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Aside from making amorous advances on attractive Enterprise crew members and scantily clad alien slave girls, Star Trek's Captain James T. Kirk was particularly adept at hand-to-hand combat against a variety of foes of extraterrestrial, android, and human origins. His uncanny fighting style was a potent blend of old-fashioned, Eastern-influenced martial arts, Greco-Roman wrestling, and a generous dose of pure macho bravado.
To gain further insight into Kirk's kickass methods of self-defense, Insight Editions is releasing Star Trek: Kirk Fu Manual, an essential how-to guide that every capable Starfleet cadet needs to carry in their footlocker as the ultimate training tool to survive the final frontier.
Dropping out of orbit and into book stores and comics shops on March 3rd, this playful 64-page instruction book is written by noted Star Trek novelist Dayton Ward and accompanied by amusing cartoon-style art from Italian illustrator Christian Cornia.
Kirk Fu powers into a series of unarmed combat techniques you can learn, developed by perhaps Starfleet’s most legendary starship captain over many years of hostile encounters with alien species on a variety of exotic new worlds.
"Star Trek: Kirk Fu was an idea I submitted to Chris Prince, my editor at Insight Editions while I was still working with him on another Star Trek-themed book, Hidden Universe Travel Guide – Star Trek: Vulcan," Ward tells SYFY WIRE. "I’d been writing Star Trek novels and short stories for a number of years at that point, and writing something more whimsical and humorous was something I’d wanted to do for a long time. I’d already written an article about my “favorite Kirk fight scenes” for StarTrek.com so the idea for the book came from there as much as anywhere."
Via a virile blend of various fighting methodologies, Kirk Fu welcomes the refined elements of several Earth-based martial arts forms as well as more primitive methods displayed in barrooms and back alleys on numerous planets throughout the galaxy. Unorthodox in practice yet incredible to behold, one must admit that its extreme artistry achieves a level of effective wonder.
Including revealing excerpts from Kirk’s private notes and personal logs, the Star Trek: Kirk Fu Manual is an ideal training guide for wayward star voyagers as a means of self-preservation in an angry universe.
Ward greatly admires a couple of Kirk's signature moves he himself might or might not attempt on antagonistic literary colleagues.
"Anything with that flying drop kick (“The Flying Drop Kirk” in the book) is how you know Kirk is truly serious about the fight," he reveals. "He’s just throwing his entire body into the thing and damn the consequences! A cousin to this has to be that crazy move where he launches himself off the wall (“The Jimmy Wall Banger”). It’s hilarious, like he found a copy of that Neo/Morpheus Kung Fu scene from The Matrix and decided to make the move his own."
Cornia's stimulating art enhances the entire project on every hilarious page.
"Christian’s style is absolutely perfect," Ward adds. "From the beginning, I wanted Kirk’s anecdotes and the descriptions to play the gag straight – at least for the most part - with the bulk of the humor coming from the illustrations and step-by-step diagrams. I still managed to get a few small jokes into the text, but I think we can agree what I’m describing is absolutely insane, and Christian did the heavy lifting so far as communicating the absurdity of the entire thing.
"With all of that said, the book is intended as an expression of unabashed love for the original Star Trek – the one I grew up with – and appreciation for Kirk the character as well as the man who’s embodied him for more than fifty years: the one and only William Shatner. He’s one of the childhood heroes for a guy who’s still got more than little bit of kid still rattling around inside him."