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Creeping Death was a 12-page Star Trek: The Original Series comic strip. It was the 27th weekly story arc in the UK comic strips series, published in six installments in Valiant and TV21 in 1971 and 1972. In this story, an enveloping fungus threatened to destroy the USS Enterprise.

Publisher's descriptionEdit

Teaser, 25 December, 1971
Two shuttlecraft had left the starship Enterprise to begin exploration of a planet classified Kappa Delta in a previously unexplored system. As they entered thick cloud cover, the men inside little knew that the sinister defences of the planet had already claimed them! Strange, fungus-like growth, spreading fast from the point of impact of tiny, light-accelerated particles…

SummaryEdit

Excited about a newly-discovered planet, Kirk joined two shuttlecraft crews to explore the surface. Before they could land, however, growths of wild fungus suddenly appeared and spread rapidly across the ships' hulls. The excess weight destabilized the ships, destroying one against a mountain, while the other crashed into a lake. The fungus dissipated in water, allowing Kirk, Spock and five crewmen to escape in a life raft, only to be captured and deposited in front of a Graktan firing squad.

At the last moment, Graktan's leader Lektor saved them – he thought they were invading Themerians. He apologized deeply for the mistake and loss of the other shuttle's crew and extended them full hospitality. But the group soon discovered that the planet's defensive fungus had also been set on the Enterprise, disabling their communications, engines, and shields. The starship was being pulled helplessly into the gravity well of the star Kappa.

To rescue the Enterprise, Kirk, Spock, and Lektor blasted off with a crew in a Graktan battle cruiser. They were forced to disable two attacking Themerian raiders, then approached the crippled starship. They exploded probes against the ship's communications array to clear it of fungus. Now able to contact the ship, Spock told Montgomery Scott to flood the fungus with water. Scott diverted the full output of the ship's water-generating plants onto the hull through airlocks, dissipating the fungus. Scott was then able to restart the ship's engines and pull away from the star.

Kirk considered the bright side of the near-disaster: they had forged a friendship with the Graktans.

ReferencesEdit

CharactersEdit

Pavel ChekovJames T. KirkLektorLeonard McCoyMorkMontgomery ScottSpockHikaru SuluNyota Uhuraunnamed USS Enterprise personnel (2260s)unnamed Graktans

Starships and vehiclesEdit

aircraftUSS Enterprise (Constitution-class heavy cruiser) • Graktan battle cruiserlife raftNCC-1701/3 (class F shuttlecraft) • NCC-1701/5 (class F shuttlecraft) • Themerian raider

LocationsEdit

Kappa system (KappaGraktan/Kappa Delta)
Referenced only 
Kappa system (Kappa AlphaKappa GammaKappa BetaKappa EpsilonKappa Zeta) • Sol system (Earth) • Themere

Races and culturesEdit

GraktanHumanThemerianVulcan

States and organizationsEdit

Federation

Science and technologyEdit

airlockartificial gravityautophonic danger alarmcommunicationscomputerdeep-range scannerenginegrapplergungyroscopehydro-product plantmathematicsmissilePADDparticle acceleratorpea-shooterradioriflestabilizertranslator communicatorweapon

Ranks and titlesEdit

captaincrewmancommanderengineerFederation Starfleet ranks (2260s)pilotprofessorscientistskipperStarfleet rankstechnician

Other referencesEdit

assignment patchatmospherebrainbridgecapital citycargo holdexecutionfiring squadfreedomfungusgravitational fieldgravityhistoryhornethornet's nesthulllanding partymoleculemountainparking orbitpeaceplanetradiationrocketshuttlecraft bayspacesporestarstar systemStarfleet uniformStarfleet uniform (2265-2270)sunwateryear

TimelineEdit

ChronologyEdit

Production historyEdit

Published Order
Previous comic:
By Order of the Empire
TOS comics
UK comic strips
Next comic:
Ground Zero
  • This story was serialized in two-page sections over six consecutive weeks in Valiant and TV21 magazine. Each issue was 36 pages, with the Star Trek segment printed in color on pages 18-19.
December 1971
January 1972
December 2016 
Reprinted in the omnibus The Classic UK Comics, Volume 2 (IDW Publishing)
1 February 2018 
Reprinted in the omnibus Graphic Novel Collection #29 (Eaglemoss)

AppendicesEdit

BackgroundEdit

  • This story was not printed with a title, but it was given one ("Creeping Death") for its reprinting in the omnibus The Classic UK Comics, Volume 2.
  • Class F shuttlecraft were established to have flotation chambers and a life raft aboard.
  • Shuttlecraft NCC-1701/3 made its second of six appearances in the UK comic strips series. Although it crashed into a lake, it was salvageable. While the vessel's name was not visible, it was possible that it could be a replacement for the shuttle Icarus, an Enterprise shuttle of that registry which was destroyed in 2254.
  • Shuttlecraft NCC-1701/5 made its first of two appearances. It also appeared in "The Void of Storms" (arc #34).
  • Although a caption said Kirk's shuttle had 12 aboard, only seven people were shown escaping after the crash, with no apparent casualties.

Related storiesEdit

ImagesEdit

ConnectionsEdit

UK comic strips
Weekly story arcs 12345678910111213141516171819202122232425262728293031323334353637
Annual stories 12Captives in SpacePlanet of RejectsGateway to the Future67Planet of the DeadWhat Is This Thing Called Spock?The Gods Have Come!11

External linksEdit

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