(written from a Production point of view)
While traveling through an unexplored region of space, the Enterprise is targeted by a barrage of missiles, damaging the starboard nacelle. On the heels of the attack, about a hundred small ships head straight for the Enterprise. The barrage stops, and Enterprise holds its return fire, allowing a small craft to board. Kirk meets the occupant of the craft, General Ari of the planet Hytar. He explains that his people are at war with their twin planet of Nuofo and mistakenly thought the Enterprise was an enemy vessel. Ari ruled both worlds as president, but was overthrown by Irf, plunging the two worlds into war. Ari pleads with Kirk to negotiate peace. Although Kirk is reluctant to do so, Spock convinces him to help out so as to buy time to get the damaged nacelle repaired.
Kirk orders repair wagons to the nacelle, and directs the Enterprise to orbit Hytar. Kirk takes a small space bug shuttle and has it painted according to Ari's instructions, with visible symbols of truce to ward off potential attackers. Departing from the Enterprise, the space bug is immediately attacked and destroyed, and Kirk gets away in an escape pod. Spock has another spacebug retrieve Kirk, who discovers that General Ari fled the Enterprise as soon as Kirk's spacebug was attacked.
A landing party is sent down to Nuofo to determine why Kirk was attacked. They are greeted by soldiers, who escort the party to Irf. He explains that Kirk was attacked because his ship bore Hytar markings – the same ones that were on Hytar missiles. Kirk invites Irf aboard the Enterprise, but Irf refuses to negotiate or allow the landing party to return.
Captain Kirk regrets getting involved in the conflict and checks on the progress of the repairs. Just then, the repair crew report a fleet of attacking vessels that fire upon and board the Enterprise. The crew easily repel the invaders and defeat the boarding parties. Frustrated, Kirk contacts General Ari, who is not surprised to see Kirk alive, and expects to hear of good progress in the war. Kirk invites him aboard, and he acts surprised to see Hytar men that Kirk's crew have taken captive from the boarding party. Kirk throws Ari in the brig and orders an invasion of Nuofo.
The Nuofo forces are outgunned and overwhelmed, and Kirk leads his forces straight into Irf's headquarters, where he imposes "an enforced peace conference". As Kirk laments some casualties and strolls around Irf's headquarters, the building is assaulted by a group of spacecraft. It is discovered that the attackers are from the planet Desta, an old mutual enemy of Hytar and Nuofo. Kirk convinces Ari and Irf's forces to unite with the Enterprise and form an alliance. The combined fleet drives the Destans away within minutes, and Ari and Irf submit to Kirk's stipulation that the Hytar and Nuofo hold a democratic election. A third party candidate, Juf, wins presidency of the two planets, and Ari and Irf are both elected as planetary advisers.
Memorable quotes Edit
"We're strangers in this part of the universe."
- - Captain Kirk
"We're going to teach these aliens a lesson in invasion! Prepare all available craft for armed conflict! Repair wagons, exploration rockets, rescue capsules, space-bugs... stand by for blast-off! We're invading Nuofo – and attack anything that tries to stop us!"
- - Captain Kirk, having a go at a bit of 'cowboy diplomacy'
"Sometimes it almost takes a cosmic calamity to bring about a feeling of brotherhood, Mr. Spock!"
"Indeed, Captain... certainly the results here indicate proof of that statement. Yes, indeed, sir!""
- - Kirk and Spock
Background information Edit
- This story must be set in 2265-2266 due to the presence of both McCoy and Bailey.
- This is the first appearance of Uhura in the UK strip, though she has no dialogue. She wears a gold uniform.
- Transporters are referred to as teleporters.
- Battle stations are here called "action stations".
- The starboard nacelle is identified as 'sector twelve' of the Enterprise.
- Crewmen in the docking port (as opposed to the shuttlebay) wear environmental suits that bear an uncanny resemblance to those that appeared ten years later in Star Trek: The Motion Picture.
- General Ari is able to fly is his ship right into Enterprise's docking port during a battle.
- Ari calls on Kirk to mediate, mirroring when another blue-skinned alien, Shran, called on another captain of the Enterprise (Archer) to mediate in "Cease Fire".
- Ari calls the Enterprise crew 'Earthmen', although they are supposedly "strangers" in the region.
- The 'space bug' Kirk pilots is long and sleek; far different from those seen in previous strips.
- Kirk's spacebug as well as the other craft launch from the edge of the ship's saucer section.
- Four men are sent down in the landing party, but none of them are from the senior staff.
- When the Enterprise is boarded, a crewman moves two children to safety. This prefigures the children that would be part of the crew on the USS Enterprise-D. Curiously, these children wear kid-sized versions of standard uniforms.
- The Enterprise uses lasers instead of phasers.
Publishing history Edit
None of the UK weekly stories had titles. Each installment was two pages in length.
- Part 1: Joe 90: Top Secret #15, 26 April 1969
- Part 2: Joe 90: Top Secret #16, 3 May 1969
- Part 3: Joe 90: Top Secret #17, 10 May 1969
- Part 4: Joe 90: Top Secret #18, 17 May 1969
Regular cast Edit
Other characters Edit
- General Ari
- Dave Bailey
- President Juf
- Kirby – laser gunner
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