Star Trek ongoing #50 – Live EvilST50 - 00001-page-001
Publisher: IDW Publishing
Writer: Mike Johnson
Artist: Tony Shasteen
Colourist: Davide Mastrolonardo
Letterer: Neil Uyetake
Covers by: Tony Shasteen and Rachael Stott
Editor: Sarah Gaydos

Release Date: 21/10/2015

Warning:  this review contains spoilers!

After leaving Banks-216 the USS Enterprise is caught in an ion storm. After the crew ride it out blind they find that they’ve arrived in the Ceti Alpha system. After sensors pick up life on Ceti Alpha V the ship receives hails from the surface surrendering to the Enterprise. Confused, Kirk sends an away team down to the planet.

Once the crew have arrived they are greeted by none other than Khan, who reveals himself as a man of peace and proceeds to welcome the crew to the augment colony. Naturally the crew react with phasers!

Back on board the USS Enterprise the crew witness the arrival of the ISS Enterprise. After hailing the USS Enterprise a Spock-off occurs between Captain Spock and Lt. Commander Spock. Mirror Uhura is sent on a mission to take the USS Enterprise while Captain Spock destroys the augment colony on Ceti Alpha V.

Meanwhile on Arronia Two, mirror Kirk plans to re-take his ship…

The Story
This issue Star Trek ongoing hits a big milestone as it turns the big 5-0. That meant there was a lot of expectations for Mike Johnson to deliver something special and I’m happy to report that is exactly what I read!

Jumping straight in with the dangers of an ion storm and the ride just doesn’t stop. Fast paced and packed with action and intrigue, this story pulls you straight in, giving you something to ponder from the start. This first of a three-part story sets everything up nicely and although we’ve not long seen an alternative universe in The Q Gambit we haven’t seen anything from the new Trek!

My only quibbles – Mudd. Can we just not. Maybe I’m a minority but do we need more Mudd in our lives? Does anyone? Also, Cumber-Khan. He would be the obvious villain to use but maybe one would hope an unknown or at least, lesser known character could have been used, after all, we’ve seen Khan relatively recently in Into Darkness as well as his own short run comic story. But I’m trusting Johnson to use him well.

The Art
Once again we get some stellar art from Tony Shasteen. I’m running out of words to describe his art as it’s some of the best art a Star Trek comic has ever seen. More please. Always. Mastrolonardo’s contribution is also well received; he and Shasteen work really well together. Great panels of the Enterprise, beards ahoy as well as a very punk Chekov!

The Covers
This issue sees four covers which is really to be expected for a milestone issue. Tony Shasteen provides a great standard wrap around cover, Rachael Stott provides a black and white faux sketch artist edition cover and we also have the standard photo subscription cover as well as a blank sketch cover. The thing that struck me most with the covers was the colouring Shasteen used on the standard cover. When producing covers, Shasteen is his own colourist and for the first time I wondered what he was trying to achieve here. The cover seemed to be a mix of styles ranging from his traditional line art on the Enterprise to an almost watercolour effect on the characters and background. I don’t know if this really works. Convince me Shasteen, because I think the colouring for this cover is marmite.

This is a great first issue for a three-part story. The pacing is great and this has already led to an action packed first-part. The art is fantastic and I have high hopes for part two and three of this story. Pick it up because you will need this in your life.