Star Trek/Legion of Super-Heroes
A strange interdimensional anomaly brings both the Legion of Super-Heroes and the crew of the U.S.S. Enterprise to a dystopian future, where they must work together to defeat an evil and oppressive empire.
Author: Chris Roberson
Artists: Jeffrey Moy, Philip Moy, Romulo Fajardo, Jr., Robbie Robbins, Shawn Lee, Chris Mowry
Publisher: IDW and DC Comics
Genre: Science Fiction media tie-in comic/crossover
Rating: Not intended for children under 13
In perhaps one of the most unexpected and bizarre crossover choices in the last decade of comic book history, DC comics brought one of its little recognized franchises together with one of IDW’s most beloved to create this six-part mini-series. It features Captain Kirk, Mr. Spock, and the rest of the crew of the original Starship Enterprise and takes place during the same in-universe period as the 1960s television show. On the other side, five members of the Legion of Super-Heroes, who hail from the golden and silver age versions of the group, are also featured.
Shadow Lass is an alien from Talok VIII, who uses powers to manipulate darkness which she received from the spirits of her ancestors. The people of the corrupted version of earth consider her a witch.
There is a lot of comic book-style fighting. Blood and gore are not prevalent, but violent things happen to the characters. Chekov is shot in the back and wounded. Later, members of the Legion of Super-Heroes and the Enterprise crew are tortured by Vandal Savage/Flint, using a device known as the agony booth (featured in Star Trek episode Mirror, Mirror).
Mild language such as d—- and h— is peppered throughout.
Shadow Lass wears a costume that some might consider to be overly revealing.
Other Negative Themes
The superheroes and Starfleet officers initially assume the worst of each other, and fight because of it. That seems to be the way of comic book crossovers, though.
The two teams overcome their differences. In spite of the fact that they are from different time periods and worlds, they find that they have a lot in common. They also fight for freedom against an evil, oppressive regime.
A freak transporter accident lands Kirk and his crew in an alternate universe, where the tyrannical Terran Empire rules the galaxy with an iron fist. The Legion of Super-Heroes — comprised of Cosmic Boy, Brainiac 5, Saturn Girl, Lighting Lad, Chameleon Boy, and Lightning Lad — have an accident while time traveling and end up in a 23rd century entirely different and more barbaric than they knew about in their history books.
Once they are out of immediate danger, Braniac 5 uses his chronometer to determine the cause of their displacement. He discovers that there is another “temporal anomaly” nearby — namely, the Enterprise crew. Assuming that the Starfleet officers intentionally caused the dimensional mix-up, the Legion chases them down, and the two teams square off for a fight. However, as evil Imperial officers appear, the two groups realize they are on the same side and choose to fight together.
Unfortunately, they are captured, and half of the new alliance of superheroes and Starfleet officers are sent back to the distant past, where they witness the rise of the Terran Empire. The other half of the team is taken before the supreme ruler of the Empire. The Legion of Superheroes know him as the immortal Vandal Savage and the Enterprise crew-members recognize him as a corrupt version of the kindly hermit Flint (from Requiem for Methuselah). The two groups must work together from two points in time to return themselves to their proper time periods and universes.
Probably the most entertaining part of the story is seeing the Star Trek characters bouncing off and relating to the Legion of Super-Heroes. Some obvious comparisons can be made between members of the two teams, such as the similar logical outlooks of Braniac 5 and Mr. Spock. Overall, the characters seem true-to-form and likeable.
The words I would use to describe the art style of this series are “colorful” and “simple”. It is not minimalistic, but colors and lines are used clearly. This is not a gratuitously “artsy” book, but it is pleasing to look at. As a Star Trek fan, I appreciated how the character designs really hearkened back to the original television show.
The storyline was not particularly deep, but it was fast-paced, interesting, and enjoyable. The fact that the two teams fought each other before uniting seemed like a worn out cliché to me, but that is one of the only complaints I have about the plot. It kept me guessing most of the time, especially when the two teams split off into two different eras of time. As a fan of science fiction, my interest was particularly piqued by that aspect. The resolution did not disappoint either. There were no pressing questions at the end of the story, and the good guys came out on top in the end.
Star Trek- Legion of Super-Heroes may seem like a strange crossover, but the writers wove the two universes together well. With its entertaining story, engaging artwork, and well-crafted characters, this is one of those good comic book crossovers that no one knew they wanted.
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+ Entertaining, well done crossover
+ Simple, colorful art style
- Some obvious comic book cliches
- Lacks thematic depth