Sunday, March 28, 2010

Star Trek Archives V2 Best of the Borg

The graphic novel, Star Trek Archives Volume 2: The Best of the Borg, contains two Star Trek The Next Generation storylines. The first storyline, The Worst of Both Worlds, is alright though very contrived. The story is based on the episode "Best of Both Worlds". It takes up the majority of the book. The other storyline, Operation Assimilation, is awesome.

The comics that this book comprises were written back in 1993 before First Contact or Voyager's portrayal of the Borg. The first invasion by the Borg was great television (Televised not in universe). The Borg were unstoppable and they turned you into them. The Federation didn't stand a chance, a single Borg cube took out an entire fleet of ships and the Federation could not do anything to stop them. Sure the Enterprise won the battle in the end but it wasn't because of skill, abilities, or anything like that. They won because the Borg were massively over confident and the Enterprise crew had gotten extremely lucky.

In the first story the Enterprise is sent through a rift in space into a parallel universe where the Enterprise did not manage to get lucky and defeat the Borg and Captain Picard is still Locutus of Borg. The character interaction is pretty good between the two universe's crews. One universe crew has it as a desperate last stand with most of the Federation already conquered; the other crew had defeated the Borg and were confident that they could do so again. There is also an interesting sub plot involving O'brien who in this universe had his family die but did not in the main universe. The reason I say it was contrived and why I do not think the story to be as good as it maybe is, is because as I mentioned the first time they defeated the Borg was basically luck. In this story we are eventually told that it was Picard who opened the transdimensional rifts in attempt to find help. He was able to exert his will over the entire Borg Collectives mind net. I just do not like that he was able to do that. The Borg has trillions of drones all of which were unable to exert any will but he was able to do so. Sure it mentions that he could not do anything against the fail safes but still it is one guy managing to overcome what trillions failed to do. They attempted the exact same plan they used to defeat the Borg the first time. Amazingly it works, with minor modification. Sleep command doesn't but telling them to eat does. Evidently if all the Borg connect to the power sources at the same time it drains the ships systems to the point that they fail entirely.

The second story is in Second Person format which usually is not very good. It is difficult to write stories in second person (you, you're, and your) and most are bad. That said it is an excellent story. This story is about a Romulan commander out in the boondocks who is upset with her place in things. Shows that the Romulans are in many ways similar to the Borg but the Borg are even scarier because they consume you; mind, body, and soul. This story does the Borg real justice as an unstoppable horrific force and the book is worth getting for this story alone.

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