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Star Trek: The Art of Juan Ortizby Juan Ortiz
Titan Books, 112 pp., $39.95
The question answered in this book is "What if every Star Trek: The Original Series episode had its own cinema-release-type poster?" We can imagine a collection of diverse artists' works filling page after page with vivid graphics in service to the enduring Roddenberry-spawned phenomenon, though we'd be hard-pressed to envision what those promotional creations might be. We'd be hard-pressed, because, to paraphrase Dr. "Bones" McCoy, "We're journos, damnit, not artists!" We certainly wouldn't have suspected that such a large catalog of works would be rendered by a single artist, Juan Ortiz, known for his creations for Disney and Warner Bros. and his own Silver Comics publication. But this volume is, and so it's all the more surprising for the variety of treatments Ortiz offers, the effective, stunning gambits of design that seem a panorama of mid-20th century tropes and triumphs applied to evoking each of the show's 80 episodes. In full color, this oversized hardbound edition will make any Trek fan or more general pop-culture aficionado grin with aesthetic joy. But then, as Mr. Spock said to his mother in "Journey to Babel" (episode 39): "Humans smile with so little provocation."