As Professor River Song would say, “Spoilers, Sweetie!”
Not that there is much to spoil, as of yet. IDW Publishing’s Star Trek: The Next Generation/Doctor Who: Assimilation2 has been loads of fun so far. The first two issues seemed to be setup as “Pre-Credits” scenes for both of the television series involved. Issue #3 brings us to that point directly after the credits have rolled and we’ve just gotten back from the first commercial break.
We get a tiny bit of plot development in this issue, and it is very thrilling to see the Cybermen on the Enterprise-D’s giant viewscreen. However, this is one case where I’m not too concerned with rapid plot advancement. The real treat of this series has been seeing the characters interact, and pretty much everyone has had a nice character moment or two. The artwork has mostly impressed me, with some great character likenesses and only a few missteps along the way. The muted tones in the painted artwork by J.K. Woodward mesh well with the color palates of both series, and allows a nice Wizard of Oz moment when we flashback from the muted tones of the Next Generation era to the primary colors of the original Star Trek series. The artwork by The Sharp Brothers shifts to a more traditional comic book line art, and the transition is handled much like the Kansas to Munchkinland reveal. Kudos go out to the writers of the series, Scott and David Tipton with Tony Lee, for staying true enough to the characters’ voices that I hear them in my head while reading the series.
We find out that the Doctor’s memories have been repressed for some reason, and once it is revealed that he has had a previous encounter with Cybermen along with a former crew of the Enterprise, we see those memories unfold for us as well. The original Enterprise crew has a very brief adventure with the Doctor’s fourth incarnation, as played by Tom Baker in the classic Doctor Who series. Spock gets to sample the Doctor’s favorite candy and Captain James T. Kirk gets to scissor-kick a Cyberman. What else could you ask for?
(O.K., I will admit that I was a little bit disappointed that Doctor McCoy’s standard, “I’m a Doctor, not a _______” quote wasn’t twisted around by the Time Lord in some way, but you can’t have everything.)
The one elephant on the bridge that no one is talking about is that The Doctor, with his 900+ years of phone box time-travel, has much more experience and knowledge than the entire Next Generation crew combined. We can plainly see how the Enterprise crew needs the Doctor in this crossover — will we plausibly see how the Doctor needs Captain Picard’s crew without somehow “handicapping” The Doctor? It’s a common problem when considering crossing other media over with Doctor Who. How do you match the smartest person in Time and Space? Time will tell…
Star Trek: The Next Generation/Doctor Who: Assimilation2 #3 (could we HAVE a longer title?) is priced at $3.99 at available at comic book stores which have not yet sold out. Happy hunting!
ADDED NOTE: If you are a big fan of either show, and cannot wait for the next issue of IDW’s crossover series, enjoy this tale by YouTube media mix-master Kelvington. It’s pretty groovy!