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REVIEW – Star Trek #17


Galactic war is imminent and seemingly inevitable. Romulan, Cardassian, and Federation forces are struggling for control in Star Trek #17, out today from IDW Publishing. Over the course of the Savage World of Glass and Bone arc, Captain Sisko and the USS Theseus have fallen out of favor with the warmongering Tzenkethi. Evidently, however, the worst is yet to come. The one and only course of action Starfleet is willing to authorize is far from a model solution.

There’s the potential for endangering the Theseus and her crew, blowing everything up all around the Tzenkethi. A threat of interplanetary war looms over the Tzenkethi, threatening interplanetary war on a scale the galaxy hasn’t seen since the Dominion. As legendary a diplomat as Sisko is, can he possibly maneuver the Federation away from all-out war? Find out what lies ahead in this review of Star Trek #17!

WARNING – Spoilers from here on out for Star Trek #17.

Peace at Any Cost

Star Trek #17 Cover (A) Art by Marcus To

One of the initial big draws of this arc was the return of Harry Kim, who we’ve not properly caught up with since the USS Voyager returned to Earth. Given that one of this series’ stars is Tom Paris, reuniting our Delta Flyers felt like a no-brainer. However, it feels like Harry’s changed quite a lot since we last saw him. His changed position in Starfleet and operating on different orders to the Theseus created an interesting dynamic, and it’s finally come to a head.

Harry, operating on his own special orders, blows up the Tzenkethi shipyard. We never touch on the casualty count as a result of the explosion, but it’s a real turning point in the story. Sisko aptly points out that the decision was a tactical atrocity, only dragging the Federation further into the conflict. However, the destruction of the ships means less likelihood of a destructive alliance with the Cardassians or the Romulans.

It presents something of a double-bladed dagger, an un-winnable scenario (a Kobayashi Maru if you will). There’s no nice way out of this situation, but that doesn’t mean it doesn’t hurt. Seeing how mad the Tzenkethi Autarch is at the Federation isn’t surprising in the slightest, nor is seeing him ally with the Romulans. I really don’t see how this story wraps up happily. Star Trek #17 sets up a real moral dilemma for an ending that’s bound to be a little controversial. Honestly, I can’t wait.

Time’s Up

Star Trek #17 Cover (B) Art by Megan Levens

To make matters worse, the Tzenkethi homeworld is collapsing. The shipyard explosion accelerated the inevitable, and the planet’s now barrelling toward armageddon. Both Dr Crusher and Scotty are trapped, stranded on the desolate surface. They’re not able to do anything to save Tzenketh and are feeling a little run down, determined to get back to the Theseus.

There’s a particularly powerful panel of Scotty’s comm badge falling to the ground, left in the dirt as if he’s totally given up. With a planet on the brink of destruction, Starfleet being totally to blame for the upcoming war, and an intimidating glass and bone warship overhead, I can’t exactly blame him. This issue has been a real gut punch, in the best possible way. For every cool explosion, there’s something absolutely devastating.

Things aren’t much better back on board the Theseus, either. Data collapsed onto the ground, buckled under the pressure of keeping the ship going pretty much singlehandedly. We’ve seen how fast his positronic network can solve problems, seeing him totally overwhelmed was a nice change of pace. It added to the helplessness running through much of Star Trek #17, leaving me rather impatiently waiting for a follow-up. Although, I fear the worst may be yet to come.

Issue Preview


As the penultimate issue in the Savage World of Glass and Bone arc, it’s doing a lot of stage-setting for the finale next month. That being said, there are some real explosive moments here, both in the literal sense of there being explosions, and as storylines come to a boiling point. It also poses a real question about the Federation’s morality in a way that hasn’t been done quite as powerfully since the peak of Deep Space Nine.

I’m definitely looking forward to seeing how the finale wraps things up. The fact an arc about a species previously only mentioned in dialogue has been so engrossing is to be commended. It doesn’t look like it’s going to have a happy ending, and I really can’t wait to see where it goes. That being said, the knowledge that a fourth arc is starting up in April is something of a comfort. I’m sure that whatever the plan for the series is going forward, it’s sure to be enjoyable.

You can pick up your own copy of Star Trek #17, which is out now from IDW Publishing. It’s available to order both physically and digitally from online retailers such as Amazon, as well as IDW’s own website. You can also find it on the shelves of any good comic book store. For more reviews, all the latest news, lore discussions, and more be sure to follow the team here at Trek Central!

Issue Credits

Star Trek #17 Cover (RI) Art by Jake Bartok

Writers: Collin Kelly & Jackson Lanzing
Artist: Marcus To
Colorist: Lee Loughridge
Letterer: Clayton Cowles
Design & Production: Neil Uyetake
Group Editor: Heather Antos
Editorial Assistant: Vanessa Real

In the next issue…

Cover Artists: Marcus To
Rod Reis
Jake Bartok

In issue #18: Tzenketh is on the brink of war against the Federation…and it’s all the fault of Captain Sisko and his crew. A space battle between the Tzenkethi, Romulans, and Cardassians is imminent, while Tzenketh begins to tremble. The Theseus crew’s actions have exacerbated the volcanic instability of the planet—another thing the Romulans will undoubtedly pin on the Federation. The Romulan Magistrex’s plot to build an alliance that will destroy the Federation is underway, but can Sisko and his crew manage to save this savage world of glass and bone? Find out in the finale of arc three of the Eisner-nominated Star Trek series!

Release date: March 20, 2024

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Connor Schwigtenberg
Connor Schwigtenberg
All round science fiction geek and a passionate Star Trek enthusiast. Can reliably be found nerding out online. Currently exploring the expanded media. A writer at heart, look out for deep dives, reviews, and feature articles.

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