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Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan was the second Star Trek movie, released in 1982. The movie was novelized by Vonda N. McIntyre in the year of its release. It was adapted into a comic in 2009, written by Andy Schmidt with art by Chee Yang Ong.

The Wrath of Khan tells the tale of Khan Noonien Singh's revenge on James T. Kirk years after being marooned on Ceti Alpha V. The story introduced Saavik to the crew of the Enterprise and saw the death of Spock. The story also featured the Genesis device, a technology created by Carol and David Marcus (the latter Kirk's son), culminating in the creation of the Genesis Planet and beginning a three-film story arc showing the aftermath of Genesis and the resurrection of Spock.


Prepare yourself for warp-10 excitement!
The galaxy's ultimate future is in the hands of James T. Kirk, Mr. Spock and the indomitable crew of the Enterprise
The galaxy's ultimate weapon is in the hands of the evil Khan and his followers…
A battle that will shake the universe cannot be avoided… And the ultimate adventure is about to begin!


In the 23rd century

The story begins aboard what appears to be the bridge of the starship Enterprise. The whole original crew, save for James T. Kirk and Pavel Chekov, is aboard under the command of what appears to be a Vulcan woman named Saavik. They are on a mission to rescue a trading freighter known as the Kobayashi Maru. The ship is found to be adrift in the Klingon Neutral Zone. Saavik orders the ship to save the freighter, which is about to fall apart. Then a fleet of Klingon warships attack and seemingly kill the entire crew. Two large doors open, and Admiral James T. Kirk enters. It is found that this is a training simulator for a cadet test. Saavik finds it hard to understand the reasoning behind the scenario, which is that sometimes Starfleet commanders must face a no-win-scenario. Kirk is celebrating his birthday.

The Federation starship Reliant is on a mission to find a suitable world for the Genesis Device, a new terraforming tool that is in development. Chekov, who is an officer aboard the vessel, along with his crew, comes upon the planet Ceti Alpha VI. They find only what appear to be traces of life, which cannot be present. On Earth, Kirk shows that he is in a mid-life crisis of sorts, wondering what his place now is in Starfleet, believing that his days aboard starships are done. Captain Clark Terrell and Chekov beam down from the Reliant to the barren planet. They discover a wrecked ship, which has been converted into what appears to be a safe haven from the planet. Chekov finds a tag that reads "Botany Bay". He then remembers this as the flagship of the mad Khan Noonien Singh, a power-crazed dictator from Earth's past. As Chekov attempts to hurry Terrell out, they are captured. Khan and his followers reveal to Terrell and Chekov that this is Ceti Alpha V, and that Ceti Alpha VI exploded, causing many deaths and the shift of the planet's rotation. Khan now has a vendetta against Kirk. Khan wants to know why Terrell and Chekov were looking for a lifeless planet. He uses a creature called a ceti eel to force them into revealing the knowledge.


Kirk is due to inspect the starship Enterprise, which is on a cadet training voyage under the command of Captain Spock. The ship sets out into space under the command of Spock. The whole crew, save for Chekov, is aboard. Meanwhile, at a Federation outpost called Regula One, a group of scientists led by Dr. Carol Marcus discover that the Federation are accelerating their plans for the Genesis Device, and that the Reliant is on its way to pick it up. The scientists are alarmed by this, and refuse to go along with it. Kirk and his crew receive a message from Dr. Marcus, who is worried about the Genesis Device. When Kirk, Spock, and McCoy learn what Genesis is, Kirk assumes command and sets a course for the outpost.

The Enterprise encounters the Reliant, which is under Khan's command. Kirk and Khan do battle, and seriously damage each other. Scotty's nephew Peter Preston is killed. Kirk and his crew arrive at Regula One, which is deserted. Kirk, McCoy, and Saavik beam over to the station and find most of the scientists have been murdered. They then check the transporter logs and find that the beam coordinates were to the center of the dead planetoid that Regulus I was orbiting. They find the Genesis Cave, the Genesis Device, and Doctors Carol and David Marcus. It is revealed that Kirk and Carol were once involved and that David is their son. Khan is able to retrieve the device, and believes he has stranded Kirk and company in the planetoid.

Spock's funeral.

Spock, using a coded transmission, is able to evade Khan and get the crew aboard. After Kirk enters the Mutara Nebula and heavily damages Khan's ship, Khan is prepared to detonate the Genesis Device to destroy them both. The Enterprise does not have enough power to escape, but Captain Spock sacrifices his life to save them all. The Genesis Wave from Khan's destroyed ship ends up terraforming a planet. As Scotty plays "Amazing Grace" on the bagpipes, Spock's body is launched into space above the planet on a course selected by Saavik. Kirk and crew set course for Earth, awaiting adventures unknown.



Movie characters

"Stoney" BeachPavel ChekovCroyJedda Adzhin-DallJoachimJames T. KirkJohn KyleVance MadisonDelwin MarchCarol MarcusDavid MarcusMas'udLeonard McCoyPeter PrestonSaavikSarodMontgomery ScottKhan Noonien SinghSpockHikaru SuluClark TerrellNyota UhuraWajahutYoshiCeti eel
Referenced only 
Marla McGivers

Novelization characters

Maximo Alisaunder Arrunja"Stoney" BeachChristine ChapelPavel ChekovCroyR. GrenniJanJedda Adzhin-DallJoachimKasatsukiJames T. KirkJohn KyleVance MadisonDelwin MarchCarol MarcusDavid MarcusLeonard McCoyPeter PrestonSaavikMontgomery ScottKhan Noonien SinghSpockHikaru SuluClark TerrellNyota UhuraYoshiZinaida Chitirih-Ra-PayjhCeti eel
Referenced only 
Mandala FlynnMarla McGivers

Starships and vehicles

USS Enterprise (Constitution-class) • USS Reliant (Miranda-class) • K't'inga-class
Referenced only 
USS AndromedaSS Botany Bay (DY-100-class) • USS Excelsior (Excelsior-class) • USS FirenzeUSS M-31USS Magellanic Clouds


Ceti Alpha VCeti Alpha systemGamma HydraGamma Hydra sectorGenesis PlanetMutara NebulaMutara sectorRegulaRegula I
Referenced only 

Races and cultures


States and organizations

Fleet General StaffStarfleetUnited Federation of Planets

Other references

bioneticsdynoscannergeoplasticsKobayashi Maru scenarioradonRetinax FiveAtalskes phaser IV


Related media

  • "Space Seed" - (TOS episode) - The Wrath of Khan was a direct sequel to this orignal series episode which set up the situation which would lead Khan to have such a strong hatred of Captain Kirk.
  • To Reign in Hell: The Exile of Khan Noonien Singh - (TOS novel) - The prequel to The Wrath of Khan telling the story of Khan's exile on Ceti Alpha V.
  • "The Wormhole Connection" - (TOS comic) - Set after The Wrath of Khan this comic sees Kirk personally request Grand Admiral Stephen Turner allow him to remain in command of the Enterprise, which Turner approves. The story then deals with Kirk's reaction to Saavik (who takes Spock's former role as science officer) while he grieves for Spock.
  • The Search for Spock (TOS movie) - Spock transfers his katra to Doctor McCoy before his death in The Wrath of Khan, allowing his resurrected in The Search for Spock when his katra is transplanted back into his body which regenerated on the Genesis Planet.
  • The Chimes at Midnight (TOS/Myriad Universes novel) - Set in an alternate timeline where Thelin is aboard the Enterprise instead of Spock and the Genesis Planet is still created, although in this case Thelin uses a shield modification to allow the Enterprise to survive the Genesis effect rather than sacrificing himself to repair the ship's engines.
  • "Cloak and Dagger" (EV comic) - The conflict between the Enterprise and the Reliant is mirrored in this comic. The Enterprise faces another Miranda-class starship, the USS Cortez, and once again the ship has been commandeered by fanatics. Like the film Number One uses the Cortez's command codes to take down the shields to make it vulnerable after its initial brutal attack. And finally like the Reliant the Cortez is destroyed by a powerful technology, though in this case a planet is destroyed in the process rather than created.

Adaptations and novelizations

Video releases


  • Regula One is referred to as "Regulus I" throughout the novelization. Regulus is the brightest star in the Leo constellation.
  • Some major differences between the novelization and the movie are due to last-minute changes to the screenplay. In the novel, Kirk does not know that David Marcus is his son until he meets him inside the Genesis planetoid. This point was left ambiguous in the movie until a late re-shoot clarified that Kirk had always known he was David's father. There is no indication in the novel of Spock transferring his katra to McCoy, or of Spock's casket landing safely on the Genesis Planet, because those elements were not added to the movie until a late stage. Indeed, Spock's line "Remember" was not added to the script until the day it was filmed.

Comic adaptation background

  • The comic adaptation of this film was released as a three part biweekly series in June and July of 2009.
Title/Number Issue 1 Issue 2 Issue 3
Writers Andy Schmidt
Artist Chee Yang Ong
Published 10 June 2009 17 June 2009 1 July 2009
Cover A Khan 1A.jpg Khan 2A.jpg Khan 3.jpg
Cover B Khan 1B.jpg Wrath of Khan 2B.jpg Khan 3B.jpg
Retail incentive cover Khan 1RI.jpg Wrath of Khan 2RI.jpg Khan 3IR.jpg


Novelization images


Media featuring Khan Noonien Singh
Episodes/Movies Space SeedThe Wrath of KhanInto Darkness
Novels Space SeedThe Wrath of KhanThe Eugenics Wars (The Rise and Fall of Khan Noonien Singh, Volume 1Volume 2To Reign in Hell: The Exile of Khan Noonien Singh) • Seeds of Dissent
Comics The Wrath of Khan (123) • Khan: Ruling in Hell (The First Six Months234) • Khan (12)
IDW Publishing miniseries
Completed series The Space BetweenKlingons: Blood Will TellYear FourAlien SpotlightIntelligence GatheringTurnaroundThe Enterprise ExperimentAssignment: EarthMirror ImagesRomulans: The Hollow CrownThe Last GenerationCountdownAlien Spotlight IICrewMission's EndThe Wrath of KhanSpock: ReflectionsNeroRomulans: SchismGhostsFool's GoldStar Trek Movie AdaptationLeonard McCoy, Frontier DoctorBurden of KnowledgeCountdown to DarknessCaptain's LogKhan: Ruling in HellInfestationStar Trek—Legion of Super-HeroesAssimilation²HiveKhanStrange New WorldsNew VisionsHarlan Ellison's The City on the Edge of ForeverThe Primate DirectiveThe Spectrum WarStarfleet AcademyManifest DestinyStar TrekStranger WorldsWaypointMirror BrokenBoldly GoThrough the MirrorThe Light of KahlessSuccessionTerra IncognitaStar Trek vs. TransformersThe Q ConflictAftermathPicard: CountdownToo Long a SacrificeSeven's ReckoningYear Five IDW bulb.jpg
Future series Assignment: Earth IIThe Mirror WarAdventures in the 32nd Century


Published Order
Previous novel:
The Abode of Life
TOS numbered novels Next novel:
Black Fire
Previous novel:
The Motion Picture
TOS novelizations Next novel:
The Search for Spock
Chronological Order
Previous adventure:
The Last Tribble
Pocket Books Timeline Next adventure:
To Reign in Hell: The Exile of Khan Noonien Singh
Chapter 26
Previous adventure:
The Last Tribble
Memory Beta Chronology Next adventure:
To Reign in Hell: The Exile of Khan Noonien Singh
Chapter 26
Publication history

External links