In my review of the last issue of Star Trek: Discovery – Aftermath, I mentioned the United Federation of Planets simply loves holding peace conferences. Fans of Star Trek, however, will already know that the relative success rate of these is such that it’s a darn good job they don’t do a sideline in organising boozy social events in brewhouses. I think we all know what I’m getting at here.
True to form, Kirsten Beyer and Mike Johnson‘s tale has depicted another typical example of things going more than a little awry with a diplomatic function, with a group of rogue Klingons having taken Chancellor L’Rell captive, seeing her as unworthy of leading the Klingon Empire. Having a ‘human’ (who was actually a surgically-modified Klingon) as her consort seems to have been the tip of the iceberg as far as this rebel faction is concerned, and this certainly follows continuity from Season 2, where members of other Klingon families tried to have L’Rell killed.
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As anyone who’s watched the series to date will know, L’Rell is hardy, and having already survived attempted coups and assassinations before now, you wouldn’t be at all surprised to find she has contingencies in place for such eventualities. In an era when Game Of Thrones has dominated the TV landscape, Discovery seems to be the natural place to go for anyone needing that itch scratched – it has political intrigue between warring Great Houses, as well as some profanity (okay, only the smallest amount, but the ‘f-bomb’ was still pretty radical for Star Trek), and sex (again, not copious amounts, but still more than the suggestiveness of Kirk having a girl in every port).
Beyer and Johnson do the series proud here, managing to stay faithful to the various factional intrigues and dissent which has been running rife on Klingon homeworld Qu’onos since L’Rell ascended to power. They’ve also done a great job in bridging the gap in Season 2 finale ‘Such Sweet Sorrow, Part 2’ between the turn of events involving the USS Discovery’s disappearance and Spock formally resuming his post on the USS Enterprise under Captain Pike. Spock’s arc in Season 2 needed closure, and Beyer and Johnson‘s three-part tale has given a credible reason for Spock to be able to find the inner peace necessary for him to return to his duties, given his enforced separation from his adoptive sister, Michael Burnham, so soon after their reconciliation.
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This IDW mini-series also managed to give the audience what they want in terms of further exploits of Pike and Spock, nicely filling in the seemingly interminable wait (at least for fans in the UK) until we get to see the Short Treks featuring this particular iteration of the Enterprise crew. Beyer and Johnson have nicely whetted the appetite of their readers, and the beautiful interplay between Pike and Spock throughout this story has helped to cement what a great interplay the duo have, building upon what we saw of them in Season 2. Tony Shasteen’s art has also given this tale an epic and cinematic feel, with a great sense of scale and scope befitting what we’ve come to expect from the TV series; similarly, his likenesses of the characters has been absolutely spot-on throughout.
Given all the rumours flying around of possible future plans for Captain Pike and his intrepid crew, we may not get another appearance by them in the comics just yet, which really would be an awful shame. However, should fortune continue to favour ships called Enterprise, and we’re lucky enough to have them return for a longer run in strip form, let’s hope the winning team behind Star Trek: Discovery – Aftermath is firmly at the helm.
Star Trek: Discovery – Aftermath #3 is released on 20th November by IDW Publishing.