"Weeds" was the first issue of Leonard McCoy, Frontier Doctor, a four-issue TOS comic book miniseries written and drawn by John Byrne. This story was set in 2271 and published by IDW Publishing in April 2010.
- From solicitations
- Space, the final frontier… and on that frontier and beyond, humans and aliens alike need medical care. Enter Leonard McCoy, Doctor of Space Medicine, late of the U.S.S. ENTERPRISE… his first assignment: save the human colonists from a mysterious plague on a distant world whose only native lifeform is a vast and suddenly hostile jungle. Shipped with a special variant Byrne “gag” cover!
In San Francisco, while reading up on the refitting of his former starship the USS Enterprise, Rear Admiral James T. Kirk received a handwritten letter from retired Doctor Leonard McCoy, who had taken Kirk's advice to get out of the house and joined the Frontier Medics Program. McCoy had been traveling with fellow doctor Jon Duncan aboard an ancient ship he'd christened Joanna, and spent several weeks helping the sick and injured out on the frontier. On their last stop, they picked up a stowaway, Theela, a privileged young Andorian woman looking for adventure. Before McCoy could turn back, they were forced to respond to a distress call from Ophiucus III. He locked Theela in a cabin.
At the colony, they learned that a plague had spread from workers at the perimeter fence, a massive retaining wall shutting out vegetation which covered the rest of the planet. Flying over the fence in skimmers, they rescued workers spraying defoliant on walking Jampala Trees, which had smashed through the fence. When the doctors returned, they found all of the colonists infected.
Symptoms began advancing more rapidly. Recalling the origins of the Irish Potato Famine on Earth, McCoy had an inspiration and confirmed that the infecting organisms were genetically identical. The planet was actually covered by one huge megaplant, not diverse species, just as the potatoes in Ireland were essentially the same plant because they'd all been spliced from one potato. The megaplant was defending itself from human incursion.
As McCoy and Duncan saw fungal growths begin to cover their bodies — the final symptom of the disease — Theela escaped from her cabin and confronted McCoy at gunpoint. But he was in no mood for her. He knocked her weapon aside and directed her to help him make an antidote. Since the affliction would only target humans, she was immune. She obeyed, quickly learning what needed to be done and coming to enjoy the work. She followed McCoy's instructions and produced a cure. Later, when she asked McCoy if she could remain with them, he allowed it, reluctantly.
- Cruz • Jon Mikael Duncan • James T. Kirk • Leonard McCoy • Theela • Lars Vandernet • Chen Wa Vandernet • Ben Wilkes • unnamed Starfleet personnel
- Referenced only
- Harry Mudd
Starships and vehicles
- aircars • groundcars • Joanna • skimmers
- Referenced only
- USS Enterprise (Constitution-class heavy cruiser)
- Earth (San Francisco • Starfleet Headquarters) • Omicron Testus IV • Ophiucus III
- Referenced only
- Earth (Georgia • Mississippi River • Ireland) • Starbase 23
Races and cultures
States and organizations
- Colonial Control • Frontier Medics Program • House Trelahn • Polagirus Trading Commune • Starfleet • Starfleet Security • United Federation of Planets
Science and technology
- airlock • artificial gravity • biobed • biochemistry • botany • rocket • computer • dagger • hologram • hypospray • phaser • phaser rifle • q'ss'lvav'a • scanner • seat belt • transporter • tricorder • warp drive • warp field
Ranks and titles
- admiral • colonist • colony supervisor • doctor • lieutenant • nurse • pilot • prime minister • servant • stowaway
- 19th century • acre • agriculture • animal • atmosphere • beam • bird • blood • colony • courier • Federation law • fungus • Great Bird of the Galaxy • haran topor • hour • Jampala Tree • kilometer • lifeform • medical school • megaplant • meter • minute • month • moon • organism • planet • potato • Irish Potato Famine • quarters • Saurian brandy • Symbalene blood burn • vegetation • warp four • year
First issue in the series
Leonard McCoy, Frontier Doctor
Schism, Issue 3
The Sorrows of Empire
|Memory Beta Chronology||Next adventure:|
- 14 April 2010
- First published by IDW Publishing.
- 9 October 2010
- Reprinted by IDW Publishing in the Leonard McCoy, Frontier Doctor miniseries omnibus.
- 4 June 2013
- Reprinted in hardcover in The John Byrne Collection omnibus.
- 29 December 2015
- Reprinted in paperback in The John Byrne Collection omnibus.
- September 2016
- Reprinted in Humble Bundle special New Visions comic "More of the Serpent Than the Dove".
- 3 January 2019
- Reprinted in hardcover in the omnibus Graphic Novel Collection #53 by Eaglemoss.
- This issue was released in four covers, all by John Byrne. The two primary covers were available equally. The third cover, an uncolored version of the B cover, was available as a retail incentive. The fourth cover, which featured the B cover art from all four issues of the miniseries, was released exclusively at the Diamond Retailer Summit at the 2010 Chicago Comic & Entertainment Expo.
- Writer/artist John Byrne stated that Leonard McCoy had been retired for some time prior to the events of this story, which he depicted through the doctor's thick beard. (Weeds article at John Byrne's website.)
- TOS novel: Across the Universe – In 2267, the USS Enterprise discovered a "Gaia"-like Meropean bio-mass on Merope IV that tried to scare away a Human colony with encroaching walls of moss.
|Leonard McCoy, Frontier Doctor stories and publications|
|#1: "Weeds" • #2: "Error" • #3: "Medics" • #4: "Hosts" & "Scalpel"|