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I am a comic book collector and happy to be one. I might say “proud” if I hadn’t, over a year ago, switched to reading digital as opposed to print comics. I feel a bit robbed of the tactile sensations of the hobby – of the turn of the page, the sneaking look to the panel a page over, the bagging and shorting and stacking and filing. Though I read my comics in a different medium than I used to, I still treat each Wednesday (comic book delivery day to specialty shops around the country) as different from the other days of the week. I subscribe and now, rather than go to the comic store to be handed the books pulled for my “Hold Slot,” I click a button on my iPad and watch them download.
Then I read them.
Rare is the week that I don’t read them all between Wednesdays and some weeks I have, well… let’s just say more comic books in my digital downloads than a grown man should. Comic book legend Will Eisner (creator of The Spirit) is one of the most influential men even to put pencil to drawing board in the pursuit of making comics. So influential was he that the industry awards (think the Oscars or the Emmys or the Grammys) are named The Eisner Awards. He called comic books “sequential art,” perhaps because he became embarrassed by his profession when he had to admit what he did for a living. This is my weekly reaction to the comics I read.
I read 6 comics last week: Amazing Spider-Man #9, Doctor Strange #6, Star Trek #55, Batman/Superman #30, Detective Comics #50 and Batman and Robin Eternal #23.
The best comic I read last week was Star Trek #55.
Star Trek has been a very consistently entertaining look at the timeline created in 2009’s Star Trek directed by JJ Abrams. The book has alternated between original story arcs, adaptations of stories from the original Star Trek series and stories dealing with the events of the two JJ Abrams Star Trek films. Writer Mike Johnson and artist Tony Shasteen are a very solid team and, though some may consider dealing with licensed properties a less than plum assignment, they have made the most of their time on the book, creating stories that feel important and that have high stakes. They tell very, very good Star Trek stories.
Judging from this issue, this latest arc, “Legacy of Spock,” is shaping up to be one of their best. The arc promises to deal with the aftermath of the 2009 Star Trek movie and answer the question of what happened to “Spock Prime,” the Spock from the original Star Trek universe whose actions could, very literally, be blamed for the destruction of Vulcan. At the end of that film, Spock Prime had decided to join the colony of New Vulcan to help rebuild the race. As it turns out, they are not thrilled for his help.
Johnson and Shasteen are really, really solid. Johnson’s writing utterly evokes the flavor of the films and Shasteen’s art (as you can see from the cover above) captures the look of the actors beautifully.
Much like Marvel’s Star Wars tie in adaptation which receives far more publicity and is far more popular, IDW’s Star Trek is a very good comic and deserves a wider readership.