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Star Trek: The Cage (Pilot)

The Enterprise is lured to a planet by a repeating distress call. Capt. Pike and the crew find the aged survivors of a crashed spaceship. However, the crash and the survivors turn out to be illusions created by an advanced race of beings, with mysterious motives. They capture Capt. Pike and watch as they put him through false imagined adventures. But, the same woman keeps appearing in all these adventures with him.

Can Capt. Pike learn what the beings’ motives are, and can the Enterprise crew rescue their captain in time?

Episode Info
Episode number: 1x0
Airdate: 1965

Starring Roles
Jeffrey HunterJeffrey Hunter
As Capt. Christopher Pike

Guest Stars

Co-Guest Stars
Leonard NimoyLeonard Nimoy
As Mr. Spock
Majel BarrettMajel Barrett
As Number One
John HoytJohn Hoyt
As Dr. Philip Boyce
Peter DuryeaPeter Duryea
As Lt. Jose Tyler
Laurel GoodwinLaurel Goodwin
As Yeoman J. M. Colt

Meg WyllieMeg Wyllie
As The Keeper
Malachi ThroneMalachi Throne
voiced The Keeper
Jon LormerJon Lormer
As Dr. Theodore Haskins
Joseph MellJoseph Mell
As Orion Trader
Adam RoarkeAdam Roarke
As C.P.O. Garrison
Clegg HoytClegg Hoyt
As Transporter Chief Pitcairn
Mike Dugan (1)Mike Dugan (1)
As Rigel VII Warrior
Anthony JochimAnthony Jochim
As Survivor #1
Leonard MudieLeonard Mudie
As Survivor #2
Bob HerronBob Herron
As Capt. Pike's Stunt Double
Bob Johnson (1)Bob Johnson (1)
voiced Talosian #1 / Pitcairn
Edward MaddenEdward Madden
As Geologist
Felix SillaFelix Silla
As Talosian #3
Frank Da VinciFrank Da Vinci
As Stunt Double
Georgia SchmidtGeorgia Schmidt
As Talosian #1
Janos ProhaskaJanos Prohaska
As Anthropoid Ape / Humanoid Bird
Serena SandsSerena Sands
As Talosian #2
Tom CurtisTom Curtis
As Voice Over
Main Cast
Leonard NimoyLeonard Nimoy
As Commander Spock


The Enterprise makes contact with a radio wave, an old-style distress signal that was designed to cause ship's interference. They identify its source as the S.S. Columbia, a survey expedition that disappeared in the vicinity of the Talos star system 18 years ago. They are eighteen light years from Talos, and Spock confirms the system has never been explored. The fourth planet has a Class M atmosphere. Captain Christopher Pike says that there's no reason to go if there are any indication of survivors, and has the helmsman set course for the Vega Colonies to tend to their sick and injured...

Read the full recap
Episode Notes
Filming began on November 27, 1964. The first scene filmed took place between Jeffrey Hunter (Captain Pike) and John Hoyt (Dr. Boyce) in Pike's quarters.

Footage from this episode was later re-used extensively in "The Menagerie, Part I" and "The Menagerie, Part II". According to dialogue in that episode, the events shown here took place in 2254, twelve years earlier.

Leonard Nimoy (Spock) and Majel Barrett (Number One/Nurse Chapel) are the only actors to appear in both the first episode and the last, "Turnabout Intruder".

Leonard Nimoy (Spock) and John Hoyt (Dr. Boyce) previously appeared in The Outer Limits episode "I, Robot" together. They played Judson Ellis and Professor Hebbel respectively.

The humanoid bird costume was earlier used as the Megasoid in The Outer Limits episode "The Duplicate Man". The ape was seen in "Fun and Games."

Leonard Mudie (Survivor #2) was the second-oldest actor to ever appear in the series. He was 85 when this episode was filmed and died the next year, on April 14, 1965. He was the first Star Trek actor to pass away.

Felix Silla has an uncredited role as a Talosian. He is used in the forced perspective shot to make the hallway in the Talosian's zoo look larger than the real-life set actually is.

Although the episode was produced and shown to network executives in 1965. it received its "official" network broadcast premiere in November 1988 unedited and in full color as part of a two-hour retrospective, The Star Trek Saga: From One Generation to the Next, on UPN.

Episode Quotes
Capt. Christopher Pike: What are you putting in there, ice?
Dr. Philip Boyce: Who wants a warm martini?
Capt. Christopher Pike: What makes you think I need one?
Dr. Philip Boyce: Sometimes a man will tell his bartender things he'll never tell his doctor.

Capt. Christopher Pike: The point is this isn't the only life available. There's a whole galaxy of things to choose from.
Dr. Philip Boyce: Not for you. A man either lives life as it happens to him, meets it head-on and licks it, or he turns his back on it and starts to wither away.
Capt. Christopher Pike: Now you're beginning to talk like a doctor, Bartender.
Dr. Philip Boyce: Take your choice. We both get the same kinds of customers--the living and the dying.

Capt. Christopher Pike: You can read my mind. I can read yours. Now, unless you want my ship to consider capturing me an unfriendly act...
The Keeper: You now see the primitive fear-threat reaction. The specimen is about to boast of his strength, the weaponry of his vessel and so on. Next, frustrated into a need to display physical prowess, the creature will throw himself against the transparency. (Pike does so)
Capt. Christopher Pike: If you were in here, wouldn't you test the strength of these walls too? There's a way out of any cage, and I'll find it.

Capt. Christopher Pike: Are you real?
Vina: As real as you wish.
Capt. Christopher Pike: No. No. No, that's not any answer. I've never met you before, never even imagined you.
Vina: Perhaps they made me out of dreams you've forgotten.

Vina: You're a fool.
Capt. Christopher Pike: Since you're not real, there's not much point in continuing this conversation, is there?

Vina: When dreams become more important than reality, you give up travel, building, creating; you even forget how to repair the machines left behind by your ancestors. You just sit, living and reliving other lives left behind in the thought records.

Vina: I'm beginning to see why none of this has worked for you. You've been home and fighting, as on Rigel. That's not new to you either. A person's strongest dreams are about what he can't do. Yes. A ship 's captain--always having to be so formal, so decent and honest and proper.

The Magistrate: Since you resist the present specimen, you now have a selection.
Capt. Christopher Pike: I'll break out of this zoo somehow and get to you. Is your blood red like ours? I'm going to find out.
The Magistrate: Each of the two new specimens has qualities in her favor. The female you call Number One has the superior mind and would produce highly intelligent children.
Capt. Christopher Pike: All I want to do is get my hands on you. Can you read these thoughts, images of hate, killing?
The Magistrate: The other new arrival considered you unreachable but now realizes this has changed. The factors in her favor are youth and strength plus unusually strong female drives.

Vina: With illusion, they can make your crew work the controls or push any button it takes to destroy your ship.
Capt. Christopher Pike: I'm going to gamble you're too too intelligent to kill for no reason at all. On the other hand, I've got a reason. (to the Telosian) I'm willing to bet you've created an illusion this laser is empty. I think it just blasted a hole in that window and you're keeping us from seeing it. Want me to test my theory out on your head?

The Magistrate: We had not believed this possible. The customs and history of your race show a unique hatred of captivity. Even when it's pleasant and benevolent, you prefer death. This makes you too violent and dangerous a species for our needs.
Vina: He means that they can't use you. You're free to go back to the ship.
Capt. Christopher Pike: And that's it. No apologies, you captured one of us, threatened all of us.
Talosian #2: Your unsuitability has condemned the Talosian race to eventual death. Is this not sufficient?

The Magistrate: She has an illusion, and you have reality. May you find your way as pleasant.

Yeoman J. M. Colt: Sir, I was wondering... just curious--who would have been Eve?
Number One: Yeoman! You've delivered your report.
Yeoman J. M. Colt: Yes, ma'am. Yes, sir.
Lt. Jose Tyler: Eve, sir? Yes, sir.
Dr. Philip Boyce: Eve as in Adam?
Capt. Christopher Pike: As in all ship's doctors are dirty old men.

Episode References
According to Captain Pike, the crew complement of the Enterprise is 203. By the time James T. Kirk took command in 2265, the crew complement would be approximately 430.

Other Episode Crew

CreatorGene Roddenberry
ProducerGene Roddenberry
CastingJoseph D'Agosta
Costume DesignerWilliam Ware Theiss
Make-upFred B. Phillips
GripGeorge Rader
Property MasterIrving A. Feinberg
GafferGeorge H. Merhoff
OtherHerbert F. Solow (Executive in Charge of Production)
Special EffectsJames Rugg
Main Title ThemeAlexander Courage
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