Heather Antos And Ryan North’s New Star Trek One-Shot Condescendingly Shouts “Fascist!” At Readers To Lecture Them On Politics
The state of Star Trek has sunk lower than Lower Decks with the Day of Blood event tie-in comic, Shaxs’ Best Day, which places the security officer Shaxs in a senseless battle against the Klingons. Edited by the infamous Heather Antos, the book is one of the worst Star Trek comics produced to date.
The character Shaxs is known for his over-the-top, gritty fighting style, which would fit well with this video game-esque plot to get to the Defiant where he faces off against more and more dangerous Klingons, except for the character delving into real-world politics to make the story unbearable to read.
The first page reads like a wordy recap of the event itself, more of a summary page than a solid start to a one-shot comic. However, a wordy start to a comic with a thin plot isn’t the worst of what occurs in this issue.
On the book’s second page, the main character Shaxs starts ranting about “fascists” to the Klingons. “This is what happens to fascists, fascists,” he says in eye-rollingly cringe dialogue.
The Klingons protest they’re not fascists multiple times, but Shaxs makes it clear they are stand-ins for modern conservatives in America.
This isn’t the first time the Klingons have been used as monstrous versions of Republicans. In Star Trek: Discovery, the bloodthirsty, redesigned Klingons shouted a battle cry, “Remain Klingon!” which was meant to be an allegory for the catchy Trump slogan, “Make America Great Again.”
The thinly-veiled political message didn’t sit well with most fans, as Discovery has been one of the most reviled of Star Trek shows in general.
Writer Ryan North decided to make his political messaging more overt, making the odd choice of leaving little notes at the bottom of most of the pages of the comic. When Shaxs first begins his rants on fascists, North chimes in with his own voice, “If you’re a fascist, then wow have you picked the wrong comic to read! And also, transmedia franchise to enjoy. And political system to subscribe to, honestly. Just a series of bad decisions going on in your brain, huh?”
It’s clear the writer meant to chastise fans who might vote differently than him, or support right-wing politicians to the point where he warns them they have no place even watching Star Trek. Not only that, but condescending readers that they’d better agree with his politics or they’re making bad life choices is beyond arrogant. It destroys any sense of immersion in the comic, forcing readers to stop and focus on these odd notes on every page. This is the job of an editor to make sure a writer is reined in, especially when dealing with a beloved franchise like Star Trek.
Shaxs continues to lecture the readers on fascism on another page, stating of the Klingons, “Right. You just truly believe a charismatic strongman when he says your side should have absolute power over your people, and now you’re using force to give it to him in a coup… Remind me, where have I heard that before?”
North didn’t hear it in Nazi Germany, as Adolph Hitler was appointed by an elected government in their system, nor would many consider Hitler to be a “strongman.” It appears like he’s referring to Donald Trump, and trying to frame the January 6, 2021, peaceful protest of U.S. election fraud as an attempted coup, another point where Antos should have done robust editing rather than leave for readers to scratch their heads as to why a Bajoran would be worrying about modern-day American politics.
Once the reader gets done with lectures, the book returns to senseless action which has very little payoff or worth to storytelling. It reads much like many of the modern tie-ins to event comics Marvel and DC produce, which have burned readers out on events, and on collecting comics in general.
What do you think of Star Trek: Day of Blood: Shaxs’ Best Day?