08 March 2013

Review: Star Trek / Legion of Super-Heroes by Chris Roberson

Comic hardcover, n. pag.
Published 2012 (contents: 2011-12)
Acquired August 2012
Read February 2013
Star Trek / Legion of Super-Heroes

Writer: Chris Roberson
Pencils: Jeffrey Moy
Inks: Philip Moy
Colors: Romulo Fajardo, Jr.
Letters: Chris Mowry, Shawn Lee, Robbie Robbins

While IDW's later Star Trek: The Next Generation / Doctor Who storyline is definitely the crossover I've always known I wanted, Star Trek / Legion of Super-Heroes is the crossover I never knew I wanted. The concept might initially seem a little goofy, but I love Star Trek, and I love the Legion, and much for the same reason. Both series provide teams of colorful characters in strange settings accomplishing awesome things through virtue of teamwork. What's not to like? And why not cross over?

Chris Roberson's script sure plays up the parallels between the Federation and the United Planets, between the Enterprise crew and the Legion, to good effect. Not too much time is wasted on the initial, mandatory confrontation, but even that is well-played and interesting: what would Spock do if faced with Braniac 5? The answer is, of course, awesome. Both groups end up working together, though, to figure out why both their universes have been replaced with this aberrant one, and the interaction is helped by the fact that Roberson knows all the characters on both teams; there's even a great Chekov joke. Roberson sure does have fun with the mashup: we get an Orion with the Emerald Eye, Klingons fighting Khunds. And I never thought I'd see the day where Superboy showed up in a Star Trek comics, even if just in a flashback! If the comic falls down anywhere, it's the end: something complicated seems to have been built up, but it resolved in a far too cursory fashion just before the story's end, which is a bit of a bummer. Roberson had done such good character work up to that point, that I was disappointed that it didn't really factor into the conclusion.

I really liked the art of Jeffrey and Philip Moy. The Legion was all on-character, but so too was the Enterprise crew: it was definitely them, without seeming traced or stiff. Get these guys on a regular Star Trek comic, stat! They also drew some great two-page spreads, especially the histories of the Legion and the Federation. I felt damn near inspired reading those sequences.

One other quibble: I am pretty sure the gap after The Great Darkness Saga where this story supposedly takes place in Legion continuity just doesn't exist. This certainly oughtn't take place after "The Day after Darkseid," but there's no point where it could fit in before that.

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