This article is about the TOS comic. You may be looking for STO mission: "Ground Zero".

Ground Zero was a 10-page Star Trek: The Original Series comic strip. It was the 28th weekly story arc in the UK comic strips series, published in five installments in Valiant and TV21 in 1972. In this story, a shuttle crew visited an unexplored planet.

Publisher's descriptionEdit

Teaser, 5 February, 1972
Damaged in a meteorite storm, Enterprise put down for repairs on one of four moons in orbit around a planet charted merely as 656. As maintenance teams got to work, Captain Kirk, Mr. Spock and two crewmen went down in a shuttlecraft to investigate the parent planet...


A shower of magnetically-charged meteors disabled shields and communications, leading to significant damage to the USS Enterprise's starboard warp nacelle. The starship made a soft landing on an airless moon to make repairs. Meanwhile, a probe sent to nearby Planet 656 had found a transmitter station near a shoreline, so Kirk took a team in a shuttle to look for other signs of intelligent life. While they were at the station, a large dinosaur emerged from the water and swiped at Morton. Kirk ran to his aid, then both fell through a sinkhole into a sloping, sand-filled cavern.

Spock and Ferris drove off the animal with the shuttle. Spock discovered that the station was ground zero for an impending missile test. He alerted Nyota Uhura in hopes she could contact the natives in time. He ordered Ferris to leave in the shuttle if he didn't return in two minutes.

Spock tossed a length of rope down the sinkhole to Kirk and Morton, but as they tried to climb up, the sand gave way, dragging Spock with them. They descended into a cavern lit by bioluminescent fungus. Flailing tentacles suddenly grabbed them – Morton thought they were about to be devoured by giant, flesh-eating mushrooms.

Ferris returned to the Enterprise as ordered. Uhura established contact with the Planet 656 natives, but it was too late – the missile would strike in seconds. Below ground, the landing party were hurled into a gravity lift and whisked to safety. The giant mushrooms were the sentient natives. Through Spock's universal translator, they apologized for handling them so roughly in order to save them from the blast.



Pavel ChekovFerrisJames T. KirkMortonMontgomery ScottSpockNyota Uhuraunnamed USS Enterprise personnel (2260s)unnamed Planet 656 natives

Starships and vehiclesEdit

USS Enterprise (Constitution-class heavy cruiser) • Shuttlecraft NCC-1701/3 (class F shuttlecraft)


Gamma galaxy (Planet 656)
Referenced only 

Races and culturesEdit

HumanPlanet 656 nativeVulcan

Science and technologyEdit

bombcommunicationscommunicatorcomputerengine housingenvironmental suitforce fieldintercommagnetismmissilePADDphaserproberadiorocketscannerstylustype-1 phaseruniversal translatorvertical thrusterswatch

Ranks and titlesEdit

captaincrewmanFederation Starfleet ranks (2260s)skipperStarfleet rankswatch officer

Other referencesEdit

assignment patchatmospherebioluminescencebirdcaverndinosauremergency stationsfungusgalaxyhourlizardlogmeteoritemeteorite stormminutemoonmushroomorbitplanetropesecondspaceStarfleet uniformStarfleet uniform (2265-2270)starshiptentaclewater



Production historyEdit

Published Order
Previous comic:
Creeping Death
TOS comics
UK comic strips
Next comic:
The Collector
  • This story was serialized in two-page sections over five consecutive weeks in Valiant and TV21 magazine. Each issue was 36 pages, with the Star Trek segment printed in color on pages 18-19.
January 1972
February 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)




  • Although several captions reiterated that the shuttle crew consisted of four people, artist John Stokes mistakenly depicted five in one panel and six in another.
  • While the setting was stated twice as being in another "galaxy", it was more likely that the term was meant to describe some type of region within the Milky Way Galaxy.
  • In the segment for January 29, 1972, Chekov's dialogue balloon pointed to the wrong character.
  • In the real world, meteorite storms exist only within an atmosphere.

Related storiesEdit



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 linkEdit

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