"The Collector" was a 22-page Star Trek: The Original Series comic strip. It was the 29th weekly story arc in the UK comic strips series, published in 11 installments in Valiant and TV21 in 1972. This was the fifth of 14 stories drawn by John Stokes. In this story, a museum collector aimed to make an exhibit out of the USS Enterprise.
- 1 Publisher's description
- 2 Summary
- 3 References
- 4 Appendices
- 5 Timeline
- Omnibus teaser
- Attacked by a "flying saucer" at Beton Three, Kirk's crew finds that it contains missing vessels from around the galaxy, including a prototype Earth plane. The abductor: An elderly being called the Collector (no relation to Palnak), who plans to add the Enterprise to his display.
Wallace Hawkins was test piloting an experimental rocket plane in Earth orbit when his vessel was hijacked by a flying saucer. The saucer departed for the Beton star system, where it approached and fired at the USS Enterprise. Enterprise personnel disabled the saucer and found the plane in the cargo hold. Admiral Voysey reported that similar saucers had been abducting vehicles for centuries. Nyota Uhura detected radio signals from nearby Beton III, so Kirk cautiously took Spock and an armed team to the surface in a shuttlecraft.
Although they were invited to land near a large complex, a cannon suddenly blasted at the shuttle, crashing it onto the roof of a geodesic dome. The shuttle crew spotted several flying saucers inside the dome, confirming their origin. The crew carefully climbed down and peered inside a second dome containing a vast museum of airplanes and automobiles. Spock mysteriously disappeared — to limit casualties, Kirk beamed up his landing party, then carefully entered the museum. An armed android Spock confronted him. After a brief firefight, an elderly humanoid appeared, destroyed the duplicate Spock, then brought Kirk to the real Spock. The humanoid was called the Collector, and he intended to use Kirk and Spock duplicates to bring the Enterprise to the surface, where it would be added to his museum.
Robots took the two Starfleet officers to a prison cell, but Kirk and Spock broke free and fled into a hangar full of flight-ready and fueled World War II aircraft. Spock suggested they escape in a Vickers Wellington bomber. When it took off, the Collector sent android British airmen to pursue in three Supermarine Spitfire fighters. A dogfight ensued, with Kirk manning the machine gun turrets while Spock carefully maneuvered two of the Spitfires to crash into each other.
Aboard the Enterprise, Montgomery Scott obeyed orders from Kirk and Spock androids to bring the starship low into the atmosphere. Uhura spotted the dogfight and put it on the viewscreen, then picked up a hail from Spock in the bomber, who verified his identity with a code word. The android duplicates raised their phasers. Suddenly the helmsman veered the ship off-course, making the androids stagger, and during the momentary confusion he shot the Kirk android while Scott shot the Spock android.
The dogfight ended when Kirk shot down the third Spitfire, but the Wellington ran out of fuel, and the Enterprise quickly beamed them up. Annoyed by the failure of his androids, the Collector launched a rocket at the Wellington. However, the Wellington was near the museum, and as it struck the bomber, the explosion also blew up the museum dome.
- Collector • James T. Kirk • Wallace Hawkins • Jansen • Montgomery Scott • Spock • Hikaru Sulu • Nyota Uhura • Voysey • unnamed USS Enterprise personnel (2260s) (helmsman, crewmen)
Starships and vehicles
- USS Enterprise (Constitution-class heavy cruiser) • flying saucer • G-50X rocket plane • Saturn V rocket • Shuttlecraft NCC-1701/8 (class F shuttlecraft)
- Referenced only
- Avro Lancaster • Gloster Gladiator • Supermarine Spitfire • Vickers Wellington
- Referenced only
- B-36 Peacemaker
- Beton • Beton III (Collector's museum) • Earth (Maribou Flats • North America • Federation Headquarters)
- Referenced only
Races and cultures
States and organizations
Science and technology
- android • camera • cannon • communications • communicator • computer • engine • environmental suit • force field • gun • machine gun • navigation computer • phaser rifle • radio • robot • scanner • tractor beam • transporter • turbolift • type-1 phaser • type-2 phaser • universal translator • video • viewscreen
Ranks and titles
- admiral • armaments officer • astronaut • captain • chief engineer • commander • commanding officer • Federation Starfleet ranks (2260s) • first officer • helmsman • pilot • professor • rank • skipper • Starfleet ranks • steersman • test pilot
- September 1972 • 1984 • airfield • assignment patch • atmosphere • beam • bridge • bullet • cargo hold • century • code • comb • condition green • emergency standby • fuel • government • hangar • humanoid • lead • metal • meteor • mile • minute • mountain • ocean • orbit • petrol • photograph • plane • prison cell • second • space • Starfleet uniform • Starfleet uniform (2265-2270) • stone • stratosphere • transporter room • universe • water • World War II • year
- This story was not printed with a title, but it was given one ("The Collector") for its reprinting in the omnibus The Classic UK Comics, Volume 2.
- At 22 pages, this story was artist John Stokes's fourth longest story. Only his last three story arcs would be longer.
- Several Valiant and TV21 covers during the serialization of this story depicted vehicles: #26 featured the first aircraft and pilot to cross the English Channel; #28 featured race cars and a motorbike; #30 featured a speedboat and automobiles; and #29 contained an ad on page 33 for a helicopter and three fighter planes, including a Supermarine Spitfire.
- This story had many similarities to arc #14 "The Ageless One", which featured Palnak "the collector" and his vast museum of biological specimens which Kirk and Spock visited in the 33rd century.
- Admiral Voysey made his second of four appearances in this story. He previously appeared in arc #26 "By Order of the Empire" and would also appear in arc #32 "The Perithees Alliance", with his hair colored brown, and in arc #37 "To Rule the Universe".
- Shuttlecraft NCC-1701/8 made its second appearance in the UK comic strips series and carried 12 people in this story. Spock also piloted it in arc #16 "Under the Sea" to rescue the crew of the Galileo, which was trapped underwater on Tekkor. In that appearance, it looked in one panel as if artist Mike Noble had added the name Galileo to the hull, perhaps confusing it with the shuttle it was rescuing.
- One Kirk android and two Spock androids were produced by the Collector. An Exo III android of Kirk was created in 2266 in TOS episode & Star Trek 11 novelization: What Are Little Girls Made Of? and one of Spock was created in 2268 in TOS novel: Double, Double. Several organic Spock duplicates were created in "What Is This Thing Called Spock?" Plixeans with the molecular patterns of Kirk and Spock fooled the bridge crew in "To Rule the Universe" and Romulans attempted to do the same in "The Marshall Plan".
- The story provided an explanation for various UFO sightings and abductions on Earth. Gary Seven mitigated various UFO sightings (TOS novels: The Rise and Fall of Khan Noonien Singh, Volume 1, The Rise and Fall of Khan Noonien Singh, Volume 2) and the United States government covered up at least one UFO incident (DS9 episode: "Little Green Men").
- Spock used a code word to verify his identity to Scott and Uhura, as done in TOS episode & Star Trek 5 novelization: Whom Gods Destroy.
- Kirk beamed up his landing party to keep them safe, as he did in "The Klingon Ultimatum".
- Foreshadowing its use in later Star Trek productions, artist John Stokes used the Enterprise assignment patch to represent all of Starfleet. Officials wearing Starfleet uniforms as well as the test pilot's spacesuit bore that assignment patch. Stokes also added the delta logo to Federation buildings and personnel in "By Order of the Empire" and "To Rule the Universe".
- TOS comic: "The Ageless One" – Palnak, a collector of biological specimens, sought to add James T. Kirk and Spock to his museum in the 33rd century.
- TOS comic: "To Rule the Universe" – Duplicates of Kirk and Spock took command of the Enterprise.
- TOS comic: "Museum at the End of Time" – A museum in a collapsing pocket universe held a vast collection of antiques.
- The loss of Shuttlecraft NCC-1701/8 could suggest a placement after its appearance in "Under the Sea". That story took place after Pavel Chekov was first assigned to Enterprise bridge duty in 2266. (TOS - New Visions comic: "Mister Chekov")
UK comic strips
To Swiftly Go...
- This story was serialized in two-page sections over 11 consecutive weeks in Valiant and TV21 magazine. Issues 25, 27, 29, 30, 32, and 33 were 36 pages, with the Star Trek segment printed in color on pages 18-19. Issues 26, 28, and 31 were 40 pages with the segment printed on pages 20-21.
- 4 March 1972: Pages 1-2 published in Valiant and TV21 #23.
- 11 March 1972: Pages 3-4 published in Valiant and TV21 #24.
- 18 March 1972: Pages 5-6 published in Valiant and TV21 #25.
- 25 March 1972: Pages 7-8 published in Valiant and TV21 #26.
- 1 April 1972: Pages 9-10 published in Valiant and TV21 #27.
- 8 April 1972: Pages 11-12 published in Valiant and TV21 #28.
- 15 April 1972: Pages 13-14 published in Valiant and TV21 #29.
- 22 April 1972: Pages 15-16 published in Valiant and TV21 #30.
- 29 April 1972: Pages 17-18 published in Valiant and TV21 #31.
- 6 May 1972: Pages 19-20 published in Valiant and TV21 #32.
- 13 May 1972: Pages 21-22 published in Valiant and TV21 #33.
- 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)