Review: Star Trek Boldly Go #3

(IDW Publishing – 2016)
Writer: Mike Johnson
Artist: Tony Shasteen
Colors: David Mastrolonardo
Letters: Andworld Design
Regular Cover: George Caltsoundas

Captain Kirk and the crew of the USS Endeavor pursue a deadly alien threat in Star Trek Boldly Go #3, a cybernetic race unlike anything they’ve encountered beforeÖ but a foe that’s also well known to Star Trek fans – the Borg! Following on from the events of the blockbusting Star Trek Beyond movie, Kirk is now interim Captain of the Endeavor, with some of the Enterprise’s crew either in new roles, reassigned, or deciding their future on other worlds.

The new ongoing Star Trek series from IDW Publishing, written by Mike Johnson, with art by Tony Shasteen, and colors by David Mastrolonardo continues to boldly go, seeking out new life forms and new civilizations, but this time Kirk and the former crew of the Enterprise meet a new challenge as the alternative timeline from the new movies assimilates Star Trek The Next Generation’s ultimate foe, the Borg.
This issue finds Captain Kirk and the crew of the USS Endeavor setting out to hunt down the spherical Borg vessel that destroyed the USS Concord and recently attacked a Federation outpost before setting course for Romulas. With the crew of the USS Concord gradually being converted into Borg on board the Borg sphere, tensions begin to mount, especially with the knowledge that Sulu’s husband and daughter are amongst the Borg’s prisoners, and now Kirk must do everything in his power to prevent the Borg reaching Romulas and triggering an interstellar incident between the Federation and the Romulan Empire.

Resistance is indeed looking futile as Romulan ships engage the Borg on the edge of the Neutral Zone, as writer Mike Johnson skillfully builds the suspense and menace of the Borg’s incursion into Romulan space. Meanwhile, back on the Endeavor Kirk and McCoy are reunited with Spock and Uhura who have travelled from New Vulcan to offer their assistance. This great scene brings most of the main crew together again and they rally round Sulu as they resolve to find a way to stop the Borg and save his family.
From here the issue races along at a break neck pace. Uhrua, Spock and Kirk’s Romulan first officer on the Endeavor, Valas, make a formidable combination, their assessment of this new enemy is concisely handled, and soon the startling reasons for the Borgís fixation on the Romulan’s gradually becomes clear. There’s also some interesting chemistry here between Spock and Valas as well, and it’s something that certainly adds an extra edge to the dynamic of the Endeavour’s bridge crew as they prepare to go into battle.

screen-shot-2016-12-13-at-5-35-29-pmTony Shasteen’s artwork in this issue is as impressive as ever. Most striking is the likenesses of the characters with their big screen counterparts. Its quite uncanny how Shasteen captures the mannerisms and nuances of the cast of the rebooted Star Trek movie franchise, especially during the reunion between Kirk, Spock, McCoy, Uhura, and Sulu, and there are fun moments of humor as well as Spock and Valas compare notes in front of Kirk. The action is fast and furious. The opening battle is spectacular, as is the Borg’s attack on Quirina VI, in which Shasteen depicts the Borg at their most ruthless and efficient best. David Mastrolonardo’s colors enhance every scene, with delicate tones enshrouding the Endeavor at warp speed and shimmering hues from the consoles and screen schematics on the bridge, all standing in stark contrast with the cool metallic gleam of the Romulan buildings and the ominous shadowy greys and green accents that accompany the Borg’s presence. I love the cover by George Caltsoundas too as it really captures the frightening biomechanical nature and power of Star Trek The Next Generation’s arch cyborg villains.

The issue builds to a tense face-off as Kirk and his team confronts the Borg on Quirina VI, but the Borg-Captain Terrell proves to be a deadly efficient tactician – just like Picard was when he was Locutus – and it’s not long before the Borg’s adaptive nature kicks into high gear – with especially frightening consequences!

Star Trek Boldly Go #3 continues the stellar work on this new IDW series by Mike Johnson, Tony Shasteen, and David Mastrolonardo. With its fast-paced storyline, impressive art, and brilliant characterization this issues chilling cliff-hanger raises the stakes and sets everything up for the exciting conclusion to this first storyline!

PaulBowler-ProfilePic1Paul Bowler is a self-Confessed Sci-Fi Geek, Doctor Who fan, and Zombie Disposal Expert. He likes movies, comic books, and all things PS3. He likes to write about his interests, would love to write a novel one day, and also enjoys chatting to the many people he has gotten to know on Twitter. When he’s not busy being an Impossible Astronaut, he likes to take a break from his adventures in time and space to enjoy some of his favourite tv shows and movies, preferably with a nice cuppa tea & a sandwich! You can follow him on Twitter @paul_bowler, or find him at his website, Sci-Fi Jubilee.

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