Let us here at PoP! guide you through a minefield of books that seem full of win from the word go, but which once you crack them open have you shouting… It’s a Trap!
Galaxy Quest: Global Warning #1-5
Written by Scott Lobdell
Art by Ilias Kyriazis
Published by IDW (2009)
There’s no question that the movie Galaxy Quest was an instant classic. Funny, smart and perfectly cast, it managed to affectionately parody it’s Star Trek source material, appealing to both Trekkers and non-fans alike. So when IDW published a sequel miniseries I was eager to read about the continued adventures of the cast of actors-turned-heroes. By Grapthar’s Hammer, was I disappointed.
First off, the sheer sense of fun that was prevalent in the film is nowhere to be found. It feels like this story could’ve been told with nearly any group of characters, and just happens to star the GQ crew. From the very start, it seeks to divorce itself from the source material. It begins some time after the film ended, with the launch of the new series Galaxy Quest: The Journey Continues nigh. My first gripe is that star Jason Nesmith/Commander Peter Quincy Taggart and Gwen DeMarco/Lt. Tawny Madison have broken up after getting together at the end of the flick, and she’s now seeing some studio executive who has absolutely no character development. Not only is Sir Alexander Dane trying to get out of his contract of playing Dr. Lazarus, but another network has scheduled a popular show against GQ‘s first relaunch episode. But that’s quickly forgotten and never mentioned again when a huge alien ship shows up in Earth’s orbit, causing worldwide natural disasters. From the Thermian Laliari, who’s sub-plot with Fred Kwan/Tech Sgt. Chen about wanting to have a child is one of the mini’s few bright spots, we learn this is the Judgement Ship, whose occupants judge planetary cultures and destroy those they deem unworthy, which so far is all of them.
Through flashbacks we learn that immediately after the film ended government agents showed up, arrested the whole cast, and confiscated the helm of the Protector they used to return to Earth. Now they need the GQ gang to fly it up and confront the Judgement Ship. Once they do, they’re imprisoned in a mental trap and escape, showing how humans are resilient, yada yada, you’ve seen it before. The Thermians play deus ex machina, of course, and our heroes succeed when… something happens. I literally have no idea. There’s a few explosions and then everyone’s happy. I’ve read the scene multiple times and still have no clue. They return to Earth with Nesmith having realized he does want Gwen and will try to win her back, despite the fact that everything we’ve seen shows the dude she’s with to be a decent guy.
My main problem with the mini concerns the cast’s characterizations, or lack thereof. Most of them seem to have regressed to where they were when the film started. That is to say, for the ones who actually get characterizations. Tommy Webber/Lt. Laredo, the least developed character in the film, has even less to do here. Guy Fleegman, with whom Sam Rockwell nearly stole the movie with his fear that he was going to die, has gotten over that, but is given nothing to do other than rehash the radar gag from the film. The art is passable, considering it’s Kyruazis’ first work, but if you like your licensed comic characters to look like their real-life counterparts, look elsewhere. They resemble them somewhat, but if I saw the art without knowing what it was from I’d never guess Galaxy Quest. My problems with the mini are exemplified by one particular bit. In the film, Dane never got to remove his prosthetic alien headpiece, and it just got more worn down as the movie progressed. Here he’s seen without it, which is fine; I don’t expect him to be wearing it when answering to the government after being taken in the middle of his normal day. But in the next scene, for no reason, he’s wearing it when the group goes into space, without explanation. It’s things like this that really bug me. Luckily for me I only spent $4 dollars for the $20 trade. And I still feel like I overpaid. Galaxy Quest: Global Warning gets 1.5 out of 5 Fletch references.
Need to clean out your palette after that? Why not reminisce about the film that started it all?