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STAR TREK Comics Timeline Project - 2251 - part 1

YEAR: 2251 - Part 1

Flesh of My Flesh
Stardate: 2252.3
Comic: Star Trek: Early Voyages #1
Publisher: Marvel
Date: Feb-1997



Synopsis:

Writers: Dan Abnett & Ian Edginton / Artists: Patrick Zircher & Greg Adams

The Enterprise is sent to investigate the disappearance of the crew from several Federation vessels and on arrival in the area encounters an unknown organic starship. The unknown creature-ship kidnaps Captain Pike and probes his memories of taking command of the Enterprise from Captain April, selecting his crew, and his first encounter with a young Vulcan cadet called Spock. Meanwhile, Spock discovers that the ship has spread a virus on board the Enterprise that is draining energy from the crew. Spock and Dr Byrce work to find a cure. A rescue team is sent to the ship to find Pike and they encounter the Ngultor, the insectoid crew, who explain that they were thrown off course in a freak warp accident and need the energy from harvesting flesh to power their ship for the long journey home. The landing team is recovered using the tractor beam and the Enterprise uses its torpedo banks to destroy the alien. However, Captain Pike, while now confident in the abilities of his new crew, feels that the victory is something of a hollow one.

The Fires of Pharos
Stardate: 2378.1
Comic: Star Trek: Early Voyages #2
Publisher: Marvel
Date: Mar-1997

Synopsis:

Writers: : Dan Abnett & Ian Edginton / Artists: Patrick Zircher & Greg Adams

Arriving at Starbase 13, the Enterprise finds itself under attack from a fleet of Klingon vessels. The Klingon commander, Kaaj, hearing of large deposits of dilithium nearby, was determined to claim the valuable haul for the Empire. But when he attacks the newly arrived Enterprise, he finds that he has severely underestimated the capabilities of Captain Pike and his crew.

Our Dearest Blood
Stardate: 2387.5
Comic: Star Trek: Early Voyages #3
Publisher: Marvel
Date: Apr-1997

Synopsis:

Writers: Dan Abnett & Ian Edginton / Artists: Patrick Zircher & Greg Adams

The crew of the USS Enterprise are invited to Rigel 7 to attend the celebrations surrounding the planet’s entrance into the United Federation of Planets. Pike and his crew are also charged with overseeing the disbanding of the Kaylar warrior caste, one of the requirements of UFP membership. However, not everyone on Rigel is as accepting of the UFP, and the crew suffer casualties when they have to overcome a group of extremists.


Nor Iron Bars A Cage
Stardate: not given
Comic: Star Trek: Early Voyages #4
Publisher: Marvel
Date: May 1997



Synopsis:

Writers: Dan Abnett & Ian Edginton / Artists: Patrick Zircher & Greg Adams

On only her second day on board the Enterprise, Yoeman Mia Colt is suddenly transported, along with Number One, into Captain Pike’s cage on Talos IV. While resisting the Talosian’s mind games, she recalls how she came to be assigned to the Enterprise, and challenges Pike’s preconceptions on his need for a new Yoeman.

NEXT POST: 2251 - Part 2

Previous Entries

---------------
NOTES:
(1) This timeline covers Star Trek comics published in the USA and UK between 1967 to 2007 (i.e. from Gold Key to TokyoPop) - it does not include any stories from current Star Trek comics publisher IDW.
(2) Click here for the
Time Line Introduction explaining the background, definitions and considerations for this Star Trek Comics Time Line project.
(3) For more information on the history of Star Trek in comics check out my book
STAR TREK: A Comics History. now available in stores.
AJP Toon

STAR TREK Comics Timeline Project - 2250

YEAR: 2250

Starfleet Academy
Stardate: not given
Comic: Star Trek Annual #2
Publisher: DC
Date: October 1991



Synopsis:

Writer: Peter David / Artists: James W. Fry, Curt Swan, & Arne Starr

The story of Jim Kirk’s arrival and early days at Starfleet Academy, where he first meets his roommate Gary Mitchell, the prankster and rival Finnegan, a young Uhura, and a young scientist by the name of Carol Marcus.

NEXT POST: 2251

Previous Entries

---------------
NOTES:
(1) This timeline covers Star Trek comics published in the USA and UK between 1967 to 2007 (i.e. from Gold Key to TokyoPop) - it does not include any stories from current Star Trek comics publisher IDW.
(2) Click here for the
Time Line Introduction explaining the background, definitions and considerations for this Star Trek Comics Time Line project.
(3) For more information on the history of Star Trek in comics check out my book
STAR TREK: A Comics History. now available in stores.
Trek icon

STAR TREK Comics Timeline Project - 2063

YEAR: 2063

First Contact
Stardate: not applicable
Comic: Star Trek: The Next Generation - First Contact - Movie Adaptation
Publisher: Marvel
Date: November 1996

Synopsis:

Writer: John Vornholt / Artists: Terry Pallot, Rod Whigham & Philip Moy

The Borg travel back in time in an attempt to assimilate Earth in a time before the Federation. The Enterprise follows them back and seemingly destroys the Borg sphere, but it isn’t long before they realize that the Borg are still active and are tying to stop the flight of Zefhram Cochran’s first warp ship, the Phoenix; a flight that results in the first meeting between Humans and Vulcans. While one part of the crew fight to stop the Borg taking over the Enterprise, the others work to ensure that the first contact happens.

Second Contact
Stardate: not applicable
Comic: Star Trek: The Next Generation / X-Men #1
Publisher: Marvel
Date: May 1998



Synopsis:

Writers: Dan Abnett & Ian Edginton / Artists: Cary Nord & Scott Koblish

While travelling back to their own time following the events of Star Trek: First Contact, the Enterprise-E is diverted into the 20th Century of a parallel universe due to the actions of a time traveler known as Kang the Conqueror. The crew of the Enterprise joins forces with the mutant heroes known as the X-Men to foil Kang’s plans, and to repair the temporal rift. (The story continues in Star Trek: The Next Generation/X-Men: Planet X, a Pocket Books novel by Michael Jan Friedman.)

Side Note: Whenever I mentioned I was working on a book about Star Trek comics, this was invariably the first comic that most people recalled. Interestingly there were two distinct and opposite reactions (1.) They hated the book with a passion, the idea of mixing the Trek and Marvel universes being a total anathema; or (2) they thought the idea of having Capt. Picard and Professor X meet was the coolest thing ever as both characters had been played on screen by Patrick Stewart.


NEXT POST: 2250

Previous Entries

---------------
NOTES:
(1) This timeline covers Star Trek comics published in the USA and UK between 1967 to 2007 (i.e. from Gold Key to TokyoPop) - it does not include any stories from current Star Trek comics publisher IDW.
(2) Click here for the
Time Line Introduction explaining the background, definitions and considerations for this Star Trek Comics Time Line project.
(3) For more information on the history of Star Trek in comics check out my book
STAR TREK: A Comics History. now available in stores.
Trek icon

STAR TREK Comics Timeline Project - 2056

YEAR: 2056

"Forgiveness"
Stardate: not applicable
Comic: Star Trek: The Next Generation - Forgiveness
Publisher: Wildstorm
Date: October 2001



Synopsis:

Writer: David Brin / Artist: Scott Hampton

In the mid 21st century Dr Colin Blakeney makes significant strides in perfecting transporter technology until his lab is sabotaged during the first attempts at human transport. Trapped in a transport beam for over 300 year Blakeney will eventually be recovered by the crew of the Enterprise-E.

NEXT POST: 2063

Previous Entries

---------------
NOTES:
(1) This timeline covers Star Trek comics published in the USA and UK between 1967 to 2007 (i.e. from Gold Key to TokyoPop) - it does not include any stories from current Star Trek comics publisher IDW.
(2) Click here for the
Time Line Introduction explaining the background, definitions and considerations for this Star Trek Comics Time Line project.
(3) For more information on the history of Star Trek in comics check out my book
STAR TREK: A Comics History. now available in stores.
Trek icon

STAR TREK Comics Timeline Project - 1953

YEAR: 1953

When the Stars Come A-Calling
Stardate: Not Applicable
Comic: Star Trek Special
Publisher: DC/Wildstorm
Date: 2001



Synopsis:

Writer: Ben Raab / Artist: John Lucas

Benny Russell, the 1950s SF writer that Capatin Sisko often sees himself as during his Prophet driven visions, continues to be turned away from publishers, not because of his talent, but because of his skin color. Later Russell is attacked by what appears to be a gang of Klingons, sees adverts for Quarks bar, mentions of the Borg, and sees aliens everywhere. Using these visions as inspiration Benny writes a new selection of stories and is accepted for publication in Incredible Tales magazine.

NEXT POST: 2056

---------------
NOTES:
(1) This timeline covers Star Trek comics published in the USA and UK between 1967 to 2007 (i.e. from Gold Key to TokyoPop) - it does not include any stories from current Star Trek comics publisher IDW.
(2) Click here for the
Time Line Introduction explaining the background, definitions and considerations for this Star Trek Comics Time Line project.
(3) For more information on the history of Star Trek in comics check out my book
STAR TREK: A Comics History. now available in stores.
Trek icon

STAR TREK Comics Timeline Project - Intro

In the early stages of writing STAR TREK: A Comics History I started to keep a note of the various stardates attached to different stories. Initially this was just meant to be a guide for myself to help in the research process; but I soon realized that a full time line of the various Star Trek comics trying to put the stories into some sort of chronological order might make a great addition to the book and would be a fun project.

A little research showed that a few people had made starts at such a project over the years, and at one point the Star Trek comics published by DC Comics included their own time line, putting their stories in order.

As the work on the book progressed I took more and more notes, and with the aid of my wife Gill, made an attempt at compiling what I felt was the first comprehensive Star Trek comics time line covering all the comics issued between 1967 and 2007 (i.e. from Gold Key to TokyoPop).

Unfortunately while the completed timeline was in the final draft submitted, it had to be dropped from the final printed version of the book due to space and cost limitations (adding the time line section would have meant adding more pages than had already been allocated, with a subsequent increase in cover price - not something we wanted to do.)

But rather than just have that work sit on my laptop hard drive I have decided to present it here on my blog over the coming weeks and months.

And as I don't have any print space restrictions I'll be presenting an expanded version with cover art and synopsis of key stories.

To kick things off here's the Introduction to the timeline section as it would have appeared in the book.

==========================================


STAR TREK COMICS - A Time Line

Introduction

Given that almost every Star Trek story opens with a narrated Captain’s Log entry with an associated Stardate, it seems natural to try to put the various stories into some sort of chronological sequence. At first it would seem that the most logical way to do that would be to order the various adventures by the given Stardate. However, many of the published stories have no corresponding Stardate attached, and those that do use inconsitent methods. The problem is further complicated by the fact that even the official Stardate convention is confusing and inconsistent (see below for more on Stardates).

Since we know that most of the Star Trek stories take place in the 23rd and 24th centuries, the next obvious approach would be to list the stories in chronoligcal order based on conventional dates—in effect, to build a timeline. A timeline for the Star Trek prose novels has already been published in the excellent Voyages of the Imagination, and several of the people behind that project have made inroads into combining some of the comics stories into that timeline. In this chapter we have published what we hope is the first comphrensive timelime of Star Trek comics series, combining the stories from all the publishers listed in the previous chapters. The time line is based on chronological dates and, as far as possible, fitting the stories in with known established points in the history of the Star Trek universe. Of course with any fictional universe with input form a large number of creators inconsitencies are inevitable.

Stardates

The official definition of a Stardate is that it is intended to be a comprehensive calendar system used across the United Federation of Planets. Some other races and intergalactic organizations have also adopted the Stardate system. The system is designed to provide a unifed way of expressing time between locations which may be light-years apart and onboard ships that travel at relativistic speeds.

From a practical storytelling perspective, no one has ever officially (i.e. on screen) explained just how the system works. Stardates are simply made up by the creators of the TV shows, movies, novels and comics.

Bob Greenberger explained that in the early days of his tenure as editor of the Star Trek books at DC Comics the creative teams “did what we could to follow the lead of the film or episodes depending upon where our stories fell.” As a back up they used previously published sources if possible. Howard Weinstein concurred: “hey had to fit in with what the TV shows and movies established. “Once I decided where my stories fit into the TREK timeline, I'd base my stardates on ‘official’ dates used in the TV episodes and films.”


In ST:TOS, Stardates were generally four digits long. When ST:TNG aired, the show’s producers settled on a five-digit standard. The first digit was a 4 (because the show was set in the 24th century), the second digit signified which season of the show the episode was from, and the remaining digits increased as the season progressed. So a Stardate of 42002.9 would be early in the second season of ST:TNG, while a Stardate of 45998.2 would be late in the fifth season. The ST:TNG format was also carried over to ST:DS9 and ST:VOY.

In the main body of the book, I have quoted various Stardates exactly as they appeared in print in the original stories. However, for purposes of indexing, I have converted them to a standard four- or five-digit date followed by a decimal. For instance, in issue #10 of the Gold Key series, the Stardate is given as 12:48.6, while in the sixth UK story arc the Stardate is shown as 48.12.46. In this list they are shown as 1248.6. and 4812.46, respectively.

If a story has more than two Stardates shown, I have tried to use the Stardate in which the majority of the action occurs. If the story uses flashbacks, I have used the Stardate when the story starts.

Stories Listed Chronologically (Timeline)

Constructing an accurate calendar-based timeline for the Star Trek comics will be an ongoing process. Presented here is an initial attempt. The following criteria have been used in developing this timeline.

Where possible, events have been assigned a calendar date (or an approximate range of dates) based on references to other events where dates have already been established, continuity considerations, visual clues such as uniform styles, crew rosters, and the like.

This timeline was compiled by Alan J. Porter and Gillian J. Porter, building on work previously done by Bob Greenberger, Win Scott Eckert, and James McCain. (Off course any errors, omissions, bad guesses and outright mistakes are totally mine, and corrections, suggestions are welcome.)

=========================================

The first Star Trek Comics Timeline entry will be posted soon.
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Today's the day ...

Yes, at last. Today, September 22nd, is the official release and ship date for STAR TREK: a comics history.

I will be blogging more about the Trek book and associated stuff that didn't make it between the covers in the coming weeks (and months probably).

...and in semi-related book news my biography of the early days of the Fab Four, BEFORE THEY WERE BEATLES is now available on the Kindle for just $1.99.
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Thanks Amazon

So every so often Amazon sends me emails with book suggestions based on what it believes my interests are.

I was a little surprised and stunned to get this one this morning.



Thanks Amazon for putting "STAR TREK: A Comics History" as the first pick.
AJP Toon

Armadillocon - A few notes

As usual I had a great time at this year's Armadillocon, hanging out with friends and meeting some interesting new people. On the whole the panels I attended were fun and provoked some good discussions and thoughts.

Having said that there were a couple of things I noticed on a few panels that, if not exactly spoiled the panel, certainly detracted from the experience.

- At at last three panels the moderator had done zero preparation, which left it to one or more of the panelists to jump in and keep things moving. Personally I find that unacceptable and very unprofessional, if you check the box on the form that you are prepared to moderate a panel, then if selected you should do at least some basic prep work, like know who is on your panel and have some questions on the subject ready.

- Panelists who would dominate the panel, but not in a good way. I don't have a problem with someone dominating the panel if the other panelists are not responding, but panelists who will interrupt others answers or talk over people just to make their voice heard, really bug me. Luckily didn't happen on any of the panels I was on, but I did see it in a couple I attended. (And worst, the moderators just let it keep happening.)

But those few notes aside, I felt this year's con was very well run and on the whole the scheduling worked out well.

From a personal perspective the events I participated in seemed to go well and be, on the whole, well received.

- I had a 300% increase in people at my Reading this year. - Well OK I had six people turn up, rather than the two from last year. The good part was that there were all strangers, it wasn't a "pity audience" of friends, but folks who had decided to waste 30 minutes of their Friday night listening to me stumble through one of my stories. They all gave great feedback on the story, and even suggested some good ideas to incorporate in my planned rewrite.

- The Blogging and Podcasting panel provoked some interesting discussions about various types of social media and how writers can use them. - The "Promoting Your Work" panel I attended immediately afterwards soon fell into similar discussions and topics, - so perhaps those two panels could have been combined into one.

- Moderating the Star Trek panel was a lot of fun, and I had a good panel, and great audience interaction. I believe we were at "standing room only" status for that one. The room certainly seemed packed. The most talked about moment from that panel was when a guy in the audience prefaced his question by starting to give a detailed description of, and even quote from, a Star Trek porno movie!! Luckily we managed to divert the conversation back to the new Trek movie, because who knows where that may have gone!

- I was a little worried that I may have dominated the Dr. Who panel later that evening, but as the token Brit and the one with the life-time experience of Who, it seemed that most of the questions ended up coming back to me. In fact I had to make a conscious effort at one point to put the microphone down so others would answer. And I think that the folks at Big Finish Audio owe me a commission check for the amount of times I plugged the Dr. Who audio dramas. The IDW Dr. Who comics got a few mentions too.

- Sunday's Graphic Novels panel was pretty much a continuation of any lunch time, or bar discussion that happens when a bunch of Austin based comics creators gets together, except this time instead of being sat around a table, we were in a straight line behind the table with an audience in front of us. I could say it was just like chatting with my mates, but it wasn't "just like that, " it WAS that.

Didn't spend as much time in the bar this year, however I did sell a copy of my James Bond book while in the bar. Not to an Armadillocon attendee, but to a Bond fan who was just hanging out in the bar having a drink with friends and family.

The weekend seemed to flash by this year, and I'm looking forward to next year's event.
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A sneak peek at "STAR TREK: A Comics History"

Although we sold a few advance copies at the recent San Diego Comic-Con, my latest book from the fine folks at Hermes Press STAR TREK: A Comics History doesn't officially ship until the end of September.

But as a taster here's a few photos of what to expect.

The cover


We have cover reproductions and samples of original comics art,


along with original art for some of the early painted covers.


There are also artists sketches,


and in the interviews section, frames from some of the TV show out takes original film stock.


You can pre-order your copy of "STAR TREK: A Comics History" here, and if you are attending Armadillocon this weekend I'll have a copy available to flick through.