Star Trek: Season 1, Episode 0

The Cage (24 Dec. 1988)

TV Episode  |   |  Action, Adventure, Mystery
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 7.7/10 from 2,896 users  
Reviews: 43 user | 6 critic

Capt. Pike is held prisoner and tested by aliens who have the power to project incredibly lifelike illusions.


0Check in

Watch Now

$0.00 with Prime Instant Video


IMDb Picks: August

Visit our IMDb Picks section to see our recommendations of movies and TV shows coming out in August.

Visit the IMDb Picks section

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 79 titles
created 19 May 2011
a list of 80 titles
created 25 Mar 2013
a list of 90 titles
created 03 Jun 2013
a list of 28 titles
created 12 Jan 2014
a list of 1222 titles
created 10 months ago

Related Items

Search for "The Cage" on

Connect with IMDb

Share this Rating

Title: The Cage (24 Dec 1988)

The Cage (24 Dec 1988) on IMDb 7.7/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of Star Trek.
1 of 80 Episodes | Next Episode »





Episode complete credited cast:
Number One (as M. Leigh Hudec)
Peter Duryea ...
Laurel Goodwin ...


This is the pilot to the series that would star William Shatner. Only in this version there is different Captain, Christopher Pike, and with the exception of Mr. Spock, an entirely different crew. Now it begins when the Enterprise receives what appears to be a distress message. But when they get to the planet where the message was sent from, they discover that the supposed survivors were nothing more than illusions created by the inhabitants of the planet, for the purpose of capturing a mate for the one genuine surviving human, and Captain Pike is the lucky winner. While Captain Pike tries to cope with the experiments and tests that the aliens are conducting on him, his crew tries to find a way to rescue him. But the aliens' illusions are too powerful and deceptive (at first). Written by <>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

24 December 1988 (USA)  »

Box Office


$630,000 (estimated)

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Majel Barrett would return in the series as Nurse Christine Chappel. And would later play Lwaxana Troi in "Star Trek: The Next Generation" and provide computer voice in "Star Trek: The Next Generation", "Star Trek: Deep Space Nine" and "Star Trek: Voyager". See more »


As Pike retreats up the stairs from the warrior on "Rigel VII", you can see the blade of his spear bend as it pushes against the warrior's chest. See more »


[Pike is watching Vina dancing as an Orion slave girl]
Space Officer: Suppose you had all of space to choose from, and this was only one small sample.
Earth Trader: Wouldn't you say it was worth a man's soul?
See more »


References Twilight Zone: People Are Alike All Over (1960) See more »


Star Trek Theme (Original TV Series Version)
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

history in the making
9 July 2005 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Just think...if Jeffrey Hunter had wound up playing the Captain in Star Trek, he might be alive today. Hunter died in 1969 from a subarachnoid hemorrhage, probably caused by an explosion that imploded instead during a film he was working on in Europe. Interesting thought.

The Cage was the most expensive pilot in NBC history to that point. Though the Star Trek idea had its supporters, the network couldn't see past its nose to pick up the series. They did, however, agree to a second pilot with some changed elements - like a woman who was second in command. The reasons why Hunter did not do the next pilot have been debated. A friend of Hunter's stated that Hunter's wife, Dusty, thought science fiction was low class and didn't want him involved in the show. And, according to Shatner's book, she also made unreasonable demands of the producers.

It's worth remembering that back in the '60s, science fiction, space movies, etc., did not have the "A" status that they do today. B movies only became A movies after Star Wars.

The Cage is a not only very good but touching, and of course, it's fascinating to see "Star Trek" before it became a cult classic. The story concerns a planet that exists basically on Mind Control, and the inhabitants in charge capture Pike in the hope that he can help replenish their race with an earth woman who is there as a result of a ship crashing. Susan Oliver is the woman.

During the run of the series, in order to recoup some of the costs of this fabulously expensive pilot, it was incorporated into a two-part episode, with another actor playing the now near-vegetative Captain Pike.

I love seeing films such as this that were done before all the special effect technology became available, because they were done in such innovative and imaginative ways. The Cage is worth a look to see the genesis of a show that became part of our culture.

31 of 32 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Anton Karidian - hero or villan? josephturner1975
How much? McCartney42
The Women of the Original Star Trek.: Majel Barrett gavbrown01
The Women of the Original Star Trek: France Nuyen gavbrown01
The Women of the Original Star Trek gavbrown01
Dagger of the Mind AardvarkRatnik
Discuss The Cage (1986) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page