Rating: 4.5/5 – Boldly Going Where No Man or Ape Has Gone Before.
by ComicSpectrum reviewer Adam Alamo.
There aren’t two things in this world that tweak my geekdom more than Star Trek and Planet of the Apes. When I read that they were going to be combined into one cosmic crossover story titled The Primate Directive, I immediately knew I needed to get my stinking paws on this. But the truth is, I had very low expectations. I guess I didn’t have the imagination to see how these two worlds can co-exist – one with a bright future for mankind and the other where we are relegated to caveman status. I’m so very glad that writers Scott and David Tipton did, because I absolutely love how they did it. The first issue blew me away like a phaser set on kill. Still, like a battle-hardened Gorilla on the outskirts of the Forbidden Zone, I was weary and thought, “Could this continue into another issue?” The answer is a resounding yes! The second issue was every bit as good as the first and I can confidentially say that this mad house of a mash up really works.
This issue picks up immediately after the big ape reveal, which was as shocking to the crew of the Enterprise as it was to Taylor and crew in the Planet of the Apes movie. I guess no matter what you see while trekking across the galaxy, it doesn’t prepare you for talking apes. The story thus far has been very Star Trek centric, but with this issue the Tipton brothers begin to weave in more of the Apes half of the story. I’m quite impressed by the writing duo’s characterizations of the Star Trek crew. It’s obvious they’re big fans and that they’ve been writing Star Trek stories for years. The dialog is well written, and though Kirk has been surprisingly level headed, there’s enough tension brewing that I’m sure he’ll be throwing down with Taylor or making out with a chimpanzee before it’s all over. The Tipton brothers also know their Planet of the Apes history and place the story squarely into continuity. It wasn’t simply shoehorned into the middle of any existing Apes movie, which makes this just as plausible as anything you’d see in either series. They’ve thankfully refrained from any redshirt jokes so far, but there’s other little nods to both series, including the new classic, “I’m a doctor, not a zoologist,” and the standard correction that they’re apes not monkeys. Artist Rachael Stott does her part in making this crossover believable (as believable as apes on horseback and transporters can be, I suppose) with her accurate portrayal of the cast. If you’ve ever wanted to see leading men Charlton Heston and William Shatner acting together, this is your chance.
For anyone who is a fan of Star Trek or Planet of the Apes, and especially for fans of both, shake off any hesitation, skepticism, or eyebrow raising you may have about this crossover and pick up this book. It’s fun, well written, and most importantly, the spirit of each series is well represented. I’m eager to see how the story plays out and if it’s as enjoyable as the first couple issues, I have no doubt that it will be great. Though Dr. Zaius may warn of heresy, I know Mr. Spock would say that reading this book is the logical thing to do.
Reviewed by: Adam Alamo
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