Star Trek Magazine Issue #29 arrives in stores and in digital form tomorrow, and StarTrek.com has an exclusive preview. Check out the accompanying photos and, below, some story excerpts, including portions of an interview with Sir Patrick Stewart and an early look at Zero Sum Game, the first title in Pocket Books' upcoming four-novel miniseries Star Trek: Typhon Pact.
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Patrick Stewart Interview
The latest issue of Star Trek Magazine features an interview with Patrick Stewart. In the following extract, he explains how he was pleased to discover that the Star Trek universe allowed for the exploration of themes that not only stretched the viewer's imagination but encouraged them to think as well...
"Gene Roddenberry was not a political man and he resisted attempts to politicize Star Trek," claims the actor. "Although when Gene died, far too early into the great success of The Next Generation, we were able - under the leadership of our great producer Rick Berman - to work some storylines into it that went in a more overt political direction. Now that did make me very happy. My own political and charitable work has never been a secret and I believe, for example, in embracing difference and individuality. That was Jean Luc-Picard's philosophy, Charles Xavier's philosophy, and it also happens to be mine."
This philosophy also resulted in one of the most fondly remembered episodes of the second season of TNG, by both fans and cast members.
"Whoopi Goldberg and I worked a lot on the story of 'The Measure of a Man,'" says Stewart. "That was a great episode. It was about somebody who had arrived on the Enterprise. They were going to take Data back to Earth, disassemble him and work out how to clone him. Of course Data did not want to go and we did not want to lose him. So a trial was set up and the defense that we presented, and Whoopi Goldberg took great heart in this, was that what was being proposed was a form of slavery. So it was a happy accident to find myself, for seven years, in a series that was dealing seriously with issues like that."
Also rewarding was the fact that Stewart, now firmly entrenched in the Enterprise's driving seat, was given a bit more input into character and story.
"When I began on The Next Generation I said to Gene, 'I like to collaborate on the characters that I play and I hope that this will be no different,'" recalls the actor. "However, as time went on I was allowed to produce more and more input into the actual stories. Rick Berman actually had the patience of a saint. I remember when his children were graduating from college they told me that dinner after dinner would be ruined because the phone would ring at their house and they would hear, 'It's Patrick Stewart on the line. Again.' But Rick was the man running the show after Gene passed away and I always wanted to talk to him. Well, kudos to Rick because he never failed to pick up the phone and say, 'Yes what do you want to speak about now?' Of course, sometimes he would say, 'Can I at least finish my dinner and phone you back later?' before speaking to me for an hour about direction and dialogue. That was fantastic and it was generous to have someone who would collaborate in that way. It was all part of what made Star Trek so much fun."
Read the interview in full in Star Trek Magazine #29, on newsstands and in comic book stores tomorrow.
New Worlds, New Civilizations, New Dangers! New Book Series!
The year is 2382, five years before the cataclysmic destruction of Romulus. And in the Star Trek literary universe, the United Federation of Planets finds itself in a more precarious state than any it has known in over a century.
Less than a year earlier, a devastating invasion by the Borg Collective laid waste dozens of worlds in the Beta Quadrant between Earth, Qo'noS, and Romulus. Many densely populated Federation colonies and homeworlds were obliterated, as well as those of its close interstellar neighbors and allies. Worlds such as Risa, Deneva, and Khitomer were sterilized of life. In the span of just a few weeks, the Borg slaughtered more than 63 billion sentient beings. It was a catastrophe unlike any in the recorded history of local space.
The crews of three Starfleet vessels proved instrumental in halting the Borg genocide and eliminating the Borg threat from the galaxy forever: the U.S.S. Enterprise-E, under the command of Captain Jean-Luc Picard; the U.S.S. Titan, commanded by Captain William T. Riker, Picard's former first officer; and the U.S.S. Aventine, a new slipstream-drive-equipped Vesta-class starship captained by the battlefield-promoted Ezri Dax.
The end of the conflict with the Borg did not, however, mean an end to its consequences. Quite the contrary, those had only just begun. More than 40 per cent of Starfleet was destroyed while trying to hold the line and buy time for escaping fleets of civilian ships. Core planets of the Federation and its allies lay in ruins. Tens of billions of sentient beings had become refugees, having fled from homes since vaporized by the Borg. The resources of the UFP suddenly had become scarce, and in the months following the Borg Invasion, its once indivisible coalition suddenly began to sussurate with whispers of secession.
At the same time, a new political entity began to take shape. Six interstellar nations with long histories of conflict against, and rivalry with, the Federation entered into negotiations to form an alliance: the Romulan Star Empire; the Breen Confederacy; the Tzenkethi Coalition; the Gorn Hegemony; the Tholian Assembly; and the Holy Order of the Kinshaya. On a world in the Typhon Expanse, they secretly forged a new astropolitical gestalt known as the Typhon Pact.
A Cold War era has begun for the Star Trek universe. Bestselling author David Mack reveals the nature of the Typhon Pact in full in Star Trek Magazine #29, on newsstands and in comic book stores tomorrow.
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