Star Trek: Season 1, Episode 11

The Menagerie: Part I (17 Nov. 1966)

TV Episode  |   |  Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi
8.5
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Ratings: 8.5/10 from 1,292 users  
Reviews: 14 user | 9 critic

Spock kidnaps the crippled Capt. Pike, hijacks the Enterprise and then surrenders for court martial.

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Title: The Menagerie: Part I (17 Nov 1966)

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Cast

Episode complete credited cast:
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Captain Christopher Pike (archive footage)
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Vina (archive footage)
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Number One (archive footage) (as M. Leigh Hudec)
Peter Duryea ...
Lt. José Tyler (archive footage)
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Dr. Boyce (archive footage)
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C.P.O. Garrison (archive footage)
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Hagan Beggs ...
Julie Parrish ...
Miss Piper
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Storyline

While visiting Starbase 11, the Enterprise is hijacked by Mr. Spock, leaving Captain Kirk behind while abducting the recently crippled Captain Christopher Pike, former commander of the Enterprise. The destination: Talos IV, off limits by Federation order since the Enterprise first visited the planet thirteen years earlier while then under the command of Captain Pike. After Kirk and Commodore Mendez, the Starbase commander, intercept the Enterprise, a court martial against Spock's apparent treachery is convened. Spock's only defense is a video feed showing Pike's capture and imprisonment by the inhabitants of Talos IV. Written by Alfetta159

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17 November 1966 (USA)  »

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1.33 : 1
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Trivia

According to James Doohan, Gene Roddenberry originally wanted to sell the failed pilot as a theatrical film. However, it needed to be expanded with additional material to reach the feature length. Roddenberry planned to film the crash of the Columbia on Talos IV, because it didn't require Jeffrey Hunter, who was neither available or affordable to reprise his role as Captain Pike. However, plans for the feature release were soon abandoned. See more »

Goofs

Spock is referred to as a lieutenant commander, rather than his actual rank, as shown by the braids on his sleeves, of full commander. See more »

Quotes

Captain James T. Kirk: [narrating] Captain's log, stardate 3012.4. Despite our best efforts to disengage computers, the Enterprise is still locked on a heading for the mysterious planet Talos IV. Meanwhile, as required by Starfleet General Orders, a preliminary hearing on Lieutenant Commander Spock is being convened and in all the years of my service this is the most painful moment I've ever faced.
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Referenced in Trekkies (1997) See more »

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User Reviews

 
The original pilot revisited - Part One
25 April 2009 | by (Italy) – See all my reviews

It is a well known fact that when Gene Roddenberry first pitched Star Trek to NBC, the original pilot episode, The Cage, was rejected for being "too cerebral". When the series was given another chance, Roddenberry thought it would be fun to establish the events of the rejected episode as canon, and did so by writing The Menagerie, which has the unique distinction of being the sequel to what was still, at the time, an unaired episode.

This time, rather than exploring a new planet, Kirk and his crew are on Starbase 11, paying a visit to the former commander of the Enterprise, Christopher Pike (Sean Kenney), now horribly disfigured and paralyzed because of an accident. Pike joins his successor on the starship, where an unpleasant surprise awaits: Spock, who used to serve under Pike, has effectively hijacked the vessel and set the course for Talos IV, a planet which is off-limits (the punishment is death) since Pike and Spock's last visit there, 13 years earlier. Naturally, being a logical creature, Spock turns himself in and arranges a court-martial so that he can justify his actions.

There's no need to say more about the plot, since the rest will play out in Part 2. What really impresses is how Roddenberry creates the connection between The Cage and the rest of the Star Trek universe, by coming up with a particular type of flashback (to say more would be too much) that allows everyone, on screen and off, to see what could have been of Trek, had NBC not turned down the original project. In particular, it's fun to see Jeffrey Hunter (who was unable to return in The Menagerie) play Pike as a more serious captain than Kirk usually is and Nimoy's early days as Spock, whose personality hadn't been fully established yet: this is the only time in the entire series that everybody's favorite Vulcan spontaneously grins.

In short, not just a great "mystery" episode, but also a treat for those who can't be bothered to track down The Cage in its original form (it's available as part of the Season 3 box set).


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