Whether you love it or hate it, Star Trek has become an action-first property. No longer is it about exploration or thought-provoking stories since J.J. Abrams took over. That said, who doesn’t like at least a bit of action in their Star Trek? Maybe not ONLY action, but IDW is delivering some riveting Klingon action. Can it keep it up though? And is it good?
Star Trek: Manifest Destiny #2 (IDW Publishing)
The official IDW summary reads:
The blockbuster mini-series continues as Captain Kirk and the Enterprise crew face off with the Klingons in deep space… a conflict that could ignite all-out galactic war! Don’t miss this special event celebrating the 50th anniversary of the STAR TREK franchise!
Why does this book matter?
Mike Johnson and Ryan Parrott have the characters’ voices locked down. Angel Hernandez draws some mean action packed pages, making anything he works on feel like an event book. Need you more reason!?
Fine, you have my attention. What’s good about it?
This is about as action-packed as a Star Trek story is going to get. There are blaster rifles, Klingons kidnapping the Starfleet crew, and Kirk and Spock going toe to toe with Klingons in hand to hand combat. Johnson and Parrott let the action fly fast and hard with an action scene right on the surface of the Enterprise and it’s exciting stuff. To see the character likenesses from the new films going through all this is fun and it really does feel like a lost chapter from the movies.
Bones continues to have a heroic journey of his own on the planet side of things. He has a bit of a standoff with the Klingons and continues to get the most dialogue between Sulu and Uhura. Surprisingly though, it’s the villains who get developed the most in this issue. There are two–the main leader and the second in command–and a conflict is brewing between them. I’ll leave it at that, but it’s interesting to see these aren’t just rabid killing Klingons but characters who have personalities. That strengthens the overall narrative.
The art continues to look great too. Hernandez can draw the likenesses of the characters very well, but also compose some awesome splash pages. There are times where his lines seem a little too basic, but the colors by Doug Garbark and Adam Guzowski flesh them out well. They do well to make the blasters spark with life and look dangerous. The art might have a rough feel at times, but it always feels big which is important in a miniseries like this.
It can’t be perfect can it?
I’m not loving that not the entire cast and crew are getting attention, but it is what it is since this is a big action comic. Part of the reason Star Trek is so good is because of the eclectic cast which feels underused here. I’m also not a big fan of Spock’s dialogue so far. At one point he uses the logic card and it seems a bit forced. Really though, Spock is underused in general. Bones and Kirk seem to get the most dialogue and Kirk’s is mostly orders as they get attacked. The voice is strong–it sounds like him, but it’s lacking any character moments worth noting.
Is It Good?
I want to see more of the Star Trek cast saying and doing things of importance, but you can’t deny the character development of the villains is a good element explored in this issue. This is big action with an event feel; perfect for summer reading.