Not the new iPad Enterprise vs. the gritty CGI Planet of the Apes (nor the Burton version, for that matter) – no, that would be ridiculous and illogical. No, the classic crew of the ‘60s Starship Enterprise visit the Planet of the Apes in its original iteration, chasing a Klingon plot that could threaten both of their universes.
Not that Charlton Heston is particularly worried – after all, he's already stuck living in the darkest timeline, as far as he's concerned. So yes, worry not, a shirtless fistfight between Captain Kirk and Charlton Heston is indeed on the cards. Other pressing questions answered: how do the Apes fare against a Vulcan neck pinch, and will Kirk try his luck with one of the locals? And does The Prime Directive still apply in an alternate Universe on a Planet Earth gone wrong?
More so than any Star Trek crossover in the past (yep, even Doctor Who, the success of which led us here), the meeting of the original Kirk and co. and the Planet of the Apes feels entirely natural, like a lost – if longer - episode of the television series. As such, there's likely to be more appeal to fans of Trek than The Planet of the Apes, but it's a storming read for all, with some great artwork, writing and action to be had. Its very nature means that neither world can be changed by the encounter, leaving it feeling somewhat inconsequential by the end, but what did you expect? It's a book which has Captain Kirk punching a Damn Dirty Ape in the face while Charlton Heston chokes out poor Chekov and runs havoc on the Starship Enterprise. Sometimes, that's all you need.
Frankly, it's worth it for the title alone.
STAR TREK /PLANET OF THE APES: THE PRIMATE DIRECTIVE / WRITER: SCOTT TIPTON, DAVID TIPTON / ARTIST: RACHAEL STOTT, CHARLIE KIRCHOFF / PUBLISHER: IDW PUBLISHING / RELEASE DATE: OUT NOW