Star Trek Ongoing #52 – Live Evil
Publisher: IDW Publishing
Writer: Mike Johnson
Artist: Tony Shasteen
Colourist: Davide Mastrolonardo
Letterer: Chris Mowray
Editor: Sarah Gaydos
Story Consultant: Roberto Orci
Covers by: Tony Shasteen and Dan Parent
Release Date: 18/11/2015
Warning: this review contains spoilers
“PREVIOUSLY IN STAR TREK…
Welcome to the Mirror Universe (MU). Captain Spock of the Terran Empire has captured the U.S.S. Enterprise and taken Commander Spock captive. Meanwhile, Captain Kirk of the Federation has found an uneasy ally in the peaceful Augment Singh, a man Kirk knows better as the violent Khan. Together Kirk and Singh travel to Qo’noS, where they encounter Kirk’s own surprising doppelgänger…”
With the much anticipated Kirk to Kirk confrontation (I shall now call the MU Kirk, Tramp!Kirk) finally revealed to us, Uhura works out that it is in fact the ion storm that has brought them into this universe. After help from Singh and the Botany Bay, Tramp!Kirk and the Enterprise crew work together to try and take their Enterprise back from MU Spock.
As the story hits the final chapter the pace of the story carries on at a decent speed. With a small exception of two pages with Spock and MU Spock which slowed the pace a bit, the story followed through with the same excitement as the previous issue.
Meeting Tramp!Kirk was everything we hoped it’d be thanks to some great character art from Shasteen, whose character likenesses enhance the story no end.
With the ‘big reveal’ out of the way and in Spock’s absence, it was great to see Uhura coming up with the answers. A lot of the present Trek comic story arcs see Spock with the ultimate answer or solution to the problem so it was great to see Uhura having a different use in the story.
We were also reminded in the last issue that Vulcan still exists in this universe and this issue dedicated two whole pages to Spocks as Spock ‘meets’ his traitorous mother. Were two whole pages for this information more than enough though? I’d say yes and this scene dragged out a little more than it need to.
I know last issue I commented on Punk!Chekov and continuing into this issue it really was the Mirror characters that made the story arc for me. MU Spock with his classic beard as well as Tramp!Kirk and Edgy Hair Uhura. These characters make the story what it is because they are that bit unpredictable from the characters we know and love so well. Did you see the outcome with MU Spock? Although explained earlier in the issue, I still didn’t see it coming which was utterly marvellous.
There’s only so much praise you can heap on Shasteen and Mastrolonardo before it all starts to sound repetitive but once again they make a superb team. Great character likenesses, ship design and imagination with the MU crew makes you feel like this is true Star Trek canon. This art teams spoils the reader – more of this comic dream team please IDW!
Once again we have two covers for this issue. One by Shasteen which is a cover of Cumber-khan goodness (but that hair though!) and the other by Dan Parent, an artist known for his work on Archie comics. This Star Trek cover celebrates 75 years of Archie comics with an Archie cover month across all IDW series with a fun and cartoony crossover. Lots of bright colours here with Archie stylized crew with the Enterprise.
You’ve got to love a great Mirror Universe story and thing is definitely one of those! Set in the JJ verse this is just what we needed – and wanted to see. With the reappearance of a ‘good’ Cumber-khan to the alternate crew this arc is a great adventure on the five year mission that you should be reading.