Villordsutch reviews Star Trek: Khan #1….
“Shall we begin?”
A few of you may remember when this comic was first mentioned a few months back on Flickering Myth. Though the cynicism spewed from my mouth about rehashing of Khan’s history (as a Star Trek fan I’m more than aware that Paramount is looking for more ways to milk the cash from us) I was still interested in reading this comic. I rather enjoyed Star Trek Into Darkness and also Khan 2.0 – yes Ricardo Montalban with his few lines still wears the badge that reads, “I am THE Khan!”, however Benedict Cumberbatch is still a good Khan for me. When I buy this copy I may have to resort to asking the store owner to put it in a brown paper bag before I leave, just so I don’t get spat on by my fellow Trekkies.
Starting with Khan’s trial (I’m guessing before he was frozen and stored in a Big Yellow Storage lock up warehouse), the question is raised why Khan 2.0 looks different from the Khan 1.0, which is recorded on the library records. After a small bit of chest puffing we are pulled back to India – New Delhi to be precise – November 1971 where Khan (a small Indian street orphan) has just been gassed and carried away by gas mask-wearing foes. Our story then unfolds as we watch these children grow to teenagers; there are scenes which are extremely graphic for a Star Trek comic, e.g. Khan battering another child to death with his crutch and again Khan ramming two knives into his stomach to see the extent of his body’s regeneration abilities. I know people have died in Trek, but generally they are Trek Deaths with little to no blood, even if they’ve stood on a landmine. We leave this story with teenage Khan and his disciples making for their exodus into the desert.
Though I shouldn’t like this comic due to the rehashing of history etc. (as mentioned earlier) I actually enjoyed this opening instalment and if I think a bit more rationally, I need to take into consideration new Trek fans that have found Trek only recently; also how many times have I freaked out when DC or Marvel has updated the genesis of top title for the new users? I haven’t. Yes, our Trek Lore is being re-written, but there is a new generation out there who want these comics.
Mike Johnson pens a good tale here, bringing Khan’s history to this new generation, and even nodding towards the older fans with Khan 1.0 as it appears that his change of appearance will be tackled later. The artwork by David Messina and Claudia Balbont looks good in this issue – the facial expressions are great with the eyes and brows putting across emotion,s plus the symbolism of certain scenes can be perfectly subtle and it makes you smirk. The art really holds up through the issue as the characters hold their form throughout.
I know there will be people out there that will not be buying this on the grounds that it’s changing their history, but you really are missing out on an opening that could become a great series. Perhaps you should just give it a go.
Villordsutch is married with kids and pets. He looks like a tubby Viking and enjoys science fiction. Follow him on Twitter.