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Year Four, Issue 3

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Real World article
(written from a Production point of view)
Year four issue 3 cover.jpg

Cover image

Writer(s): David Tischman
Artist(s): Gordon Purcell
Publisher: IDW Comics
Series: Year Four #3
Published: 3 October 2007
Pages: 22
Stardate: 4173.15 (2269)
Year four issue 3 alt cover.jpg

Alternate cover image

SummaryEdit

Stardate 4178.6. Nurse Chapel is hiding in a shuttlepod while Kirk and Leonard McCoy bang on the door, trying to get in. They manage to enter, phaser at the ready. She leaves the shuttle with them, and they leave the shuttlebay.

"Captain's log, stardate 4173.15. The Enterprise is in orbit over the colony on PH-11, a remote planetary system at the edge of the galaxy – the frontier of known space. Communication with the PH-11 colonists stopped suddenly several weeks ago, and all efforts to raise them have failed. Starfleet has asked us to investigate. Just like the first settlers of the American west in Earth's 19th century, man is alone out here – on his own... and life among the stars can be dangerous – I only hope our fears are unfounded."

On the surface, McCoy checks the pulse of a colonist, reporting "he's dead, Jim." He notes that there is no sign on infection. Chekov reports that the communication room is destroyed, and Spock reports that the colonists had recently found a wrecked alien escape pod and shows a tape that he found. Kirk and Spock beam up to the Enterprise, leaving the landing party to continue the investigation.

On the starship, Spock watches the tape, and hears one of the colonists report that he has destroyed the radio. When he finishes watching it, Kirk tells him that McCoy has finished his tests and asks him to meet them in sickbay. On his way out of his quarters, Spock encounters Nurse Chapel, which delays his arrival in sickbay. McCoy tells them that the colonist he examined died of massive brain trauma – almost like his brain had received too much information at once. Kirk is called to the bridge, and McCoy asks to watch the tape that Spock had.

In the cafeteria, Chapel greets Ryan and M'Ress, but they both ignore her completely and walk out.

On the bridge, McCoy reports that he and Spock are running tests. Suddenly, Sulu changes course, and when Kirk inquires, he reports that it was per his orders, and order Kirk did not give. He tells Sulu to return to the prior course. Spock calls for security, and Kirk tells Sulu that he is relieved of duty. He turns to Uhura and she reports that she heard him give the order to change course. Security arrives on the bridge, and Spock tells them that Kirk has been infected by the virus from PH-11. McCoy relieves him of duty and when Kirk resists, Spock uses a Vulcan nerve pinch on him to knock him out, so that security can take him to sickbay.

Down in sickbay, McCoy tells Chapel that the captain has been infected and asks her to sedate him, despite Kirk's protestations. When McCoy is distracted with Collins, the security guard on duty, she slips a scalpel to Kirk so that he can cut his bonds. When McCoy leaves, Kirk makes his move, and Chapel distracts Collins long enough for Kirk to disable him. They hurry down the hall, and Kirk tells Chapel to save the ship as he attacks Sulu and another crewman.

On the bridge, Uhura tells Spock that the two are still free. The ship is nearing a planet, their destination. Spock opens shipwide communications and tells them to find all uninfected crewmen and transform them. Sulu and the other guard open their mouths and a weird sound comes out; Kirk is transfixed.

Kirk, McCoy, Spock, and Chapel beam down to the surface of the planet. Spock declares that he is ready. All four make a strange noise, and a strange aura emanates from them as Chapel declares "the UR is home."

"Captain's log, supplemental. The UR is a viral life form with a communal sentience, infected its carriers through sound. It lay dormant in the body of the alien pilot on PH-11 for over a thousand years — Unfortunately, its unfamiliarity with Human physiology killed the colonists... I have submitted my report to Starfleet and the colonists' families have been notified."

Memorable QuotesEdit

"There was no way they could have received Starfleet's hails."
"Your grasp of the obvious continues to amaze me doctor."

- McCoy and Spock, after discovering the communications room has been destroyed


"Find a way to stop this thing – Keep my ship safe!"

- Kirk, asking Chapel to save the day as he distracts the guards


"Seems to me, there must be easier ways to explore the galaxy."
"Not for the UR, doctor."
"We still know so little."
"That's what we're here for nurse – or we're all out of a job."

- McCoy, Spock, Chapel, and Kirk

Background InformationEdit

  • This story appears to take place during the second season of Star Trek: The Animated Series from the stardate. The presence of Arex also supports this.
  • The issue sold an estimated 11,056 copies in comic specialty stores in October 2007. [1] These figures do not cover copies sold on the direct market (bookstores, etc.).

CreatorsEdit

CharactersEdit

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.
James T. Kirk 
Federation captain of the USS Enterprise.
Spock 
First officer of the USS Enterprise.
Leonard McCoy 
Medical officer of the USS Enterprise.
Scotty 
Enterprise engineer.
Arex 
Enterprise navigator.
Pavel Chekov 
Enterprise security officer.
Hikaru Sulu 
Enterprise helmsman.
Uhura 
Enterprise communications officer.
Ryan 
Enterprise officer.
Christine Chapel 
Enterprise nurse.
Collins 
Enterprise security officer.

External link Edit


Previous issue: Series Next issue:
#2: "Year Four, Issue 2" Star Trek: Year Four #4: "Year Four, Issue 4"

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