'Star Trek' Comics See Big Changes Ahead

IDW Publishing’s line of Star Trek licensed comics is in for a bit of shakeup both in terms of releases and those working on the comics behind the scenes.

The biggest shakeup is the departure of group editor Sarah Gaydos, who is leaving IDW to take on the role of Editorial Director of Licensed Publishing at Oni Press. Gaydos has been working on IDW’s Star Trek comics since 2013 and she’s overseen such popular titles as Star Trek: Boldly Go, Starfleet Academy, Star Trek: The Next Generation - Mirror Broken, the Star Trek: Waypoint anthology, the launch of the Star Trek: Discovery comics, and the Star Trek crossovers with Green Lantern and Planet of the Apes.

John Van Citters, Vice President, Product Development at CBS Consumer Products, took to Twitter to bid Gaydos a fond farewell.

In March, John Byrne announced that he will bring his Star Trek: New Visions series to an end later this year with issue #24. New Vision uses the photonovel format to tell new stories using scenes from Star Trek: The Original Series to tell new stories with the original cast.

“Issue 24 will be my last of NEW VISIONS, at least on anything like a regular schedule,” Byrne wrote on his forum. “Paramount is allowing me to bow out with one last big itch scratched. It’s been an amazing amount of fun, but I’ve felt this coming for a while — especially since my 26 total issues equate to a full 'season'…"

At WonderCon, IDW also confirmed that Star Trek: Boldly Go #18 will be the final comic book set in the Kelvin timeline for the foreseeable future. Boldly Go was intended to bridge the gap between Star Trek Beyond and the next movie in the rebooted film series. In terms of in-universe timing, the series was set between the destruction of the Enterprise in Star Trek Beyond and the completion of the Enterprise-A that was foreshadowed in the film’s final scene, with the Enterprise crew taking on new assignments and new missions.

With Paramount’s plans for Star Trek 4 uncertain, IDW has chosen to shelve that series and focus on Star Trek: Discovery instead. Star Trek: Discovery is the first time that IDW has had an ongoing Star Trek television series to tie into, something that Kirsten Beyer, who writes for the television show and the comics, addressed at WonderCon.

“The trick with Discovery is finding where there is enough room to tell meaningful stories that aren’t going to intersect too much with the ongoing show,” Beyer said (via Trek Movie). “The serialized nature of the show means there aren’t these little corners and angles where you can jump in and write a story.”

This makes the future of Star Trek comic book line a bit unclear. IDW has been publishing Kelvin timeline comics since 2009, beginning with Countdown, a prequel to the 2009 Star Trek reboot that tied the new movie into the prime timeline. From there, an ongoing series following the reboot crew through the Kelvin timeline version of several classic Star Trek episodes followed, along with more miniseries, tie-ins to Star Trek Into Darkness, and eventually, the Boldly Go relaunch following the release of Star Trek Beyond.

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Now those Kelvin timeline comics are off the table, at least for now. Bryne’s class Trek stories will soon come to end. IDW is focusing on Discovery, but it's unclear if that will be to the exclusion of other Star Trek series. The mirror universe story that began with Star Trek: The Next Generation - Mirror Broken will continue in Star Trek: The Next Generation - Through the Mirror in May and Star Trek: The Next Generation - Terra Incognita in June. IDW’s plans for The Next Generation, or any other past Star Trek series, beyond that are unknown.

What are your thoughts about the future of Star Trek comics? Let us know in the comments!