Star Trek 862: Mudd's Magic!

862. Mudd's Magic!

PUBLICATION: Star Trek #40, DC Comics, July 1987

CREATORS: Len Wein (writer), Tom Sutton and Ricardo Villagran (artists)

STARDATE: 8932.3 (follows the last issue)

PLOT: Harry tells Kirk how he landed on that planet after escaping a ship filled with giant rats, and how he found an artifact able to grant his every wish except allowing him to leave. Kirk tries every logic trick he knows to get the artifact to release them (and the Enterprise, also suffering from wishing madness), but the condescending artifact merely chuckles at him. Visiting the ruins where Harry found the artifact, they find walls covered with alien nursery rhymes, revealing the artifact is actually a nanny for super-advanced children. A mindmeld convinces it the crew are adults, and Kirk arranges for the Federation's terminal patients to come and spend their remaining time in this wish fulfillment paradise. Harry Mudd is once again taken into custody.

CONTINUITY: Harry Mudd, released from jail since we last saw him (Gold Key series #61).

DIVERGENCES: If the Wishing Planet exists after these events, we never hear about it.

PANEL OF THE DAY - Best escape pod design EVER!
REVIEW: Lots of exposition from all parties, an ending that's a bit of a cheat (the mindmeld), and the kind of story we've seen before (and since) on Star Trek. I'm not even sure why we need Harry Mudd there, since the crew could just have been exploring a new planet with the same effect. He does provide some nice exposition at odds with the images (the big liar). The art is better than the writing though, Sutton and Villagran sometimes channeling Ernie Colon, it seemed to me, and providing us with more interesting imagery than in the last issue. The Enterprise converted into a medieval castle is particularly fun.
But overall, the series seems to be running out of steam post-ST IV.

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