Thursday, June 14, 2018

Star Trek: New Visions (series) by John Byrne (via Hoopla)

Star Trek: New Visions (series)
by John Byrne [available only via Hoopla] 

Back in 1977-1978, the Bantam publishing company released a series of 12 Star Trek Fotonovels, which took stills from popular episodes of the 1966-69 NBC TV series Star Trek, super-imposed text in word balloons, and basically retold the plots of those 12 episodes of Trek in a different format. These were moderately popular but never went beyond the first 12 volumes.

Star Trek: New Visions is a modern take on that, but with a serious twist. Legendary comic book artist and writer John Byrne has been a fan of Classic Trek for many years, and starting in 2014, he began a creative experiment that has been quite successful. Byrne had access to clean, sharp still images from screen captures from all 79 original Star Trek episodes, as well as the Star Trek feature films featuring the classic cast, and even the subsequent later generations of Star Trek. In Star Trek: New Visions, Byrne creates all new adventures of the Enterprise and its crew, combining still images from existing episodes with digital trickery and some new computer-generated artwork. These “new episodes” are presented in comic-book/graphic-novel format, as single issues, and have later been compiled into multi-story larger collections. Byrne opened New Visions with a two-issue sequel to the classic Trek tale, “Mirror, Mirror” (in which several Enterprise crew members are thrown into a dystopian alternate reality and have to survive long enough to make their way back to their own reality). As of 2018, 21 individual issues of New Visions have been published, and Byrne has indicated he plans to wrap up the series in just a few more issues. This is a shame, as Byrne is an excellent storyteller and definite has a good handle on these classic Trek characters — these really do feel like they could have actually been legitimate episodes of the original series.

Although the libraries don’t have physical copies of the Star Trek: New Visions volumes on our shelves, some of them are available through the graphic novels collection of our Hoopla digital offerings. If you love Classic Trek, I highly encourage you to sample New Visions…it’s the closest thing I’ve found the style and tone of the original series!

[If you enjoy this, you may also wish to try tracking done some of the highly-collectible 12 original series Star Trek Fotonovels. Our local libraries don’t own any, but you can regularly find them in used book stores, and a few are available through InterLibrary Loan from other libraries around the country.]

[ publisher’s official Star Trek: New Visions web site ] | [ official John Byrne web site ]

Recommended by Scott C.
Bennett Martin Public Library

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