Cartoonist, Malachi Ward (who regularly contributes back-up stories to Image’s popular Prophet series) has co-created and launched an ambitious Star Trek episode guide called Let’s Watch Star Trek.
Ward co-created Let’s Watch Star Trek with his brother, Sam Ward. The site features an episode guide for every Star Trek series, including Star Trek: The Orginal Series and Star Trek: The Next Generation, along with its various spinoffs – Deep Space Nine, Voyager and Enterprise. The central user experience is a fun, easy to use, Netflix Instant-friendly rating system and guide that informs viewers whether the Star Trekepisode they’re considering watching is one that boldly goes where no episode has gone before or if they should just read the episode summary and skip ahead. However, since there’s A LOT of Star Trek to watch, summarize and rate, so the Wards have only managed to get up to approximately episode 10 with each series thus far.
But watching Star Trek wouldn’t be watching Star Trek without fan art so, site visitors can also enjoy comics by Malachi Ward and other cartoonists, such as the above addition by Prophet aritst, Simon Roy in honor of the Star Trek: Original Series episode, Who Mourns For Adonais, which debuts on the site today.
Ward is busy working on a single issue stand alone horror comic for his Revival House Press series, Ritual, but took time to answer a couple questions about Let’s Watch Star Trek:
Shannon OLeary: What gave you and your brother the idea to do the Lets Watch Star Trek site? Did you watch Stark Trek together growing up?
Malachi Ward: Sam and I had been watching a lot of the different Star Trek shows, revisiting what we loved when we were kids and filling in the episodes and shows we hadn’t seen. We were having a lot of fun talking about them and (because of my compulsive nature) would rank episodes and compare different elements of various series. Eventually we thought it would be fun to make a site where people could enjoy Star Trek together. A lot of Trek fansites kind of take themselves too seriously… We wanted to keep the tone light and have lots of drawings and comics, so it would be entertaining even if you’re only sort of familiar with the franchise.
SO: What are your five favorite Star Trek episodes across all the different series?
MW: I’ll choose from episodes that we’ve already reviewed on the site. We’ve covered around the first 10 episodes from each show.
STAR TREK: THE ORIGINAL SERIES My favorite original series episode so far is probably Where No Man Has Gone Before. There’s some really great tension in that episode, and the relationship that sours between Kirk and Gary Mitchell works really well. Plus Kirk gets his shirt ripped off and he has a big gun made to kill gods.
STAR TREK: THE NEXT GENERATION It’s a little harder to choose a good episode from the first chunk of Next Generation episodes. It took them a little while to find the rhythm of the show. There’s a great episode later in the season called Conspiracy that has some truly disturbing imagery, enough that a particular scene burned into my adolescent brain when I first saw it. Without spoiling it I’ll say it involves alien bugs crawling into a guy’s mouth. If I have to stick to my own guidelines, I’ll go with Justice not because it’s good but because it’s hilariously bad. It involves some sexy aliens sentencing Wesley Crusher to death because he accidentally stepped on some flowers.
DEEP SPACE NINE My favorite episode so far is the premiere, Emissary. They do a great job of differentiating themselves from TNG, that the show is going to be dealing with longer story arcs and more specific, complex political situations.
VOYAGER is probably my least favorite of the shows, but I really like the episode Eye of the Needle. The episode crystallizes how alone the crew is now that they are so far from home.
ENTERPRISE is the underdog of the Star Trek franchise. A lot of fans don’t like the series, but I think it’s pretty fun. In The Andorian Incident they introduce one of my favorite recurring characters. His name is Shran, and he’s blue, and he’s got aentenae, and he’s a total bad ass.
Malachi Ward’s next convention appearance will be at The Brooklyn Comics and Graphics Festival where he’ll be supporting the release of Ritual #2 for Revival House Press. He is also the co-creator of the indie sci fi series, Expansion with Matt Sheean, and is the author of Utu, The Scout, and Ritual #1. Some of his short comics have appeared in collections such as Fantagraphic’s MOME as well as various Nobrow Press anthologies.