Error was the second issue of Leonard McCoy, Frontier Doctor, a four-issue Star Trek: The Original Series comic book miniseries written and drawn by John Byrne. This story was set in 2271 and published by IDW Publishing in May 2010.

Publisher's description[edit | edit source]

From solicitations
Doctor McCoy hates mysterious ailments. He also hates the transporter. Now he finds himself on a world beset with one, where the only means of getting around is the other. John Byrne’s tale set in the period before Star Trek: The Motion Picture continues here with two covers from Byrne.

Summary[edit | edit source]

During a break in the refitting of the USS Enterprise, Montgomery Scott lent a hand upgrading the technology at Gamma Tarses VII, a planet soon to be inducted into the Federation. He asked McCoy to help with a medical problem confounding experts. McCoy was annoyed to find out the only way to get around their city was via transporters, wearing a stabilizer band each time.

Protocol required McCoy and Duncan to abstain from work during a local religious holiday. Considering that so much of the environment and plant life had been modified by genetic engineering, Duncan and Theela wondered about the nature of the Tarseans, who all appeared to be the same age and without children. Meanwhile, McCoy and Scott shared a bottle of Saurian brandy. Frustrated by the medical puzzle, McCoy went for a walk, eventually wandering below the city's hospital into a vast hall full of machinery. He was then stunned and arrested for trespassing. He would be judged when the High Council reconvened in three days.

Before he met with the Council, McCoy recorded a theory about the illness in his medical log. To test it, he took off his stabilizer band before being transported to the Council. When he materialized, he lost all memory of the past week. Transporters were being used as a means of immortality. Each time people beamed, their molecular patterns were reset to a stored base pattern, erasing all passage of time. The stabilizer band saved and restored memories. But over many centuries, a cumulative build-up of non-living atoms would become fatal. While the populace was unaware, the Council had accepted that their choice to live for thousands of years would eventually cause the extinction of their species.

When Scott returned to San Francisco, he gave James T. Kirk a letter from McCoy describing the events on Gamma Tarses VII. They left together to share a drink.

References[edit | edit source]

Characters[edit | edit source]

CambridgeThan D'LoraEela'hJon Mikael DuncanJames T. KirkLeonard McCoyShar M'SholoMontgomery ScottTheela
Referenced only 
Wyatt EarpBenjamin FinneySpock

Starships and vehicles[edit | edit source]

Joanna
Referenced only 
Cam TamoUSS Enterprise (Constitution-class heavy cruiser)

Locations[edit | edit source]

Earth (San FranciscoStarfleet Command) • Gamma Tarses VII
Referenced only 
Earth (AberdeenManhattanSan Francisco Naval YardsSpacedock) • Antos Veria IXMirror UniverseTerran EmpireWrigley's Pleasure Planet

Races and cultures[edit | edit source]

AndorianAntos Veria IX nativeHumanTarseanVulcan

States and organizations[edit | edit source]

FederationGamma Tarses VIIHouse TrelahnStarfleet Academy

Science and technology[edit | edit source]

acetylcholinebexadrilbiobedcommunicatorgenetic engineeringholodeckphaserscannersciencesickbaystabilizer bandstunnerstylustechnologytime traveltransporterweapon

Ranks and titles[edit | edit source]

admiralcommanderdoctorengineerFederation Starfleet ranks (2270s)hereticNaziNinth CitizenofficerphysicianpilotRomansecurity guardSeventh Citizensh'hab'abaStarfleet rankstechnician

Other references[edit | edit source]

Alet Cam Tamoatombacteriabraincabincelldaydevildimensiondiplomacyengineeringevolutionextinctionfarmgardengiant amoebagodhelmhologramhospitalhourjaillife forcemedical logminutemonthoceanparallel universeplantq'eesavaradiationreligionSaurian brandyshore leaveslaveryspaceportStarfleet uniform (early 2270s)universevirusyear

Timeline[edit | edit source]

Chronology[edit | edit source]

Published Order
Previous story:
Weeds
TOS comics
Leonard McCoy, Frontier Doctor
Next story:
Medics
Chronological Order
Previous adventure:
Weeds
Memory Beta Chronology Next adventure:
Medics

Production history[edit | edit source]

Appendices[edit | edit source]

Background[edit | edit source]

  • This issue was released in three covers, all by John Byrne. The two primary covers were available equally. The third cover, an uncolored version of the B cover, was available as a retail incentive.
  • Regarding the Tarsean's city design, author John Byrne wrote: "The vertical farms in this issue were inspired by an article in a recent Scientific American." (Error story conversation at John Byrne's website)
  • McCoy retold to Theela the events of TOS episode: "Mirror, Mirror". She was amazed, but Duncan was uncertain that all of McCoy's fantastic adventures could be true.
  • The bridge of the refit Enterprise was simulated in a holodeck-like facility at Starfleet Command.

Related stories[edit | edit source]

Leonard McCoy, Frontier Doctor stories and publications
#1: "Weeds" • #2: "Error" • #3: "Medics" • #4: "Hosts" & "Scalpel"

External link[edit | edit source]

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