I associate the original Star Trek television series mostly with UHF channel rerun memories and being a little kid in the 1970s. Because of that, Universe Publishing’s upcoming Stuck on Star Trek — a book of reusable vinyl stickers and backdrops – strikes some familiar and fun notes of nostalgia for me.
Illustrated by prolific artist Joe Corroney, whose portfolio spans a range of science fiction universes, Stuck on Star Trek is a scene creation kit in book form. It bears a similarity to – but has no connection with – the 50+ year-old Colorforms toy line, which offered its own Trek box in the 1970s.
Among the 10 sharply-illustrated backgrounds are the Enterprise bridge, transporter room, sick bay, and engine room, and planetary locations from The City on the Edge of Forever, The Devil in the Dark, and Arena. (It’s been several decades since I told stories with my Peanuts and Welcome Back Kotter Colorforms sets – yes, for real – and those came with just a single background each. Having this many backdrops to choose from would have blown my five-year-old mind.)
The 8-by-10-inch book’s also got a sturdily-constructed cover, which includes a fold-out stand that makes it easy to display on a shelf or desk. I can see this being a nice bit of office desktop distraction: There’s something oddly satisfying about assembling and deconstructing Scenes from Trek That Never Were.
It’s not without a few annoyances, though. While the backdrop pages are glossy cardstock, the two pages of cling stickers are much flimsier, and they crease easily when you remove the stickers. This wrinkling seems like it could, over the long term, affect their suitability for storing the stickers. A blank white cardstock page for storing the clings would have been nice.
The clings are also not entirely opaque – see the Gorn in the scene above – and while the book cover boasts “over 70” stickers, it turns out that 37 of those are tribbles.
My biggest complaint about Stuck on Star Trek is that there’s no space setting! The book comes with stickers of the Enterprise, a Romulan Bird-of-Prey, and a Klingon battlecruiser, but there’s no outer space backdrop? (And only two of the scenes even include enough sky to place a ship in seriously low orbit.)
You get one each of the main Trek cast — although there are two additional “costume changes” each for Kirk and Spock — plus a Romulan, a Klingon, and a Gorn. And, naturally, a Redshirt.
Stuck on Star Trek has a cover price of $19.95 and is set for a March 13 release.
Disclosure: Universe Publishing provided a review copy of this book.