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FCBD Review – Star Trek: The Next Generation Broken Mirror

Star Trek: The Next Generation Broken Mirror

 

Ever since the Mirror Universe was expanded upon on Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, I have been fascinated with how the crew of ST: TNG‘s counterparts would look and behave.  In 1993, a year before the DS9 Mirror Universe episode “Crossover”, the novel Dark Mirror was released by famed Star Trek writer Diane Duane.  It painted a much darker and foreboding Mirror Universe, one where the Terran Empire was still very much in control of the galaxy.

Star Trek TNG Broken Mirror Cover by J.K. Woodward
Star Trek TNG Broken Mirror Cover by J.K. Woodward

For Free Comic Day, IDW Publishing returns to Star Trek‘s Mirror Universe and the ISS Stargazer, under the command of Captain Jean-Luc Picard.

Star Trek: The Next Generation – Broken Mirror follows canon set up by DS9‘s treatment of the Mirror Universe.  The Terran Empire is all but defeated.  The Klingon and Cardassian Empires have conquered most of the galaxy by forming a powerful and brutal alliance.  The Empire has retreated to its home star system where it struggles to defend its borders.  Things are going very badly for Starfleet.

Writing

Written by David and Scott Tipton who captures the essence of TNG‘s mirror counterparts brilliantly.  The story is centered around the most surprising TNG character, one you would imagine wouldn’t fit very well in this brutal universe.  There is a testament to the characters of TNG in the Tiptons’ writing.  Even told from one character’s particular point of view, each one is dynamically portrayed in a very satisfactory manner.  This is a truly enjoyable read and it leaves you not wanting to wait for the next issue, which is one of my most important criteria when reviewing a comic and even choosing to add it to my personal pull list.

Art

My biggest problem with this book is the artwork.  J.K. Woodward handles art and color duties and I am sad to say it doesn’t live up to the writing.  I personally hate giving criticism of artwork because I am not an artist and often don’t feel qualified enough to judge.  But in this case, I am not a fan of Woodward’s art.  To me personally, it is muddled and the colors are washed out.  It’s definitely not as pleasing to the eye as the writing is to the mind.  In all fairness, there is a substantial amount of detail that goes into illustrating the world of Star Trek.  Starship interiors can be complex to put together.  Backgrounds must be an artist’s nightmare in this genre.  I have seen artists handle it far worse, I guess that’s as much praise that I can give.

That is not saying that anyone else wouldn’t enjoy and like the artwork that goes along with this story.  For me, it detracts from the overall experience.  It certainly gives me pause when considering adding this to my pull list.

Conclusion

In the end, Broken Mirror is a nice start to what could be an epic comic series.  Star Trek‘s Mirror Universe has always intrigued me as it does other fans.  The Tipton’s and Woodward are off to a good beginning storywise, but I feel that art should fall to someone else.  I can still give this first issue fairly high marks for the overall effort.  As a lifelong Star Trek fan, I am always willing to give anything related a good read.  For a Free Comic Book Day offering, I would certainly recommend picking it up.  I say that as a fan and not as a collector.  You should grab this title before it’s gone.

Be sure to get out tomorrow and support Free Comic Book Day and your local comic book store.  Don’t forget what Free Comic Book Day is all about, and that is introducing new readers to comics.  If you are a collector, please keep this in mind and let everyone get a chance to pick up a title before they’re gone.  And for those new to Free Comic Book Day, show your support not only by coming out but with your wallet as well.


To find a comic shop near you, visit www.comicshoplocator.com or call 1-888-comicbook.

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About the author

Bryan Brown

The founder of Word of the Nerd and semi-fearless leader. Bryan is an all around nerd, from Star Trek to comic books to collecting action figures. If it's nerd related, he's into it or at least has an opinion on it.

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