In Star Trek #35 (Part 1 of The Q Gambit), we once again get to see a much younger John De Lancie (Q), vibrant and mischievous as the day he entered the Star Trek universe nearly 30 years ago, interacting with the up-and-coming action star Chris Pine.
In comic books, we don’t have to worry about our favorite characters graying at the temples and thickening at the waist. They’re perfectly preserved at their most vigorous on the comic book page. Star Trek comics do what they can to capture the likeness of the actors who originally portrayed the characters and this comic has succeeded admirably.
This new story begins with Q intruding on Captain Picard’s hospitality. For all intents and purposes, Q is a god who can bend space-time and alter reality to create fanciful exercises in futility as easily as Data can program the holodeck. Q explains that Spock’s little stunt from the first J.J. Abrams Star Trek film has endangered the existence of an entire timeline. Q’s motives are suspect, but he tells Picard that he intends to save the endangered timeline.
The scene serves no other purpose than to remind us of the playful banter exchanged between two of our favorite characters in The Next Generation. The rest of the comic book takes place aboard the first Starship Enterprise, helmed by James T. Kirk.
Star Trek #35 sets up a vague story that ties the new film universe to the tried and true worlds of The Next Generation. It may be interesting in the next few issues. It may not. The important thing is that we get to Q again, meddling away in the affairs of men. And that’s good fun.