(coexisting on another dimensional plane)
In his youth he was apparently an idealist (according to Marlena Moreau); however by the time he became captain, he had become a cold-blooded Terran killer. During his career, he was twice awarded for surviving a mortal wound and for being a master of poisons.
Commanding the ISS Enterprise
He succeeded to command of the ISS Enterprise by assassinating Captain Christopher Pike. His first action was the suppression of the Gorlan uprising through the destruction of the rebels' home planet. His second action was the execution of five thousand colonists on Vega IX.
Kirk's rise to power was very much due to his possession of the Tantalus field, a device he stole from an alien scientist that allowed Kirk to vaporize uncooperative enemies remotely, without evidence.
However, Kirk also had a personal security squad as bodyguards, led by Farrell. His woman in the late 2260s was Marlena Moreau, a lieutenant assigned to the sciences division (and also a skilled assassin).
In 2267, he visited the home planet of the Halkans. The Empire had noted their homeworld's vast dilithium reserves and threatened to destroy them if they did not cede mining rights to the Empire. When Kirk's landing party attempted to beam up from the Halkan homeworld, an ion storm crossed him with his counterpart from another universe, beaming him right inside his duplicate's clothes in a one-in-a-million transference, which read to Kyle's board as a "wobble" in the power beam of the transporter.
He found himself aboard the USS Enterprise in a different world than he knew – the Spock of that universe noted that it was far more difficult for the "barbaric" landing party to act civilized than it was for the civilized crew of his vessel to feign barbarity. After being imprisoned by Spock, he offered him fantastic bribes to get his command back. Spock proceeded to place the captives on the transporter, to wait for when the crew from his landing party reciprocated the action, and beamed themselves back into the places of their duplicates. (TOS: "Mirror, Mirror")
During a second crossover in 2370, Intendant Kira told her counterpart, Major Kira Nerys, that Kirk's situation upon his return was radically different. His Spock relieved him of command, learned of the existence of the Tantalus field and earned Marlena's loyalty. Kirk's counterpart had strongly encouraged them to attempt to overthrow and change the Empire's negative effects on the galaxy.
|Commanding officers of the starships Enterprise|
|Enterprise NX-01:||Archer • T'Pol • Tucker • Lorian|
|USS Enterprise:||April • Pike • Kirk • Decker • Spock|
|USS Enterprise-D:||Picard • Riker • Jellico • Halloway|
|ISS Enterprise NX-01:||Forrest|
|ISS Enterprise NCC-1701:||Pike • Kirk • Spock|
|USS Enterprise:||Pike • Kirk|
Like his counterpart, the mirror Kirk was played by William Shatner.
Had a would-be Shatner guest appearance on Star Trek: Enterprise come to fruition, mirror Kirk would have come aboard Enterprise (with a revelation that victims of the Tantalus field – used by Spock soon after his return – are displaced in time, not killed) in the hopes of using the transporter to return to his universe – which, in the process, he and an unwitting Archer would have created in the first place.
According to the IDW comic Hell's Mirror, the mirror universe James T. Kirk was born into poverty under a George and Winona Kirk who yielded to the Empire's cruel demands. In secret, they raised him with many of the same values his Prime counterpart was raised with, emphasizing a love of literature and art, especially focusing upon heroic narratives such as the one told in the book The Once and Future King. At some point, however, his home was burned down by enforcers of the Empire, and Kirk was carted off to be brainwashed at a reeducation camp. Even during the era of his Enterprise captaincy, Kirk held on to those memories, in secret keeping a banned copy of The Once and Future King among his personal belongings.
In the short story "The Greater Good" contained in the anthology Shards and Shadows, the mirror universe James T. Kirk, who was then a lieutenant, served aboard the ISS Farragut in 2264. Captain Garrovick took great pleasure in humiliating him in front of the entire crew. In revenge, Kirk arranged for Garrovick and two hundred of his crew to be killed by a dikironium cloud creature. He later claimed that he slept sounder the night after Garrovick's death than he had in years.
According to the novel Dark Victory, Kirk stole the Tantalus field from a mirror version of Balok during an encounter between the Terran Empire and the First Federation, similar to the exchange observed in "The Corbomite Maneuver". In contrast, in the short story "The Greater Good" from Shards and Shadows, Kirk obtained the device from Dr. Simon Van Gelder at the Tantalus penal colony and used it to assassinate Captain Pike to become captain.
Marvel Comics' "Fragile Glass", a sequel to "Mirror, Mirror", depicts Spock assassinating the mirror Kirk in short order after the return from the crossover. The novella (later novel) "The Sorrows of Empire" shows that after Kirk's return to his universe, Spock attempted to dissuade him from destroying the Halkans, showing that if they did, it would in fact, be even more difficult for the Empire to get the dilithium, but Kirk refused and destroyed the Halkan civilization anyway. Shortly after, Kirk was strangled to death by Spock in his own quarters, and Marlena vaporized his body with the Tantalus field. Decipher's Mirror Universe also had Kirk assassinated after his return.
However, DC Comics' The Mirror Universe Saga and Pocket TNG: Dark Mirror by Diane Duane both depict Kirk surviving, as well as the Empire in its current form. The latter actually depicts an Empire in the Star Trek: The Next Generation-era, something that did not occur in the Star Trek: Deep Space Nine version of events. In DC's comic arc, Kirk finally fell victim to arrogance when he was executed, along with his staff, for the crimes of his duplicate from "our" creation, after Kirk tried to invade this universe's Federation.
In the Star Trek: The Mirror Universe Trilogy novels of William Shatner and co-writers Judith and Garfield Reeves-Stevens, the mirror Kirk survives well into the 24th century via hibernation sleep (unlike his counterpart, who had to die twice to get into the 24th century). This version of events, which ties closely to the canon DS9 version, depicts Kirk as a madman who rose to ultimate power as the Emperor Tiberius I, with the help of Intendant Spock. Meanwhile, Spock had been fulfilling his promise and attempted to change the Empire from the inside, using Kirk's power, before his betrayal. Afterward, it is revealed that it was former Emperor Tiberius that brought together the Klingons and the Cardassians into a formidable alliance before his eventual disappearance for 78 years.
In an alternate reality version of the mirror universe, James T. Kirk (β) was featured in issues fifteen and sixteen of the Star Trek: Ongoing comic series. Kirk was depicted as being first officer on the ISS Enterprise (β) under the command of Captain Spock (β).
In Parallel Lives, Part 2, the mirror Kirk of the Prime Timeline appears when an anomaly called a "quantum storm" causes the crew of the USS Enterprise to meet gender-swapped versions of themselves and the quantum storm starts pulling in Enterprise crewmembers from infinite realities, with the mirror Kirk being pulled in and appearing next to Kirk and asking who he is and how he got on his ship before being pulled back into his reality.
A second alternate mirror universe counterpart of Kirk appeared in the three-issue story arc Lost Images. This Kirk was depicted as being captain of the ISS Enterprise before that version of Spock mutinied against him. He later regained command of the Enterprise through the help of that universe's Khan Noonien Singh and the prime alternate reality version of Kirk.