Thursday, January 17, 2013

Star Trek - The Cage

SPOILER WARNING!!! This post spoils Star Trek episodes The Cage and The Menagerie.

Original Star Trek appeared to Finnish Nexflix in HD. Could there be any better excuse to watch the series again? I will write something about selected episodes. I hope this gives you new perspective on these episodes and help you see why Star Trek is so loved among scifi fans.

The Cage is first un-aired pilot of Star Trek. Today most interesting part of episode is how much things changed before we got Star Trek we know and love. Only two actors of this pilot returned to actual series. Majel Barrett was Number One, one of very few females in this episode. She returned to much minor role in actual series. Leonard Nimoy plays character named mister Spock but Spock in this is quite different character than in actual series. He looks same but in this he is minor character. Other characters didn't make to actual series.This episode was darker than actual series and didn't have same utopia adventure feeling that actual series had. Main character is captain Christopher Pike who don't like to see females on bridge. Probably he didn't want to see any non-white persons either. I saw only one non-white in whole episode. This is quite different from actual series where we had Sulu and Uhura on bridge and on second season there were also russian Chekov.

In story powerful aliens capture captain Pike to create new slave race. Aliens haven mental powers which allow them to read minds and control others mentally. They can make other see and feel just what they want. This has made them forget how to operate and fix their own machines. They need slave race to do that. They try to control Pike by rewarding good thoughts and punishing bad thoughts. In the end Pike manages to escape and aliens find out that humans love freedom too much to be slave race. This means end for aliens because humans were their last hope. They didn't want to work with humans as equals because they didn't want humans to be destroyed by mental powers as they did. Some footage of this episode was later used in two parter The Menagerie which continues story of this episode.

This episode was darker than episodes in actual series because this didn't have humor of actual series. This also suffered from absence  Kirk-Spock-Bones trinity. This operated more on single character captain Pike who was much darker and one-dimensional character than Kirk. Supporting characters were even more one-dimensional. Story was quality Star Trek but cast and characters weren't as good as actual series cast and characters. This kind of Star Trek would have had its fans but could newer have become phenomenon actual series came to be.

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