Phoenix Comicon 2013 Fancy Sketches Part 1

The Phoenix Phancy Bastards had some excellent sketch requests this year. Here’s part 1 of a 2 part collection of my favorites. Looks like Gallifrey Comicon might not be too far away since we just discovered Gallifrey.

COMMENTERS: Speaking of Gallifrey Comicon, in what fictional geek genre place would you like to see a comic convention held? What are the panels, the events, etc? Who are the speakers?

Comments (14)

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If anyone wants the original Josh “Powergirl” black and white art, it’s for sale. $30 shipped in the USA.

4 replies · active 107 weeks ago

Scott's avatar

Scott · 107 weeks ago

I’d love to get the Josh Powergirl piece. How to get it?
Paypal $30 (if you’re in the US) to store at hijinksensue dot com and include your mailing address. Also let me know if I should sign it to anyone.


Scott's avatar

Scott · 107 weeks ago

Will do, thanks
Scott's avatar

Scott · 107 weeks ago

I don’t see a direct link form that piece, so will “donate” $30 and mention inthe comments what it’s for and where to send it. Thanks!
Bryce's avatar

Bryce · 107 weeks ago

Moria could be an epic convention hall once they cleaned the place up.
Adwxxx's avatar

Adwxxx · 107 weeks ago

lou's avatar

lou · 107 weeks ago

I can see Coruscant hosting a Con, since a planet-covering city just HAS to have a totally bitching convention center. Then again, organizing something that size would be a nightmare.
Candace's avatar

Candace · 107 weeks ago

Love the Captain Jacks and the Josh!
…is that the temporal dimensional pod from 7 Days?
Charles Foster Kane's avatar

Charles Foster Kane · 107 weeks ago

So I guess Benedict Cumberbatch plays Khan in the new Star Trek movie? I’m seeing Star Trek tonight because it didn’t open sooner in my country, so that kind of spoils it for me 🙁

1 reply · active 100 weeks ago

Yeah, don’t go to geeky American websites until you’ve seen it.
Andy's avatar

Andy · 107 weeks ago

If you would make a fancy, weathered-looking print of the Vitruvian Zuul, I would be so happy (and pay you moneystuff for it).

Into Dickness


David and I will be at booth 243, NOT 1749 and NOT by the LEGOs. Come in the main entrance, hang a left and head to the back corner. Here’s a photo of David peeking over a handy map.

COME SEE ME AND DAVID IN PHOENIX THIS WEEKEND, APRIL 23-26! BOOTH 1749 way in the back by the LEGOs! BOOTH 243! More details HERE


Check out the winners of the Fancy Fan Art Contest RIGHT HERE.






Over the last several months I had done a very thorough job of avoiding all Star Trek Into Darkness spoilers. I was planning to go into the theater NOT knowing whether or not Khan was the villain. Then, at the very last possible moment, a random Internet headline spoiled the secret identity of Cumberbatch’s character for me. It really wasn’t that big of a deal. I mean the movie gives his secret away in the first 25 minutes or so. The thing I was in no way prepared for (similar to the Mandarin reveal in Iron Man 3) was that Into Darkness is an alternate timeline reboot of Wrath Of Khan. It just is. Don’t argue with me. There aren’t just a few parallels and nods here and there. It IS Wrath of Khan, told from the perspective of the new timeline established in Star Trek (2009). Also, it is fantastic.

I will admit that a couple of the “let’s tie this into Star Trek 2 or other Trek canon” moments were (almost) cringe worthy. Spock yelling, “KHAAAAAN!” was certainly at the top of that list. The rest, however, I found entirely delightful. When old Spock said they had defeated their Khan, “at great cost,” I actually clenched my fist and looked at my wife with this dopey grin that screamed, “I CAN’T WAIT TO TELL YOU WHAT HE’S TALKING ABOUT WHEN THIS IS OVER!” When Kirk was in the radioactive chamber and he and Spock went in for a SciFive, I was audibly chanting, “SAY THE LINE, SAY THE LINE!” He totally said it, and it was awesome.

Other things that were badass: The Klingons, the idea that this is the Federation BEFORE it becomes Earth’s military and that it serves more of a NASA role at this time and how that is inevitably going to change, the idea that Admiral Robocop is essentially right about the impending war and the need to fortify Earth’s defenses despite being a despotic, mass murdering mad man, BENEDICT MOTHER FUCKING CUMBERBATCH, Benedict Cumberbatch’s voice, every line Cumberbatch delivers, BENEDICT MOTHER FU… you get the idea, how Spock has grown since the first film and getting to see the emotional side of him, how he deals with his emotions and how is reacts when he can’t deal with them, how it finally makes sense (by the end of the film) for Kirk to be a captain (this is a MUCH LONGER discussion, but I think the ONLY reason Kirk was made captain in the first film was in service to the expectation that the movie have a guy named Captain Kirk. He was certainly a brave, intelligent and heroic man, but in NO WAY was he a leader or able to accept the responsibility of taking care of all of the lives on a ship. By the end of Into Darkness, he’s earned it.), and pretty much every moment Scotty is on screen.

Things that were less badass: Not enough Sulu (seriously I think he had just that one line), too much “Everyone changes jobs and ranks and quits and is rehired and whatever” in this one (there was enough of that in the last one), Peter Weller (Admiral Robocop) already played a Starfleet officer with designs on being a warlord in an episode of Enterprise WHICH ISN’T CANON SHUT UP IT ISN’T SO WHY AM I COMPLAINING?!, the unrealistic stupidity of the security guard on Admiral Robocop’s ship that finds Scotty, and the “We need to get on the GIGANTIC, WAY MORE POWERFUL THAN OUR SHIP” ship to stop the big bad plot that seems incredibly familiar to the first film.

All of that said, I can HIGHLY recommend this movie to anyone who isn’t necessarily a Star Trek fan but enjoyed the first film and appreciates a good scifi action movie, AND to Star Trek fans who enjoyed the first film as well. If you hated Star Trek (2009) then you will hate Into Darkness for the same reasons. It’s not as cerebral or philosophical as any of the series or most of the TOS and TNG movies (which I think is a positive, since it makes a lot more sense to explore the really heady stuff in hour long snippets over the course of a 24 episode season that it does to spend 2 hours in a theater on space metaphors for race relations and equality), and it isn’t as inaccessible to the masses as some nerds would probably prefer it to be. Regular people can enjoy this movie, which will certainly piss off some hardest of core fans.

I don’t love J.J.’s Star Trek in the same way that I love classic Star Trek or even for the same reasons, but I do love it. At this point I consider it to be a very high budget fan fiction that just so happens to entirely enjoyable and present fans with at least 10 reasons to love it for every 1 reason to groan or complain. I really hope after Star Trek 3, J.J. opens up the door for a new series set in his Trek universe. Even something set in the TNG timeframe of his timeline would be fantastic.

Oh, and one more thing about Cumberbatch and his voice and his charisma and his whole deal… set panties to melt.

COMMENTERS: I wrote a lot of opinions up there. Tell me what you think about them or what you think about Into Darkness in general. Spoilers are cool for this thread so be warned:


Comments (76)

I loved that tribble scene, because it totally was for shits and giggles.

While somewhat established in the film, I think the best establishment for the technical brilliance of Khan was in TOS, the episode where they find him and his family. If that were still relevant, I would buy the part where the Admiral forced him to design a starship.

Candace's avatar

Candace· 106 weeks ago

Yeah, Khan and his crew figured out in short order how to take over the Enterprise in TOS, so I considered that precedent for Khan being able to look at Federation starship tech and figure out how to improve it.

I also enjoyed the tribble scene, and think McCoy’s resurrection of Kirk is great because it now allows Dr. MCCoy to add yet another miracle to his resume. 🙂

I think Kirk normally Kirk would have allowed Scotty to open one of the torpedoes, but he had just been spanked. OTOH, he had seemed unrepentant at the time, so @Cyrankoss might have called that one right.

I also thought Kirk was acting un-Kirk-like with Scotty and the torpedoes… but I figured they wrote it that way on purpose. I mean, everybody’s yelling at him telling him this is a stupid mission, and he just lost his one father figure and is a bit unhinged. His acting out-of-character and the firing of Scotty and dismissal of Bones’ and Spock’s concerns all contribute to the feeling of “this is wrong no stop it this is not right” that I thought was very effective at that point in the movie.
I only saw Wrath of Khan for the first time a year or so ago and it wasn’t that great. That is – it wasn’t that great as ‘a film’. As ‘a Star Trek film’ it was brilliant, but that’s because there are so many bad Trek films and so few good ones.

I saw Into Darkness with a group of friends of varying orders of geekitude. Of the 5 of us I was the 3rd most geeky. The 2 major nerds were torn throughout the film between enjoying seeing something bright and shiny involving Cumberbatch and Star Trek and apoplexy about the lack of Roddenberry-esque soul.

That said, we all loved the film.

I wanted more Karl Urban – for science reasons – but it was a fun movie. It aint art, but none of the Trek movies are. Few movies are. And art movies aren’t necessarily enjoyable movies (cough*TreeOfLife*Cough).

What shits on my whiskers is when people argue that brand X is better because its more philosophical. More philosophy doesn’t make something better, especially if its piss poor philosophy. When I watched Khan it was because my friends wouldn’t shut up about how deep and thought provoking it was. “Its like a meditation on man’s place in the cosmos and the nature of friendship as a catalyst for change.” Sure, it is. Here’s some first-year Aristotle; read that and then we’ll talk philosophy. Khan is the finest of original Trek, but nostalgia is what makes it taste so good.

Anyway, I’m hoping Nu-Trek III just fucks with everyone by introducing a transgendered French cyborg time-traveller named Jean-Lucy Picard…

4 replies · active 106 weeks ago

And I just realised that there’s a chance Wil Wheaton may read what I wrote. I can’t handle that level of meta.

I’m not sure if I should perform an act of penance now or wait until instructed.

Suggestions for acts of penance anybody?

Eh…in the new canon, Singh appears to be a mastermind villain; superweapon and all.

In the old canon, Singh was a brilliant warlord, trained in the tactics of the most famous conquerors in his history. He displays this in the series (where he’s established and quickly learns to suborn starships), as well as in the movie.

There was drama and suspense. There was spectacle, but it made sense for the plot. It probably is nostalgia, but I would much prefer the SFX from that movie to this one…because not once did I feel ANY suspense in this flick.

Matt's avatar

Matt· 106 weeks ago

At every point in WoK you understood why everyone was doing what they were doing and how they felt about it.

It sounds so basic, but I can’t say the same for STID.

I can. The motivations were pretty clear to me, but that didn’t help me enjoy it much more.

I would have to see Wrath of Khan again (like I need an excuse), but nostalgia tells me they did it better in WoK.

I also had a blast. If I have any complaint, it’s that we could have used less time spent on people hanging from ledges and more time explaining who Khan was in the past. The guy should be as recognizable as Hitler, but nobody knew who he was. I mean, we did, but we have the benefit of three hours of previous screen time with him.

I had no problem with Khan being able to design advanced weapons, as I see some other silly people do. Give him an hour with a technical manual to catch up, and he’ll then surpass you. Because he’s better. At everything.

And can we just have Uhuru speaking Klingon all the time, if ya know what I’m sayin?

3 replies · active 106 weeks ago

Kirby's avatar

Kirby· 106 weeks ago

Not to mention, as they say several times, they live in a time of peace and exploration. Khan came from a time where technology meant trying to blow the **** out of each other.

The Hitler thing could kind of be explained by it being 300 years ago that he was around, during a part of history that Humanity is largely trying to ignore/cover up. I mean, I don’t know if I can think of many historical figures from 1713 that I’d recognize right off the bat… or at all.

Besides, he’s got a common last name. Unless Data’s creator’s a direct descendant or something… which would make an interesting movie on its own.

(side note: Tom Hiddleston for Data reboot. Seriously.)

You just blew my mind. I never made that connection.

Anyway, the andriod kept throwing me off balance. I did, however, like how the aliens were just part of the crew and not spectacles for the camera.

I agree with you entirely. I get that hanging off ledges is supposed to be a running gag, but there could have been a little less… running time.
Adwxx's avatar

Adwxx· 106 weeks ago

God damn it JJ, try and get the a little of the fake science right. Just call it a super conducting absolute zero bomb.
old_pines's avatar

old_pines· 106 weeks ago

Thank you.

Thank you for giving a well-reasoned, balanced review. The fact that it exactly mirrors my feelings about the movie notwithstanding, I appreciate that you were able to reflect upon the movie without obsessing over Trek canon. Too many other reviewers have tried to measure the movie off of the classic serieses (precious) and forget that each awesome movie and episode was built on the backs of previous episodes/series/movies that this new franchise simply does not have.

The trek reboot has to take into account that Kirk isn’t the strong, willful product of a Star Fleet officer who groomed him for leadership. In this timeline, Kirk’s dad was killed by dimension-jumping psycho Romulans and he is naturally still having problems because of it. The events of TOS haven’t happened and can only happen now within the context of the new time structure.

I couldn’t buy into Chekov as engineering chief and I agree that Sulu could well have played a bigger part. Ignoring the unfortunate “KHAAAAAAN”, I think the character development for Spock is fantastic. Kiel’s growth is believable. Khan….

Ok, all apologies to my wife, but I wouldn’t turn down a three-way with Benedict Cumberbatch and Ian McKellan. Mmmm. That said, Khan in this movie made me believe that this small group were actually genetically-crafted superwarriors. Khan and gang from TOS and WoK did not sell that fact. Especially his cronies. Leaving them out of it in this movie and focusing on one psychotic superman was the right call.

I can’t wait to see the next installment. I want to go there, boldly.

1 · active 106 weeks ago

Candace's avatar

Candace· 106 weeks ago

Yeah, I was like, “Why is Chekov Scotty’s understudy?” It was kind of weird.
old_pines's avatar

old_pines· 106 weeks ago

Also, how interesting would it be if the universe of the new timeline was the mirror universe from DS9?

3 replies · active 106 weeks ago

I might hold out for that. Maybe.
Bryce's avatar

Bryce· 106 weeks ago

You mean the mirror universe from TOS. DS9 grabbed the same universe and ran it into the future.
BowtiesAreCool's avatar

BowtiesAreCool· 106 weeks ago

Nerd Text to Follow: I don’t think that makes sense. It’s still the Federation. The mirror universe started thousands of years ago going the wrong way. (We know this because of Mirror Doctor Phlox reading the “great works of literature” from our Universe, saying they were “less agressive”. Except Shakespeare. Mirror = Aggressive and morally-eroded.

But seeing the mirror universe and Kirk being a bigger better badass would be very cool!

Malady's avatar

Malady· 106 weeks ago

The one thought stuck in my head is “What if we get a TNG reboot in another decade or so?”
I was so wanting Wesley Crusher to show up on the bridge of the Killerprise, put his hands on his hips, and say “Robocop!”

This movie so actively avoids making sense, that I wonder if Lindelof did it on purpose. Or, was his carefully crafted script hacked apart and stitched back together specifically to service the action/effects scenes? Based on Lost, I’m guessing the former.

And yet, I enjoyed the movie. Part of this is that I LONG ago gave up on Star Trek making sense. There have been precious few tightly scripted Trek episodes, and no movies. The whole damn premise is a plot hole. So, I went in expecting big effects, a difficult moral choice, a bunch of fan service, and some awesome Cumberbatch. That’s pretty much exactly what I got, plus some really good Kirk/Spock moments.

1 · active 106 weeks ago

Matt's avatar

Matt· 106 weeks ago

Knowing Roberto Orci, I wouldn’t be surprised if the script initially had a lot of false flag/9.11 was an inside job nonsense that got taken out relatively late in the production (because it was stupid and potentially offensive) and left everything really muddled.

It would certainly explain why Khanberbatch’s and Adm. Robocop’s plans were so aligned early in the move.

Candace's avatar

Candace· 106 weeks ago

Yeah, that kind of took me out of the movie a bit.
Twistednic's avatar

Twistednic· 105 weeks ago

Remember though, they didn’t have the correct codes to open the others. Bones said that had they tried there was no telling how well they may/ may not have defrosted. Lame but at least they acknowledged it
Also, I was thinking that maybe not all of them are superpersons in the exact same way. For all they/we know, Khan is the only one with the healey blood.
I liked it. I thought it was refreshing to see Khan actually doing things that a normal hu-mon would be incapable of. Too often in the past, Trek would hold back on showing characters with superhuman physical attributes actually demonstrating said attributes. But BC’s Khan, Spock, and Nero from the last film all showed their superhuman traits quite well. And the voice… holy shit, it’s like if young Alan Rickman was a Kryptonian Terminator from Hell.
The retelling of WoK was cool. The brief team up, the Kirk/Spock flip, the KHAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAN! moment. All awesome. And I think Spock’s yell actually makes sense. In Amok Time, we saw that Spock is capable of losing his Vulcan control (“JIM! Er um, I mean I’m not emotional, shut up!”), but there’s another thing that occurs to me about this scene: As a Vulcan, I’m guessing that Spock usually restrains his physical strength (for much the same reason Spider-Man does). But he knows that Khan is too strong to pull punches against, the stakes are too high, and Khan is not deserving of that consideration. So Spock, at that moment, seems to me to have made a decision to unleash himself. To Khansciously release his self Khantrol. To basically become a Romulan, ruled by his passions instead of logic.
The fight afterward bears this out. Spock is a badass, he is pissed off. He is Spock at 11.

Regarding needing Khan alive: yeah McCoy could probably save Kirk with dead Khan blood, or with one of the popcicles. but the odds would be lowered. Fresh blood, obviously is better than older blood. And it’s possible that the popcicles’ blood would only be workable if they get revived right. So yeah, Bones probably could have saved Kirk with a popcicle or blood drawn from a dead Khan. But he’s not about to take that chance.
Really the one thing that perplexed me about this was the bit where he’s experimenting on a tribble. Superhuman blood fixing an alien? But then I remembered the TNG episode where it’s revealed that all the major races are from the same space seed and maybe some of the animals were also seeded thusly.

1 · active 106 weeks ago

I like your explanations, especially the one about Spock consciously deciding to be rage-ful. Much more exciting that way!
On the whole, I guess I agree with your views. Although, I was in a rather poor mood, and so did not appreciate quite as many of the “tie-ins” as you did, Joel.

In the end, I said the same thing as I said at the end of the last one:

“It was a good movie, but a mediocre Star Trek movie.”

I was wrong, though. I’m upgrading this one to “ok” status, due to the exploration of the concept of a Star Fleet before it became a true military organization (despite the name).

However, too little was established in the new canon. You pretty much have to accept a ton of stuff from the old canon in order to appreciate the new Star Trek, like the poorly-established Vulcan strength, and also the Kolinahr (which they’ve tried establishing for two movies, and…well…Spock keeps breaking it). Also, I’m really, really bored of the “falling through space to the tiny target” gimmick. Every time I see it, I think of that Dead Space trailer, and wonder why I’m not playing that game instead. It looks pretty awesome.

It had good fight scenes, great explosions and decompression, some character development, and attempted to recapture the exploration of ideas of the original movies. It was an ok Star Trek movie.

4 replies · active 106 weeks ago

Candace's avatar

Candace· 106 weeks ago

I may be mistaken here, but I don’t think either version of Spock ever actually completed the Kolinahr.
It is quite true! I couldn’t remember the name of the actual practice of repressing emotions, so I used a sub-optimal word that really didn’t mean what I wished for it to mean.
In that case, I agree with you. I think there wasn’t enough of a chance to establish a baseline of Spock-never-reacts-to-things-emotionally for all the emotional reacting he’s been doing to have the impact it should.
Bryce's avatar

Bryce· 106 weeks ago

So Spock is the only survivor of the true timeline and is this sage mentor character. AltSpock gets to kiss Uhura, yell KHAAAAAAAAN, is generally more of a dynamic character than PrimeSpock, and Kirk dies (but gets better)?

This entire universe is PrimeSpock writing fanfiction about himself.

1 · active 105 weeks ago

“This entire universe is PrimeSpock writing fanfiction about himself.” – this is the best bit of criticism of the JJ-verse I’ve seen.

I’ve quoted it, with attribution, in my review of the movie at

Citizen Alan's avatar

Citizen Alan· 106 weeks ago

Cumberbatch was awesome, but was there any explanation of how a Sikh Indian, previously played by a Mexican, is now the Whitest Man In the World.

2 replies · active 105 weeks ago

Which just makes it all the suckier that they made him SO WHITE. Cause, you know, white people are the utter epitome of the human race… [eyeroll]. I’m not as bugged by it as most of my friends were, but I see why they make the criticism.
Nevest's avatar

Nevest· 106 weeks ago

I really didn’t like the first movie. Way too many illogical plot holes, just pulled me out of it and made it unenjoyable. The second movie was fantastic. Everything fit, everything made sense and flowed. Very enjoyable.
Liam's avatar

Liam· 106 weeks ago

Another actor playing Khan who isn’t Indian? At least this time they got an actor from a country that has some history with India.
In regards to Peter Weller already appearing on Enterprise, I think it’s GOOD they’re keeping up the Star Trek tradition of reusing actors from previous movies/series’. (COUGHDavidWarnerCOUGH)

2 replies · active 100 weeks ago

Am I wrong, or was that Tony Todd playing the one demasked Klingon. He was Worf’s brother Kurn (Kern?) and at least one other Klingon.
firstfallen's avatar

firstfallen· 100 weeks ago

He was Kurn. IMDB says he wasn’t in STID, but I remember him as adult Jake Sisko from DS9 :P. Also apparently Alpha Hirogen in a Voyager episode!
StephC's avatar

StephC· 106 weeks ago

Am I the only one who wasn’t surprised by the reveal of the true Mandarin in Iron Man 3? I wasn’t expecting Trevor to be so hilariously strung out, but the fact that Killian was the mastermind? Called it after Tony left him waiting on the roof. And the fact that Cumberbatch is Kahn wasn’t a shock either. If you’re going for a Big Bad Baddie, Kahn’s an obvious choice.

3 replies · active 97 weeks ago

Bryce's avatar

Bryce· 106 weeks ago

Yeah, I was spoiled (in a thread about the original WoK, the day before ID came out, and the guy had the audacity to say “what, I said ‘spoilers’,” as if we’d know what movie he was spoiling) but it’s not really a surprise. They were doing so much denial that he was Khan that he was at LEAST going to be a Khan-with-serial-numbers-filed-off.
I was shocked by the Mandarin thing just because of how it defies the role of the character in the comics. I didn’t hate it. I thought it was pretty clever for movie continuity, but I did think Kingsley laid it on a little thick.

I thought BC was Khan from moment one but then they started the whole “SHUT UP YOU IDIOTS HE’S TOTALLY NOT KHAN!” campaign.

I was SO DISAPPOINTED when they revealed the Mandarin. They had been building to it since the beginning of the first movie and the terrorists who belonged to “the Ten Rings.”
I was ready for some real magic vs tech throwdown, and, in a perfect world, Fin Fang Foom. Instead it was just a pothead actor. What a waste of potential awesomeness.
Candace's avatar

Candace· 106 weeks ago

As a dyed-in-the-wool Trekkie who grew up on TOS, I enjoyed the film, although there were a couple of plot holes other commenters have already mentioned above which took me out of the movie. That being said, TOS episodes *never* had plot holes. (Said wryly.)

It didn’t bother me that Peter Weller was used again in a similar role. TOS re-used actors for different roles a couple of times, too, so there is precedent. (I guess they thought no one would notice?!?)

As far as the underuse of Sulu, to be fair, he was actually a supporting character in TOS, who did not appear in every episode. That being said, he and Chekov were my favorite characters when I was growing up, although that was primarily because I had crushes on George Takei and Walter Koenig. OTOH, he did get to be awesome for a bit while Acting Captain.

1 · active 106 weeks ago

I would have loved at least one “OH MYYYY,” when he sat in the big chair.
I really enjoyed the movie but yeah, it’s not the same as the old Star Trek. The old Trek had a greater emphasis on the details and continuity. You can’t really nitpick the Abrams Trek the same way you can nitpick the old Trek. The dialogue, action, acting, and effects were all great but the plot was probably on the level of a Voyager or Enterprise episode.

Regardless, I still wished the movie had been a bit slower and more subtle. The old Section 31 used elaborate secret plans filled with political manipulations, lies, and betrayals. It kind of sucks how they’ve been turned into a bunch of dumb warmongers who barely even try to hide their existence. Also, I wish there had been a greater focus on Khan’s intellect and charisma rather than his physical strength.

Orion M's avatar

Orion M· 106 weeks ago

I was mostly very happy with it.

But yeah, not even Zachary Quinto could keep a straight face through Spock yelling KHAAAAAAAAN! The whole theatre was laughing uncontrollably. Possibly because it was the Cinnebarre and they serve all the boozes, but still.

Benedict Cumberbatch sold Khan to me as measured and superior in a way Ricardo Montalban never did. I’ve seen basically the gamut of Trek, and for all I was told it was The Awesome Special Sauce, I never cared much for Wrath of Khan. I felt that Khan in ST2 showed severe devolution from his remarkably well-crafted appearance in TOS. He wasn’t brilliant or deadly or even particularly dangerous.

(And the Space Magic that resurrects Spock is no less ridiculous than the Space Magic that resurrects Kirk. More ridiculous, actually. But Star Trek has always been about ridiculous Space Magic, so I forgive them both on that count.)

Anyway, I don’t agree that it’s entirely 100% a reboot of ST2 – it’s the main story threads of ST2 and The Undiscovered Country rolled into one, with some name-drops of things from DS9 and TOS to establish background flavor. It’s my hope that Section 31 gets some more love in Trek 3.

On a completely unrelated note, if I ever work with Benedict Cumberbatch, I will only ever call him by his full name. “Would you like some more coffee, Benedict Cumberbatch?” “Strange weather today, isn’t it, Benedict Cumberbatch?” “You make a very good point, Benedict Cumberbatch!” “My good friend Benedict Cumberbatch is an excellent actor. Oh, Benedict Cumberbatch, I was just talking about you!”

I’m sure he’d deck me after like half an hour, but that would be totally worth it. I mean, how many people get punched by Benedict Cumberbatch?

Saw it again tonight and thought of a couple more things I would have added to my review. I LOVED the inclusion of Section 31 from the DS9 Canon. Considering how Section 31 is never fully understood in DS9 or even an official part of Starfleet, they could totally be hopping over from the Abrams continuity into the Berman/Moore-verse.

Does Carol Marcus change her name to Carol Marius at the end, or does Kirk just say her name weird when he welcomes her back on the ship?

I totally blanked on the fact that when the dad at the beginning goes to work at the “archive,” that he walked right past the missiles and a bunch of non-archive weapons manufacturing equipment. Also that the archive was named the “Kelvin Memorial Archive.”

I missed the reference to “the Mudd incident” the first time through.

Right when Bones looks on in disbelief at Kirk’s dead body, my friend Rob goes, “You’re dead, Jim,” and I lost my shit.

6 replies · active 104 weeks ago

OH! And the model of the Phoenix on Marcus’s desk. That was an additional bit of badassery.
Nice list of easter eggs here:…

I was a little disappointed that Bones didn’t tell Kirk that he had only been “mostly dead”, because Princess Bride references rock 😉

The Unknown FB's avatar

The Unknown FB· 105 weeks ago

They (Lindelhoff, et al) also wrote another prequel comic for this movie, like they did the ’09 one, which has a good deal of set up for this movie, along with a nice backstory to another captain of the Enterprise.
They kind of missed the point of Section 31. It’s supposed to be a super secret organization that almost no one knows exists. Its methods are supposed to be almost impossible to track. Most importantly, people are supposed to be surprised and appalled by its existence. The very idea that something so antithetical to what the Federation stands for can exist within the very heart of Starfleet is supposed to be extremely controversial and hard for people to believe. It’s kind of like learning that your nice friendly neighbor who gets along with everyone and is a pillar of the community turned out to be a mafia hitman.
Bryce's avatar

Bryce· 105 weeks ago

While Kirk was hot on the revenge warpath when he was told about it, the reactions of everyone else on the Enterprise to the torpedoes seems to be about what you wanted. I loved that Scotty put his foot down and they actually carried that through to the repercussions, even if it was to get him in place to come back into the picture in Act 2/3. Chekhov’s look upon his “promotion” was both a meta “oh crap I’m putting on a red shirt” and an “oh crap I need to keep this ship running.”
Yes, I found a lot of the music cues too intrusive/instructive. For example, when Kirk is trying to kick the warp core into place. It takes forever, which is great for suspense, but you know EXACTLY the kick when it’s going to start working again because the music SUDDENLY CRESCENDOES before he kicks it. Which kind of momentarily ruins all the suspense they were trying to build.

This is not a subtle movie.

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The Unknown FB· 105 weeks ago

I’m just glad to know that kicking things to get them to work is still a valid repair technique, even into the 23rd century.
I am very glad you liked it! The fan community that I’m a member of that sprang up around the 2009 movie has been… less than supportive. I guess the first time around people would only join if they’d liked the movie, and now everyone’s been hanging around for four years waiting and there’s no guarantee they’ll like it.

I enjoyed it. On second watching I found the plot holes and glaring inconsistencies more bothersome, but I still love most of the character beats and all the funny quips. And I really loved the first part of the plot where Kirk loses his captaincy because yes, he is an irresponsible ass at that point. I think a lot of things about the movie were very well done.

And Benedict Cumberbatch… I believe I am permanently melted into a puddle of goo about that man. Between my recent re-watching of Sherlock and then seeing STID twice, I just can’t stand what an excellent actor he is.

It was… enjoyable on the whole, I suppose. But there were just too many moments that utterly killed the tension and/or pacing for me. One in particular really just ruined the rest of the movie for me; The scene where Kirk “dies” has NO WEIGHT WHATSOEVER, because of poorly delivered, heavy-handed foreshadowing about magical anti-death-blood. The premise is… silly, but forgivable, BUT I literally spent the entire scene between Kirk and Spock at the radiation shield screaming in my head, “SHUT UP, HE’S GOING TO BE FINE”.

There are a million little details that bug me, but those can be overlooked in service of the story. Sort of. But a major point of dramatic tension being ruined by sloppy writing is a serious no-no. (I mean, we knew Kirk wasn’t staying dead, but there was NO MYSTERY AT ALL COME ON.)

I love J.J.’s alt universe as long as I keep reminding myself that he is rebooting the franchise. Frankly, anyone who wanted this movie to be a remake of Wrath of Kahn or “Space Seed,” the episode where you actually find out everything about Kahn, is an idiot in my opinion. I’ve heard it screamed on forums that Cumberbatch is great, but he didn’t get to be KAHN in the sacrosanct, undiluted, original series way they wanted, but you know what? Cumberbatch can walk over my cold corpse any day (feel free to interpret that anyway you want to) and his Kahn is just as compelling as Montalban’s. I don’t want to sit through a remake of the Wrath of Kahn. I want new, fresh material, and new takes on the most frightening villains and that is exactly what J.J. gave me.
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Rev-e· 105 weeks ago

I was thinking that the old school original timeline movies made more of a point about taking on big-picture real world issues…then I remembered starfleet authorizing a drone strike on someone else’s sovereign territory to take out a terrorist and got the point.
Spot on review. Well done Joel. Big ups.
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manbeardman· 105 weeks ago

i just saw it last night and …….. meh i couldnt get into it i think cause i loved the original wrath of khan so much still a good movie
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Chaucer59· 99 weeks ago

I hated Chekhov in the original series, and I hate that JJ brought Jim back–and WAAAAAAAYYYY too early in the first movie. All the crew were seasoned veterans in TOS compared to Chekhov. Why do we need a cheesy Russian accent? I was thrilled in the beginning of Star Trek II when they infected Chekhov with that brain slug that was SUPPOSED to be fatal, but then they miraculously saved him at the end. Of course, I was the rare exception to all the Star Trek geeks at the time Wrath of Khan came out–I hated what they did with Khan. In the original story, Khan was a powerful farkin’ genius–a truly remarkable opponent. In Wrath of Khan he was a raving whack-job who they defeated because he got a case of the dumb and forgot that space is three-dimensional. COME ON, that wasn’t Khan–that was Khan’s crazy, Alzheimer’s-addled uncle Bernie Noonien Singh.
My wife and I, for the next several days, found an astounding number of opportunities to say: “YOU SHOULD HAVE LET ME SLEEP.”

For Every Action There Is A Redaction

CRUISE FUNDRAISER UPDATE: 98/100 prints are sold!  Only 2 prints remain! I am expecting delivery of the prints any day now and they’ll start shipping as soon as they arrive.

I made a new eBook/iBook! It’s called “Sorry I Ruined Your Book Vol. 1” and it has over 180 pages of HE book 1 preorder/artist edition sketches with commentary on every drawing! Donation subscribers get it free and it’s also available to anyone for a one time “pay what you like” donation.


Welcome to my life in a 24 hour geek news cycle. I remember when I was a kid and we weren’t able to know ANYTHING about movies or tv shows until we saw the trailers or commercials. Even then the message was very carefully controlled by the studios and producers. The stars never went on Carson and dished on who they beat out for the role or how many times the show runner got fired. We just took our geek media as it was presented without the burden of behind the scenes knowledge. Often times, shows I liked would get cancelled and I wouldn’t even know until it just never came back the next season. You’d read a one sentence blurb about a new Batman or Superman movie in a Wizard Magazine, and then… nothing. No idea where it went or why it never materialized. Of course, the irony of it all is that NOW you can find the answers to all of those questions online. I know exactly why Nicholas Cage was never Tim Burton’s Man Of Steel. Honestly, I’m just grateful for that one. We, as geeks, dodged a Batman & Robin ’97 sized bullet there.

I say the intimate knowledge of the inner workings of the media I choose to consume is a burden, but I really do enjoy it. I like the anticipation that it builds, and the satisfaction of being “in the know.” The burden part comes in when too much familiarity with the “sausage-making” process of geek pop culture can lead to unrealistic expectations and eventual disappointment, either from getting your hopes up too high based on 100’s of blog posts, interviews and YouTube clips, or from prejudging a project based on any of the aforementioned data distribution methods.

All in all the lowering of the barrier to information is overwhelmingly a good thing. As consumers we now have nearly as much privilege to information as would have been reserved for the people that actually worked on the projects themselves. But there was a (now lost) purity and innocence in finding out about a movie for the first time when you saw the trailer or the poster, and then not knowing anything else about it until you were in the theater 3 months later. I think it was easier to just like things back then without having to be an expert on them.


You’ve Got Me On My Knees

CRUISE FUNDRAISER: 77/100 prints are sold and I only have until Dec 15th (4 days left!) to meet my goal of selling all 100. Help me get on a nerd boat and get some neat art for yourself in the process!

DEC 12th at 12noon Pacific IS YOUR LAST CHANCE to order anything from Sharksplode before Santaween!

COMMENTERS: Let’s assume “Harrison” is a red herring. What other movie trailer red herring’s did you fall for? Or did you see through them while the rest of the Internet lost it’s collective mind?

Hey hey! You can listen to an interview I did on the Clinically Inane podcast.

Into Dorkness


CRUISE FUNDRAISER: 66/100 prints are sold and I only have until Dec 15th (8 days left!) to meet my goal of selling all 100. Help me get on a nerd boat and get some neat art for yourself in the process!

HijiNKS ENSUE JCCC3 Cruise Fundraiser print


We now live in a world that has a Star Trek: Into Darkness trailer and Benedict Cumberbatch just oozes cheekboney sex all over it. There’s a lot of speculation that he’s playing Khan. He is not. He is playing Gary Mitchell, or a at least a character based on Gary Mitchell. It wouldn’t bother me if they changed the name. The wrath of Gary is not a wrath I could see myself particularly fearing.

J.J. Abrams first Star Trek is a perfect movie. That’s just a fact. A SPACE fact, which is the realest kind of fact. Even the parts that don’t make sense make me exceedingly happy. I was never a doubter as to the potential quality of the sequel. The little 1 min snippet has gotten me ever more not… being… a doubter. I have a giant Trekboner is what I’m saying, and this trailer did nothing to diminish it.

My friend Sam is the one that originally suggested to me that Tumblr, which it’s excess infestation of Cumberkin (people that were born into a human body, but know at heart they were supposed to be born clinging to Benedict Cumberbatch’s torso like a baby marsupial) might have had a hand in the crafting of the trailer. It basically leaves out most of the actual Star Trek in favor of the Sherlock star’s soothing yet wicked voice over and asskicking leapery (or leaping asskickery). I can’t say that he’s wrong, in that this movie appears to have been crafted by and specifically for nerds. SPOILERS: It was. I love it when Hollywood panders to us and gets it totally right.

COMMENTERS: Are you as excited as me for STiD? Check your Trekboner. Hmmm… that’s PRETTY excited, but I might still have you beat. If you want a little extra POTENTIALLY SPOILERY GOODTIMES, you can watch the Japanese version of the trailer.

Don’t forget to check the thumbnail to the right of the main HE comics to see if there’s a new LoFi. I’m updating them more often now.