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Star Trek: Alien Spotlight – Tribbles (Review)

The first Star Trek pilot, The Cage, was produced in 1964. To celebrate its fiftieth anniversary, this December we are reviewing the second season of the original Star Trek show. You can check out our first season reviews here. Check back daily for the latest review.

There is something delightfully gonzo about trying to write a comic book from the perspective of a bunch of Tribbles.

IDW’s Alien Spotlight series did not always work as well as it might, but the delightful done-in-one format of stand-alone stories told from the perspective of iconic Star Trek aliens allowed for a bit more versatility and flexibility than the line was normally afforded. Alien Spotlight: Cardassians was set after the end of Star Trek: Deep Space Nine. Alien Spotlight: Borg featured a delightfully clever logical paradox and a Borg invasion. Alien Spotlight: Klingons allowed Keith R.A. DeCandido to work his magic with the Klingons. Alien Spotlight: Romulans served as a springboard for John Byrne towards his Romulans saga.

You think you've got tribbles?

You think you’ve got tribbles?

There were more than a few disappointments along the way, but the Alien Spotlight series stands as one of the highlights of IDW’s Star Trek licensing. Alien Spotlight: Tribbles is a very odd piece of work. It is the kind of high-concept story that might feel like a gimmick and feels stretched over a single issue, let alone an arc. However, it is just silly enough that it works. Telling the story of a conflict between a bunch of Klingons and a human freighter crew through the eyes of the Tribbles is a fascinating idea.

While there is a sense that writer Stuart Moore occasionally has to stretch to get the story to where it needs to go, but Alien Spotlight: Tribbles is a delightfully charming (if perhaps a little too light) Star Trek diversion.

Laugh it up, fur ball...

Laugh it up, fur ball…

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Star Trek – The Trouble With Tribbles (Review)

The first Star Trek pilot, The Cage, was produced in 1964. To celebrate its fiftieth anniversary, this December we are reviewing the second season of the original Star Trek show. You can check out our first season reviews here. Check back daily for the latest review.

This is a classic.

The Trouble With Tribbles is an episode that can make a legitimate claim to being the best episode of Star Trek, if not the best episode of the entire franchise. It is a genuine classic in countless ways, perfectly embodying so much of what makes Star Trek classic and iconic and loved. David Gerrold’s script, polished by Gene Coon, is easily the best comedy episode that the franchise has ever produced, but never at the expense of the show’s credibility. The Trouble With Tribbles may be silly, but it is also very clever and insightful.

Nobody knows the Tribbles I've seen...

Nobody knows the Tribbles I’ve seen…

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Star Trek: The Next Generation – Blood and Fire by David Gerrold (Review)

This January and February, we’ll be finishing up our look at the second season of Star Trek: The Next Generation and moving on to the third year of the show, both recently and lovingly remastered for high definition. Check back daily for the latest review.

We’ll be supplementing our coverage of the episodes with some additional materials – mainly novels and comics and films. This is one such entry. This is actually supplementary to the first season of the Next Generation, specifically the episode Symbiosis.

The lead up to the first season of Star Trek: The Next Generation was full of potential. Gene Roddenberry was directly overseeing a Star Trek production for the first time since Star Trek: The Motion Picture. More than that, the producer had brought along quite a few of the talented production staff members who had helped to make the franchise so special in the first place. David Gerrold and D.C. Fontana, two of the best loved Star Trek writers of all time, would be working on the show.

Despite all that television had changed in the decades since the original Star Trek had been on the air, Roddenberry proudly boasted to fans that the franchise would continue to engage directly with the big issues of the day. After all, one of the most memorable aspects of the classic Star Trek was the show’s willingness to engage with big political issues. Even the most casual of pop culture fans remember the awkward metaphors for Vietnam or racism.

Unfortunately, The Next Generation really seemed to lack the nerve of its direct predecessor. This became quite clear early on, when veteran writer David Gerrold’s script for the proposed Blood and Fire was unceremoniously shelved, and quickly forgotten about.

tng-bloodandfire

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