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This article is about the TOS comic. You may be looking for VOY episode: "Message in a Bottle".

Message in a Bottle was a 21-page Star Trek: The Original Series story which appeared in the third issue of Marvel Comics' anthology series Star Trek Unlimited along with the TNG story "Sins of the Fathers". In this story, when Captain Kirk is knocked unconscious on a mission to a pocket universe, Lieutenant Uhura must assume command of the mission and find a way to return the crew to their own universe.

Publisher's description

From solicitations
When a wormhole disables a shuttle, Uhura takes control!


Communications officer's log, stardate 5989.6. While charting the remote Huygen cluster, the Enterprise has encountered a curious spatial phenomenon.
What initially appeared to be a wormhole is in fact the entrance to a pocket universe a fraction the size of our own.
The regular bursts of quantum matter within it seem to contain repeated, structured phrases... an indecipherable language of pure energy
Captain Kirk has assembled a landing party to run the gauntlet between the quantum discharges. We are to investigate the anomaly and if so, to communicate with it.

Kirk, Christine Chapel, Hikaru Sulu, Nyota Uhura, and crewman Corman boarded the Columbus to explore the anomaly. The ship traversed a lengthy conduit between the primary universe and the pocket universe, but unexpected energy discharges flipped the shuttle and knocked out Kirk. As ranking mission officer, Uhura assumed command over Corman's heated objections.

Acting captain's log, Lieutenant Uhura reporting. We are nearing the entrance to the pocket universe. In the absence of Captain Kirk, I will initiate first contact procedure should it become necessary.
Until I hear otherwise, from Mr. Spock, the welfare of this mission and crew are my responsibility.

They discovered bio-electrical relays between crystalline clusters that acted like neural synapses, and Uhura suspected the entire anomaly was one massive living entity. Sulu detected dangerous gravitational variances when it was unsafe to reenter the narrow conduit, so they abandoned ship in environmental suits. A plasma flare destroyed the Columbus, stranding its crew.

Acting captain's log, supplemental. I'm returning to the primary cluster at the heart of the anomaly. If I'm right, it could be the key to sending a distress signal back to the Enterprise.
I plan to use one of the quantum pulses as a carrier for the signal. However, this entails making contact with the being's consciousness.
After the way it treated the shuttle, I rate my chances somewhere between slim and none, but I have to try... I don't think I've ever felt so alone.
I've reconfigured my translator to emit a universal greeting on a similar wavelength to the shuttle's energy signature which initially attracted the being's attention. Aside from acting as vehicle for the distress call, it may well provide a means of talking to the anomaly itself. It's a long shot, but as the captain says, those are sometimes the best ones.

They transmitted just as a dangerous energy pulse appeared below Uhura. Their carrier wave signal provided transporter coordinates, and the USS Enterprise immediately beamed them back. While Kirk was treated in sickbay by Leonard McCoy, Uhura explained to Chapel that she had been able to make the entity aware of them. Its linguistic broadcasts were actually singing, and she was working to define its vocabulary. Corman approached them, perhaps to apologize.



Christine ChapelPavel ChekovCormanJames T. Kirkpocket universe entityMontgomery ScottSpockHikaru SuluNyota Uhuraunnamed USS Enterprise personnel (2260s) (helm officer, relief communications officer)
Referenced only
Leonard McCoy

Starships and vehicles

USS Enterprise (Constitution-class heavy cruiser) • Columbus (Class F shuttlecraft)


Huygen Cluster

Races and cultures


States and organizations


Science and technology

communicationsdistress callengineenvironmental suitgravity constrictorhelmlife supportsensorthrustertransporteruniversal translator

Ranks and titles

captaincommunications officercrewmanensignFederation Starfleet ranks (2260s)lieutenantnurseofficerpilotStarfleet ranks

Other references

assignment patchbraincommand divisioncommunications officer's logcoordinatescrystaldeathelectromagnetismenergyevent horizonevolutiongravityimpulselanding partylanguagelifelifeformmammalminuteobservation portoperations divisionorbitplasmapocket universeprobeseat beltsingingStarfleet uniformStarfleet uniform (2265-2270)universewormhole


Significant events


Related stories


Star Trek Unlimited comics
#1 ("Directives" & "Dying of the Light") • #2 ("Action of the Tiger" & "The Unkindest Cut") • #3 ("Message in a Bottle" & "Sins of the Fathers") • #4 ("None But the Brave" & "Inheritance") • #5 ("Secret Lives" & "As Flies to Wanton Boys ") • "Heart of Darkness" • "An Infinite Jest" • #8 ("The Boy", "The Warrior" & "The Veteran") • "Trekkers" • "A Piece of Reaction"


Published Order
Previous comic:
#2: Action of the Tiger
TOS comics
Next comic:
#4: None But the Brave
Previous comic:
The Unkindest Cut
Star Trek: Unlimited Next comic:
Sins of the Fathers
Previous story:
The Unkindest Cut
Stories by:
Dan Abnett and Ian Edginton
Next story:
Sins of the Fathers
Chronological Order
Previous adventure:
Action of the Tiger
Memory Beta Chronology Next adventure:
None But the Brave

External link