‘Star Trek 2′ Comic Book Tie-In and Timeline Discussion

Published 3 years ago by , Updated September 18th, 2012 at 8:30 am,

J.J. Abrams and his Star Trek production crew are currently scrambling to settle on an actor to portray the mysterious villain in the Trek sequel – a character who may or may not be Khan Noonien Singh – so that production the project can actually begin before the end of January 2012.

Trek fans have nonetheless had plenty to talk about while waiting for an official announcement on that matter, thanks to recent casting additions like Peter Weller and Alice Eve, along with the not-so-comforting news that Star Trek 2 will be post-converted to 3D; though, on a more encouraging note, the film could conceivably also be partly shot for IMAX, since Abrams has expressed his interest in the format.

Today, we have a couple of extra tidbits of information to help keep all you Trekkies preoccupied. The first item of the day is that Trek comic book writer Mike Johnson has confirmed that recent rebooted movie universe tie-in issues (which are being supervised by Trek screenwriter/producer Roberto Orci) “very subtly lay in clues to the next movie [and] there might even be a tiny hint of a subplot in the first issue.”

Johnson teased TrekMovie with the news that the previously-released Star Trek comic book issue #1 featured a “subtle hint” of the movie sequel’s plot; similarly, the new fourth issue boasts some “thematic foreshadowing” but nothing so secretive that it requires any sort of elaborate puzzle-solving or elaborate deconstruction of the graphic novel ( ie. Da Vinci Code-style).

Then again – unless the new Trek comic book issue features an obvious visual clue or reference (ex. the SS Botany Bay shows up) most of those who read it are probably going to have little to no clue as to what the “subtle hint” is, given how the minds behind the new Trek movies like to play things (frustratingly?) close to the chest.


J.J. Abrams Talks the new Star Trek Timeline

alex kurtzman and roberto orci talk star trek 2 Star Trek 2 Comic Book Tie In and Timeline Discussion

Part of the reason behind the controversy surrounding the possible appearance of Khan in the Trek sequel has to do with the franchise’s rebooted timeline and whether it will or won’t drastically affect the new iteration of the villain. After all, now that none of the main Trek characters are (per se) bound to their previously-established fates, one has to wonder: could the iconic Kirk-Khan dynamic be significantly different, so much so that the latter almost feels like an entirely new antagonist?

Obviously Abrams isn’t going to spill the beans on a massive spoiler like that. However, during a talk with The Nerdist, the director did offer the following insight about the Trek movie alternate timeline in general (as some food for thought):

“Here’s the thing… I think the key to that was, first of all, it was one of those things that not everyone even cares about or understands the timeline of it all. The notion that when this one character, Nero, arrives in his ship, that basically the timeline is altered at that moment, so everything forward is essentially an alternative timeline. That is not to say that everything that happened in The Original Series doesn’t exist.

“I think, as a fan of movies and shows, if someone told me the beloved thing for me was gone, I would be upset. But we didn’t do that. We’re not saying that what happened in that original series wasn’t good, true, valid, righteous and real. Let people embrace that. We’re not rejecting that. That, to me, would have been the big mistake. We’re simply saying that, “At this moment, the very first scene in the first movie, everything that people knew of Star Trek splits off into now another timeline.”

Principal photography on Star Trek 2 (which will have a different title, when all is said and done) is slated to begin very soon, so the film can make its May 17th, 2013 U.S. theatrical release date; so, you can expect to hear an official villain casting announcement in the very near future.

Source: TrekMovie, The Nerdist (via StarTrek.com)

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  1. I got into an interesting discussion on FB w/someone who made a good point: Up until the reboot movie in 2009, Trek just about exclusively utilized a “closed loop” time geometry for their universe. In other words, travels back in time were to “repair” the timeline, else things would be altered in the Trek universe proper. The examples are endless in all of the Trek series (and movies). Now, all of sudden, Trek has “discovered” the alternate timeline hypothesis!

  2. Simon Pegg left to start filming today according to his twitter.

  3. Hm. Makes sense but it doesn´t explain why Spock and Uhura seemed to be attracted to each other BEFORE the timeline was changed.

    • the timline was changed the day Eric Bana attacked, Chris Pine was born & his daddy died. And now anything goes.

      • This is where the whole time travel thing gets messy. Kirk’s father died saving a few hundred people. What are the odds that there would be any effect at all on what happened to Uhura or Spock in another part of the universe, at least prior to the “alternate” Kirk entering the picture? Sometimes I just have to convince myself to just shut up and enjoy the movie, or I’ll just let the distractions ruin it.

        That said, if they used the alternate timeline argument to make Khan into an “entirely new antagonist”, then why use an existing character at all? The crew seem to be realtively unchanged from the original series crew; why should the villains be radically different? Especially Khan, because he’s slept through the whole change in the timeline. I’m hoping they stay away from Khan. I want them to give me something I haven’t seen yet.

        • I think they are aiming these films at the biggest possible audience and just don’t want to get bogged down too much in explanations for everything. I think a TV show can get away with a lot more of that sort of thing. Sometimes when I’m talking to my friends about something I’m really into I take it a bit too seriously. I know when this happens because I can see their faces glaze over.

        • Because hundreds of people died that didn’t in the original timeline. And the Federation got an enormous amount of future information from scans that they didn’t have in the original timeline.

          Both of these events are significant enough to change the path of anything related to Earth. That definitely includes Uhura, and possibly Vulcan, and more possibly Spock himself, since his mother is human.

        • In “The City On The Edge Of Forever”, all of time changed because one woman was saved. I imagine that the deaths of hundreds could cause a significant disruption.

          • Jeffrey — that goes to my original point: “COTEOF” made the Trek universe proper change. We see that when Kirk and Spock are on the Guardian’s planet and suddenly the Enterprise disappears. IOW, why didn’t McCoy’s actions create an alternate timeline just like Nero’s actions did in the reboot film?

    • The timeline was changed the moment Nero came through the black hole, which was 25 years or so before the bulk of the events after the main title card. At no time were Spock and Uhura shown to be attracted to each other before that moment. In fact, neither were ever even shown on the screen.

  4. Its like this , when Nero returns, the future continues as is, but created a alternate reality same charchters different life.

  5. In my opinion, the Star Trek reboot was very overrated. I only saw it because Leonard Nimoy was in it. Since no original cast members will be in the sequel, I, and likely others, will be forgoing it.

  6. “If someone told me the beloved thing for me was gone, I’d be upset. But that’s not what we did.”
    For better or worse, I think that’s exactly what Abrams did. As good as the movie was, the whole premise was that the original timeline was changed. It no longer exists. If this movie is considered canon than the original series has indeed been discarded. I hope Abrams continues down this path and doesn’t back track or put on more time traveling cameos. After doing something different with the series it would suck if he went back to doing more of what’s already been done.

    • Who’s to say that they don’t still exist in an alternate universe somewhere? Look, the chances of another TV series coming up at some point in the future were next to nil, and there was no way that they were going to do any other movies with the Next Generation and beyond casts after the disappointing box office of the last two movies.

      The only place that original flavor Trek was going to continue was in the books and comics, and there’s nothing to keep them from publishing more of those.

    • and that’s exactly why using khan in the sequel is a mistake.

  7. i wonder in 10 or so years if someone will try to remake the mess that became the star wars universe? i wonder if lucas would ever let someone rework that whole series? he probably would if he were to retain the merchandising rights to it all.

    • How about someone goes back in time until just after “Return Of The Jedi” and kills George Lucas before he can write the prequels and pretend that he planned it out like that before he wrote a new hope.

      And thus altering the timeline back to how it should have been.

      • Or just have someone other than him write the screen play.

        • That’s an even better suggestion. Less messy too. ^-^

  8. Here’s a thought, make Kahn the “Good Guy” and the “Enterprise Crew” the antagonists.

    • How would that work, jR? I’m interested – please expand.

      • Khan exposes star-fleet for clandestinely trying to use clones (illegally)as guinea pigs to populate the fleet with “Ideal Officers that do not fly by the seat of their pants” unlike Kirk. Kirk and crew are for the cloning and participate in ferrying candidates to the cloning colony in order to populate star-fleet. The clones are needed for an impending war with the Klingon’s.

        Khan is desperate to prove the hole idea is immoral by stealing the Enterprise with fellow clones and violating the Neutral Zone between the Klingons. He then attempts to expose to the entire federation of planets the cloning process illustrating that clones have no past, no family, no heritage. Kirk is forced to choose a side only because he wants the Enterprise back in his command where it belongs.

  9. I’m still not really sure what type of theory of time J.J. is using for this rebooted franchise but I strongly suspect it’s the Hollywood version; the one dedicated to all flares and no substance and it’s coming in LIEmax, oh joy…

  10. Alternative timeline still doesn’t explain why Captain Kirk looks like Chris Pine instead of William Shatner.

  11. JJ Abram’s explanation of how the timeline works was very simple, direct, and smart. I cannot believe how many of these comments indicate that almost none of you understand what he said.


    It’ll work.

    • Indeed it is, Todd. I just pointed out that just about all of previous Trek used a different theory of time and time travel.

      • All of those theories have been rendered obsolete since the Nero effect preempts them all now.

        I want the antagonist to be Harry Mudd and MUDD’S WOMEN.

        • Mudd isn’t enough of a threat. But it would make for a nice sideplot. I want to see an original villain and storyline.

  12. I still find it baffling that people are still confused by this divergent timeline. It’s pretty simple temporal mechanics. Nero being in the timeline altered everyones lives, either in small ways or massive ones.

  13. Don’t forget the 1st rule of time travel; Everything had to happen a first time all the way through. The 2nd rule of time travel; When you go back in time and change something you have created a new time line of future events. Which was beautifully diagrammed in the movie “Back to the Future II” by Dr. Brown.

    So if they ever want to fix what has been changed wait for the Temporal Police to catch up to the events and correct them just like in the Voyager two part episodes “Future’s End”.

  14. It’s unfortunate that the timeline change caused the designers of the new enterprise to use bar-code scanners on the bridge.

  15. Im excited about the sequel i never been a die-hard fan of the original series so i don’t have a clue what you guys are talking about,i just remember watching the next generation series back in the ninties and a few of thier movies so this is all brand new to me, so if they keep making good movies i’ll keep watching with pleasure.

  16. I am excited too about the sequel and thanks for it.