You know exactly what to expect when you pick up a book titled Star Trek Cats. Lots of Star Trek — and lots of cats!
No matter how much you expect to find regarding either of those two worthy subjects, you’ll get even more in this tight, new 64-page hardcover from Chronicle Books.
Featuring big, bold artistic interpretations of many a famous Star Trek scene, except with, well, uh, cats, the book is rewarding for both an episode-quoting Trekkie and your favorite crazy cat lover. And if you happen to be both of those things, it’s most certainly an item you will want to add to your collection.
Created by artist Jenny Parks with confidence and panache, the books drawings are vibrant and detailed, with a surprising layer of screen-accurate authenticity. From Spock’s wool cap covering his pointy (and fluffy) ears in “The City on the Edge of Forever” to a close-up of Scotty working the transporter controls with his paws, Parks’ art is extremely rewarding in unexpected ways.
With text pulled straight from 17 different Original Series episodes featured in the book, the deep Star Trek knowledge hidden in its pages is extensive.
“Captain, although your abilities intrigue me, you are quite honestly inferior,” says Khan Cat to Kirk, portrayed as a tough orange tabby cat in a scene from “Space Seed.” And from “Charlie X,” in much the same vein, the lean black-and-white cat portraying Spock tells Kirk “Your illogical approach to chess does have its advantages on occasion, Captain.”
And there is nothing better than seeing Scotty portrayed as a Scottish Fold (natch!), especially when the cat’s fluffy rump and tail is all you can see climbing into a Jefferies Tube to get to work.
Those types of hidden gems seem to never end: a kitty napping on a pile of tribbles, Spock paw-melding with a Horta, and scruffy ol’ Bones proclaiming, “I’m not a magician, Spock, just an old country doctor,” as he tries to catch a flashing triangle dancing up-and-down on the biobed readout in sickbay. Good kitty!
And don’t look now, but there’s alley cat Cyrano Jones with a front row seat for the impending catfight between Scotty and Korax: “Laddie, don’t you think you should…rephrase that?”
Some of the other episodes featured include “The Gamesters of Triskelion” (don’t touch the green section, kitty!), “The Naked Time” (a foil, but no foil ball), and “Arena” (I weary of the ‘cat-and-mouse’ chase).
And for dog lovers, there’s a quick cameo from Spock’s unicorn dog, albeit getting some serious side-eye monitoring on the surface of Alfa 177 from the all black shorthaired cat portraying Sulu.
Any list of favorites from the scores of pictures in the publication will likely include the amazing image of the entire bridge crew struggling to maintain their balance as the ship ‘shakes’ from a phaser blast. It’s yet another winner among a bevy of special images.
Star Trek Cats is way more fun and interesting than it has any right to be. It not only makes a great coffee table book, but also a great gift for friends and family. From the deep cut Trek knowledge to the big bold drawings from Jenny Parks, the book is an absolute steal at its sub-$15 price point.
Live long and pros-purr, indeed!