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The Cage 

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


Robert Butler


Gene Roddenberry (created by), Gene Roddenberry




Episode complete credited cast:
Jeffrey Hunter ... Captain Christopher Pike
Susan Oliver ... Vina
Leonard Nimoy ... Mr. Spock
Majel Barrett ... Number One (as M. Leigh Hudec)
John Hoyt ... Dr. Phillip Boyce
Peter Duryea ... Lt. José Tyler
Laurel Goodwin ... Yeoman J.M. Colt


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 <rcs0411@yahoo.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


TV-PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Did You Know?


With the death of Leonard Nimoy (Spock) on February 27, 2015, Laurel Goodwin (Yeoman J.M. Colt) is the last surviving credited cast member of this episode. See more »


Wooden batons, nailed to the rock outcrop on the barren planet, to allow the actors to walk up the slope, are clearly visible. See more »


The Keeper: Wrong thinking is punishable; right thinking will be as quickly rewarded. You will find it an effective combination.
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Alternate Versions

While the 1988 restoration has most of the color footage re-inserted, there are still a few pieces missing:
  • A few frames of footage in the briefing scene, including Spock switching the monitor off. (Although the monitor is back on in the last shot of the scene)
  • The picnic scene is missing some shots. To fit the existing color footage to the uncut soundtrack, some shots are repeated.
  • Before Pike's line "Don't help me. . . They can't read through hate", the Keeper exits the menagerie. After that line, a shot from a later scene of the Keeper returning is re-used. This was made to cover up the dissolve to the later scene that was made for "The Menagerie" (1966). Originally, this shot followed a closeup to Veena, a cut to the Enterprise bridge, and a cut to the prisoners asleep in the cage. All of that was ruined (maybe permanently) by the dissolve made in 1966.
  • After Pike beams back to the ship, there is a reaction shot of Number One and Spock. The color print of this shot was lost, so what is used instead is a re-photographed shot of the shot played on the view screen (taken from "The Menegerie, part II"). This is evident because the shot begins to pull back and we can see the edge of the monitor screen. All of these shots exist in there entirety, but only on the Black and White print, seen on the 1986 VHS edition.
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Featured in For the Love of Spock (2016) See more »


Star Trek Theme (Original TV Series Version)
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User Reviews

A brief glimpse of what might have been
6 October 2005 | by movieman_kevSee all my reviews

Captain Christopher Pike (Jeffrey Hunter) heads the U.S.S. Starship Enterprise in this pilot that the Powers that Be passed on, forcing Gene Rodenberry to make a second pilot with Wialliam Shatner as Kirk as well as making the new version more action oriented, less cerebral and ditching the idea of a woman as second in command. But that would all come later as this review is on the topic at hand. The unaired pilot deals with Pike being held captive in a glass cage by alien beings who possess the powers of mind illusions. It's in both black & white, as well as color (the parts that would be lated integrated into "The Menagerie" 2-part episode of Star Trek) It's more thought-provoking, less "action-packed" then the later series would end up being. And I throughly enjoyed it. This original version can be found as an extra on the Season 3 DVD set of Star Trak by the way.

My Grade: B+

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Greek | English

Release Date:

27 November 1988 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Cage See more »


Box Office


$630,000 (estimated)
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Company Credits

Production Co:

Desilu Productions See more »
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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Mono | DTS (re-mastered version)| Dolby Digital (re-mastered version)


Color (Technicolor)| Color

Aspect Ratio:

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