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Alien Spotlight: Vulcans

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Real World article
(written from a Production point of view)

Cover image

Writer(s): James Patrick
Artist(s): Josep Maria Beroy
Publisher: IDW Comics
Series: Alien Spotlight #2
Published: 5 November 2007
Pages: 22
Stardate: Unknown (2254)

Alternate cover image

Summary Edit

"Captain's log. We're in orbit of Magefferus-3. Magefferans are an aggressive hostile race. Beneath the planet's atmosphere stretches a surface scarred with the debris of countless battles. A small civilian population repulsed by their more war-minded majority has approached the Federation to intervene, after years of their own failures toward peace. While I am surprised the military leaders would even listen to us, I'm not optimistic that our presence can change anything. Or maybe my frame of mind is worse than usual amid the problems the Enterprise has had lately. Some friction has developed among the crew. Our newest addition is Vulcan. I'd met him some time back and was very impressed, so I thought he'd make a good addition to the Enterprise. And while it's true that the Federation is accepting of other cultures, it's quite another thing to share a starship with them. Vulcans have served on ships before, but this crew is unfamiliar with them, so their seeming lack of emotion is sometimes mistaken as rudeness or uncaring. The most vocal critic has been our brilliant but high-strung navigator, Lieutenant José Tyler. I'm not the ship's counselor, but it's not hard to tell they share opposing dispositions."

Captain Pike is contacted and informed that the landing party is ready to beam down to the planet. Pike meets Tyler in the turbolift, and they discuss the species on the planet below. Tyler asks if Spock will be joining them, and asks for permission to speak frankly when the answer is affirmative. He tells Pike that things are getting worse, giving the example of a discussion earlier that day about an incident at Reebi Station where the crew was trying to figure out how they could have gotten both the Enterprise team and hostages out safely. When they'd asked Spock, he responded that he'd have let the hostages die and that he'd come to that decision based on the importance of each hostage and each crew member who'd gone in, and when Smithy said that his brother was a hostage, Spock said that it was irrelevant, almost causing a fight. Pike agrees to think about the situation, worrying that it may not be worth upsetting the balance of the ship. They arrive at the transporter room, where they are told by Spock that the military leaders are waiting for them in the city of Pomapoli. Pike tells Number One not to throw any parties while they are gone.

They beam down to the surface and find themselves in the midst of wreckage. It appears that the beam had been diverted. When they try to contact the Enterprise, they discover that their communications are being jammed. They are surrounded by military men who tell them that they were stupid to believe that peace was possible. The leader orders his men to "kill them, cut off their heads, and we will deliver them to the fools who invited them here." One fires, hitting Reed, a security officer, forcing them to take cover. They discover that their phasers are being jammed, so Spock begins working on changing their frequency. Pike orders him to fix the communicators, but Spock points out that they are more sensitive and that he may not have the right tools. Pike comforts Reed, and all the time, Spock does not seem fazed at all, and fixes the phasers. The crew fires back, killing all of their ambushers.

Meanwhile, Reed has died. Spock suggests moving on because reinforcements will surely arrive soon. Tyler tells him to shut up and to give them a moment with their dead crew-mate. Spock retorts that a moment is illogical and that they should strip his equipment and move quickly.

"Captain's log. We have been ambushed on Magefferus 3. The Magefferan military do not intend to change their ways, no matter what some civilians believe. With the exception of Spock, the mood remains poor. We lost an excellent man, security officer Daniel Reed. After the mission, we'll return him to the Enterprise for a proper funeral. Again, Spock seems unaffected. It's more likely that he's just not showing it. But I find it troubling. This mission may even confirm that he should be reassigned."

Tyler shows Pike a map of where they currently are, where they were transported to, and where they were supposed to meet the civilian leaders, a location nearby. He suggests attacking the location of the jamming signal and beaming back to the Enterprise. Spock inquires about the original goal of the mission, and Tyler tells him that it's over due to their attack, and they get into a debate over continuing the mission, with Tyler taking the tact that the planet can "go to Hell", and Spock suggesting that "our lives remain insignificant compared to the missions on this planet." Pike interrupts and takes Tyler's side of the debate, since he does not want to lose any more lives.

They arrive at the site of the jamming device, and set up an attack on it, Spock creating a diversion, which should allow Pike and Tyler to get close enough to the device to destroy it. Unfortunately, the guards spot Pike and Tyler and capture them, injuring Tyler in the process. The rest of the group surrender. The leader pulls his knife and prepares to cut Pike's throat when one of his underlings stops him saying, "There's something wrong with this one... his face. There's nothing on it. No fear for his life. No concern for his comrades. I've never seen anything like it." The Magefferan leader asks Spock what he is, Spock responds that he is a Vulcan, a people that have mastered their emotions. He continues on, telling him that they control their "emotions through discipline and the teachings of Surak," noting that Vulcans used to be even more savage then the Magefferans. The leader does not believe him and slices Spock's hand, but Spock shows no reaction. He tells them that he is willing to tell them about himself and his people and show them how they restrain themselves, and all the Magefferans need do is listen to him.

"Captain's log. The Magefferans were so intrigued by Spock, I think they didn't kill us just so they could keep looking at him. We went from leader to leader as they studied his emotionless face – one with no pain, no fear. It took days, but after speaking with different factions, we convinced many of them to meet their civilian leaders on our ship. I've determined our mission was as successful as it could have been under the circumstances. The Federation can handle the rest. More mediators are on their way now, most of them Vulcans. Before we leave, however, there are some loose ends to tie up with the Enterprise."

Pike calls Tyler into his ready room. Tyler asks if the events have changed his mind about Spock, and Pike tells him that they reminded him why he brought him on board initially. Tyler asks if it is worth upsetting the balance of the crew, and Pike responds that the crew is an excellent one and that they need to act like it and realize that Spock is valuable to the ship and Starfleet, and that personal issues need to be put aside. He tells Tyler that he will talk to Spock and ask him to keep his controversial opinions to himself, but not to expect peace overnight, just as the Magefferans will not accomplish it overnight.

"Captain's log. One final entry before leaving Magefferus. This crew exemplifies the best of what Starfleet represents. We are a piece in a long-term plan to make the universe a better place. But part of me believes Spock will become a bigger piece to it all. Part of me thinks we are more the start of his journey than he is the start of ours. It's why I invited him aboard. It's what I first saw in him, and I will make sure to never forget it again."

Memorable Quotes Edit

"I have to say, I've never seen a species discover warp drive then nearly completely ignore it because they couldn't turn it into some sort of weapon."

- Tyler, on the Magefferans


"How could we persuade these people to adopt a more peaceful way if we become hostile toward them?"
"They attacked us. The mission is over."
"Of course they attacked. It is their nature. We are here to provide them with an example of another way."

- Spock and Tyler

Background Information Edit

Vulcan alien spotlight photo

Photo cover

  • Rick Remender was the original author of the story, but when he was forced to pull out, James Patrick took over.
  • This story is set almost immediately after Spock first joined the crew of the USS Enterprise under Christopher Pike, which places it around 2254.
  • The crew refer to the planet as both "Magefferus-3" and "Magefferus 3" in the text.
  • There was a limited photo cover released.
  • The issue sold an estimated 8,260 copies in comic specialty stores in November 2007. [1] These figures do not cover copies sold on the direct market (bookstores, etc.).

Creators Edit

Characters Edit

Canon characters listed below are linked to the main article about them. Non-canon characters are not linked, but those that recurred, appearing or being mentioned in more than one story, are defined further in IDW TOS characters.
Christopher Pike 
Captain of the USS Enterprise.
Number One 
First officer of the Enterprise.
José Tyler 
Navigator on the Enterprise.
Spock 
Vulcan crewman on the Enterprise.
Daniel Reed 
Enterprise security officer. Died at the hands of the Magefferans.
Smithy 
Enterprise crew member. His brother died in the Reebi Station incident on Reebus.

External link Edit


Previous issue: Series Next issue:
#1: "Alien Spotlight: The Gorn" Alien Spotlight volume 1 #3: "Alien Spotlight: Andorians"

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