This action might not be possible to undo. Are you sure you want to continue?
The Newspaper Comics
Complete Dailies and Sundays 1981–1983
STAR TREK: THE NEWSPAPER COMICS VOLUME T WO: 1981–1983
STORIES AND ART BY
Sharman DiVono, Ron Harris, Larry Niven, Padraic Shigetani, Martin Pasko, Gerry Conway, Bob Myers, Ernie Colón, Alfredo Alcala, and Dick Kulpa
THE LIBRARY OF AMERICAN COMICS
EDITED AND DESIGNED BY COLOR RESTORATION BY
Lorraine Turner, ART DIRECTOR
LEXICON AND STRIP RESEARCH
Bruce Canwell • MARKETING DIRECTOR Beau Smith Rich Handley • INTRODUCTION Jeff Vaughn DAILY STRIP RESTORATION Joseph Ketels
Special thanks to Ron Harris, Rosemary Ford, Martin Pasko, Padraic Shigetani, Mark Martinez, Allen Lane, and Rick Norwood. Additional thanks to Dick Kulpa, David Seidman, Justin Eisinger, Alonzo Simon, and Chris Ryall. ISBN: 978-1-61377-776-3 • First Printing, September 2013
Published by: IDW Publishing, a Division of Idea and Design Works, LLC 5080 Santa Fe Street, San Diego, CA 92109 www.idwpublishing.com
Ted Adams, Chief Executive Officer/Publisher. Greg Goldstein, Chief Operating Officer/President. Robbie Robbins, EVP/Sr. Graphic Artist. Chris Ryall, Chief Creative Officer/Editor-in-Chief. Matthew Ruzicka, CPA, Chief Financial Officer. Alan Payne, VP of Sales. Dirk Wood, VP of Marketing. Lorelei Bunjes, VP of Digital Services.
Distributed by Diamond Book Distributors, 410-560-7100
STAR TREK ® & © 2013 CBS Studios Inc. © 2013 Paramount Pictures Corporation. STAR TREK and related marks are trademarks of CBS Studios Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Library of American Comics is a trademark of The Library of American Comics LLC. All rights reserved. Introduction © 2013 Jeff Vaughn. Lexicon © 2013 Rich Handley. With the exception of artwork used for review purposes, none of the comic strips in this publication may be reprinted without the permission of CBS Studios Inc. No part of this book may be reproduced or transmitted in any form, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information and retrieval system, without permission in writing from CBS Studios Inc. Printed in Korea.
To Borg or not to Borg…
by J. C. VAUGHN
As the first volume of this series showed, there’s probably no such thing as “forgotten Star Trek,” but there is certainly a category for “semi-forgotten Star Trek.” The Sunday and daily comic strips collected in this edition and its predecessor definitely fall into that category, and that’s a shame…not only because these are additional chapters in the history of one of the most enduring media franchises, but because there were some very entertaining stories told over the strip’s less-than-five-year mission. What the series demonstrates, first and most importantly, is that Star Trek can and does work as a comic strip. It’s not the action-adventure of Russ Manning on Tarzan or Archie Goodwin and Al Williamson on Secret Agent Corrigan or the science fiction of Alex Raymond on Flash Gordon or Goodwin and Williamson on Star Wars, but these stories are some very respectable entries in those overlapping genres (as well as in the world of licensed projects). In fact, some of them are very good. On the downside, they are not of uniform quality, but in the end and as a whole they constitute “must read” material for any serious Trekker or Trekkie, particularly when you get to the “Omnimind” story by writer Sharman DiVono and artist Ron Harris. The eleventh arc in the strip’s run, which appeared from October 26, 1981 to February 28, 1982, has been referred to as “the proto-Borg” story with good reason. Persuing the Klingons from the previous story arc, Kirk and the Enterprise crew are lured by an ancient probe to the planet Iskonia, on which robotic life has emerged the victor over organic life. Upon their arrival they discover that the Klingons have been taken over by the machines and made to do their bidding. In the daily strip from December 3, 1981 (see page 23), Kirk asks one of the machine creatures, “Are you the Omnimind?” and it replies, “I am a servant. One part of the whole.” While that hints broadly at the Borg concept, it doesn’t mean one should go running to one’s fellow fans shouting, “Look! Look!” No, that’s reserved for the strip seventeen days later—the December 20, 1981 Sunday page, particularly the last two panels (see page 29). The appendages and prosthetics on the Klingons are as Borg-esque as it gets, and this predates the May 5, 1989 first appearance of the Borg (“Q Who?” Star Trek: The Next Generation, Season 2, Episode 16) by more than seven years.
Just a few days later, in the December 25 and 26 dailies (see page 31), Kirk is seen exhorting Kolak, his former Klingon rival, to fight off the Omnimind’s programming, and in turn the Omnimind’s programming is increased. This is not a 100% analog to the Borg as they would be later seen, but it’s close enough to be highly similar to the scenes between Captain Picard, Data, and the Borg Queen in Star Trek: First Contact. Speaking of the Borg Queen, check out the last panel of the January 9, 1982 daily (see page 36). The character, Lyra, is one of the good guys, a humanoid resistance fighter opposed to the Omnimind, but at first glance the similarity to the queen is striking (and that doesn’t stop Kirk, naturally, from hitting on her). As the story moves toward its conclusion, Enterprise crew member Lt. Marsha Latham has been captured. She is replicated and the replica is turned into a host for the Omnimind. This echoes the Lt. Ilia drone from Star Trek: The Motion Picture and gives a foretaste of the Borg Queen a decade and a half before First Contact. The final element of this “proto-Borg” arc is the big reveal of the
Omnimind’s origin, what would pass for its true identity. It’s probably the weakest element in the story, but it’s also the one with the richest possibilities. Fans have long speculated on the origin of the Borg, and this offers a glimpse of good intentions gone horribly awry, something that’s easy to imagine having happened to the earliest versions of the Borg as they are later known. This, of course, is just one of the arcs in this volume. As writerproducer Mark Haynes (a veteran Star Trek fan, Star Trek strip art collector, and my co-writer on IDW Publishing’s 24 comics) put it, “The Star Trek newspaper strip is probably as close as we’re ever going to get to the real feeling of what the second five-year mission or the illfated Star Trek: Phase II television series would have been like. Like the original series, there are some genuine clunkers and some average stories, but there are also some real gems, stories that if given the chance will stand the test of time.”
J.C. Vaughn is Vice-President of Publishing for Gemstone Publishing. He was, he reluctantly admits, a pitching writer for the Star Trek: Voyager TV series.
OPPOSITE AND ABOVE:
Thomas Warkentin’s 1978 sample strips. (Courtesy his widow, Rosie Ford.)
STRANGE NEW WORLDS
A guide to this volume’s strips, to consult as you boldly go where no one has gone before (or at least not in many years)
Sample Strips (w/a: Thomas Warkentin) 1. The Enterprise intercepts a distress call from Morpheus II and discovers an ancient starship hulk. • Watch for: a technical explanation of what constitutes a Class-M planet. 2. The Enterprise loses two crewmembers aboard a Klingon warship. • Watch for: a visit from Elaan, the Dohlman of Elas, from the episode “Elaan of Troyius.” 3. Kirk and Spock retrieve a meson cylinder from the Suarians, with help from a shady pilot named Grey. • Watch for: an early appearance by Doctor Wu, later featured in Warkentin's sixth storyline. Audition Strip (w/a: Dick Kulpa) (printed in Volume One) Kirk is intrigued when Spock reports that a new cartoonist is interested in working with the Enterprise crew. • Watch for: the dropping of the comic strip's fourth wall. #11: Restructuring Is Futile (w: Sharman DiVono, a: Ron Harris, 10/26/81-2/28/82) Kirk finds a Klingon crew cyborged by a machine intelligence called the Omnimind. • Watch for: assimilated biological lifeforms—years before The Next Generation's introduction of the Borg. #12: The Wristwatch Plantation (w: DiVono and Larry Niven, a: Harris, 3/1/82-7/17/82) Investigating the fate of a Bebebebeque colony on Mimit, the Enterprise faces Kzinti invaders. • Watch for: a Surak-class shuttlecraft and a rare look at drug smuggling in Star Trek. #13: The Nogura Regatta (w: DiVono, a: Harris and Warkentin, 7/18/82-9/4/82) Kyoshi Nogura plans a starship race to honor his grandfather, Admiral Nogura, but pirates abduct several entrants. • Watch for: a starship captain with more than a passing resemblance to Santa Claus. #14: A Merchant’s Loyalty (w: Padraic Shigetani, a: Shigetani, 9/5/82-10/30/82) Merchant fleets from the Deltan 330 Graveyard Sector stage a deadly rivalry to lure the Enterprise into their grasp. • Watch for: the transition from The Motion Picture-era uniforms to those from The Wrath of Khan. NOTE: Martin Pasko has sometimes been erroneously cited as the writer of this storyline. However, Shigetani provided both the script and artwork for this tale, with Pasko writing only a single tale, #15. #15: Taking Shape (w: Martin Pasko, a: Shigetani, 11/1/82-2/12/83) The Enterprise crew is replaced by shape-shifters from Manark V, resulting in a showdown with Romulans. • Watch for: Lieutenant T'Yee, a blonde Vulcan conceived after Paramount nixed plans to use Savvik. #16: Send in the Clones (w: Gerry Conway, a: Bob Myers, 2/14/83-5/7/83) To end a war with the Sangdor, Kirk receives help from Courier Clones—one of whom Scotty is accused of murdering. • Watch for: an Engineering crewman in sunglasses, as well as plot similarities to “Wolf in the Fold.” #17: Goodbye to Spock (w: Conway, a: Ernie Colón, Alfredo Alcala and Serc Soc, 5/9/83-7/2/83) Stranded in the Fortenue System, Spock suffers amnesia and falls in love with a woman from a feudal society. • Watch for: plot elements from the episodes “All Our Yesterdays” and “This Side of Paradise.” #18: Terminally Yours (w: Conway, a: Kulpa, 7/4/83-8/13/83) Contracting a plague, McCoy grows paranoid and steals a shuttlecraft so he can die alone. • Watch for: a strong focus on friendship, as well as plot similarities to story arc #10. #19: The Retirement of Admiral Kirk (w: Conway, a: Kulpa, 8/15/83-10/15/83) Assigned to a desk job, Kirk resigns to pursue privateer work, but discovers he has signed aboard a slave ship. • Watch for: the return of Admiral Yaramoto from arc #16, plus an alien engineer with a Scottish brogue. #20: Getting Real (w: Conway, a: Kulpa, 10/17/83-12/3/83) Kirk and company enter a parallel universe in which they are characters on a TV show called Star Trek. • Watch for: references to the TV series, including posters, Trekkies and a “Star Trek Lives” t-shirt.
S S S S S S S S S S S
October 26-29, 1981
October 30 - November 1, 1981
November 2-3, 1981
November 4-7, 1981
November 8, 1981
November 9-12, 1981
November 13-15, 1981
This action might not be possible to undo. Are you sure you want to continue?
We've moved you to where you read on your other device.
Get the full title to continue reading from where you left off, or restart the preview.