(NOTE: The above thread title may seem misleading, but it's rather appropriate when concerning the product later on. If you can figure out how, point me out. )
It's not often that I get a chance to visit comic book stores (three of which I know, and none are close enough for conventional travel), so when I do manage to see what's new, it's something of a personal treat. Aside from offering a unique chance to pick up comics that local newsagencies don't carry *CoughSonicCough* or stock ridiculously overpriced (Try finding a conventional Marvel comic under $8 per issue. And Spider Island
goes for HOW many titles?), there is a wide selection of back issues that I've either wanted, or didn't even know existed.
Being an unashamed Penderist (or at least someone who has found his work inspirational over the years for lack of a more appropriate term), it's only natural to undergo a bit of research over the work he's done, especially when it's not connected to a certain blue Hedgehog. Now don't get me wrong; it was Ken's tenure writing for Sonic
that drew me in, and I enjoyed it as much as the next person who did, but when I first discovered this website all those years ago, imagine my surprise to learn he contributed to other books. Star Trek
in particular.A big brown paper bag. Excellent for calming the nerves in a crisis.
At the end of the day, Star Trek
and me are like oil and water. Not to say I have anything against the franchise (sorry, Doctor Who
got to me first), but if they were to select me for Who Wants to be a Millionaire
and the $100 question concerned Star Trek
, then I would most certainly fall metaphorically flat on my face at the first hurdle.
In other words, my knowledge is limited. Very limited. And while I've been exposed to a couple of incarnations (various episodes of the original series, memories of the cartoon on Saturday mornings, The Wrath of Khan
, a certain Captains of the Final Frontier
, and the odd repeat on Channel 11 of TNG
), it's not enough to make me a proper knowing fan.
Example: Ask me what a Cardassian is, and I'll respond with "isn't that one of those rich twins?"
(in that order)
So getting back on topic, upon learning that Ken worked on various Star Trek
comics, my interest was tickled. As the years past, it developed into quite the itch. Seeing as the itch was not going to leave until some copies were located, a search was undertaken by checking out the back-issue bins at the few comic book stores I could find. But alas, no such luck. Though it really was my fault most of the time, either forgetting to look or running out of time.
Remembering to see if one store had any Star Trek
comics in their posession (but forgetting to bring a list of the issues Ken wrote/pencilled. Argh!), so began a search to find the section and (if any) goodies it may contain.
What followed was a double-edge sword. They had about three overflowing boxes of waterlogged Star Trek
titles from Marvel, DC, Paramount, Malibu, etc. plus what appeared to be a complete run of the short-lived TekWorld
series by one William Shatner. Only problem was that without a list, it meant sitting down and sifting through what seemed at least 400 comics.
About 50 minutes passed before striking paydirt. It may seem quite a long time for a relatively low number of comics, but a vast chunk of titles appear to have been salvaged from a flood and were stuck together. Without a trusty knife, it meant having to rip them apart with my bare hands et la Galvatron
to not only figure out what issue was what, but also who contributed in the credit boxes.
From what I could gather, taking pole position were later DC issues (60-80 if memory serves me well) and nearly the entire Malibu DS9 run. It was tempting for me to purchase the lot, though budgetry restraints meant only a select number could be picked up. Tip:
Don't let me loose in a comic book store. Chances are it will be 2-minute noodles again for a number of nights.
What you see above is the fruit of my labours. A near-complete set of Malibu's Deep Space Nine
adaptation. Only missing issues #2-4 and #28-32, but I'm confident they will be found eventually should I wish to persue collecting the set. Not to mention all those one-shots, spin-off's, mini-series, and crossovers.
In the end, 25 issues were bought instead of the few with Ken credited. Reasoning behind this was for me to learn what the heck was going on without resorting to online write-up's, especially when dealing with a topic such as this. It seemed a wiser investment to read from the first issue rather than dive into the deep end and expect to swim.
Which brings us back to:
Anyone who's done the research and checked out the Star Trek
page on this website will know Ken got a chance to work on three more books: "Mission of Mercy" "Last Remains"
, plus "Blood and Honor"
with the late Mark Lenard. Never did I think it would be possible to find any of his work without having to import them. But it seems to have been considered otherwise. Not to mention these being the last official published contribution he made to Star Trek
for quite some time. Begin from the end? As 'The Living End' would sing, the ending is only the beginning repeating.
So, did I learn anything new regarding the franchise? Is Ken a dynamic artist for both Sonic
and human-based characters? And what of the other titles he worked on? All these questions will be answered... eventually!