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Data Just Left Starfleet, Setting Up Star Trek’s Next Great Mystery


Data resigns from Starfleet after a mysterious revelation, setting up the next major threat in the
Star Trek
Data’s shutdown was caused by a galactic query with emotional consequences, hinting at a cosmic mystery ahead.
The introduction of the Pleroma and a potential “wound at the center of all things” could be Data’s next great mission.

Warning: contains spoilers for Star Trek #18!Data has just resigned from Starfleet, and in the process sets up the next great Star Trek mystery. In Star Trek #18, the conclusion to the “Glass and Bone” storyline, fans learn the impossible has happened–Data has left Starfleet. His reasons for doing so remain unknown, and in fact seem to relate to the next big threat coming in the Star Trek universe.

Star Trek #18 is written by Jackson Lanzing and Collin Kelly and drawn by Marcus To. In the previous issue, Data was rendered unconscious after wiring himself into the Theseus’ computer bank.

The issue did not specify what did this, but a text piece in issue 18, made to resemble a memo from Bruce Maddox, reveals that Data was running some sort of query through the ship’s computer–and whatever he learned caused him to shut down.

Star Trek TNG Redemption II Data 2

Maddox was successful in reviving him, but Data had greatly changed, resigning from Starfleet to investigate it on his own.

IDW’s Star Trek Title Trafficks in Big, Cosmic Mysteries

Data’s Resignation Sets Up the Next One

Star Trek TNG Measure of a Man Data

Since its launch in late 2022, IDW’s Star Trek title has raised the bar high for future Trek comics, thanks to its “widescreen” approach to the source material. In addition to culling crews from across nearly every incarnation of the franchise, Lanzing, Kelly and their collaborators have crafted high-stakes stories. The book’s first year built towards the epic Day of Blood crossover event and the second year kicked off with a trip to the homeworld of the oft-mentioned but never seen Tzenkethi. The book is not done yet, as it has teased a major threat on the horizon.

Before Data shut down, he was in the process of running a massive query on a topic of galactic importance. What it was is not revealed, nor was Maddox able to pry it out of Data. Whatever Data saw not only caused him to shut down, but came back with strong emotions. Maddox shuts the query down, which angered Data and further informs his decision to resign from Starfleet. Maddox noted that Data’s fear and stress almost “seemed human.” Clearly something major is coming for the galaxy, and only Data knows what it is.

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Could Data Have Learned of the Existence of the Pleroma?

Is The Realm of the Gods the Center of the Next Big Threat?

Star Trek TNG Measure of a Man Bruce Maddox Data

Star Trek’s next issue begins the odyssey of the Pleroma, or the mysterious “Realm of the Gods.” This new development was seeded in earlier issues and will bear fruit in the months ahead. It is possible that whatever Data saw could relate to the Pleroma. T’Lir mentions to Sisko “a wound at the center of all things,” and the Pleroma may be the key to healing it. Data could have also learned of this “wound,” triggering his shutdown, yet why it made him resign from Starfleet is anyone’s guess, as is what he plans to do about it.

Star Trek #18 is on sale now from IDW Publishing!

Star Trek #18 (2024)

Star Trek 18 Cover Writer: Jackson Lanzing & Collin Kelly Artist: Marcus To Colorist: Lee Loughridge Letterer: Clayton Cowles Cover Artist: Marcus To

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