Star Trek: The Next Generation - The Gorn Crisis
Written by Kevin J. Anderson and Rebecca Moesta
Painted by Igor Kordey
Lettered by Richard Starkings and Comicraft's Albert Deschesne
Designed by Alex Sinclair
Edited by Jeff Mariotte
Date of Publication: 1 October 2002
Cover Price: $17.95
On the one hand, I've never really liked Kevin J. Anderson's writings. I won't say he ruined the Star Wars Expanded Universe singlehandedly for me, but he certainly had a major hand in it. Combine that bias with the premise--the crew of Star Trek: The Next Generation meet the Gorn--which sounds like the stuff of fan fiction, and there's really not much to lure me here.
However, I came across a softcover copy at Half Price Books for $2.00 and decided to take a chance. Igor Krodey's paintings are beautiful, and there is an interesting behind-the-scenes feature at the end in which he shares some of his ideas for creating the look of the Gorn, from their physiology to cultural elements. It might seem entirely unnecessary, but clearly Kordey's art benefited from the depth of his attention to detail. It's a gorgeous volume to peruse; his likenesses of Patrick Stewart and Brent Spiner are great, his battle scenes are epic and there is a great sense of scale and energy to every page.
Story-wise, The Gorn Crisis is fairly average stuff. A militant segment of Gorn society has engineered a coup, hellbent on conquest, just as the Enterprise has arrived to see about recruiting the Gorn for the war against the Dominion (don't worry if you have no idea what that is; you just need to know that's why they're there). Elsewhere, Commander Riker is working with a Klingon task force to shore up defenses in anticipation of a Dominion attack. Naturally, the Klingon commander is disgraced and his crew restless. Captain Picard's away team is taken hostage and Data has to save the day.
We've seen all these things before, and that's why The Gorn Crisis is disappointing. This story exists for the express purpose of playing with Star Trek toys. It doesn't actually have anything to say, though. Science fiction in general, and Star Trek particularly, are at their best when they are used as allegories. The only thought that seems to have gone into The Gorn Crisis is, "Wouldn't it be fun to see Klingons and Gorn fight?" Thankfully there's Kordey's art to breathe some life into such an uninspired and vapid story.
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