The PsychoCrystals—they glitter with death! — The PsychoCrystals was a Star Trek: The Original Series comic book story published by Gold Key Comics in 1975. It was the 34th issue of their TOS series of comics, the 8th of 22 stories written by Arnold Drake and the 31st drawn by Alberto Giolitti. In this story, a landing party from the USS Enterprise discovered a world of telepathic crystalline lifeforms.
- Teaser page
- An innocent scientific expedition becomes a subterranean nightmare when Captain Kirk and the crew of the Enterprise find themselves racing against the clock of their own executions.
- Captain's log: star date 19:27.4. On routine mineral and biological survey of space sector 179, sub-sector 23-C...
Spock observed that planet Alpha 23-C was rich in industrial minerals, so Kirk, Leonard McCoy and Montgomery Scott beamed down to conduct an overnight topographical survey. The trio split up to climb a plateau. Scott spotted a beautiful outcropping of gemstones that he thought would make a good necklace for a woman he liked, but before he could chop off a sample with a pick axe, it shot him with a laser beam. Peering into one gem, he was strangely psychoanalyzed — facets reflected various sides of his personality, including fantasies as a heroic Highlander and secret agent as well as images of himself terrified by witches as a child. He yelled before passing out. Kirk revived him, then found McCoy in hysterics.
When they camped that evening, Kirk awoke in paranoia and began strangling Scott. McCoy stirred and quickly stunned Kirk. Realizing they weren't prepared for this type of psychological assault, Kirk decided to return to the Enterprise, but their communicator signals were jammed. Suddenly a bipedal crystalline lifeform approached. Scott reached for his phaser but the being, named Izor, fired a laser beam from its head and disarmed him. It called the landing party kidnappers and attempted murderers, revealing that the crystal gems were its species' infants. Kirk surreptitiously dropped his communicator as Izor led them into deep caverns.
- Captain's log: star date 19:27.5. Mr. Spock's "sophisticated crystals" have turned out to be living things! And we are being marched to their underground civilization!
They emerged into an underground crystal city paradise populated with the crystal lifeforms. Despite Kirk's protest of innocence, their president condemned the humans to die. Later they were brought back to the president's office. Kirk observed from a periscope that Spock had beamed down and begun to inspect the gemstones. However, the infants reflected only geometric images, unable to spark emotions from the Vulcan. Nonetheless, Spock was captured and reunited with the landing party.
The president could not read their minds to confirm that they were innocent, as only their children had strong telepathy. Suddenly a large crystalline dinosaur, a rampaging slourda, disturbed the city's peace, retreating tentatively when spears were thrown at it. The dragon was immune to natives' thoughts which generated laser beams, as people were from repeated exposure to bacteria, but Kirk believed that he, Spock, Scott and McCoy could act like foreign germs. Spock proposed to channel new thoughts through one of the crystal infants, but it meant carrying a baby gem into danger. When they next encountered the slourda, Spock was able to project scientific concepts though the gem such as the formula of sulfuric acid, E=MC2, Newton's Third Law of Motion, and theories behind rocket engines, which shattered the dragon into pieces.
Having demonstrated their good intentions, the landing party was allowed to leave. Kirk and Spock provided the natives with scientific texts to produce enough new thoughts to keep them free of slourda forever.
- Izor • James T. Kirk • Leonard McCoy • Montgomery Scott • Spock • unnamed Alpha 23-C natives
- Referenced only
- Albert Einstein • Isaac Newton
Starships and vehiclesEdit
- Sector 179 (Alpha 23-C)
- Referenced only
- Earth (Scottish Highlands) • Flaming Lakes of Orion • Jupiter (Jupiter Colony V) • Mars (Deimos • Phobos)
Races and culturesEdit
States and organizationsEdit
Science and technologyEdit
- backpack • communicator • geometry • laser • narco-pellet • periscope • pick axe • radio • rocket propulsion • science • spear • sword • technology • transporter • weapon
Ranks and titlesEdit
- commander • commanding officer • Federation Starfleet ranks (2260s) • guard • Highlander • harpist • poet • president • secret agent • skipper • Starfleet ranks
- 20th century • assignment patch • bacteria • beam • bird • book • cake • captain's log, USS Enterprise (NCC-1701), 2266 • carbon • cavern • century • city • coma • condor • crystal • culture • death penalty • devil • dog • dragon • eagle • emotion • execution • fire • foods and beverages • goat • harp • headache • horse • insanity • language • library • lifeform • light • logic • metal • mineral • month • moon • music • nitrogen • oxygen • paradise • paranoia • poetry • prison • psychoanalysis • rat • rock • second • sector • slourda • sports and games • Starfleet uniform • Starfleet uniform (2265-2270) • sulfuric acid • sunspot • telepathy • Newton's Third Law of Motion • transporter room • witch
- "The PsychoCrystals" was collected in Dynabrite, Issue 11358 along with "A Bomb in Time" and in Star Trek Annual 1977 along with "Sceptre of the Sun".
- Despite eschewing technology, the Alpha 23-C natives had periscopes and printed books.
- At least three crystalline species were seen: The bipedal natives, dogs, and the dragon.
- When Scott saw the crystal dragon, he remarked, “St. George never saw the likes of a dragon like that.” He was referring to the legend of “Saint George and the Dragon,” a saint who slayed a dragon and saved a princess. (Saint George and the Dragon article at Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.)
- Spock projected the thought, “For every action, there is an equal but opposite reaction.” That was Sir Isaac Newton’s Third Law of Motion. (Newton's laws of motion article at Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.)
- Scott referenced a woman on Jupiter Colony V. Possibly she was Blanda Lane, whom he fancied at the time. (TOS comic: "A Page From Scotty's Diary")
- Scott twice exclaimed "Great moons of Mars!"
- This story has been released seven times in English and translated into Dutch, German, and italian.
- ENT episode: "In a Mirror, Darkly" – In the mirror universe in the year 2155, the ISS Enterprise encountered a crystalline Tholian.
- TOS comic: "... Like a Woman Scorned!" – In 2273, Scott's fear of witches was exploited by Andrea Manning.
- TNG episodes: "Datalore", "Silicon Avatar" – In 2364 and 2368, the USS Enterprise-D encountered the Crystalline Entity.
#33: The Choice
|TOS comics (Gold Key)||Next comic:|
#35: The Peril of Planet Quick Change
The Animal People
A Bomb in Time
|Memory Beta Chronology||Next adventure:|
World Against Time
- October 1975
- First published by Gold Key Comics
- Printed in hardcover in Star Trek Annual 1977 (World Distributors Limited)
- August 1976
- Printed in the omnibus The Enterprise Logs, Volume 4 (Golden Press)
- Printed in Dynabrite, Issue 11358 (Western Publishing)
- June 2004
- Printed in the omnibus The Key Collection, Volume 5 (Checker Book Publishing Group)
- September 2008
- Included on The Complete Comic Book Collection DVD (Graphic Imaging Technologies)
- 21 June 2018
- Reprinted in Graphic Novel Collection #39 (Eaglemoss)
- German: As "Paradies der Kristalle" in Zack 1976 #17 (Koralle)
- Dutch: As "De Psychokristallen" in the omnibus Ruimteschip Enterprise Classics Strip-Paperback #1 (De Vrijbuiter)
- German: As "Die Psychokristalle" in the omnibus Raumschiff Enterprise Comic Taschenbuch #1 (Condor)
- Italian: As "I Psicocristalli" in the omnibus The Gold Key Collection, Volume 9 (Free Books)