So far Star Trek: The Q Conflict has been a fun yet flawed Trek crossover. This issue sees the conflict enter a new stage, but does it improve on the flaws of the previous issues?
Scott & David Tipton, David Messina, Elisabetta D’Amico, Alexandra Alexakis, and Neil Uyetake put the crews into their second challenge, this one seemingly impossible.
The crews confront Q about the unfair nature of the contest, and his meddling. This leads him to allow Trelane to pick the second challenge. He settles on a ship-bound game of capture the flag. However, things get complicated when Trelane changes the rules, and drops an impossible enemy into the battlefield…
The Tiptons struggled to get their footing the last few issues, but here they’ve made it past their stumbles and deliver the best issue of the miniseries so far. They give most of the characters a solid moment to shine, even if it’s just an insightful piece of dialogue, and utilize Trek history to create a truly scary threat. Even better, they use the strengths of the mash-up they’ve created to solve the threat, with Kirk’s knowledge of the threat feeding into the tactical knowledge of Worf, technical knowledge of Scotty, and the command presence of Picard, Janeway and Sisko. It’s not just fun, but it’s satisfying for fans of the franchise.
Messina makes smart choices here. One of Star Trek’s failings in comics is how reliant the shows and movies are on ship to ship action, which is incredibly hard in a static medium like comics. Here, he keeps the action on the characters, their actions, and their reactions, with glimpses of the ships and their battle. It’s a smart choice that conveys the action without relying on static images of starships. D’Amico’s great colors add a layer of sci-fi shine to the issue as well, remaining a highlight of the story.
After this greatly improved issue, I’m excited for the rest of the story.
Star Trek: The Q Conflict #3 is available now from IDW Publishing.