Friday, February 28, 2014

Star Trek Annual preview

I ran across this Star Trek Annual 2013 today, and it slipped by my radar.  It's a fairly unique concept, the idea is to tell some missing Star Trek: TOS episodes using old photos montages, known as fumetti, done by noted comic book creator, John Byrne.

 It started out as just something Byrne had fun doing in-between his other various projects.  It's a sequel to the episode, "Where No Man Has Gone Before,"  the third episode from the first season. If you don't remember that episode, there's a recap of that episode in this preview.  From what I've read, the project was pretty successful and IDW and Byrne have begun more "lost stories" in the series to be released bi-monthly. 

Velvet #1  by Ed Brubaker and art by Sean Epting

   Ed Brubaker and Steve Epting have become a formidable force in modern comics. I’ve come to rely on them for strong storylines and ideas.  

   Their long run on The Death of Captain America and the more recent ongoing, Fatale, and other comic work have always hooked me, and I look forward to seeing what new stories and ideas they come up with.

   Velvet  is a spy comic heavy on action and intrigue and fashioned much in the mode of James Bond, Jason Bourne, and the more recent film, Haywire. It features a strong female protagonist, Velvet Templeton, portraying the main role.  

   The story begins in 1973 as an operative agent, X-14, is on a mission in Paris. Something goes wrong and it appears a mole has tipped off  his mission, and he’s been set up as a fall guy.  

   After the news reaches the agency of his untimely demise, intelligence sets into looking for who might have taken the hit, and they begin checking into airport arrivals and departures, hotel bookings, and so forth, trying to find clues as to who might have done it. 

   There’s another flashback on Velvet’s earlier career when she was an agent. She knew X-14 along with several of the other agents, they were once pretty close so she has a personal interest in the case. But the past few years she’s taken a desk job out of the field, and working under Director Manning as a secretary.  

   From intel they find an agent, Frank Lancaster, who might have killed X-14, but Velvet thinks the intel on Lancaster smells funny, and is half baked. Curiosity gets the better of Velvet, and she begins her own investigation into the case, which leads her to one of Lancaster’s safe houses.  

   Once Velvet gets inside the safe house we find out all is not well. The book ends on a confrontation, and a heck of a cliffhanger. Yes, like a lot of the James Bond franchise and other spy fiction, a certain amount of suspension of disbelief is required to engage in such fantasies. But if spy fiction and action is your double martini, you might want to check out the book. 


At 4:44 AM, Blogger SFF said...

Boy the Star Trek book looks great mainly because that Original Series always looks so amazing but I definitely would be interested in it. (And I might even buy it ;).)

Poor John Byrne. I love that guy's stuff and, like happens to anyone, it must be tough getting older and not being able to draw the kind of artwork you once were able to put down on paper. That guy did some truly amazing runs in comics. What a talent!

At 11:12 AM, Blogger El Vox said...

SF Fanatic--yes, do check out the Preview from the link--that will make you at least want to check out the Star Trek Annual a little further, although the first printing sold out, a newer printing run might be out now or further in the future.

I saw the Previews for it and rather dismissed it not paying any attention to it as I'm not a huge fan of the fumetti style, and wondered what the heck & why Byrne was creating something that way as he is a great enough artist to draw it. It wasn't until a preview of the Annual came up that my curiosity got the better of me, and decided to give it a closer look. I remember that episode and thought it was one of the better ones from Season One.

John Byrne is still going strong however. He did a series last year called The Highways about a space station. I enjoy the way it began, but ended a bit anti-climactic for me. Still it was a fun short four issue series, if I remember correctly. Might have to review it here. We'll see. :)


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