★★★★★ November 24, 1966 Season 1 Episode 12
If you want to see where we are…and you missed a few…HERE is a list of the episodes in my index located at the top of my blog.
This episode was written by Gene Roddenberry
How much do The Talosians want Pike back? How much does his former first officer want to help him? What lengths will Spock go to free Pike from his confinement? The planet that Spock was trying to take the Captain is called Talos IV. Starfleet had given strict orders not to go to that planet and the punishment was the death penalty.
The second part of this wonderful two-parter episode has a great payoff. It’s interesting seeing Captain Kirk on the screen watching his predecessor Captain Pike at the helm of the Enterprise. Regular cast members don’t get that much to do. As we find out, Pike had been taken prisoner by the Talosian people, a species that has mastered the art of illusion. It’s how they continue to survive. And they have a plan in store for Pike, as well as for the lovely Vina (Susan Oliver), the sole survivor of a previous expedition.
We get to see an Orion slave girl…who is described as vicious, animal-like, and irresistible to any man. She is in one of the many illusions Captain Pike has been thrust into. This is the first appearance of an Orion Slave Girl in Star Trek not counting The Cage because it wasn’t aired until the 80s.
I really like The Cage, but this story inserted into that one makes it that much better and more well-rounded. If you want to start watching the original Star Trek…these two are not a bad place to start.
At the end of the episode, you have Spock, whose closing exchange with Kirk is a thoughtful dialog on the topic of emotionalism versus logic. It would set the stage for future episodes, many of which would have to be dealt with on the basis of sound reasoning instead of irrational fear or succumbing to the unknown. Quite a remarkable accomplishment for a show more than 50 years old… the stories growing richer and more vibrant with the passage of time.
In the script, McCoy and Scott have a scene in which they explain to Kirk how they figured out which computer bank Spock tampered with to lock the ship on course. They took perspiration readings on all banks, and since Spock’s sweat has copper in it, traces of copper were found. This scene isn’t shown.
When Number One and Yeoman J.M. Colt transport to the planet, Vina states that Capt. Pike would be better reproducing with a computer than Number One. Majel Barrett provided the standard Federation computer voice throughout the various Star Trek series.
The Talosian “Keeper” alien was actually played by a woman – Meg Wyllie, as were all Talosians. The voice was dubbed by Malachi Throne, who portrays Commodore Jose Mendez. In order to differentiate the ‘Talosians’ voice from the Commodores, Throne’s voice as the Talosian was slightly sped up.
Spock uses the term “hyperdrive” instead of warp drive. Hyperdrive was the propulsion mechanism for the United Planets Cruiser C-57D featured in Forbidden Planet (1956), a movie which Gene Roddenberry used as a source for many other Star Trek elements.
In the images of the Enterprise of the past, the crew prepares for departure from Talos IV. Pike signals the crew by saying “engage”. This is another characteristic of Captain Pike that Picard borrows in Star Trek: The Next Generation (1987), along with referring to the First Officer as “Number One”.
Sean Kenney took over the role of Pike from Jeffrey Hunter. Kenney also appeared as DePaul in TOS Season 1. Because Malachi Throne was cast as Commodore Mendez, it was necessary to re-dub The Keeper’s dialogue by altering the pitch of the actor’s voice. Throne later played Romulan Senator Pardek in Star Trek: The Next Generation: Unification I (1991) and Star Trek: The Next Generation: Unification II (1991).
Spock’s court-martial board views the video stream from Talos IV of Captain Pike’s imprisonment 13 years earlier and of the Enterprise’s attempts to rescue him. The Talosians, using their powers of mind-reading and illusion, place Pike in worlds from both his memory and his imagination. The one constant is Vina, the beautiful blonde survivor of a crashed Earth ship (the other half of a Talosian plan for a captive Adam and Eve). Number One’s attempts to liberate Pike result in her and Yeoman Colt’s capture (additional breeding stock for the Talosian plan), but when the humans and Talosians learn more of each other, the situation takes a turn neither side expects. As the Enterprise approaches Talos IV once again, Kirk and the court watch the past unfold and learn the real reason for Spock’s mutiny.
William Shatner … Captain James Tiberius ‘Jim’ Kirk
Leonard Nimoy … Mister Spock
Jeffrey Hunter … Captain Christopher Pike (archive footage)
Susan Oliver … Vina (archive footage)
Malachi Throne … Commodore José Mendez
Majel Barrett … Number One / Enterprise Computer (archive footage) (as M. Leigh Hudec)
Peter Duryea … Lt. José Tyler (archive footage)
John Hoyt … Dr. Phil Boyce (archive footage)
Adam Roarke … C.P.O. Garrison (archive footage)
DeForest Kelley … Doctor Leonard ‘Bones’ McCoy
James Doohan … Lieutenant Commander Montgomery ‘Scotty’ Scott
Nichelle Nichols Nichelle Nichols … Lieutenant Nyota Uhura
Sean Kenney … Christopher Pike
Hagan Beggs … Lt. Hansen
Julie Parrish … Miss Piper
Bill Blackburn … Lieutenant Hadley (uncredited)
Tom Curtis … Jon Daily (uncredited)
Frank da Vinci … Guard (uncredited)
Brett Dunham … Guard (uncredited)
Sandra Lee Gimpel … Third Talosian (archive footage) (uncredited)
James Holt … Starfleet Officer (uncredited)
Clegg Hoyt … Transporter Chief Pitcairn (archive footage) (uncredited)
Anthony Jochim … Third Survivor (archive footage) (uncredited)
Bob Johnson … First Talosian / Transporter Chief Pitcairn (voice) (uncredited)
Jon Lormer … Dr. Theodore Haskins (archive footage) (uncredited)
Tom Lupo … Security Guard (uncredited)
Ed Madden … Enterprise Geologist (archive footage) (uncredited)
Leonard Mudie … Second Survivor (archive footage) (uncredited)
Eddie Paskey … Lieutenant Leslie (uncredited)
Jan Reddin … Enterprise Court Recorder (uncredited)
Serena Sande … Second Talosian (archive footage) (uncredited)
George Sawaya … Chief Humboldt (uncredited)
Georgia Schmidt … First Talosian (archive footage) (uncredited)
Meg Wyllie … The Keeper (archive footage) (uncredited)
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