Star Trek Pin-up #31 FRAMED U.S.S. Enterprise The Voyage Home


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The U.S.S. Reliant, commanded by a renegade superman, and the U.S.S. Enterprise engage in a death duel in Star Trek The Wrath of Khan. Unable to get what he desired from the station crew, Khan used the Reliant to intercept Admiral Kirk and the USS Enterprise. In an ambush, the Reliant caused severe damage to the engineering section of the Enterprise, but Khan was unable to revel in his victory because the Reliant itself fell victim to a counter-ambush from the Enterprise after its crew managed to partially disable its defenses by accessing them through the Reliant’s prefix code. This attack caused moderate damage to the Reliant, including the loss of photon torpedo controls and the warp drive. Despite the damage the Reliant escaped, and returned to Regula where it hid behind the planetoid from Enterprise. Khan took up the pursuit shortly afterwards when hailed and taunted by Kirk into the Mutara Nebula.

The Battle of the Mutara Nebula was the final engagement between James T. Kirk and Khan Noonien Singh. In 2267, Captain Kirk left Khan and his followers on Ceti Alpha V in exile. Because Kirk never returned to check on their progress, he had no way of knowing that a catastrophic environmental calamity had occurred that made Ceti Alpha V a desert wasteland, just months after Khan and his followers were left on the planet. Nearly twenty years later, Khan seized an opportunity to achieve what he had wanted for so long: the death of Kirk.

The U.S.S. Reliant (NCC-1864) is the ship on which Pavel Chekov serves as first officer. Assigned to Project Genesis and later hijacked by Khan Noonien Singh. Destroyed by Genesis Device detonation. A Federation Miranda-class starship that was in service with Starfleet in the late 23rd century. During the mid-2280s, the Reliant was commanded by Captain Clark Terrell. While under his command, the ship’s prefix code was 16309. In 2285, the Reliant was assigned to assist Carol Marcus and Project Genesis. While Marcus and her team worked from the Regula I space station, Reliant searched for a lifeless planet to satisfy the stringent requirements necessary for stage three of the experiment.

Spock told Kirk that although Khan was intelligent, his critical weakness was his inexperience – his attack pattern indicated just “two-dimensional thinking”, not considering attacking from above or below, only on the same plane. Having realized this weakness, Kirk ordered the ship to descend vertically and stand by on photon torpedoes. After returning to the bridge from medical treatment, Chekov offered his assistance to Admiral Kirk. Kirk ordered Chekov to the weapons console.

The Enterprise crew caught Khan by surprise when his ship passed over the Enterprise, which allowed Kirk’s ship to ascend behind the enemy and begin its brief but relentless onslaught on the Reliant at close range – first a photon torpedo was fired from the starboard launcher, destroying the Reliant’s own torpedo launcher. Secondly, a phaser burst hit the Reliant’s port warp nacelle, severely damaging it and finally a second torpedo was fired, completely severing the nacelle from the ship and killing most of Khan’s crew and maiming Khan in the process. In spite of the severe damage that the Reliant had sustained and severe physical injuries, Khan was not ready to surrender yet. Commander Uhura hailed the Reliant, demanding its immediate surrender, but as a final act of vengeance a dying Khan activated the Genesis Device, which would reorganize all matter in the nebula, including the Enterprise. The only way the Enterprise and the crew could possibly survive the detonation (4 minutes from Khan’s activation) would be to jump to warp, but the ship’s main engines were still off-line. Thinking about a philosophical conversation that he had with Kirk previously, Spock sacrificed himself to save the ship and its crew. In the radiation-contaminated engine compartment, Spock managed to reconnect power to the warp engines. The Enterprise jumped to warp seconds before the Reliant exploded. The detonation of the Genesis Device re-organized the matter within the Mutara Nebula and created a new planet designed by the Device’s matrix.

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