STAR TREK: Why I Never Liked “Q”


I’ve been reading IDW Comics’ STAR TREK ongoing series since the beginning, and it’s been pretty good. But I’ve skipped the last issue which came out this week because it’s the beginning of a 6-part arc featuring the infamous Q. And, frankly, I just never liked that character.

As I mentioned before, The Next Generation is the Star Trek incarnation that I mostly grew up with, and therefor feel the most connection to, but every time Q appeared it just took me out of the series. This is no disrespect intended towards John de Lancie, who played his role as well as anyone could, and had undeniable onscreen chemistry with Patrick Stewart, it’s just the character itself that bugged me. I mean, Star Trek is a science fiction franchise, not science fantasy. I can suspend my disbelief to accept things like warp drives, teleportation, holodecks, replicators, etc. Even if it seems scientifically impossible now, well, I can just assume that sometime between today and the future someone invented someway to make those things real.

But then you introduce Q, this apparently omnipotent being who can do anything. Manipulate matter, time and space, and now as we see in this latest comic-book, even transverse and merge alternate timelines at will. It just feels out of place to me, like he belongs in a more magical universe. Heck, he’d make a great supervillain in the DC or Marvel Comics’ universes (like Mr. Mxyzptlk or The Beyonder), he may even fit better in Star Wars, but not Star Trek. “Realistically” I always thought that Picard and the rest of the Enterprise crew were a tad blasé in dealing with Q. If someone with this God-like power showed up in front of me I’d be pretty darn terrified, and try to be as nice to him as possible, not trading insults with him like Picard always did. This is someone who could just turn you into an amoeba or send you back in time to the Big Bang, for crying out loud!

I know that technically the explanation is that the Q are just a really advanced species that evolved over the millennia, and that one day humans may even evolve beyond them, hence Q’s interest in humanity. And that may have worked in the first few appearances where his abilities could possibly explained by the old axiom of “any Sufficiently Advanced Technology” is indistinguishable from magic”, but with each subsequent appearance he seemed to get more powerful, even controlling the afterlife when Picard died, with his only limits being with the other members of the Q Continuum stop him. It was even worse when he’d appear on Voyager, because I kept thinking why don’t they just ask him to send them home? Of course that would end show, but that’s the problem when you bring in omnipotent beings.

Well, I don’t mind it in the comic-book, because I can just skip that. As long as they don’t introduce him in one of the future movie sequels, or any future TV series (which is where Star Trek belongs, so I hope we get a new one as soon as possible), then that’s okay with me.

Just my opinion.

One comment

  1. I kind of liked Q in the TV series. I kind of think of it as Q needed someone like Picard who wasn’t afraid of him and his powers because you have to think that being omnipotent can be pretty boring. I mean you get to have anything you want, there’s no hunt, no chase, nothing. You wake up (If you have to sleep at all because again you are OMNIPOTENT) and the world as you see it is pretty much at your fingers. Q needed Picard because he was the one thing he couldn’t control I kinda think he respected him for that.


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