Has Trek been swept away by Wildstorm? - Mania.com

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Has Trek been swept away by Wildstorm?

Amid news of the studio's upcoming projects, some sobering comments about the future of comic book TREK

By Arnold T. Blumberg     July 20, 2001
Source: Comic-Con International

Wildstorm's first TREK hardcover brough the NEXT GEN crew face to face with the Gorn
© 2000 DC Comics
Since their acquisition by DC, the Wildstorm studio has continued to turn out some solid material marred only by their seeming inability to deliver anything on a set schedule. While a DANGER GIRL Ultimate Collection has been announced at this year's San Diego Comic-Con, featuring all seven issues, variant covers, and additional material, there is no new ASTRO CITY in sight, owing to writer Kurt Busiek's ongoing "health issues." With only one completed script in and ready to go, group editor Scott Dunbier and editor John Layman urged attendees at a Comic-Con panel to ask Busiek to deliver more ASTRO CITY scripts and allow them to get the series back on track in 2002.

"Instead of giving you one issue a year and reminding you that you are only getting one issue a year," said Layman, "we'd rather wait to give you seven or eight [issues] a year."

While fans wait hungrily for ASTRO CITY to return, they may have to satisfy themselves with news of other Wildstorm offerings, including a new series of Alan Moore's LEAGUE OF EXTRAORDINARY GENTLEMEN, a Humberto Ramos series titled OUT THERE that according to the creator draws on his appreciation for television series like DAWSON'S CREEK (!), and writer Ian Edginton's THE ESTABLISHMENT, an offshoot of the acclaimed THE AUTHORITY. A sequel to Sam Kieth's ZERO GIRL was also announced, as well as a few TOP 10 titles and a new mature themed "Version 3.0" of WILDCATS.

Wildstorm also has a lock on one of sci-fi's hottest television properties right now, the Sci-Fi Channel's FARSCAPE, which will debut with a two issue prestige series featuring all of the characters from the critically acclaimed TV show. Future FARSCAPE comics may follow if the initial launch proves successful.

Surprisingly, missing in action from the news of upcoming Wildstorm releases is STAR TREK, certainly one of the most venerable sci-fi names in pop culture. Apart from an admittedly exciting new NEXT GENERATION hardcover graphic novel titled FORGIVENESS, written by SF novelist David Brin in his first comic book or TREK project, Wildstorm made no announcements of future mini-series or one-shots set in either the Classic, NEXT GEN, DS9, or VOYAGER series. Even more surprisingly, given the enormous hype surrounding the fall launch of the latest installment in the franchise the prequel series ENTERPRISE, starring Scott Bakula as Captain Jonathan Archer Wildstorm shied away from any announcement concerning a comic book tie-in with this new TREK.

"We don't have so many more [TREK comics] that are in the works," said Dunbier at the panel. "We will be producing more projects but probably not as many as we have been putting out. The projects we've been doing are good but they haven't been performing well." Dunbier added that "we have high hopes for this new series though," suggesting that ENTERPRISE may give their TREK comics a much needed hypospray in the arm.

If TREK moves on to another publisher in the near future, Wildstorm will join the list of other comic book companies that tried and failed to make a go of it with what seemed a sci-fi sure thing, like industry powerhouse Marvel (just after the release of STAR TREK: THE MOTION PICTURE and later with Paramount Comics), Malibu, and even Gold Key, way back in the days when there was only one series to adapt (although their version was hardly faithful to the series' characterization or continuity). DC Comics had the longest run at the TREK universe from the mid-'80s to the early '90s, and featured some extremely well-written story arcs by TREK scribe Peter David and Howard Weinstein.

Check back for more on FORGIVENESS and other Wildstorm projects.


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