Today, IDW’s Khan mini-series comes to a close. It has been an interesting ride thus far as the creators attempted to do a new spin on this classic character given that the current Star Trek movies have rebooted the entire universe and last year’s Star Trek: Into Darkness thus gave us a new Khan for this reboot. The first two issues of the series were quite decent, largely because it was all setup to lead into the meat of the story. The third and fourth issues however have proven to be not as good and the story has pretty much just dragged along.
And now we have the fifth and final issue, wrapping everything up. My complaints from the previous two reviews still exist. The art is off, the characterisation is… also off. I don’t know. I just couldn’t get into this at all. But, it was kind of nice that everything was wrapped up for the most part. But still, I get the feeling that there just hasn’t been enough room to explore the entire story in just five issues. It is simply too intricate!
So welcome to the first Comics Picks of The Week for 2014 where I list the comics that were actually to be the first ones released in the new year. Everything that has been revealed so far about 2014 promises an amazing year, I have to say. Well, for the most part at least. There are some things that I don’t quite understand, or like, but eh, it is still going to be a great year I feel.
This past week, Marvel finally launched its All-New Marvel NOW! line with Black Widow, All-New X-Factor and Revolutionary War: Alpha and they aren’t going to stop. New releases will continue throughout March at the least and we will even be getting some of these new titles double-shipped, such as Black Widow #2 which comes out next week. In other news, I had some fun reading DC titles this week, although Detective Comics #27 proved to be quite disappointing for most of the first half. And my disappointment is on several levels, not just with one particular aspect of it. But, more on that in the reviews.
My first graphic novel of the year happened to be the (unfinished) mini-series that Steve Gerber and Matthew Sturges wrote a few years ago, with the former writing the tale of a new Doctor Fate while the latter wrote about the supervillain Eclipse. Only eight issues of this double-sized series were released, but I have to say that I definitely enjoyed it and based on that, my graphic novel reading is off to a good start.
The wind-up has now begun. In October IDW started this new tie-in series to this year’s Star Trek: Into Darkness and its been an interesting ride of sorts. The first two issues were quite decent and I kind of did enjoy them to a fair degree, but the third issue wasn’t so good. It was sort of expected I suppose, since this is an origin series, and there is a lot of ground for writer Mike Johnson to cover here. That was indeed one of the problems with issue #3 since it pretty much moved through the entire story at a very fast clip.
The new issue does thing slightly different. It tells a more focused story, for starters, but the art is still a bit off, largely in terms of how the characters are drawn, their faces particularly. This is the penultimate issue of this mini-series, since issue #5 next month is the end and we will, hopefully, get to the beginning of the movie itself and see how things were brought to that state with Khan, or rather, John Harrison as he was known in the first half of the movie.
Another month, another Star Trek: Khan comic from IDW Publishing hits the shelves. Writer Mike Johnson has used the first two issues fairly well in most respects, adding to the entirely new continuity of films that Director J. J. Abrams established with his two blockbuster movies and showing off how Khan as he was in Star Trek: Into Darkness came to be. Its not something that I’ve particularly liked, since I’m a fan of the older established continuity, but I’ve been fairly interested in it all the same.
The third issue here goes into much more depth about Khan’s reign during the Eugenics Wars and gives a lot of information on the state of the world at the time. So far, we had only seen the private moments for the most part and with the new issue Johnson expands the scope of the story and the events so that he is properly contextualising Khan as a product of his times, more than anything. Nature AND nurture so to speak. So, as a character study, this issue definitely holds some weight. But its not all song and roses.
Being a fan of the character of Khan Noonien Singh from his original appearances in Star Trek: The Original Series and Star Trek 2: The Wrath of Khan, reading the first issue of Mike Johnson’s new series from IDW last month proved to be an interesting experience. It changed a few things, but kept others the same. The core of the character did not, thankfully, need any redefinition, but his backstory was indeed rebooted to fit what the recent Star Trek: Into Darkness did with him, and where the character is meant to go.
I read the second issue last night and I have to say that I am somewhat disappointed in that it is just not as strong a comic. We continue to get more on the character and the supporting cast, but there is something that is distinctly missing from this issue. Which is a shame since the series is quite promising otherwise.
Khan Noonien Singh is one of the most memorable characters to come out of the Star Trek: The Original Series, so much so that noted science fiction author Greg Cox penned three novels featuring him in the previous decade and the character has had two films to himself since his first appearance in the TOS episode Space Seed. There’s something rather visceral about the character that draws you in, something greater than the character itself. I can’t really say what, but all I can say is that of all the Star Trek villains over the decades, he is definitely one of my favourites.
Recently, IDW Publishing announced plans to publish a new ongoing series for their Star Trek franchise and that this would focus on Khan as he was presented in the recent Star Trek: Into Darkness movie, the sequel to the 2009 blockbuster Star Trek. These movies are a reboot of the old The Original Series sub-franchise and they redefine a lot of the lore that has been canon over the years. Khan himself is no stranger to a change in lore since the Greg Cox trilogy is considered to be out of official Star Trek canon as well. And the new series introduces a brand-new canon, if this first issue is anything to by.