Published by IDW Publishing, Star Trek: The Q Conflict #4 is written by Scott Tipton and David Tipton, features pencils by Silvia Califano, inks by Elisabetta D’Amico, colors by Alexandra Alexakis and is lettered by Neil Uyetake. Issue four puts us half way through this six-issue miniseries that has come to be an intra-franchise crossover like no other.
The second event of the competition that the dastardly Q has put on has come to a close. Our Star Trek captains and their crew dispatched the Planet Killer with Picard’s team landing the final blow. With Janeway/Metron and Picard/Q with one win a piece, our heroes now find themselves with in a break in the action. In the previous issue, the captains and the trio of god-like beings were starting to conspire against Q but were just waiting for the right moment to strike.
To this point, the opportunity has eluded them. Even Guinan in all of her wisdom and experience advises caution. We have seen Guinan be one of the only characters in the Star Trek franchise to instill some semblance of fear in Q during Star Trek: The Next Generation episodes Q-Who and Deja Q. If she is wary, so must our heroes.
Q lays out the next challenge for the teams. Teleporting all participants to the Deep Space Nine station, fans of the namesake series will recognize the wormhole that is home to the Prophets. For the uninitiated, the Prophets are thought to be godlike beings that Captain Sisko has many dealings with throughout the series. Housed inside of a wormhole, their existence is mysterious. However, their displays of power are equivalent to way we have seen from Q and the other godlike beings in the Star Trek franchise.
Q, in all of his arrogance, is unimpressed with the Prophets. While Trelane, Ayleborne, and Metron opted to participate in the competition to decide the fate of the universe, the Prophets declined. Q believes that the Prophets are unworthy to put in the same category of godship. However, their reclusivity has made them difficulty to truly gauge the extent of their abilities. Q tasks our captains to provoke the Prophets out of hiding.
Captain Sisko who was deemed the Emissary of the Prophets has seen their powers first hand. Despite his objections, the contest continues as the Starfleet officers have little choice to deny Q’s wishes. Luckily, each team has a member from the Deep Space Nine station. This allows each of the four crews to devise their own unique way of contacting the Prophets. While their approaches are different, they all feel the same arier of caution when dealing with the Prophets.
The rest of The Q Conflict #4 follows each team carrying out their plans. While Q maintains that he can handle the Prophets as he has handled other godlike beings, the trio of Trelane, Ayleborne, and Metron are not convinced. The discourse between the beings ranks coupled with the unpredictableness of the Prophets may be the opening that our heroes are waiting for.
In my review of issue three, I was slightly disappointed with the ending of the issue. It was more than predictable and the magic of the unknown that I have come to love about the series was relatively nonexistent. Issue four fixes those problems and then some. The addition of the Prophets adds a layer that makes the outcomes of this issues and the ones to follow unknown. Little is known about the Prophets in the Deep Space Nine series, so it is entirely possible that their presence could hurt or benefit our heroes.
I am continually blown away by the character interactions that I would never dreamed of experiencing. The crews approaches to reach the Prophets fits their characters accurately which further shows the writer’s commitment to creating a story that makes sense in the craziness that is a intra-franchise crossover.
Further, the art in the issue may be my favorite of the series so far. The colors and imagery surrounding the wormhole and the Prophets is better than what we see in the Deep Space Nine series. The creative freedom that a comic provides allows the art to come to life in a way that would have been difficult for television to create in the early 90s.
The wait from issue to issue is a long one. However, Star Trek: The Q Conflict #4 has made the wait more than worth it. I am excited to see what the team at IDW Publishing throws at us next. We are building to the climax of the series and I am on the edge of my captain’s chair.
Star Trek: The Q Conflict #4
The wait from issue to issue is a long one. However, Star Trek: The Q Conflict #4 has made the wait more than worth it.