"Dwarf Planet" was a Star Trek: The Original Series comic book story published by Gold Key Comics in 1974, their 25th issue. It was the 23rd story credited to artist Alberto Giolitti and the sixth written by Arnold Drake. In this story, James T. Kirk, Spock and Nyota Uhura discover tiny people in a miniature city in the year 2266.
- 1 Description
- 2 Summary
- 3 References
- 4 Appendices
- 5 Timeline
- Captain's log, star date 19:24.8 – Lt. Uhuru, our chief comm-officer, has detected intelligent radio signals from the little explored area of space, Sector 119-D!
A landing party from the Enterprise journeys to an unknown planet in Sector 119-D, via one of the starship's shuttlecraft. Captain James T. Kirk, Mister Spock and Lieutenant Uhura are investigating radio signals from the area that indicate intelligent lifeforms. The crew land in a city which is technologically advanced. The landing crew find the city is deserted, and move to a nearby settlement, finding it to be built for smaller beings, and equally as empty. Exploring further, they find another still smaller city, less than a mile distant from the first landing site. The structures and trees of the miniature city are only waist-high. Scattered vehicles are abandoned as well…
The trio separates to learn more, but each is incapacitated by tiny rockets with bolas and beta gas. They are hoisted by crane, loaded into wooden carts by foot-tall humanoids, and brought into the third city to President Alata. Alata explains that two generations ago their star began emitting an unknown radiation that started shrinking the people and plants. They built a second city appropriate to their new proportions, and the next generation built the third city. Her people don't want to abandon their world, but also don't want to shrink into oblivion. Kirk offers to study the radiation and seek a cure. Alata agrees, but keeps Uhura to ensure that Kirk would return.
- Captain's log, star date 19:24.9 – On route toward the sun of the planet Kujal where we hope to find the key to the mystery of that shrinking world!
A jammed sensor array prompts Montgomery Scott to put on a foil-lined spacesuit and climb out an airlock to repair it. He manages to fix it, but in the process he tears a tiny hole in his suit. He collapses, and Kirk quickly retrieves him wearing a second suit. Scott's suit appears empty, but actually he's been shrunk to less than one foot tall. He's absorbed a huge amount of radiation due to his proximity to the star and soon will become microscopic.
Acting quickly, Scott is placed in an antiseptic container. While the radiation is being identified, however, two soldiers sent aboard the ship by General Kwy to cause trouble find the container and shoot at the ventilation hose. Leonard McCoy captures them and reseals the hose, but it is too late – contaminants have gotten in. Soon a microbe attacks Scott, who is now the size of a grain of salt. He tosses rocks at the creature and is forced to pummel it with what seem like huge piles of boulders. McCoy retrieves Scott and places him under an experimental anti-shrink-ray device, which restores him to full size. Back on Kujal, Kirk promises to provide enough devices to restore all Kujalans within a year. Alata promises that General Kwy will be the last person restored.
- Alata • Delo • Imarta • James T. Kirk • Kwy • Leonard McCoy • Montgomery Scott • Spock • Hikaru Sulu • Nyota Uhuru
Starships and vehicles
- aircraft • crane • USS Enterprise (Constitution-class heavy cruiser) • Galileo (class F shuttlecraft) • groundcar • rockets • tank • truck
Races and cultures
States and organizations
Science and technology
- airlock • beta gas • bola • circuit • communicator • computer • harpoon • jet • machine • micro-specs • microscope • observatory • radio • radio energy analyzer dish • radio signal • rifle • sensor dome • shield • spacesuit • sword • telescope • weapon • whip
Ranks and titles
- chief communications officer • commander • general • horticulturalist • lieutenant • president • professor • scientist • teacher
- airlock • airport • atmosphere • bacteria • bola • bush • cell • city • demon • execution • gas • germ • glass • hatch • helmet • hour • inch • woolly mammoth • microbe • mile • minute • museum • peace • radiation • sardine • salt • sector • slavery • space • star • sun • tree • universe • whale • year
- TAS episode: "The Terratin Incident" – Spiroid epsilon waves shrank a human colony and the crew of the Enterprise.
- DS9 episode: "One Little Ship" – A subspace compression anomaly shrank the runabout USS Rubicon.
- The story celebrates Gulliver's Travels, written by Jonathan Swift in 1726. In his first voyage, Lemuel Gulliver was captured by a race of tiny, humanlike Lilliputians who secured him with ropes, the same as happened to Kirk.
- The radiation which caused the shrinking was said to have been identified, but it was not named in the story. Similar effects were caused by spiroid epsilon waves emanating from the planet Terra 10 in TAS episode & Log Four novelization: The Terratin Incident. Spiroid epsilon waves penetrated the shields and hull, affecting molecules with complex chains, including animal life, plant-based clothing, and dilithium crystals. The radiation in this story might be of a similar type but not as strong. Although it penetrated shields, it did not get through the hull and only affected living matter, not clothing or crystals. It also shrank people more slowly on the surface, having taken three generations to shrink people down to one foot tall. Scott shrank much more rapidly because he was in space and much closer to the source of the radiation.
- "The Terratin Incident" first aired 17 November 1973. This story had a publication date of July 1974, but it could have been in development prior to the TAS story or it might have been inspired by it.
- The crew traveled to and from the surface via shuttlecraft, so there was no opportunity to learn whether the transporter could have restored shrunken matter, as it did in "The Terratin Incident".
- Scott climbed onto the Enterprise primary hull's upper sensor dome to repair its uppermost antenna. During the EVA, his foil-lined spacesuit protected him from shrinking. That suggested an easy short-term solution was to cover Fara-3 City with a large sheet of foil.
- Amplification was treated strangely in this story, as if the technology were unfamiliar to readers. The vehicles had giant microphones to pick up sound from the landing party. General Kwy wore amplifier equipment he called a "forehead device", so that his tiny voice could be heard by Kirk, yet none of the other miniature people needed them to be heard.
- Uhura was misspelled "Uhuru".
- The reprint in The Enterprise Logs, Volume 3 omitted page 11. On that page, the crew were fed and allowed to confer. Kirk considered how they might go about finding an antidote to the radiation. The cut page meant that the officers were speaking directly to the president on one page, then suddenly they were alone but being spied on.
- Uhura, Kirk and Spock arrived on the planet via the Galileo. Later, Kirk and Spock left via the transporter, with no mention of the shuttle.
- This story has been released six times in English and translated into Italian and Portuguese.
- 2210s (Two generations prior)
- Explosions on Kujal's star triggered emissions of a radiation that began shrinking Kujalans
- 2240s (About one generation prior)
- Fara-2 City built for smaller Kujalans
- 2260s (Current generation)
- Fara-3 City built for even smaller Kujalans
- 2266 (Stardate 1924.8)
- USS Enterprise identified the radiation and developed an anti-shrinking-ray
#24: The Trial of Captain Kirk
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#26: The Perfect Dream
The Trial of Captain Kirk
The Animal People
The Cosmic Cavemen
|Memory Beta Chronology||Next adventure:|
A Bomb in Time
- July 1974
- First published by Gold Key Comics
- August 1976
- Printed (minus page 11) in the omnibus The Enterprise Logs, Volume 3 (Golden Press)
- June 2004
- Printed in the omnibus The Key Collection, Volume 4 (Checker Book Publishing Group)
- September 2008
- Included on The Complete Comic Book Collection DVD (Graphic Imaging Technologies)
- August 2014
- Remastered in hardcover in the omnibus Gold Key Archives, Volume 5 (IDW)
- Cover art reproduced as a 9x13 embossed tin wall sign (Open Road Brands)
- 15 February 2018
- Remastered in hardcover in the omnibus Graphic Novel Collection #30 (Eaglemoss)
- March 1978
- Portuguese: As "Microaventura" in the omnibus Jornada Nas Estrelas Special (Abril)
- Italian: As "Il Pianeta Nano" in the omnibus The Gold Key Collection, Volume 7 (Free Books)