‘In the otherdimensional Mirror Universe, there is no United Federation of Planets, only a cruel Terran Empire, where advancement comes through assassination, brutality is commonplace and kindness is weakness. The Terran Empire is on it’s last legs in its war with the Klingon-Cardassian Alliance, but Captain Jean-Luc Picard has learned the final chance of victory: a revolutionary new Galaxy-class starship that could turn the tide of the war. The ship is called Enterprise. And Jean-Luc intends to take it.’
The second issue of the new Star Trek: The Next Generation mirror universe series, Star Trek The Next Generation: Mirror Broken, continues the tale of the desperate Terran Empire, and the crew of the ISS Stargazer as it’s captain, Jean-Luc Picard, intends to steal the most advanced ship in the empire, The Enterprise.
After the world building of the first issue, issue #2 expands upon Picard’s plan to become the captain of the Enterprise, introducing new conspiritors to his plot in the form of Geordi La Forge’s lover Leah Brahms, and William Riker.
Brahms is a character that appeared briefly in Star Trek: The Next Generation in a handful of episodes, where a relationship with Geordi was a possibility, but never actually came to pass. She was one of the people responsible for designing the warp core on the Enterprise, and as such her appearance here makes sense from a storytelling point of view, and is a great little easter egg for fans.
The Riker here is, like most others in the mirror universe, a much nastier version of himself, complete with a scar around his blinded left eye, and braided evil twin beard. Unlike most of the others involved in the plot to take the Enterprise, Riker needs some convincing, by getting in a vicious bar brawl with Picard (a bar brawl set in a bar run by Morn from Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, another great little treat for eagle eyed fans).
The fight between Picard and Riker shows how vicious this universe’s version of Picard is, how much more eager to fight he is, and the fact that he will fight dirty too. Some of this is established earlier in the issue, when Picard is almost killed whilst working out in his gym aboard the Stargazer, before he kills his would-be assassin.
Thanks to this assassination attempt we get to see Picard vetting his crew for who can be taken with him to the Enterprise, a process that involves Inquisitor Troi reading the minds of the crew whilst interviewing them all.
This issue doesn’t move the plot forward in any great way, but it does help to further develop the mirror universe, showing how untrustworthy and vicious the people in the Terran Empire are, how quickly they will betray or kill the people around them in order to advance themselves.
A solid issue that focuses more on characters and building relationships over moving the plot forward in any significant ways. Whilst this may annoy some readers, giving the book time to establish these different versions of iconic characters is something that will surely pay off down the line.