Review – Star Trek: Year Five #21 (IDW Publishing)

Publisher: IDW Publishing
Writer: Brandon Easton
Artwork: Silvia Califano
Colourist: DC Alonso
Release Date: 30th June 2021

Having established a fascinating time-travelling conundrum worthy of this sci-fi franchise’s original TV series in this title’s previous instalment, Brandon Easton’s penmanship for the latest issue of Star Trek: Year Five must have come as a bitter disappointment to its readers. In fact, for many Trekkies it will be hard to imagine a more contrived conclusion than the one the Baltimore-born author presents for this twenty-page periodical, as Gary Seven inexplicably suddenly pops out of nowhere to irrationally save the day; “My motives are far from clandestine. For all that you have done… Taking Isis away from me… You will pay the ultimate price. But only when I see fit.”

Sadly though, things had already gone horribly wrong with this publication’s storytelling long before the mysterious Class 1 supervisor momentarily materialises to somehow create an energy wave to restore the U.S.S. Enterprise’s antimatter mix, providing the exact geo-synchronous orbit co-ordinates the Constitution-class starship requires to allow it to send “a message back through the temporal vortex.” Spock’s successful physical assault upon Surak at the start of this comic strongly suggested that the historical flow of time was about to be altered by the Starfleet Science Officer replacing the legendary Vulcan as the ‘Father of Logic’. However, that notion is quickly dispelled by Amanda Grayson’s son as he simply departs the scene allowing the elderly philosopher to bring the Time of Awakening to its proper end following his death “from radiation sickness after a nuclear attack by Rihan’s faction.”

Just what causes the formidably aggressive Vulcan space fleet which Captain James Kirk and his crew faces in an alternative future is never explained, nor how Spock’s presence in the past even instigated the birth of so Romulan-like an Empire on the planet Ni’Var. Instead, Easton’s plot has everything panning out as planned, courtesy of the Federation Commander simply being allowed to walk towards his means of escape by Surak, following a highly unlikely mind meld between the two men which supposedly showed the half-human’s life-long struggle to keep his emotions in check.

Ultimately, this two-parter would appear to have been exclusively written to explain why Spock suddenly decides to leave Starfleet at the end of the Enterprise’s first five-year mission so as to undergo the Kolinahr ritual on his home world, and finally purge himself of all emotions. Yet, such a major decision doesn’t debatably make much sense now the character realises that the legendary figure behind the onerous sacrament was entirely capable of murder, the erection of mass extermination camps, and inflicting pitiless misery upon the very people whose culture he was supposedly meant to have rescued.


The writer of this piece was: Blax Kleric
Blax Tweets from @Blaxkleric ‏
You can read more of his reviews at The Brown Bag

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