The Mirror Universe (also referred in code as The Looking Glass) is a fictional parallel universe in which the plots of several Star Trek television episodes take place. It resembles the fictional universe in which most of the Star Trek TV series takes place, but is separate from the main universe and not normally accessible, and there are several differences between the normal and mirror universes which drive plots of various episodes. The Mirror Universe has featured in a number of different Star Trek series. It is named for "Mirror, Mirror", the original series episode in which it first appeared.
The characters in the Mirror Universe are generally the same as the characters in "normal" Star Trek continuity (for example, it has a James T. Kirk and a Spock), but their personalities are, on the whole, much more aggressive, mistrustful, and opportunistic. Whereas the Star Trek universe usually depicts an optimistic future in which the Earth-based United Federation of Planets values peace and understanding, episodes set in the Mirror Universe show the galaxy to be marred by continual warfare, with compassion seen as a liability. Uniforms are often more suggestive, such as women baring midriffs, and men with tighter pants.
In the 23rd century, during the original series of Star Trek, humanity had enslaved dozens of alien worlds and formed the Terran Empire instead of the United Federation of Planets (as exists in the main Star Trek universe). Officers were barbaric aboard starships and discipline was enforced through torture — crew members carried agonizers and ships were fitted with agony booths. Officers could advance rank by killing superiors who they thought were incompetent. Roman/Nazi-style military salutes were used by all crew members to show loyalty. When exposed to individuals from the normal universe, the Terran Empire began to reform itself for the better but was overthrown in the 24th century as a consequence and replaced with an equally barbaric Alliance of several alien species who took advantage of the Empire's self-weakening to enslave their former masters.
Though the Mirror Universe is much darker and more violent than the normal Star Trek universe, a few Mirror characters are more friendly or docile than their "normal universe" counterparts. For example, Mirror Quark puts himself at risk to help escaped slaves reach freedom, and while "normal" Brunt is selfish and power-hungry, Mirror Brunt is a kind and considerate Ferengi.
There are an infinite number of parallel universes in Star Trek canon (as witnessed in the Star Trek: The Next Generation episode "Parallels"). However, the Mirror Universe is prominent among dimension-crossing incidents. The Mirror Universe has been visited in one episode of Star Trek, five episodes of Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, and two episodes of Star Trek: Enterprise, as well as in several Star Trek novels and several of the games (Star Trek: Shattered Universe, for example, takes place entirely in the Mirror Universe).
Not all "normal" characters have a Mirror counterpart; because the Mirror versions of Ben and Jennifer Sisko separated before conceiving a child, there is no Mirror version of Jake Sisko. Several licensed works also indicate that since humans (or Terrans as they are called in the Mirror Universe) were largely enslaved by the time period of The Next Generation, a mirror universe copy of Data was never created. Also, since the Dax symbiont was never joined with Ezri Tigan, there is no exact copy of Ezri Dax in the Mirror Universe, only "Mirror" Ezri Tigan. Several Mirror Universe versions of established characters have also died during the course of the various canonical and non-canonical Mirror Universe storylines, whereas their "normal universe" counterparts remain alive. The reverse is also true with Bareil Antos being alive in the Mirror Universe when his "normal universe" counterpart had died, and with Jennifer Sisko, who survived for many years after her "normal universe" counterpart died. (The Mirror Sisko eventually died herself in the episode "Shattered Mirror".)
Characters from each universe refer to the other as "parallel" or "alternate" rather than as "mirror".
On April 5, 2063, Zefram Cochrane conducted his warp flight, drawing the attention of a passing Vulcan ship, as per the events shown in the standard Star Trek universe in Star Trek: First Contact. When the Vulcans landed and made their peaceful introduction, however, Cochrane killed the leader with a concealed weapon, then led the townspeople in commandeering the Vulcan ship.
The special opening credits sequence used for "In a Mirror, Darkly" chronicles the history of human warfare and the interstellar domination of the Terran Empire, as opposed to the regular opening sequence depicting peaceful exploration. One of the more notable scenes is a Terran Empire flag being planted on the moon, which may or may not be intended to be in 1969. (The spacesuit being worn is the same as that which the Enterprise crew wears, but commentary on the episodes by their producers indicates that this was simply a matter of convenience, as the CGI model for that suit had already been created.)
Terran domination was made possible by technology taken from the Vulcans and (presumably) from other defeated races; thus, the Starfleet of the Mirror Universe was more advanced than its regular counterpart. By 2155, the Terran Empire had already enslaved the Vulcans, Andorians, Orions, and Tellarites, and launched successful attacks against the Klingons and the Xindi (as seen in the opening credits). As such, the Mirror Universe crew of Enterprise, known as the ISS Enterprise, is more racially diverse than its "real" universe counterpart, with Vulcans and Tellarites serving as crewmembers. The Mirror version of T'Pol, in particular, holds a position of trusted authority, and as in the "real" universe, a Denobulan, Phlox, serves as Enterprise's physician. The Mirror version of Soval is seen to be an enlisted science crewman aboard the ISS Avenger, another Starfleet vessel which is also seen to include Andorian and Orion crewmembers.
During the episode's stated date of January 2155, Archer steals the USS Defiant, an Original Series-era Constitution-class starship which disappears and is presumed destroyed in the Original Series episode "The Tholian Web", from the Tholians (who are more aggressive than their non-Mirror counterparts), but he is later poisoned by Hoshi Sato, who subsequently declares herself Empress of the Terran Empire (though whether she succeeds in this gambit is not revealed). During the episode, future events are foreshadowed, such as the fall of the Terran Empire after several centuries (as seen in the Deep Space Nine storyline described below).
The episode's story was continued in a novel mini-series Star Trek: Mirror Universe.
The Original Series
The Mirror Universe was first introduced in the original Star Trek episode "Mirror, Mirror". It was established that in the Mirror Universe the United Federation of Planets counterpart was the brutal Terran Empire, run by humans and their Vulcan allies. In the Mirror Universe, the term "Terran" is predominantly used for humans. The Mirror-Captain Kirk of the Imperial Starship Enterprise was a mass-murderer, who had been promoted to Captain by assassinating Captain Christopher Pike.
In the Terran Empire, officers were promoted for assassinating their superiors and order was kept by use of the "Agonizer" pain-giving devices. In some serious cases, the "Agony Booth" could also be used. Aesthetic differences included: the Mirror-crew's uniforms were flamboyant and somewhat robe-like, with ceremonial daggers for the officers; Mirror-Sulu was a Gestapo-like political officer with a disfiguring facial scar; Mirror-Spock had a goatee (which has led to a number of pop culture references of people from "evil alternative universes" having goatees), whereas the regular character does not; the "United Nations" emblem of the Federation was replaced in the Terran Empire symbol, which consisted of the Earth imposed over a vertical sword of conquest.
In this original encounter, Captain Kirk, Dr. McCoy, Lieutenant Uhura, and Chief Engineer Scott had been turned down by the peaceful Halkans, who did not want to trade for dilithium. They feared the use of the material for war. An ion storm causes a beam-up to go awry, however, switching the crew with their alternatives and sending the team into the mirror universe.
Normal Kirk is forced to pretend to be his mirror counterpart and discovers the ISS Enterprise was on a similar mission as his own ship - only the Terran Empire would not take no for an answer. They threaten to begin bombing the planet from orbit unless the Dilithium is sent to them. Kirk orders the bombing to be postponed, but other officers become suspicious and one attempts to assassinate him for acting against the interests of the empire.
Both Spocks find out the dual nature of the affected officers and work on a way to get them home in time; there is a limit.
Before leaving the Mirror Universe, Kirk asks the Mirror-Spock about the Halkan prediction of a galactic revolt to which Mirror-Spock reply it will happen in approximately 240 years with the inevitable overthrow of the Empire. Kirk uses this response to give an impassioned speech to Mirror-Spock that continuing to support the Empire was illogical and that one man with the right tool can make a difference. He asks Mirror-Spock to be that man, and Mirror-Spock replied that he would consider Kirk's proposal.
Deep Space Nine
The Mirror Universe was later revisited in the Deep Space Nine second-season episode "Crossover", and turned into a story-arc that spanned into the final season, with five Mirror Universe episodes over the course of seven seasons.
On Deep Space Nine, which takes place over 100 years after the original contact with the Mirror Universe, it was revealed that drastic changes had occurred in the Mirror Universe because of the interference of the regular universe's Kirk. Before he left the Mirror Universe, James T. Kirk planted seeds of doubt in the Mirror-Spock's mind about the Terran Empire's brutal tactics. Kirk noted that Spock was a man of honor in both universes, and the Mirror-Spock listened to Kirk's urging for reform. Mirror-Spock's future role on Enterprise and the fate of Mirror-Kirk are unclear, though some have suggested that Mirror-Kirk was assassinated (and was shown in a non-canon Star Trek comic). Mirror-Spock then went on to become Chief of State of the Terran Empire. Mirror-Spock introduced many popular reforms that largely ended the iron-fisted rule of the Terran Empire, especially a vast demilitarization program. However, these reforms were very ill-timed.
Not long after Mirror-Spock's demilitarization drive, the Terran Empire encountered the Alliance. In the Mirror Universe, the Alliance is a unified government of the Klingons and the Cardassians, presumably ruled by the Klingon Emperor. The Alliance conquered the ill-prepared Terran Empire and enslaved the Terrans and Vulcans. Terrans became pariahs and a slave race, often subjected to mass forced physical labor.
The Alliance does not have cloaking device technology (although a ship was seen decloaking in an earlier episode, an episode in the seventh season established that the Mirror Universe does not have cloaking devices, and the earlier appearance was retconned out as a graphical error). However, cloak technology did exist in the 22nd century on at least one Terran ship (who in turn took it from the Suliban).
It is unknown what role the Romulans play in the Mirror Universe. However, there is evidence of their existence. When Sisko was finished impersonating Mirror-Sisko, he told Mirror-Jennifer Sisko that he was leaving to see the Romulans, to get them to join the fight against the Alliance. This implies that the Romulans are an independent empire, much like they are in the "prime" reality or universe. It also means that, unlike other races such as the Vulcans and Andorians, the Romulans were able to resist the Terran Empire and to survive the mirror equivalent of the Earth-Romulan War, assuming that one took place to begin with.
The Bajorans of the Mirror Universe were ruled by the Terran Empire but later sided with the Alliance and became masters of Terran slave forces. Notable among them was Intendant Kira, the counterpart to the normal universe's Kira Nerys. Intendant Kira was a ruthless, sadistic hedonist; she was outwardly bisexual and sexually aggressive — characteristics apparently more common in Mirror Universe females than in normal universe ones. She maintained power in her sector of the Alliance from Terok Nor, the counterpart of Deep Space Nine.
When Deep Space Nine officers Julian Bashir and Kira Nerys visited the Mirror Universe, they sparked a rebellion among the Terran slaves led by the Mirror-Sisko and Mirror-O'Brien. Over the next five years, the Terran Rebellion would drag on and was not conclusively finished. However, Regent Worf was eventually taken as a prisoner of war by the rebellion.
The Klingon Empire of the normal Star Trek universe hasn't actually had an Emperor in 300 years; they were replaced by the Chancellor and the High Council. But in the Mirror-Klingon Empire there are still ruling Emperors. The Mirror-Imperial Family is House Duras, who were deposed in disgrace in the normal Trek universe. However, during Deep Space Nine, a Regent currently ruled as the true power behind the throne: the brutal Regent Worf.
Other characters in the Mirror Universe:
- Garak was Intendant Kira's first officer.
- Odo was the cruel foreman of the human slaves on Terok Nor, and was killed by the Dr. Bashir of the normal universe.
- Sisko was something of a shady pirate, but later started the Terran Rebellion, although he was subsequently killed.
- Tuvok never got lost in the Delta Quadrant and was a member of the Resistance.
- Quark was a Terran-sympathizer who was killed by Intendant Kira for smuggling humans away from the space station.
- Rom was a Rebel member who posed as an informant for Intendant Kira as part of prime-Sisko's plan to rescue mirror-Jennifer. The Intendant had Rom executed.
- Nog and Brunt were also later killed by Intendant Kira.
- Sisko's wife Jennifer never died at the hands of the Borg in the Mirror Universe, and she had to be convinced to join the Resistance. She was later killed by the Mirror-Kira.
- Julian Bashir was an uncouth, unshaven and aggressive member of the Resistance, although he was quite loyal. It is unclear if this Bashir was genetically enhanced, but humanity's status as a conquered slave race make it unlikely that he was.
- Jadzia Dax was the lover of Mirror-Sisko, although she later died (roughly the same time her counterpart in the normal universe died).
- Ezri (who did not have the Dax symbiote) was a freelance mercenary and Intendant Kira's lesbian lover working both sides until the real Quark and Rom convinced her to join the Rebellion.
- Leeta was a member of the Resistance and a lesbian who takes an interest in Ezri.
- Jake Sisko was never born in this reality.
- Miles O'Brien was a somewhat depressed character, so Mirror-Sisko dubbed him "Smiley" as a play on his first name 'Miles', and the name stuck to distinguish him from the normal O'Brien. Smiley never married or had children, but eventually became a high-ranking cell leader in the Terran Resistance — and after Mirror-Sisko's death, perhaps the leader.
- Bareil Antos is also still alive, but never became a Vedek (religious leader). In the mirror universe, Bareil was a thief and petty criminal.
- Vic Fontaine also makes an appearance, working alongside Mirror-Ezri. Inexplicably, he is not a hologram in the Mirror Universe, and the moment is played as comical. He was killed by Bashir shortly after making his appearance.
Eventually, the Terran Resistance captured Mirror-Terok Nor and used it as a base of operations, and built a Mirror-Defiant using plans stolen from the normal universe.
The following is a list of episodes that take place in the Mirror Universe or involve characters from the Mirror Universe, in in-Universe chronological order.
|ENT||418||"In a Mirror, Darkly"||Mirror-Archer, Mirror-Forrest, and the rest of the crew discover that a ship from 100 years in the future in an alternative universe, the USS Defiant, has travelled to their universe through some kind of rip in space. All of the crew members except Captain Forrest evacuate the ISS Enterprise as it is attacked by Tholians and board the Defiant. The Enterprise is destroyed, and its surviving crew uses the improved technology of the Defiant to chase away the Tholians. Archer replaces Forrest as captain.|
|ENT||419||"In a Mirror, Darkly Part II"||The Mirror Enterprise crew find the Defiant littered with the corpses of its former crew who murdered each other due to the effects of Interphase which causes humans to become psychotic. The Tholians use slaves to strip the ship. The overseer is a Gorn named Slar, who sabotages the Defiant and kills some of the survivors of the ISS Enterprise. Mirror Archer defeats the Gorn, and then his thoughts turn to using the powerful Defiant to take control of the Terran Empire. However, it is Mirror-Hoshi Sato who ultimately threatens to use the Defiant's weapons on the Emperor of the Terran Empire and replace him as Empress of the Empire.|
|TOS||204||"Mirror, Mirror"||Four crew members from the USS Enterprise switch places with their mirror universe counterparts and must get home while avoiding being discovered by the mirror universe crew of the Enterprise.|
|TOS||309||"The Tholian Web"||The USS Defiant (NCC-1764) is trapped in Interphase in Tholian Space and vanishes. Note: Until "In a Mirror, Darkly" there was no obvious connection between this episode and the Mirror Universe. No elements from the Mirror Universe are shown or mentioned anywhere in this episode.|
|DS9||223||"Crossover"||Dr. Bashir and Major Kira are transported to the Mirror Universe 100 years after the events of "Mirror, Mirror". They find that the Terran Empire has been replaced by the Alliance of Klingons, Cardassians, and Bajorans and that humans are slaves.|
|DS9||319||"Through the Looking Glass"||The Mirror-O'Brien kidnaps Sisko where Sisko must impersonate his late counterpart in order to save the mirror version of his late wife.|
|DS9||419||"Shattered Mirror"||After the Mirror-Jennifer Sisko kidnaps Jake, Captain Sisko must travel to the Mirror Universe to retrieve his son. While there the Mirror-O'Brien wishes for Sisko to help him prepare their version of the Defiant for battle against the Alliance in what could mean freedom for the Terrans.|
|DS9||608||"Resurrection"||The Mirror version of Vedek Bareil arrives on DS9 as he flees from the Alliance. His real reason for being in our universe is to steal the Bajoran Orb of Prophecy and Change for the Intendant, the mirror Kira. However, before he can complete this mission, he has a change of conscience, convinced by Kira, leaving the Orb behind and returning to the Mirror Universe with the Intendant.|
|DS9||712||"The Emperor's New Cloak"||Grand Nagus Zek, financial leader of the Ferengi Alliance, is captured and taken to the Mirror Universe as a hostage. Quark and Rom must pay a ransom of a cloaking device to free Zek, but Regent Worf imprisons them all in his quest to crush the Terran rebels.|
Besides the various canon productions depicting the mirror universe, it was the basis of many novels and comics, however as each TV series made its own mark on the continuity of the Mirror Universe the histories and futures established for the universe in non-canon works began to contradict canon. Most recently several Mirror Universe novels have been published in the DS9 Relaunch series and the Star Trek: Mirror Universe series which integrate new non-canon stories into the complete canon Mirror Universe.
- Glass Empires
- "Age of the Empress"
- "The Sorrows of Empire"
- "The Worst of Both Worlds"
- Obsidian Alliances
- "The Mirror-Scaled Serpent"
- "Cutting Ties"
- "Saturn's Children"
- Shards and Shadows
- "Ill Winds"
- "Greater Good"
- "The Black Flag"
- "The Traitor"
- "The Sacred Chalice"
- "Bitter Fruit"
- "Family Matters"
- "A Terrible Beauty"
- "For Want of a Nail"
- "The Sorrows of Empire"
- "Fearful Symmetry"
- "The Soul Key"
- "Rise Like Lions"
In 2007, two collections of Mirror stories were published: the first involves Mirror Enterprise, TOS and TNG, the second features Mirror DS9, Voyager and New Frontier (the first time the mirror New Frontier has ever been seen). Dark Passions and the Shatner novels are not part of the canon as established in these stories.
The first of these collections, Glass Empires, comprises Age of the Empress (describing Hoshi Sato's reign as Empress); The Sorrows of Empire (Spock's career from immediately after Mirror Mirror, to the forging of the Alliance at the mirror-Khitomer Accords; explaining that the fall of the Empire was orchestrated by Spock, forcing the people of the empire to fight for their democracy to make sure the Empire never reformed); and The Worst of Both Worlds (in which Jean-Luc Picard, a Terran slave, must defend the Alliance against the even worse threat of the Borg).
The second, Obsidian Alliances, consists of The Mirror-Scaled Serpent (Chakotay's resistance cell encounters Neelix and Kes in the Badlands); Cutting Ties (in which M'k'nzy of Calhoun ("Muck"), a slave of the Romulan Empire, meets the mirror counterparts of the Excalibur crew); and Saturn's Children (in which Kira plots to regain the position of Intendant from Ro Laren, while O'Brien faces discontent in the Resistance). The latter of these ties into the Mirror-Kira's appearance in the Deep Space Nine relaunch series of novels.
The Star Trek: Stargazer novel Three, by Michael Jan Friedman also features the Mirror Universe. Since the Stargazer novels are set during Picard's first command, nearly 40 years before the DS9 crossover, it provides a glimpse of the Mirror Universe during the war between the Empire and the Alliance. In it, the counterpart of a member of the USS Stargazer crew crosses over from the ISS Stargazer to kidnap the Stargazer’s chief engineer Simeon for the human resistance against the Alliance. The captain of the ISS Stargazer is the counterpart of the USS Stargazer’s first officer, Gilaad Ben Zoma.
Other views of the Mirror Universe
Various novels have been set in the Deep Space Nine version of the mirror universe, including a trilogy by William Shatner, which reveals the Mirror-Kirk (or "Emperor Tiberius", as he calls himself) was still alive, and plotting to reconquer his Empire. Apparently, it had been he who originally created the Alliance to overthrow Spock, before it turned on him. His right-hand man is Regent Jean-Luc Picard, who works with the counterparts of other Enterprise-E bridge crew. He is opposed in his aims by Mirror-Spock, now the Intendant of the Vulcan Resistance. Mirror versions of Kathryn Janeway, other Voyager crewmembers and Tasha Yar also appeared.
According to the Shatnerverse the Mirror Universe diverged from the standard Star Trek universe due to the events of Star Trek: First Contact. Human space travel was colored by Earth's pre-mature encounter with the Borg and so instead of developing a diverse and peaceful Federation based on exploration, humans created a hostile and military-oriented Empire based on strength and fear.
Dark Passions by Susan Wright is also set before the DS9 episodes, at about the time of The Next Generation. It focused on the mirror-Seven of Nine, a Terran slave who had been fitted with cybernetics to be a spy for the Obsidian Order. The sequence ended with her escaping in a ship she named Voyager, along with the counterparts of many of the Voyager crew.
Diane Duane, in her Star Trek: The Next Generation book Dark Mirror (ISBN 0-671-79377-2) offers another explanation of what happened after Captain Kirk and three others of his crew encountered the Mirror Universe. In the novel, the Empire is still very much in existence in the 24th century. The point of divergence pre-dates the Eugenics Wars, which in this timeline consist of the supermen annihilating each other with nuclear weapons, with humanity following their mindset in its new-found freedom. While on the Mirror Enterprise Picard finds several historical works of literature that reflect their universe's aggressiveness, although these altered versions may be actually due to Orwellian revisionism. The novel concludes with Picard advising the mirror Worf - here a slave - to encourage the Empire's slave races to wait for the chance to strike back, as the Empire's attempt to conquer our universe shows their increased desperation for new territories to conquer to enforce their powers.
"The Mirror Universe Saga" (DC Star Trek comic, 1984-85)
Template:Plot The Mirror Universe Saga (ISBN 0-930289-96-X) is a trade paperback that reprints eight issues of DC Comics' Star Trek comic book (issues #9 - #15, as well as issue #16 which completed the arc but did not actually involve the Mirror Universe) chronicling an encounter between the Mirror Universe and our own. It is set immediately after the events of Star Trek III: The Search for Spock, which had just been released shortly before the series was first published. The series was credited to Mike W. Barr (head writer for DC's Trek comic at the time), Tom Sutton, and Ricard Villagran. When originally published, this story arc was called "New Frontiers", though it is best known by the title used in this section heading.
The I.S.S. Enterprise obtains the Genesis technology developed by Dr. Carol Marcus then enters our universe to spearhead the Empire's intended conquest of the Federation. Meanwhile, in the "real" universe, Captain Styles of the Excelsior has arrived at Regula I, where Kirk and crew have found temporary safe haven, to take them back to Earth to stand trial for their mutinous actions (as depicted in Star Trek III). When they encounter a mystery attacking ship, Styles overconfidently believes the Excelsior can defeat the attacker, which is an "outdated" Constitution-class ship, but it turns out to be the I.S.S. Enterprise under the command of Mirror-Kirk. The Mirror-Enterprise crew easily overpowers the inexperienced Excelsior crew, taking over the advanced vessel, and Mirror-Kirk dispatches Mirror-Spock (who despite his words at the end of "Mirror, Mirror" had elected to return to Mirror-Kirk's side after all, after logically deducing that the efforts of any one single man would be a useless gesture against the Empire). Mirror-Sulu and Mirror-Chekov travel to Vulcan (aboard Kruge's Klingon bird-of-prey, captured by Kirk during Star Trek III and confiscated by Styles when taking custody of the Enterprise survivors) to find Spock, still recovering from the fal-tor-pan ritual on Vulcan. Kirk and his own crew manage to escape and take over the I.S.S. Enterprise, which is destroyed by remote control by the Mirror-Kirk; the real Kirk's crew survives by escaping in the ship's saucer section.
After retaking the Excelsior from Mirror-Kirk (and placing the Mirror-Enterprise crew in stasis), Kirk takes command of Excelsior and takes it to the Mirror Universe in a gambit of impersonating Mirror-Kirk yet again. His plan is to break the back of the Empire's planned invasion by taking command of the Imperial fleet aboard Excelsior, then turning on the fleet at the critical moment. One Empire officer, a Captain Blaine, is suspicious of Kirk's intentions; however, rather than suspecting Kirk is in fact his counterpart from the other (our) universe, he is familiar with Mirror-Kirk's history of advancing through the ranks by use of treachery and intrigue and thinks Kirk is out to take control of the Empire for himself.
Saavik researches Imperial history to help familiarize the crew with the Mirror Universe and its history, so as to better portray their own counterparts. Her research reveals the likely point of divergence between the two universes - the Romulan War. In our universe, Earth and Romulus fought their war in deep space. In the Mirror Universe, the war was fought in Earth's solar system, and Earth lost. The Romulans held Earth for ten years until a resistance overthrew them. This resistance did not disband once the Romulans were deposed, however; rather, its leaders proclaimed that Earth would no longer be conquered, but rather would be the conquerors themselves. Thus did the resistance movement form the seeds of what would eventually become the Terran Empire.
Meanwhile, Mirror-Spock reaches Vulcan, where he engages in a mind meld with the recovering Spock of our universe. However, once Mirror-Spock touches his mind, Spock is able to reflexively initiate a meld of his own. In the ensuring battle of minds, Spock draws strength to restore his mind, and at the same time, Mirror-Spock becomes reconciled to "our" Spock and the two make common cause to stop the Empire. The two Spocks use the captured Klingon ship to cross into the Mirror universe.
Also seen during this storyline is the counterpart of Kirk's son, David Marcus - still very much alive in the Mirror Universe, and leading a resistance cell against the Empire.
The Empire accepts Kirk's proposal to align with the Romulans and Klingons to defeat the Federation, Klingons and Romulans. However, Kirk and Scott have a plan to disable the entire fleet of Empire ships, then, when sufficiently defeated, disable the Romulan and Klingon ships (correctly suspecting both parties would turn their guns on Excelsior once the battle had ended) and return home. The empire, however, already had its own Excelsior built; they had studied the Federation ship earlier in the arc, and used the data gleaned from this examination for help in making their own Excelsior operational. The Mirror-Excelsior is under the command of Captain Blaine, who had evidently convinced others within the Empire's Admiralty of Kirk's duplicity. Fortunately, Scotty had deliberately screwed up the Excelsior's systems before Empire technicians studied them, giving their scanners false readings; as a result, the Mirror-Excelsior cannot draw enough power to operate and is easily defeated.
The Excelsior then returns to the Federation, having dropped off their mirror counterparts in shuttles. When Mirror-Kirk awakens, he tries to contact the nearest Imperial vessel for assistance - not realizing he and his crew have been branded as traitors after the real Kirk's actions left the Imperial fleet crippled. The I.S.S. Nogura picks up Mirror-Kirk's distress signal, and after verifying the identity of those aboard, destroys the shuttle, killing all aboard. Of the Mirror-Enterprise crew, only Mirror-Spock survives, and he elects to join David Marcus' resistance cell.
After returning to his own universe, Kirk gives a reporter an exclusive on how he and his crew saved the Federation from an invasion about which they would have never known. Her reports in the mass media paint the Enterprise survivors as heroes, much to the consternation of Starfleet brass who still wanted Kirk court-martialed. In the end, facing a public-relations nightmare if they proceeded with a full trial, Starfleet reluctantly gives Kirk full command of the Excelsior, ostensibly for an extended shakedown cruise to help work out all the bugs in its system. With the exception of Spock (who is assigned to a command of his own, the science vessel Surak), Kirk's entire crew joins him on this new mission. This sets up the later Star Trek comics stories which were published in the interim leading up to the release of Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home in 1986.
This story, like all Trek comics stories and novels, is not considered canonical with the main Star Trek universe.
Star Trek games
Portions of a number of Star Trek games take place in the Mirror Universe.
A 2004 Star Trek game — Star Trek: Shattered Universe — is set sometime after the original series episode "Mirror, Mirror". In the game, Captain Hikaru Sulu and the crew of the U.S.S. Excelsior swap places with the crew of the I.S.S. Excelsior thanks to a localized stellar ion storm. They are hunted by Mirror-Chekov, who commands the I.S.S. Enterprise, and assisted by the Mirror-Klingons and Mirror-Romulans. During their trek home, the Excelsior crew encounter Mirror Universe variations of the original series' missions, including the M-5 multitronic computer, a giant space-amoeba and a Doomsday Machine, although the latter is under the escort of the ISS Constellation and ISS Intrepid.
While the game takes place at some point during the era of the Star Trek films, it is unclear exactly when. The Enterprise has not yet been decommissioned, but Sulu is in command of the Excelsior, placing the game somewhere in the timeframe of "Star Trek V: The Final Frontier" and "Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country". Spock has not yet completed his coup d'état—the Empire contacts Mirror-Chekov several times during his mission to capture Sulu—but there is still much time for that to occur in the Mirror Universe timeline. There is no indication the character of Kirk, either version, is involved in the storyline.
During the Star Trek game – Star Trek: Voyager Elite Force – the crew of the U.S.S. Voyager are trapped in what is called a 'ship's graveyard'. Among the wreckage of ships there is an unidentified Constitution class vessel from the mirror universe crewed entirely by humans. It is made apparent that this vessel is from the mirror universe by the 'sword in the earth' symbol on the walls of the ship, the uniforms of the crew, and the fact that they attack hand to hand with daggers instead of phasers (It is shown in Mirror Mirror that crew members are equipped with daggers). These members of the Terran Empire have presumably been trapped in the graveyard for many years and have formed an alliance with crews of Klingons, Malons and Hirogen, though it is unknown if any of these races are also from the mirror universe. This alliance practices piracy and scavenges ships within the graveyard, taking by force any needed supplies and weaponry. Their own ship appears to have been heavily damaged and has received many emergency repairs. Many of the ships belonging to the Klingons, Malons, Hirogen and Terran Empire have been joined together to form a base of operations. This is referred to as 'The Scavenger Base'.
The members of the Voyager's Hazard Team, a specially trained group of officers trained to deal with unusual threats, are sent to board this base of operations in order to recover isodesium. This substance is needed to survive against the power-draining effects of the graveyard.
In Star Trek: Starfleet Command, a player who eventually joins the Starfleet Special Forces during the Federation campaign will be launched on a series of missions involving the mirror universe. It begins with an encounter involving the destroyer USS Boston during an experimental "star tap" test, capturing the player's counterpart (in exactly the same ship as the player's main vessel) when the player is accused of crimes against other empires, a mission to capture the mirror Captain Decker, and a showdown on Earth against a fleet of Doomsday Machines led by the mirror counterpart of Matthew Decker, who is supreme commander of the Imperial forces.
While in the "Alternative Factor", the Lazarus of the alternative universe said that to meet his counterpart would cause the destruction of both his and our universe, while in later episodes characters met their counterparts in the Mirror-Universe and the meetings did not cause any apparent damage to either universe. This apparent discrepancy is explained by the explicit statement made in the episode that the alternative Lazarus is from an anti-matter universe; it has long been established in "Star Trek" canon that physical contact between matter and its anti-matter counterpart is catastrophic.
Parodies, homages and similar stories
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- The Mirror Universe concept has been much parodied, notably in the episode "Spookyfish" in the second season of South Park.
- Another notable parody occurred in the Mystery Science Theater 3000 episode "Last of the Wild Horses".
- The Red Dwarf episode "Dimension Jump" depicts an alternative universe in which each of the series' principal characters have alter-egos portrayed by the same actors.
- There have also been episodes of the television series Hercules: The Legendary Journeys and Xena: Warrior Princess that reveal a "mirror universe" where all of the main characters have reversed moralities (i.e.: good characters in the main universe are evil in the "mirror universe" and vice versa). An episode of Sealab 2021, the Crime Syndicate of America concept in DC Comics, and the Transformers "Shattered Glass" storyline all feature alternative universes with similar settings.
- Doctor Who has also depicted an alternative universe. In the serial "Inferno", Britain fell to a fascist revolution in the forties and became a totalitarian republic. Although most of the alternative characters were not simply "evil" versions of their other selves, sharing essentially the same qualities (in particular Section Leader Elizabeth Shaw and Doctor Petra Williams). Doctor Who showed a different alternative universe in which Britain was a republic in "Rise of the Cybermen"/"Age of Steel", with momentary visits thereto thereafter.
- In Stargate SG-1's season nine episode "Ripple Effect", several alternative SG-1s appear through the Stargate, with varying differences.
- In the Futurama episode "The Farnsworth Parabox" the characters travel into a parallel universe and immediately accuse the other side of being evil. Also in Futurama, Bender has a 'good twin' named Flexo.
- NBC's sitcom Community has a dark parallel timeline first established in the season 3 episode "Remedial Chaos Theory".
- The WB's supernatural drama Charmed has an alternate, reverse morality world introduced in the Season six fanale "It's A Bad, Bad, Bad, Bad World". In this world good and evil were reversed (i.e. the demon of fear was the demon of hope in the alternate world).
- ↑ The Star Trek Encyclopedia: A Reference Guide to the Future. By Michael and Denise Okuda Pages 504 - 505
- ↑ Christopher L Bennett, Margaret Wander Bonanno, Peter David, Keith R.A. DeCandido, Michael Jan Friedman, Jim Johnson, Rudy Josephs, David Mack, Dave Stern, James Swallow, Dayton Ward, Kevin Dilmore, Susan Wright. Shards and Shadows. ISBN 978-1416558507.
- ↑ David Mack. Rise Like Lions. ISBN 978-1451607192.
- ↑ 
- ↑ Scenes at Bad Wolf Bay at the ends of "Doomsday" and "Journey's End"
- Mirror Universe article at Memory Alpha, a Star Trek wiki
- Star Trek: The Mirror Universe Chronology
- Hypothetical Timeline - Canon Fodder: Fixing the Star Trek DisContinuity
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