Star Trek: Early Voyages #6
Marvel/Paramount Comics (July, 1997)
“Cloak And Dagger” part 2
WRITERS: Ian Edginton & Dan Abnett
PENCILER: Patrick Zircher
INKER: Greg Adams
COLORIST: Marie Javins
LETTERER: Janice Chiang
EDITOR: Bobbie Chase
The pre-enlightenment Vulcan faction boards the damaged Enterprise but they manage to chase them off and get a shot of on the ship after remotely taking their shields down. As both sides recover the other warlike Vulcans on the surface force Pike to agree to take them back to Vulcan, where they plan to reeducate their more logical kinfolk. They also hope to draw out the stolen Cortez to destroy their rivals with a weapon that may well damage the planet. While that plan succeeds the weapon does more damage to the surface than thought, killing the other Vulcans as well. Back on the ship, Spock has learned from spending time with the pre-logic Vulcans, but it’s the opposite of what they intended as he decides emotions are more dangerous and tries to further purge his human side. Perhaps if they had shown some of those non-murder emotions T’Kell claimed they wanted to bring as well? Because in the end he was right; the only result was mutual destruction for the Last-Of-All-Cities.
What they got right: There’s a subtle message in that last sentence of my summary. That’s when Star Trek was at its best, a subtle message rather than the blunt object message we get so often now. The idea of seeing what the pre-logic Vulcans were like before their enlightenment and why they were driven to a pursuit of pure logic is on display without having to go the route of time travel or flashback. Nicely done.
What they got wrong: The idea of having the codes for another ship’s shields is something I think was introduced in Star Trek: The Wrath Of Khan, and I’m sure neither Khan’s crew (who get mentioned as a combo of foreshadowing, world-building, and allegory) or the Vulcans knew about it, but does that mean if someone who does know gets a hold of a starship that they have access to every shield-dropping code in Starfleet? I can see that going badly at some point, and I wonder why that story has never been tried?
Recommendation: A good two-part story. Pick it up if you can, especially if you’re a Trekkie.