliefs is incredibly awkward throughout, but it is there, so I have a feeling something got lost in translation from script to finished product.

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