Star Trek / Green Lantern: The Spectrum War #3 (Part three of six)
Published by: IDW Publishing
Writer: Mike Johnson
Artist: Angel Hernandez
Colourist: Alejandro Sanchez
Letterer: Neil Uyetake
Covers by: Tony Shasteen, Rachael Stott (Colours by Davide Mastrolonardo) and Gary Brown (Colours by Doug Garbark).
Edited by: Sarah Gaydos for IDW and Jim Chadwick for DC Comics.
Release Date: 09/09/2015
Warning: this review contains spoilers!
PREVIOUSLY IN STAR TREK… On a remote dead world, the crew of the Enterprise discovers the skeleton of a visitor from another universe – Ganthet, last of the Guardians of Oa – and six inert Power Rings. Montgomery Scott activates the rings inside a tachyon field, causing the rings to escape and choose new bearers… just as the Enterprise is confronted by Klingon General Chang aboard a Bird-of-Prey. At this critical moment, Green Lantern Hal Jordan arrives to find out why Ganthet’s skeleton is onboard a ship he’s never seen before, in a universe he doesn’t recognize…
The story continues as we discover how the two universes collided and brought together the crew of the Enterprise and Hal Jordan, while across the alpha and beta quadrants alliances are forged as the ring bearers begin to realise the power they now command and in the background an unstoppable enemy lurks ready to destroy another universe…
As the series reaches the half way point; the story is gathering pace as Mike Johnson introduces more characters into the fray. While most writers would be happy with the cast of characters already introduced Johnson isn’t and has introduced even more villains to the story and we get our first glimpse of the main protagonist; Nekron. Having seen Johnson handle multiple plot threads and characters in The Q Gambit I am not concerned by the increase in characters although it will certainly be a challenge wrapping up this storyline.
There is a lot of background story within this issue including how the two universes came together and the threat that Nekron poses. For these types of crossovers to work, the way in which the characters are brought together is important, it has to feel right and in this case I think Johnson has come up with an interesting concept which works. Flashbacks in the story mean we also see how the ring bearers on Romulus, Gornar and Qo’nos are coping with their new powers and how their plans for conquest and power can only make things worse for Kirk, Hal Jordan and the rest of the galaxy.
The interactions between Kirk and Hal Jordan were well written. It was fun watching the two compete with each other and it should be interesting seeing how the two work together in the remaining story arc. A real surprise was seeing the Starship Constellation under the command of Commodore Decker (Decker and the Constellation were first seen in the Original Series episode The Doomsday Machine) towards the end of the issue. This was a nice nod to the character and I am hoping Johnson uses the character again in the Ongoing Series.
This issue focused heavily on the Green Lanterns, their enemies, their powers and the sub plots across various worlds in the Alpha and Beta Quadrants. For those who like Green Lantern, this should be an enjoyable issue but for those who love Star Trek this is a very light issue for the crew of the Enterprise. While we see Spock in the issue, he is without lines and most of the senior staff are not featured in the issue. It must be a difficult job balancing all the characters and sub plots but being a Star Trek fan I am hoping that we see more of the Enterprise crew in the next issue rather than just seeing them in the background as a crossover should not be dominated by one of the two key titles. Balance is key.
The panels that stood out included the Lanterns battles with the undead, those on Romulus, Chekov testing his new found powers and those with the Starship Constellation. All of these panels were drawn well and had some amazing details. There is a lot of fighting in this issue and Hernandez has drawn these scenes in an exciting and dramatic way.
The likenesses were extremely good in this issue. Having read a few Green Lantern stories the likenesses of Hal Jordan, Guy Gardner, Sinestro and members of the Sinestro Corps were consistent with those seen in the Lantern comics from D.C while the likenesses of the Enterprise crew continue to impress although Chekov was inconsistent throughout the issue.
Colourist Alejandro Sanchez has again done a great job with the use of colours within the story. The way in which the reds, yellows, oranges were used when the story visited Romulus, Gornar and Qo’nos helped remind the reader which power ring was being worn by which character and if like me you don’t know a lot about the Lanterns I was able to look up which ring did what.
Hernandez and Sanchez make a great team, hopefully they will be invited back to draw more Star Trek in the future for the Ongoing Series.
This issue has three covers. The standard cover is by Tony Shasteen with variants by Rachael Stott (Cover B) and Garry Brown (Subscription Cover). The standard cover is of Kirk, Spock and Larfleeze in mortal combat, Cover B has Hal Jordan and pig face flying in space with the Enterprise in the background and the subscription cover has Guy Gardner, Spock and McCoy flying in space using their power rings.
These covers were a distinct improvement upon those in the second issue. Out of the three covers the one drawn by Rachael Stott was a personal
favourite. I have always enjoyed how Stott draws the Enterprise and while we only see her in the background it was a nice cover. The Standard cover had some good likenesses of Kirk and Spock but it’s not the best cover I have seen drawn by Tony Shasteen.
The subscription cover was disappointing since we see Spock on the cover with a power ring and as we know from the story; Spock is not chosen to wear one. I know these covers are planned in advance but these discrepancies are quite frustrating. The style of the third cover was not to my liking, it reminded me of some of the early Star Trek: The Next Generation comic covers from the 80’s and it was coloured far too darkly for me to enjoy.
This was an enjoyable issue with some impressive art and use of colour. With only three issues remaining I can’t wait to see what Johnson has in store for us next.