The 10 Best Captain Pike Episodes of the Star Trek Franchise


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Which Star Trek character has been around the franchise the longest? Spock? Kirk? No, it's actually Captain Christopher Pike. Since his debut in its original pilot, "The Cage," the captain-before-Kirk has shown remarkable staying power. He's been portrayed by four different actors across three series and two movies, and he shows no signs of fading away anytime soon.

After being abandoned by Gene Roddenberry in favor of Kirk for the second pilot and the subsequent series, it seemed the character would be largely forgotten. However, several months into production, Roddenberry was falling behind in delivering series episodes. To catch up, he decided to use footage from the original pilot to create two episodes in the time it would take to produce one. The result was the two-part episode "The Menagerie," and Captain Pike was finally introduced to Star Trek fans. Jeffrey Hunter's brash and daring Pike is revisited, and by the end of the episode, Sean Kenny 's wheelchair-bound version of the character becomes the image that remains for most fans. After a more than 40-year hiatus, Pike is resurrected for J.J. Abrams alternate-timeline reboot of the movie franchise in 2009's Star Trek. Bruce Greenwood 's Pike is older, wiser, and a mentor to the young and egoistic James T. Kirk ( Chris Pine ). Ten years later, Pike reappears in the new Star Trek series Star Trek: Discovery , this time played by the ever-well-coiffed Anson Mount . Alongside his counter-point Spock ( Ethan Peck ) and his Number One ( Rebecca Romijn ), the character was so popular that a spin-off series was created, Star Trek: Strange New Worlds , now headed for its third season on Paramount+ . It's been quite a journey for the captain, so let's look back at some of his greatest hits.

10 "The Cage"

'star trek: the original series' pilot (1965).

Captain Pike's 1966 debut in Star Trek 's failed first pilot never aired in its entirety and wasn't made available to the public until its release on VHS two decades later. While fans got to see some of Jeffrey Hunter's performance in the original series episode "The Menagerie", seeing the entire episode gives a fascinating window into the evolution of the franchise as a whole and in particular the concept of a Starfleet Captain.

As Hunter's Pike first appears he is surly, short with his crew, and argumentative. Fresh off a mission to Rigel 7 in which several of his crew members were killed, he has just about had it with the life-and-death pressures of being the captain, thank you very much. Swilling down whiskey with the ship's doctor, he confesses a desire to chuck it all and go back to his ranch and horses. His trip to Talos !V and his encounter with the mind-bending Talosians would change all that. It's an adventure he takes on with the swagger and courage of an action hero. Although there is no Starfleet or Federation involved, and the Enterprise is referred to as a "space vehicle", you can definitely see the seeds of Captain Kirk here, as well as a template for the complex issues and dilemmas all captains from Archer through Burnham will face.

9 "The Menagerie, Parts One and Two"

'star trek: the original series' season 1, episodes 11 and 12.

Taking place 11 years after the events in "The Cage," "The Menagerie ', Part One" finds the Enterprise under Captain Kirk traveling to Starbase 11, where the ever-loyal Spock ( Leonard Nimoy ) can visit with his former commanding officer . Pike (Sean Kenny) has suffered a terrible accident that has left him paralyzed and unable to communicate except through a brainwave-controlled device that can only give yes or no answers. Spock reveals a plan to him, to which Pike gives repeated 'no' signals, but a determined Spock ignores him, beaming him aboard the Enterprise, taking over the ship, and setting it on a course for Talos IV. It all leads to a court-martial hearing that puts Spock on trial for mutiny, during which Pike must give testimony.

"Part Two" features a reedited version of "The Cage," presented as video evidence in Spock's trial. It details Pike's kidnapping by the Talosians (an alien race whose distortion fields turn reality into illusion), his relationship with the beautiful spaceship crash survivor Vina, and the illusory experiments they use in an attempt to get him to mate with Vina and spawn a race of slaves to help repair their planet. During the court-martial hearing, Pike answers questions and watches the video evidence with much emotion. Despite having no dialogue or ability to use facial expressions, Kenny gives an amazing performance using just the expressiveness of his eyes. This episode sets in motion Pike's fate (turns out the court-martial hearing was just a ruse to get Pike back to Talos IV so that he could be reunited with Vina and live in the illusion of a normal life), which has been a major part of both Discovery and Brave New Worlds.

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8 "Brother"

'star trek: discovery' season 2, episode 1.

Anson Mount's debut as Captain Christopher Pike in the second season of Star Trek: Discovery was nothing less than spectacular. For a show struggling after a first season of un-Treklike story arcs of which many fans were highly critical, Pike's introduction was a stroke of genius by the writers, adding a much-needed breath of fresh air as well as a solid connection to Star Trek 's past. In the timeline, this happens years after his encounter with the Talosians and years before the events in "Menagerie" will happen. Mount's Pike is older and wiser, with a mix of authoritativeness, empathy, and humor that make him instantly likable.

Pike's appearance could easily have been overshadowed by all the revelations about Burnham's past, her relationship with Stepdad Sarek, and her connection to Spock. Instead, he holds his own in the episode, confidently assuming command and sensitively helping Burnham try to understand her brother Spock's absence. Sent by Starfleet, after the Enterprise goes into shipwide system failure, is trying to intercept one of a series of mysterious red bursts that Starfleet believes to be some kind of signal. Pike's mission is to assume command of Discovery , help them heal from the treachery of Captain Lorca ( Jason Isaacs ) and the aftermath of the Klingon Wars, as well as engage them on a mission to investigate the red bursts further. He does these all with deftness and deference to the crew and their interim leader, Saru ( Doug Jones ). Pike's leadership skills are on display here in a way Trek fans had never been able to see before.

7 "New Eden"

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It's rare for Star Trek episodes to approach religion and spirituality other than by dismissing them as primitive superstition. Except for Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, Trek series tend to stay firmly in the secular humanist realm. This is why it was so unique to see Pike reveal his spiritual side by connecting with an alien religious society in "New Eden." There's hardly an inkling of such depth in Hunter's Pike (granted, there were no opportunities for him to explore the character further), and this definitely underscores the difference between "old Pike" and "new Pike.".

In their continuing investigation of the red bursts, Pike beams down with Burnham and another crew member to the Earth-like planet Terralisia, which has a small human population. Disguised as fellow Terralisians, they talk with some of the citizens, who tell them the story of how their ancestors were rescued from a church during World War III's destruction by one of the red bursts and brought to this planet. One of the Terralisians, a man named Jacob, suspects that Pike and the others are actually from Earth, which would mean that Earth was not destroyed as the others believe. Pike struggles with the dilemma of the Prime Directive (or General Order One, as it is called here), which prohibits Starfleet officers from interfering in the development of pre-war civilizations. Revealing the truth to Jacob would be such interference. His humanity and heart are tested as he tries to do the right thing.

Star Trek: Discovery

6 "strange new worlds", star trek: strange new worlds season 1, episode 1.

In this pilot for the spin-off series, Christopher Pike is doing what Jeffrey Hunter's Pike could only dream about in "The Cage": living on his ranch, enjoying his horses, and enjoying the company of his girlfriend. Shaken by the vision given to him of his tragic fate, he contemplates leaving Starfleet altogether. All such thoughts are sidelined, however, when it's discovered that his Number One, Una (Rebecca Romijn), has disappeared from a first contact mission with the USS Archer. The Enterprise is pulled out of dry dock along with Pike to go find her.

Along with Spock and acting first officer La'an Noonien Singh ( Christina Chong ), Pike beams down to Kiley 279, where they find an abandoned USS Archer and a planet torn apart by two warring factions of Kileans. After rescuing Una, she tells him that due to events they put in motion during their time with USS Discovery, the Kileans were able to study their warp technology and turn it into a bomb, unintentionally violating Starfleet's directive not to interfere with pre-warp civilizations. As in "New Eden," Pike briefly wrestles with General Order One (which by the end of the episode is properly named the Prime Directive) before doing what all Star Trek captains do: tossing it aside and doing what they think is right. He shows the Kileans the fate of Earth's World War 3, explaining that it will be their fate too unless they agree to some kind of truce and join the Federation. "Perhaps somewhere all your ends are written as indelibly as mine', he says, "but I choose to believe that your destinies are still your own." Pike is a man haunted by a future that he seemingly can't change, but he makes the conscious decision to live life doing what he loves and to believe that he is the captain of his own fate.

5 "Memento Mori"

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This episode showcases Pike's leadership skills and his ability to find solutions that fall outside of conventional methods. He has a blend of Kirk-style and Picard-style captaining. Like Picard, he is open to the input of his crew, which he finds valuable in helping him make decisions, and like Kirk, he is not afraid to take bold, decisive action on his own and put himself on the line.

The Enterprise finds itself under attack from the Gorn, a vicious alien species no one in the Federation has seen or knows much about, save one: the new chief of security, La'an Noonien Singh. As a child, she was living aboard a colony ship, the SS Puget Sound, when the Gorn attacked, capturing them all and placing them on a Gorn planetary nursery to either be eaten or used as breeding sacks for their children. As the only survivor, she knows the Gorn to be brutal, ruthless, and relentless hunters who will stop at nothing. Without much Starfleet protocol to go on, he hides the ship in black holes, slingshots around them in what is dubbed "the Pike Maneuver," and finally defeats them by using what La'an knows against them. Several crew members lost their lives in the Gorn attack, and Pike honors them along with the many others who have sacrificed their lives for space exploration, showing himself to be a leader of exceptional integrity, courage, and heart.

4 "Lift Us Where Suffering Cannot Reach"

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This episode shows Pike at perhaps his most vulnerable, dealing with a situation he cannot adequately resolve as well as betrayal from someone he truly cares about. The Enterprise was on a routine mission to the Majalan system, a place Pike had been a year earlier on a rescue mission, and found himself dazzled by a beautiful Majalan woman named Alora ( Lindy Booth ). Responding to a distress call from a Majalan shuttlecraft under attack, he is reunited with Alora, now a minister of Majalan spiritual practices, who asks for his help in protecting a chosen child known as The First Servant, whose upcoming ceremonial ascension is crucial to Majalan life.

The twisty tale has Pike becoming intimate with Alora and revealing to her what he has been shown about his future. Majalan's has much more advanced medical technology than Starfleet, so Alora begs him to consider staying with her so they can save her life. It's an offer he cannot accept, for horrifying reasons that are soon revealed, and Alora's betrayal with a kiss gives viewers a real window into the weight of Pike's secret and the toll it takes on him.

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3 "If Memory Serves"

Star trek: discovery season 2, episode 8.

Although not entirely a Pike-centric episode, "If Memory Serves" does take viewers back into Pike's past by reconnecting with the events of "The Cage," revisiting Talos IV and the Talosians (a place not returned to in over 50 years of the franchise), and reuniting Pike with Vina ( Melissa George ), his lost love. Burnham and Spock are on the run and headed for Talos IV, a place Starfleet has deemed off-limits in the three years since the Enterprise's adventures there, in hopes of saving Spock's sanity. There they meet Vina, who helps them unravel the mystery of the red bursts that Red Angel Spock has been seeing.

Pike, alone in his Ready Room, is visited by Vina via a psychic projection powered by the Talosians. He is understandably shocked to see her, but their reunion is sweet and touching, nicely blending Trek history with its new iteration. "I've thought about you—us—often and wish that you had come with me," he tells her. Together, she and Pike help rescue Spock and Burnham and make a choice to leave illusions behind. It's a well-done revisit that updates Vina into a stronger female character while also tugging on the heartstrings.

2 "Through the Valley of the Shadows"

Star trek: discovery season 2, episode 12.

This is the episode that brings Pike face-to-face with the tragedy in his future and deepens the lore by revealing details about Pike's accident that were never fully covered in "The Menagerie." As Pike continues to investigate the red signals with Discovery, he finds one appearing over the planet Boreth, where a Klingon monastery dedicated to their deity Kahless is located. The monastery also protects the planet's time crystals, something he needs to help Discovery complete its mission.

The monastery timekeepers warn Pike that taking a time crystal will require a great sacrifice. The crystal shows him what the price will be: sometime in 2266, he will be commanding a training vessel involved in a terrible accident. In saving his trainees, he is exposed to delta rays that leave him horribly disfigured. He is trapped in a wheelchair, in agony, his face melting from his skull. He's horrified, and he knows he can prevent the tragedy by simply not taking the crystal. Instead, he takes the crystal and sacrifices his own future to save the galaxy. The episode sets everything in motion for the character and Strange New Worlds and shows the essence of Pike.

1 "A Quality of Mercy"

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This clever episode contrasts the leadership style of Pike with that of James T. Kirk by recreating a classic original series episode, with Pike at the helm this time and just an assist from Kirk. It also emphasizes Pike's sacrifice and why he must embrace his tragic future. On a mission to Outpost 4, Pike learns that the son of the outpost commander will be one of two cadets he will be unable to save during the future training accident he was shown by the time crystal on planet Boreth. Deeply upset, he retreats to his quarters to write a message to the boy about his future. As he does so, he's confronted by his alternate future self, Admiral Pike, who has used one of the Klingon time crystals to travel back in time to stop him from trying to alter the timeline.

To convince him, the Admiral gives him a time crystal that puts him in the middle of the events of the classic original series episode "Balance of Terror." Now in 2266, a Romulan vessel destroys Outpost 4, and Pike is left with the choice of chasing them down and destroying them or simply incapacitating them. In this version, the USS Farragut, captained by James T. Kirk ( Paul Wesley ), joins the Enterprise in the chase. The Farragut ends up being destroyed by the Romulans, things unravel, and Pike learns that if he were to captain the Enterprise in 2266, his command style would result in war with Romulus and tragedy for Spock. Back in his original timeline, Pike decides not to finish the letter to the outpost commander's son and tells Spock that trying to change his future would only place the burden on someone else. Spock senses that Pike is somehow talking about him and expresses his gratitude. Thus, the loyalty Spock ends up exhibiting to Pike during "The Menagerie" is born.

NEXT: The 13 Best Space Warfare Movies, Ranked

Star Trek (2009)

Strange New Worlds Just Solved Star Trek's Oldest Mystery


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The following contains spoilers for Star Trek: Strange New Worlds Season 2, Episode 4, "Among the Lotus Eaters," now streaming on Paramount+.

The fourth episode of Strange New Worlds Season 2 ties directly back to the very beginnings of Star Trek before anyone heard of the starship Enterprise. "Among the Lotus Eaters" returns Captain Pike to the site of his biggest failure, an away mission that killed three crew members. Strange New Worlds uses this as an opportunity to reveal why Pike is the captain. However, the episode also answers one of Star Trek 's oldest mysteries: what happened on Rigel 7?

Even facing his mortality during his first appearance on Star Trek: Discovery , Captain Pike is different. Played by the late Jeffrey Hunter, Captain Christopher Pike was meant to lead Star Trek in its first failed pilot . The episode was later re-purposed into a two-parter called "The Menagerie," establishing Pike ends his career confined to a sadistic sci-fi wheelchair. After losing his memories thanks to the radiation on Rigel 7, Strange New Worlds answers the mystery of Rigel 7 and who Christopher Pike is at his core. The original pilot was called "The Cage," perhaps subtly referenced by where the crew experiences their first "Forgetting." In that episode, Captain Pike is ready to give up exploring the stars, wondering how many more have to die because of his orders. In his return to Rigel 7, Pike cleans up his own mess and reestablishes why he can't help but be a hero.

RELATED: Strange New Worlds Fixed Star Trek's Biggest History Problem

Star Trek's First Trip to Rigel 7 With Captain Pike Remained a Mystery

For over a half-century, what happened on Rigel 7 that sent Captain Pike and Star Trek into motion was an open question. Strange New Worlds and Discovery have illuminated more about this fateful mission. Pike and company landed on a planet they couldn't observe from orbit. They met a hostile indigenous population, killing three Starfleet officers and almost claiming Spock's life. Before then, all Star Trek fans knew about what happened on Rigel 7 was that it was deadly and, in Pike's view, not worth the sacrifice.

The episode of The Original Series painted Pike as a man who almost wasn't fit to be captain. He was angry with the mission and felt the loss of people's lives wasn't worth the trouble. Only Spock's unyielding loyalty to Pike allowed viewers to infer he was more than the angry man the story made him out to be. When Anson Mount stepped into the role, he built on the two key characteristics Hunter and the story established. First, Pike does not endure the loss of crew members with as much aplomb as Kirk did in The Original Series. Second, he is a man who takes great umbrage to being put into a cage.

RELATED: Strange New Worlds Could Explain James T. Kirk's Body in Star Trek: Picard

Strange New Worlds Answered Questions About Rigel 7 and Captain Pike

The questions Star Trek fans had about Rigel 7 are answered, but the episode also deals with Pike's questions about himself. Though the Forgetting stripped him of his identity, Pike immediately takes back his liberty, hoping to make things better for the people he "served" with. The man who stormed the Rigel 7 castle was a terror. Pike blocking blaster fire with a serving tray as he advanced falls firmly on the list of top "badass" Star Trek captain moments. His desire was peace and compassion. Even without his memories, he didn't want to kill the Ensign who crowned himself king of Rigel 7. Yet, he would've.

Pike's return to Rigel 7 stripped away the doubts the character felt the last time he left the planet. Rather than second-guessing himself or falling to guilt, the Forgetting stripped away those doubts. It left Pike with only the core of who he was. Luckily for the rest of the field workers, he's a fighter, a leader and a hero. On the Enterprise, Pike is far more cautious than Kirk. Strange New Worlds ' Season 1 finale makes that clear. However, he's not indecisive, and he's definitely not "soft." In a way, Captain Pike is like Superman. He could be a lot scarier than he is, tempered only by his depth of compassion and intelligence.

When Captain Pike first left Rigel 7 in the first-ever Star Trek episode, he wasn't sure of himself. When he left the second time, he left more confident in his destiny than ever. He liberated the people of Rigel 7, including from the asteroid whose radiation caused the Forgetting. Yet, this time he also saved the lives of every member of his crew. He also rescued an officer thought to be lost. The mystery of Rigel 7 was finally solved, and it only took 57 years to do it.

Star Trek: Strange New Worlds debuts new episodes Thursdays on Paramount+ .

  • Star Trek: Strange New Worlds (2022)

The Untold Truth Of Star Trek's Captain Pike

Star Trek Discovery Pike smiles

"Star Trek" has been around for almost 60 years, and its captains, such as Kirk, Picard, and Janeway , are some of the most prominent faces of the series. However, the franchise's very first captain is hardly known at all to the general public. In fact, even some "Star Trek" diehards may know very little about him.

Captain Pike commands the Enterprise in the original series pilot titled "The Cage,"  which was filmed in 1965, and he takes the crew on their first mission in front of cameras. Unfortunately, the studio wasn't thrilled with the finished episode and chose not to air it. However, they felt that the show had potential, so they took the surprising step of green lighting a second pilot that aired the following year. In place of Captain Pike, we got Captain Kirk, who would lead the Enterprise — and the franchise — for the next 25 years.

Though an alternate version of Pike would have a part in the J.J. Abrams' "Star Trek" films, Pike wouldn't return to the series until 2019, in Season 2 of "Star Trek: Discovery." His arrival was so well received that the announcement of a series focused on the character, "Star Trek: Strange New Worlds," followed soon after. However, despite his handful of appearances, we still know very little about him. So we've raised our shields, set our phasers to stun, and assembled the untold truth of Captain Pike.

He was inspired by Horatio Hornblower

"Star Trek" creator Gene Roddenberry had always been a fan of Horatio Hornblower, the famous fictional sea captain and the protagonist in a series of novels by C.S. Forester. When creating "Star Trek," Roddenberry has acknowledged being inspired by these novels and explained that his captain was influenced by Hornblower himself: strong, skilled, and contemplative, but isolated from his crew. 

While fans have long believed that the sea captain formed the basis for the second captain of the Enterprise, Kirk, it is Pike who has the most in common with Hornblower. In his pitch for the series, first revealed in 2011  and written years before he conceived of James T. Kirk, Roddenberry describes his captain as "a space age Captain Horation [sic] Horn-blower"  within whom "lives a continual battle with self-doubt and the loneliness of command." Though the pitch would call the captain by a different name, it's the same character that would become Christopher Pike, as his description is much closer to what fans saw in that original pilot than would be displayed by the brash but gregarious Kirk.

Jeffrey Hunter was cast after an exhaustive search

The network bought Roddenberry's famous pitch that "Star Trek" would be a "'Wagon Train' to the stars," an outer-space version of the popular TV Western that saw cowboys traveling across an unexplored frontier, encountering exciting adventures week after week. 

However, to make its first episode work, Roddenberry and the network needed a good-looking, charismatic leading man to star as captain of the Enterprise. Lots of names came to mind, but many were unwilling or unavailable. In "The Star Trek Interview Book," Roddenberry remembered that one of his top choices, Lloyd Bridges, turned down the opportunity, reportedly telling the "Star Trek" creator, "I've seen science fiction and I don't want to be within a hundred miles of it." Eventually, Roddenberry realized, "there just weren't a lot of actors who would do it. I was talking about what was in many people's eyes a silly show." 

Other choices for Captain Pike are said to have included James Coburn, Peter Graves, and Robert Loggia , but it was movie star Jeffrey Hunter who surprised the studio with his interest. He was a controversial choice, but one the studio loved given his star power, and he would go on to become the series' first captain and a fan favorite once his work finally reached audiences.

Nobody knows for certain why Hunter didn't return

For a long time, it was assumed that Hunter departed the series after the initial pilot at the studio's behest. The thinking was that either some studio executive didn't like his portrayal or didn't feel he was right for the series. However, over the years, quotes from various people involved with the production of "Star Trek" have cast a different light on the situation, sometimes offering contradictory versions of the events that lead to his departure.

Hunter's replacement, William Shatner, recalled in the book "Star Trek Memories" that Hunter was actually fired because his wife, who had suddenly become highly involved in the project, was making unreasonable demands on her husband's potential return for a full series. Leonard Nimoy would repeat this claim in his 1995 book "I Am Spock." On the other hand, some have said that Hunter wasn't fired at all, but quit to return to roles in feature films, not wanting to commit to a weekly television series that might have prevented him from pursuing bigger work. Still others have said it was a simple contractual issue, that he had no provision for a second pilot, and wanted to renegotiate. The website  Star Trek Fact Check chronicled the different stories in 2013. Whatever the truth may be, fans will likely never know all of the details, as Hunter died tragically from complications from surgery after a fall in 1969 .

He wasn't the first captain of the Enterprise

Despite being the first "Star Trek" captain to go before cameras, Pike wasn't the first captain of the Enterprise. In fact, we've since learned that the ship is actually more than 20 years old, and its first captain was a man we still have yet to meet in live-action. 

However, fans have had a chance to see him in animated form. In the short-lived "Star Trek: The Animated Series," the ship's original captain appears in the episode "The Counter-Clock Incident." The 1974 episode reveals that Kirk is actually the ship's third captain, after Pike and a man named Robert April, who comes back aboard the Enterprise in that episode as a Starfleet Commodore. Robert April is actually the same name Roddenberry had used for his captain in his original pitch , and he brought it back for the animated episode as an homage to his original concept. That said, the existence of Captain April has always been controversial among Trekkies since "The Animated Series" is considered by some to be non-canonical, but that's where "Star Trek: Discovery" comes in. In the episode "Brother," we learn that Captain Pike took command of the Enterprise from the outgoing Captain April years earlier when he was promoted from his position as April's first officer.

Pike's first episode was chopped up and became his second

According to "The Center Seat: 55 Years of Star Trek," the original pilot episode "The Cage" cost nearly $600,000 to produce. The fact that the network chose not to air it and instead try a second pilot is a testament to both the quality of the concept and the studio's belief that it could be the network's next big hit.

However, they weren't going to allow all the footage they'd shot to go to waste. So Roddenberry put together a two-part episode titled "The Menagerie" that would be able to recycle much of the original pilot cut around new scenes of Spock reminiscing about an earlier adventure. In the episode, Spock steals the Enterprise to transport a now-disfigured Captain Pike to a planet called Talos IV — a world that Starfleet has deemed off-limits, under penalty of death. Spock fails and is put on trial, during which he recounts the events of "The Cage." It's one of the series' more memorable episodes and shows Spock and the Enterprise as having an exciting depth and history, something that always made "Star Trek" unique. Of course, at the time, viewers had no idea that the flashback scenes were from an unaired episode, as they wouldn't discover the existence of "The Cage" for many years.

His first episode only aired once, 22 years after it was filmed.

The making of the original "Star Trek" pilot "The Cage" has been well chronicled, and the History Channel documentary "The Center Seat: 55 Years of Star Trek" does a great job of outlining how the episode came together. However, what's lesser known is what happened to the footage captured for "The Cage" after it was rejected.

Supposedly, the master print of "The Cage" was cut up and spliced directly into the 35mm print of "The Menagerie," while the unused parts were discarded. It's well known that Roddenberry kept a black and white print for himself that he showed at conventions, but the original full-color episode was lost. In 1986, to commemorate the 20 year anniversary of the series, a VHS release of "The Cage" was produced, assembled from the color segments from "The Menagerie" and filled in with Roddenberry's black and white print, and this was the first glimpse of the unseen pilot for most fans. 

The following year, however,  a film archivist named Bob Furmanek unearthed the original 35mm color negatives in a Hollywood film lab and transferred them to Paramount, who now owned "Star Trek." Thanks to this discovery, a special full-length, full-color presentation of "The Cage" aired in 1988 as part of a two-hour special called "The Star Trek Saga: From One Generation To The Next."  It was the first — and only — time that "The Cage" would be broadcast on television.

Pike only appeared in two episodes before 2019

Even though the Enterprise's first on-screen captain, Pike, has a long canonical history, he only ever appeared in the original pilot, "The Cage," and the Season 1 episode "The Menagerie," which featured snippets of reused clips from the unaired episode. During the 1970s, the only way to see the unaired pilot was to attend one of creator Gene Roddenberry's appearances at "Star Trek" conventions, where he would delight the crowd by playing the episode for audiences, as was reported at the time by the San Antonio Express . Back in those days, long before the internet, the opportunity to see a secret episode of their favorite show was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, and it helped the legend of Captain Pike grow.

Surprisingly, despite his importance to the history of the franchise on and off the screen, the character of Captain Pike would get minimal mention over the next several decades. It wouldn't be until 2019, over 50 years after "The Cage" was filmed, that Pike would return. After a brief reference on a computer display in the "Star Trek: Discovery" episode  "Choose Your Pain," Season 1, which is set 10 years before the original "Star Trek," would end with the arrival of a pre-Kirk Enterprise. In the Season 2 premiere, "Brother," fans finally got to see Pike command a starship once again.

Pike was disfigured so a different actor could play him

Gene Roddenberry knew that the chances of getting Jeffrey Hunter to return to film "The Menagerie," which resued clips from Hunter's unaired pilot, were remote, so drafts of the episode described Pike as a frail man who could hardly speak. When the actor formally declined an offer, it became necessary to recast, and a new search began for a replacement.

It wasn't easy to find a new captain, as Gene Roddenberry took the casting of the relatively small part incredibly seriously. The role of the injured Captain Pike ultimately went to Sean Kenney, an actor nearly half Hunter's age. Kenney recounted the story of his casting in his book  "Captain Pike Found Alive! " where he shared how Roddenberry described the role to him in a meeting. Kenney wrote, "[he] said that the lead character, Pike, had been severely injured in a training accident and was unable to speak or move any body parts. Much of this role would come from emoting feeling through my eyes." Told by Roddenberry that he would be under heavy makeup to appear injured and older, Kenney was confused, "I'm thinking, why me, why don't they just get an old guy?" Regardless of his bewilderment, Kenney accepted the role without hesitation.

He lived out his final days on Talos IV

The plot of the two-part "Star Trek" episode "The Menagerie" sees Spock attempt to take a disfigured and mute Captain Pike to the planet Talos IV, the same world featured in the unaired pilot episode "The Cage." It was an effort to allow Pike a semblance of a normal life because the Talosians were powerful telepaths with the ability to create completely realistic illusions. In "The Cage," they grant a disabled woman the ability to live a normal life and give her all the comforts she could ever want. If Spock could bring Pike back to Talos IV, perhaps the Talosians could do the same for him, as he now uses a futuristic wheelchair and is unable to speak.

At the conclusion of "The Menagerie," Spock, with the assistance of Captain Kirk, is able to persuade Starfleet Command to lift the ban on a visit to Talos IV. This allows Pike to live out the remainder of his life with dignity, in recognition of his service to the Federation. In the final scene of the two-part episode, Pike reverts to his more youthful, vigorous appearance as he bids goodbye to his former science officer.

Pike knows his future

Plenty of characters in the "Star Trek" universe have met a dark fate. Kirk dies at the hands of a planet-killing terrorist in "Star Trek: Generations" while Spock is lost forever inside a black hole in J.J. Abrams' film "Star Trek." However, Captain Pike, who commands the Enterprise on "Star Trek: Discovery," will not only wind up disfigured, mute, and exiled to an alien world due to a terrible accident and, but he is also well aware of his unfortunate future.

In the "Star Trek: Discovery" episode "Through the Valley of Shadows," Pike ventures to the Klingon world of Boreth, where a sect of secretive monks reside. Once there, he must retrieve a time crystal that will allow him to send the U.S.S. Discovery far into the future, averting a potential galactic disaster. However, accessing the time crystal comes with a terrible price — a vision of his future. 

What's worse, nothing he sees is truly set in stone unless he chooses to take the crystal. Once he removes the crystal from Boreth, the future he sees will become his fate, as unavoidable as tomorrow's sunrise. While horrified by the future that he observes, Pike still chooses to retrieve the crystal, knowing that it may be the key to saving the entire galaxy.

He has a Starfleet commendation named after him

Captain Pike isn't just a legend to fans of "Star Trek." He's also a legend to his fellow Starfleet officers. In addition to having  Pike City on Cestus III  named in his honor, he becomes one of the most famous Starfleet captains, even in his own time. In the "Star Trek: Discovery" episode "Choose Your Pain," Commander Saru tells the computer to display the names of the fleet's most decorated captains. The list the computer produces includes Robert April (the first captain of the Enterprise before Pike), Jonathan Archer (captain of the NX-01 on "Star Trek: Enterprise"), Matt Decker (from the original series episode "The Doomsday Machine"), and, of course, Pike himself.

The long list of commendations that Pike has received features the Starfleet Medal of Valor, the Legion of Honor, the Star Cross, the Medal of Commendation the Starfleet Silver Palm, and the Legate's Crest of Valor, among many others. With so many medals to his name, perhaps it should come as no surprise then that Pike would later have an award named after him with the Christopher Pike Medal of Valor . In "Star Trek: Deep Space Nine," Captain Sisko receives the Pike Medal of Valor for his actions at the Battle Of Deep Space 9, the mission that reclaimed the station from Dominion takeover in the episode "Tears Of The Prophets."

Pike was sidelined for the Klingon War

The war between the Klingon and the Federation has been vaguely referenced for years in "Star Trek," and fans finally got to see some of it play out in Season 1 of "Star Trek: Discovery." The series shows Burnham instigating the first major engagement between the two galactic powers in "The Battle Of The Binary Stars." You might think that Captain Pike, as one of the most decorated captains in Starfleet, would become one of the war's greatest human heroes — but you'd be wrong. Instead of taking the Enterprise to the front lines, Pike, Spock, and their crew sit out most of the war.

As Pike says in the episode "Brothers," the Enterprise is in the midst of a five-year exploratory mission outside Federation territory when the war breaks out. Instead of being ordered back to fight, he is ordered to stay on his mission. For this exalted Starfleet hero, it is frustrating to sit on the sidelines while the fleet risks everything in a war that could decide the very future of the Federation. When viewers meet him following the conclusion of the war in the opening of Season 2 of "Star Trek: Discovery," Pike feels a kind of survivor guilt, having been unable to contribute to the war effort. He's itching to get back into the action and jumps at the chance to take command of the U.S.S. Discovery on a vital mission with galactic consequences.

Pike has been played by four actors

Despite being written into just a single official television episode during the franchise's first 40 years, Pike has surprisingly been portrayed by four different actors. In the unused pilot "The Cage" and the flashback scenes of the original series episode "The Menagerie," which featured clips from the unaired episode, Pike was played by Jeffrey Hunter. After Hunter declined an offer to reprise the role in wraparound scenes in "The Menagerie," a disfigured Pike was portrayed by actor Sean Kenney.

When J.J. Abrams rebooted "Star Trek" in 2009, they took the once minor character of Pike and gave him a much more significant role as the Enterprise captain who recruits a young Kirk into Starfleet. This version of Pike was played by actor Bruce Greenwood, who imbued Pike with gruff intensity. In "Star Trek: Discovery," Pike returns to the small screen, now played by "Hell on Wheels" actor Anson Mount, who impressed critics and viewers alike. Even those critical of "Star Trek: Discovery" on forums such as Reddit called him a bright spot of Season 2. Pike next appears in "Star Trek: Strange New Worlds," a series about the adventures of a pre-Kirk Enterprise, perhaps finally fulfilling the original vision Gene Roddenberry pitched decades ago.

Pike is dead in both major alternate timelines

Like Marvel's multiverse , there's an endless number of parallel realities in "Star Trek" lore. However, two alternate realities have dominated the franchise. These are the so-called Mirror Universe that first appeared in the original "Star Trek" episode "Mirror, Mirror," and the alternate universe seen in the J.J. Abrams films, which is created when Romulan villain Nero travels back in time to kill Spock.

However, in both of these realities, Pike is killed relatively early on. When Kirk is transported into the Mirror Universe, he has no knowledge of this alternate reality, so he looks up the history of this new universe in the ship's computer. To his surprise, Kirk discovers that his variant counterpart had assassinated the ship's former captain, Christopher Pike, and took his place as captain of the Enterprise. In the J.J. Abrams films, where he has since been promoted, Admiral Pike is killed early on by Khan in the sequel film,  "Star Trek: Into Darkness."  Of course, this is science fiction, so in addition to showing adventures set before their deaths, resurrecting these parallel Pikes through any number of methods is not out of the question. As such, it's possible we haven't seen the last of these versions of Captain Pike, either.

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Christopher Pike

Christopher "Chris" Pike was a 23rd century male Human Federation Starfleet officer who was perhaps best known for serving as the commander of the USS Enterprise . During his service, Pike was considered to be one of the most highly decorated starship captains in Starfleet history . ( ST : " Q&A "; DIS : " Choose Your Pain ", " Brother "; TOS : " The Cage ", " The Menagerie, Part I ")

  • 1 Early life
  • 2.1 Starfleet Academy
  • 2.2 Early postings and assignments
  • 2.3 First officer of the USS Enterprise
  • 2.4.1 Promotion of Lynne Lucero
  • 2.4.2 Testing Thira Sidhu
  • 2.4.3 First mission to Rigel VII
  • 2.4.4 Meeting the Talosians
  • 2.4.5 Sitting out the Klingon War
  • 2.4.6 Investigating the red bursts
  • 2.5.1 Rescuing the Hiawatha crew
  • 2.5.2 New Eden
  • 2.5.3 Going after Spock
  • 2.5.4 Conflict with Control
  • 2.6.1 Return to Earth
  • 2.6.2 The Elysian Kingdom
  • 2.6.3 Outpost 4
  • 2.6.4 Finding a Lawyer
  • 2.7.1 Initial promotion
  • 2.7.2 Passing the torch
  • 2.7.3 Tragic near-fate
  • 2.7.4 Return to Talos
  • 4 Alternate timelines
  • 5 Awards and honors
  • 7.1.1 Robert April
  • 7.1.2 Una Chin-Riley
  • 7.1.3 Spock
  • 7.1.4 Leland
  • 7.1.5 Joseph M'Benga
  • 7.1.6 T'Pring
  • 7.1.7 George Samuel Kirk
  • 7.2.1 Alora
  • 7.2.3 Marie Batel
  • 8.1 Catchphrases
  • 8.2 Opinions of Pike
  • 9 Key dates
  • 10.1 Appearances
  • 10.2.1 Identifying performers
  • 10.2.2 Name and preliminary depictions
  • 10.2.3 Original casting
  • 10.3 Rewriting the part
  • 10.4.1 Disfigured portrayal
  • First portrayal
  • Reiteration
  • Discovery
  • 10.5 Apocrypha
  • 10.6 External links

Early life [ ]

Pike was born in the city of Mojave on Earth in the early 23rd century . ( DIS : " Saints of Imperfection ")

Pike had a pony named Sir-Neighs-a-Lot who broke his leg in a rainstorm . Pike’s parents had the pony put down , which caused Pike to cry for a week . ( SNW : " A Quality of Mercy ")

Later on in life, Pike had two horses – Tango and Mary Lou – which he rode through parkland that surrounded the city. ( TOS : " The Cage ", " The Menagerie, Part I ")

Pike's father was a science teacher who also taught comparative religion . This led to a very confusing household for Pike, causing him not to agree with his father on much. ( DIS : " New Eden ") Pike also had a evasive female cousin who, according to Pike, apparently only gave a straight answer in church . ( DIS : " Saints of Imperfection ") At one point during his childhood , Pike heard a fable that described Hell-Fire , something that he carried with him into his adulthood . ( TOS : " The Cage ")

During his childhood, he was diagnosed with asthma , and also suffered from space sickness . ( DIS : " Brother ")

One of Pike's favorite foods was his mother 's homemade tomato sauce . ( SNW : " Among the Lotus Eaters ") Pike hated spiders . ( DIS : " An Obol for Charon ")

Pike was explained in dialogue to be "about [Kirk's] age" as of 2267 in "The Menagerie, Part I", which suggested a birth date around the late 2220s or early 2230s , however, it was later indicated in Star Trek: Discovery that he was already in the Academy by the early 2220s.

A biography of Pike was included on the Star Trek movie app. According to that source, he was born in 2205 , to Charles ( β ) and Willa Pike ( β ), and spent part of his childhood living on the planet Elysium.

According to production designer Tamara Deverell , the table in Pike's ready room aboard Discovery dated from his childhood. [1]

Starfleet career [ ]

Alexander Marcus talked Pike into joining Starfleet. ( Star Trek Into Darkness )

Starfleet Academy [ ]

Sometime before 2224 , Pike attended Starfleet Academy , where he received top marks in all his classes with the exception of an "F" in Astrophysics .

He was part of the graduating class of 3201.14 . He also met Philippa Georgiou , who during their time at the Academy was able to drink Pike and their fellow cadets under the table. ( DIS : " Brother ", " Saints of Imperfection ")

Early postings and assignments [ ]

Pike's file

Pike's dossier

Upon graduating from Starfleet Academy, Pike was commissioned as an officer in Starfleet, with his first assignment being as a test pilot . ( DIS : " Light and Shadows ")

As an ensign , Pike served as a security officer . During an encounter with a Nausicaan , Pike drew his phaser and ran after the pants-less Nausicaan. After tripping during the pursuit, he discovered that he had been entangled in the Nausicaan's pants. Following the encounter, Pike's lieutenant pulled him aside and told Pike that maybe a career path in security wasn't for him. ( SNW : " Children of the Comet ")

Pike served on three Federation starships, the USS Antares , the USS Chatelet , and the USS Aryabhatta .

According to his biography on the Star Trek movie app, Pike enrolled in Starfleet in 2223 and was commissioned as an officer in 2227 . He served aboard several vessels, including the USS Olympus ( β ), the USS Aldrin ( β ), and the USS Yorktown .

Sometime during his career, he made a speech to Una Chin-Riley 's Academy class about a test mission he had flown. It was there that the two met and began a lasting friendship. ( SNW : " Ad Astra per Aspera ")

First officer of the USS Enterprise [ ]

Pike and April picture

April and Pike

During the 2240s , he was assigned to the USS Enterprise as Captain Robert April 's first officer . ( DIS : " Brother ")

In 2249 , Lieutenant Pike participated in a rescue mission in the Majalan system of the Majalan Alora from a damaged shuttle . Pike was nearly killed by a pulsar during the mission. ( SNW : " Lift Us Where Suffering Cannot Reach ")

Christopher Pike, 2249

Pike in 2249

A deleted scene from " Lift Us Where Suffering Cannot Reach " reveals that Pike was aboard the Aryabhatta when he met Alora in 2249 .

Commanding the USS Enterprise [ ]

In 2250 , Pike was given command of the Enterprise . ( DIS : " Brother ") He chose Una Chin-Riley as his first officer. She spent a week shadowing Pike before she took on her new role. ( SNW : " Ad Astra per Aspera " display graphic , SNW : " Subspace Rhapsody ")

By 2253 , Una said that Pike was "the most heavily decorated fighting captain in Starfleet". ( ST : " Q&A ") In 2259, he was regarded by Vice Admiral Pasalk as "one of Starfleet's most decorated officers." ( SNW : " Ad Astra per Aspera ")

Promotion of Lynne Lucero [ ]

Constitution transporter 2250s

Captain Pike saying farewell to Captain Lynne Lucero in the Enterprise's transporter room.

Sometime during his tenure as captain of the Enterprise , Pike oversaw the transfer of Lynne Lucero from the Enterprise to the USS Cabot , as Lucero was taking command of the Cabot . He noted in his captain's log that the Cabot was lucky to have her. ( ST : " The Trouble with Edward ")

Testing Thira Sidhu [ ]

Starfleet mask

Pike as a prisoner

Pike also participated in a simulation , designed by Chin-Riley, to test Cadet Thira Sidhu 's suitability to serve on the Enterprise during her evaluation; he was brought handcuffed and masked to Inventory Two on Starbase 28 as a mutineer . Pike told her that the station was under attack by Tholians and ordered her to release him; Cadet Sidhu stood her ground, going so far as to threaten to shoot the captain. This prompted Pike to reveal that the situation had been simulated to test her resolve in a difficult situation. Pike then escorted Sidhu aboard the Enterprise and revealed her new assignment: Enterprise' s engineering department . ( ST : " Ask Not ")

First mission to Rigel VII [ ]

Christopher Pike, 2254

Christopher Pike in 2254

Four years after assuming command of the Enterprise , Pike led a landing party to Rigel VII . On this mission, the group was attacked by the Kalar , and Pike himself was trapped by one of the warriors in an abandoned fortress . Three crewmen, including Pike's own yeoman , Zac Nguyen , were killed , while an additional seven, including Spock , were injured, some severely. The loss weighed heavily on Pike; with all the strain and overwork that followed, he began to question his own continuation as starship commander. The Enterprise then set out for Vega colony to hospitalize the sick and injured. ( TOS : " The Cage "; SNW : " Among the Lotus Eaters ")

Meeting the Talosians [ ]

Mojave remastered

Vina, Pike, Tango, and Mary Lou near Mojave

En route to the Vega colony, the Enterprise intercepted an old-style radio-interference distress call carrying the call letters of the SS Columbia , a survey expedition from the American Continent Institute which had been lost in the Talos star group in 2236 . At Pike's reluctant command, the Enterprise diverted and traced the signal to a crash site on Talos IV . After an initial encounter with supposed survivors, including an out-of-place young beauty named Vina , it was revealed that the native Talosians had used telepathy to create the illusion of an encampment; all the survivors except Vina were dead.

Talosians 3

The Talosians

Pike was overpowered and kidnapped , and placed in a Talosian menagerie . There the Talosians attempted to manipulate him into mating with Vina, to create a population of illusion-controlled Human servants. Due to the Talosians' telepathy, Pike was forced to relive old memories and placed in illusory scenarios of lives that he could have if he abandoned his career as a starship captain. The scenarios included reliving the fight on Rigel VII, a picnic in parkland near Mojave with his two horses, and an illusory day in the life of an Orion slave-trader dealing in green animal women . Pike refused to mate with Vina, so the Talosians began to take steps to convince him to breed with other females of his crew; to this end, Yeoman J.M. Colt and Chin-Riley were captured.

In an ultimately unused line of dialogue from the final draft script of " The Cage ", Pike (then called "Winter") angrily told the Talosians, " I'm not an ape beating its chest! I'm a thinking, rational being! " Another excised line of dialogue, from the Mojave picnic scene, featured him admitting to Vina, " I've been aching to be back here. " It was also made clear in the script that he preferred Vina in the form she had taken when he had first seen her, due to how "wild" and "barbaric" she had seemed, a realization that led to her subsequently appearing as an Orion slave girl. In scripted but unused dialogue from that later scene, Pike was said to have stopped intermittently at the Orion colonies , to "check things out," then sent "blistering report[s] on… 'the Orion traders taking shocking advantage of the natives…'" Also in the script, Pike prevented Vina's slave master from whipping her, though this situation doesn't arise in the final version of the installment.

Vina, Pike, and Number One

Pike escapes his cage with Vina and Chin-Riley

Inside his cell, Pike managed to capture The Keeper . Pike then threatened to break the Talosian's neck if he resisted, and all the illusions ceased from that point forward. Escaping with the others to the outside of the Talosian complex, Pike had Chin-Riley set a laser to overload, in an effort to make a statement to the Talosians about holding Humans captive. Indeed, the Talosians believed this violent reaction made Humans unsuitable for breeding. Vina's true appearance was then revealed, and Pike convinced the Talosians to restore her illusion of health and beauty while letting him and his crew members go free. Although the experience with the illusory worlds restored Pike's confidence in his command, it was recommended that all contact with the Talosians be restricted. General Order 7 was enacted, threatening the death penalty should anyone travel there, for fear of the Federation falling under illusory indulgence. ( TOS : " The Menagerie, Part I ", " The Menagerie, Part II ")

Sitting out the Klingon War [ ]

At the outbreak of the Federation-Klingon War in 2256 , the Enterprise was engaged in a five-year mission and was ordered to remain on mission by Starfleet, held out of combat in reserve as a last resort. Missing the war took a toll on Pike and the rest of his crew. ( DIS : " Brother ")

Investigating the red bursts [ ]

As the war wound down in 2257 , Spock took an unspecified leave of absence from Starfleet and voluntarily admitted himself to receive psychiatric care aboard Starbase 5 , a fact that Spock requested Pike to keep from his father, Sarek , and his foster sister, Michael Burnham . ( DIS : " Brother ", " New Eden ")

Following the end of the Klingon War in 2257 and the detection of seven red bursts across the galaxy , Starfleet ordered Pike to investigate the location of the only burst which could be traced. When the Enterprise suffered a catastrophic systems failure en route, Pike issued a priority one distress call that was picked up by the USS Discovery . ( DIS : " Will You Take My Hand? ", " Brother ")

Commanding the USS Discovery [ ]

Rescuing the hiawatha crew [ ].

Burnham, Saru, and Pike

Pike meeting Saru and Michael Burnham

With the Enterprise unable to continue its mission, Pike was ordered to assume command of the Discovery from acting captain Saru under Starfleet Regulation 19 , Section C. ( DIS : " Brother ")

During the encounter with the interstellar asteroid at the location of a red burst , Pike led a landing party to the USS Hiawatha . His landing pod was hit by debris, forcing him to eject using a malfunctioning exo-suit , after which he was rescued by Michael Burnham . When Burnham became trapped aboard the Hiawatha , Pike returned to the stricken starship to rescue her.

Pike in standard uniform

Pike in his ready room aboard the Discovery

Shortly thereafter, Starfleet temporarily assigned Pike as captain of Discovery, due to the Enterprise being compromised far worse than originally thought. He was tasked with determining the source of the signals and their intent. ( DIS : " Brother ")

A millennium later, while being questioned by Starfleet in 3189, Jett Reno made reference to Pike's rescue of her from the Hiawatha . ( DIS : " Die Trying ")

New Eden [ ]

Pike at the White Church

Pike in the White Church

A short time later, another burst led Pike and the Discovery to an inhabited planet deep in the Beta Quadrant . A distress call and subsequent scans of the planet revealed it was inhabited by Humans. Not wanting to violate General Order 1 , Pike led an away team with Burnham and Lieutenant junior grade Owosekun to the surface to investigate. On the surface, they discovered a unique syncretic blend of many Earth religions. While investigating, they were confronted by a local named Jacob , prompting Pike to claim that they were visitors from the Northern Territory . While attending a local religious ceremony that night, they discovered the planet was populated by people saved from World War III nuclear exchange by an " angel ".

While doing further investigations on the surface, the away team was incapacitated by Jacob, who accurately believed them to be people from the "old Earth". They were able to escape and returned to the Discovery . Pike returned to the surface, however, where he revealed the truth to Jacob, but told him he could not interfere in their society. As the two parted ways, Jacob gave him a World War III camera helmet in exchange for a long-lasting power cell . In the camera footage, Pike spotted an angel-like figure, which Burnham admitted she had seen earlier.

During the same mission, a young girl named Rose discovered one of the landing parties' phaser and accidentally caused it to discharge. Pike pushed her out of the way, causing him to suffer from the phaser blast instead. Pike would eventually recover. ( DIS : " New Eden ")

Going after Spock [ ]

Shortly afterwards, Spock's mother, Amanda Grayson , rendezvoused with Discovery . At her request, he contacted Starbase 5's commanding officer, Diego Vela , who claimed Spock had killed several of their personnel and fled the station. Pike, Grayson, and Burnham all rejected this possibility. ( DIS : " Point of Light ")

Pike and Number One

Pike and Chin-Riley talking aboard the Discovery

As part of his continuing investigation into the allegations against Spock, Pike met with Chin-Riley aboard the Discovery , discussing the repairs to the Enterprise . During this conversation, Chin-Riley revealed that Starfleet Command had placed a Level One classification on Spock's case, a very unusual decision to make regarding a line officer. They both agreed that the facts didn't add up before they parted ways. ( DIS : " An Obol for Charon ")

Shortly after he began his search for Spock, Pike came into contact with Leland and Section 31 . Leland made his presence known while assisting Discovery in its mission to rescue Ensign Tilly from the mycelial plane . ( DIS : " Saints of Imperfection ")

Spock, Burnham, and Pike

Pike with Spock and Burnham

After Michael Burnham and Spock escaped with assistance from Philippa Georgiou , Pike came into conflict with Section 31 while heading towards Talos IV to rendezvous with Burnham, who had discovered Spock. He learned of this fact when a projection of Vina once more appeared and revealed the location of the two to him. When Pike and Section 31 operatives attempted to retrieve the two from the surface with a transporter, Vina appeared to Pike one final time and convinced him to break off the attempt, which was a ruse to trick Section 31 into thinking they had captured Spock and Burnham. Reuniting with Spock and Burnham, he ignored Leland's request for him to report for disciplinary action. ( DIS : " If Memory Serves ")

Conflict with Control [ ]

The situation came to a head when Pike and Discovery , now wanted for treason by Starfleet, arrived at Section 31 Headquarters . While attempting to reset Control , Discovery was attacked by the station 's defenses in an attack that was ostensibly ordered by Starfleet. Upon beaming over to the station, the landing party discovered that Admiral Patar and all the personnel aboard the station had been killed two weeks prior when Control went rogue. ( DIS : " Project Daedalus ")

During a mission to the Klingon monastery world of Boreth to recover a time crystal , Pike experienced a vision of an unavoidable future if he continued with his quest. His vision showed him aboard a Class J starship on a training cruise when a baffle plate ruptured, leaking delta radiation into engineering , causing severe burns and damage to his body. The vision then transported him to an empty corridor where he came face-to-face with himself in the life-support chair he would inhabit following the accident.

Pike with a time crystal

Following a vision of the future, Pike accepts his fate

Following this vision, he recoiled screaming in terror, and was given the option to give up and leave empty-handed, but carried on and retrieved the crystal. ( DIS : " Through the Valley of Shadows ")

After the mission to Boreth, he returned to the Discovery , only to detect thirty Control-commandeered Section 31 vessels on an intercept course. He ordered a distress call sent to the Enterprise and to prepare to destroy the Discovery to prevent Control from taking possession of the time crystal. ( DIS : " Through the Valley of Shadows ")

Return to Enterprise [ ]

Pike on the Enterprise, 2258

Pike on the bridge of the Enterprise

In 2258 , after a few months of serving as captain of the Discovery , Pike returned to his position as captain of the Enterprise to face a Control-possessed Leland and his Section 31 fleet. ( DIS : " Such Sweet Sorrow ") After Burnham and the Discovery traveled through the wormhole to the 32nd century , in order to preserve the truth and ensure the sacrifices had not been made for nothing, Pike and his senior staff reported to Starfleet Command that the Discovery was lost with all hands.

A hundred and twenty-seven days after the battle, the Enterprise departed to investigate a new moon in orbit of Edrin II . ( DIS : " Such Sweet Sorrow, Part 2 ")

Return to Earth [ ]

Following the mission to Edrin II, Pike and the Enterprise returned to Earth for downtime in 2259 . Pike spent his time in Bear Creek , Montana , where he pursued a relationship with Captain Marie Batel . Affected by his vision of the future, Pike ignored several attempts at contact from Admiral Robert April, and was reluctant to resume command of Enterprise . April eventually visited Pike at Bear Creek, where he informed him that Una had been taken captive during a first contact mission to Kiley 279 .

Christopher Pike, 2259

Pike in 2259

Pike agreed to reassume command to rescue Una. Following the mission to Kiley and Una's rescue, Pike kept the captain's chair, re-inspired to lead the Enterprise on new missions of exploration. ( SNW : " Strange New Worlds ")

Although he resumed his duties, Pike remained haunted by visions of his eventual fate shown as to him by the Boreth time crystal . ( SNW : " Strange New Worlds ", " Children of the Comet ")

The Elysian Kingdom [ ]

When an alien consciousness from the Jonisian Nebula brought the fairy tale The Kingdom of Elysian to life on the Enterprise , Pike was used for the character of Sir Amand Rauth . Pike retained no memory of these events afterward. ( SNW : " The Elysian Kingdom ")

Outpost 4 [ ]

During a mission to Outpost 4 along the Romulan Neutral Zone , Pike met Maat Al-Salah , whom he recognized as one of the cadets who would die during the training accident that would ultimately cripple Pike. Pike considered writing a letter to Maat to dissuade him from joining Starfleet, in an attempt to avoid the accident. Before he could finish his letter, he was visited by an older version of himself from the future. This future Admiral Pike warned his 2259 counterpart that changing his own pre-ordained future would have dire consequences. To demonstrate this, he used a time crystal to send Pike to the year 2266 of his future, where he was still in command of the Enterprise during the Neutral Zone Incursion . Pike's involvement in this alternate timeline led to an endless war with the Romulans, with Spock being crippled in his place. Returning to his own time, Pike deleted the letter and accepted his fate. He also began to take an interest in James T. Kirk , currently a lieutenant aboard the USS Farragut , after witnessing his command potential during these events. ( SNW : " A Quality of Mercy ")

Finding a Lawyer [ ]

Shortly after Pike's return, Una was arrested for lying about being an Illyrian , something that Pike was aware of and didn't officially report. Pike vowed to try to save Una from her fate of being imprisoned for hiding the truth about being from a genetically augmented species when joining Starfleet. ( SNW : " A Quality of Mercy ", " Ghosts of Illyria ")

Shortly thereafter, Pike and the Enterprise returned to Starbase 1 for inspection and shore leave. Pike left Spock in command for three days while he travelled to find a lawyer to defend Chin-Riley during her court-martial. ( SNW : " The Broken Circle ")

Career as fleet captain [ ]

Initial promotion [ ].

Pike and Kirk meet

Fleet Captain Pike and Lt. James T. Kirk meeting for the first time.

Around stardate 2394.8, Pike was temporarily promoted to fleet captain and was given temporary command of the operation conducted in Bannon's Nebula , which included command of Bavali Station , the USS Farragut , and several other support craft. During this mission he would meet James T. Kirk, soon-to-be first officer of the Farragut , for the first time in this timeline. Kirk aided Pike and his crew in saving the lifeforms found in the nebula's deuterium, and met many of his future shipmates for the first time. ( SNW : " Lost in Translation "; TOS : " The Menagerie, Part I ")

Passing the torch [ ]

Pike commanded the Enterprise for several more years before command of the Enterprise was passed to Captain Kirk. Prior to joining Kirk on the Enterprise , Pike's former science officer, Spock, had served with Pike for a total of eleven years, four months, and five days. ( TOS : " The Menagerie, Part I ")

According to " Q2 ", Kirk's first five-year mission ended in 2270 , and so it presumably started in 2265 . According to , Pike commanded the Enterprise from 2251 to 2262 . [2] (X)

Tragic near-fate [ ]

Christopher Pike with radiation burns

Fleet Captain Pike wounded by delta rays

In 2266, Pike was on an inspection tour of a cadet vessel , an old class J starship , when one of the baffle plates ruptured, causing a radiation leak , just as he had seen in the time crystal vision on Boreth nine years earlier. Pike managed to rescue all the cadets who were still alive, but found himself caught in the automatic lockdown as delta radiation reached critical levels. ( TOS : " The Menagerie, Part I "; DIS : " Through the Valley of Shadows ")

Prior to his injury, he was described by Jose I. Mendez as being " big, handsome man, vital, active. " Afterwards, the disfigured Pike was put on a form of advanced life support which sustained his withered body and life functions, as he was too weak and incapacitated to move or respond to physical stimuli. His wheelchair was tuned to his brain and could use blinking light signals to respond to simple queries in the affirmative (one flash) or negative (two flashes), but that was the extent to which he could communicate. ( TOS : " The Menagerie, Part I ")

According to, Pike was on board the USS Republic when he suffered his radiation poisoning. [3] (X)

Return to Talos [ ]

Kirk, Pike, and Spock

Pike with Kirk and Spock

In 2267 , after being contacted by the Talosians, Commander Spock devised a plan to use a fake message in an attempt to divert the Enterprise (of which he was now first officer under Captain Kirk) to Starbase 11 , where Pike was hospitalized. Spock's intention, risking execution if caught, was to deliver Pike to Talos IV, where the Talosians could tap Pike's mind with telepathy and illusions, providing a hospice of sorts in sparing him from dying helplessly in his lifeless body.

Pike, also contacted beforehand by the Talosians, at first refused Spock's plot to spirit him away to Talos IV. However, on the journey to the forbidden planet, images of Pike's earlier experience on Talos IV – presented during Spock's on-board court martial (a court martial later revealed to have been concocted by the Talosians) – convinced Pike to accept the Talosians' offer.

Pike and Vina

A restored Pike descending with Vina on Talos IV

On Talos IV, with the help of the Talosians, Pike lived out a life of illusion with Vina, in which his devastating handicap no longer existed. Pike went into retirement from Starfleet active duty and lived on Talos IV permanently, with no further outside contact, since the secrecy of the Talosian power made his fate largely unknown. ( TOS : " The Menagerie, Part I ", " The Menagerie, Part II ")

Pike had a strong moral center and devotion to the values he found embodied in the Federation, spending his life in its service and defense. In numerous incidents, he risked his life for causes he deemed just. Even when faced with evidence of his future, Pike accepted this fate as he had confirmed that his sacrifice saved lives. ( DIS : " Brother ", " New Eden ", " Through the Valley of Shadows "; SNW : " A Quality of Mercy ")

In the mid- 24th century , Pike's Birthday was celebrated as a Federation holiday. He was revered by Brad Boimler , who would dress up as Pike for Halloween . According to Boimler, he was known for "diplomacy ...patience, forgiveness, benevolence... really great hair." ( SNW : " Those Old Scientists ")

In 3189 , after failing to connect with his crew, Captain Saru compared his efforts with Pike's and noted to Tilly that Pike made connecting with his crew seem so effortless. ( DIS : " Forget Me Not ")

When Captain Saru was trying to come up with a catchphrase, he asked Ensign Tilly for suggestions, and one of the options was Pike's own catchphrase "Hit it". ( DIS : " The Sanctuary ")

In 3191 , while preparing to fly the ISS Enterprise -- the USS Enterprise from the mirror universe -- out of a wormhole with the help of the USS Discovery , Cleveland Booker suggested saying "hit it" before beginning their plan. Well aware that it was Pike's catchphrase, Captain Michael Burnham called it too weird and decided to go with her own "let's fly." ( DIS : " Mirrors ")

Alternate timelines [ ]

In an alternate timeline , Pike managed to avoid his crippling fate by writing a letter dissuading Cadet Maat Al-Salah from joining Starfleet using the information that he gained from the time crystal on Boreth . As a result, Pike remained captain of the USS Enterprise for years more to come. However, Pike's actions when confronted with the Neutral Zone Incursion differed from that of Captain Kirk in the prime timeline, and resulted in an endless war between the Romulans and the Federation in which millions died.

Christopher Pike, late 23rd century

Rear Admiral Christopher Pike in an alternate timeline

This version of Pike was eventually promoted to rear admiral and consulted with the monks at Boreth, learning that his actions also prevented reunification between the Vulcans and Romulans, due to Spock having suffered crippling injuries (resembling Pike's own in the original timeline). In order to stop himself from making this mistake, Pike convinced the monks to give him another time crystal to travel back in time, and show his past self the consequences of his actions. As a result, this timeline was erased from existence. ( SNW : " A Quality of Mercy ")

Awards and honors [ ]

Starfleet database, decorated captains

Pike was listed among Starfleet's finest captains in 2256

By 2256 , Pike was one of Starfleet's most decorated captains, ranked among other legends such as Robert April, Jonathan Archer , Matthew Decker , and Philippa Georgiou . ( DIS : " Choose Your Pain ")

The Christopher Pike Medal of Valor was named in Pike's honor. Benjamin Sisko and Solok received the award in the 24th century . ( DS9 : " Tears of the Prophets ", " Take Me Out to the Holosuite ")

Sisko wearing baseball cap

The logo of the Pike City Pioneers on a baseball cap

On the planet Cestus III , Pike City was named after him. ( DS9 : " Family Business ", " The Way of the Warrior ") There was also a shuttlecraft Pike carried on board the USS Enterprise -D . ( TNG : " The Most Toys ")

Upon naming the Cestus III settlement Pike City after Christopher Pike, the writers of Star Trek: Deep Space Nine also speculated somewhat about the character. " We figured, hey, for all we know, Pike was the one who discovered that world in the first place, " recalled Robert Hewitt Wolfe . ( Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Companion , p. 241)

In the first draft script of VOY : " Flashback ", it was established that Harry Kim had never read Captain Pike's journals, though Kathryn Janeway recommended them to Kim. All mention of Pike was excised from the episode by the time the final draft of the script was issued.

Personal interests [ ]

Pike was fond of horses, having owned equines at multiple times in his life. ( SNW : " Strange New Worlds ", TOS : " The Cage ", " The Menagerie, Part I ")

Relationships [ ]

Friendships [ ], robert april [ ].

Pike and April, 2259

Captain Pike and Admiral April on Starbase 1

Due to Pike being Robert April 's first officer, the two became friends. Even after April was promoted to admiral , Pike was still able to call him by his first name "Bob". ( SNW : " Strange New Worlds ")

Sometime prior to April's promotion, Pike and him took a picture when they were both still wearing an earlier version of the Starfleet uniform. ( SNW : " Children of the Comet ", " A Quality of Mercy ")

Una Chin-Riley [ ]

Pike and Una hug

Pike and Una hug

Pike met Una Chin-Riley when he gave a speech to her Academy class about a test mission he had flew. Following Pike's speech, Chin-Riley came up to him afterwards and pointed out a flaw he had made during reentry. He found it bold and annoying, but she was right. ( SNW : " Ad Astra per Aspera ")

Over the years, the two would develop a friendship and a respect for one another. ( SNW : " Strange New Worlds ", " Ghosts of Illyria ")

Spock likes the sound

Christopher Pike and Spock on Talos IV

Pike first met Spock in 2253 when he transferred to the Enterprise from Starbase 40 to become Pike's new science officer . ( ST : " Q&A ") By 2257 , Spock became one of Pike's most valued bridge officers as he trusted him implicitly. ( DIS : " Brother "; SNW : " Among the Lotus Eaters " display graphic )

When Spock decided to remain onboard the Discovery , Pike believed there weren't words to describe the pride Pike had for him. ( DIS : " Such Sweet Sorrow ")

Spock wound up returning to the Enterprise during the events at Xahea , and served under Pike for several more years, during which time they continued to become friends. After realizing that preventing his own death meant that Spock would die instead, and take with him any chance of peace with Romulus, Pike again accepted his fate without hesitation and expressed relief at Spock's own survival. ( DIS : " Such Sweet Sorrow ", " Such Sweet Sorrow, Part 2 "; SNW : " Strange New Worlds ", " A Quality of Mercy ")

Even after Pike was promoted to fleet captain and left the Enterprise , Spock was fond of Pike even so far as to risk court martial in 2267 to kidnap his disabled former captain and bring him to Talos IV to live a life of illusion and happiness. ( TOS : " The Menagerie, Part I ", " The Menagerie, Part II ")

During his lifetime, Pike and Section 31 agent Leland had been friends, though their differing career paths and resulting value systems strained that friendship considerably. ( DIS : " Saints of Imperfection ")

Joseph M'Benga [ ]

Pike and M'Benga

Pike and Joseph M'Benga

Pike and Joseph M'Benga became friends sometime prior to 2259 . M'Benga toured Mojave with Pike and in return, Pike toured Kenya with him. The two were reunited when M'Benga was assigned to the Enterprise as chief medical officer. ( SNW : " Strange New Worlds ")

T'Pring [ ]

Due to Spock being assigned to Captain Pike's command, T'Pring and Pike were acquainted with one another as T'Pring called Pike by his first name. ( SNW : " Strange New Worlds ")

George Samuel Kirk [ ]

Sam Kirk and Chris Pike

Pike and Sam Kirk

Sometime prior to 2259 , Pike met George Samuel Kirk and was well acquainted with Sam and his family. Upon Pike's return to the Enterprise , he personally requested Kirk be assigned to the Enterprise . ( SNW : " Strange New Worlds ")

Romances [ ]

Pike and Alora

Pike and Alora

Pike met the Majalan Alora in 2249 when he was a lieutenant. He struck up a relationship with her, after he risked his life to rescue her shuttle from a pulsar . According to Pike, he was hitting on her just a little. The two wouldn't meet again until a decade later when the Enterprise saved Alora's life again. During their second encounter, the two would sleep together. Their relationship ended when Pike soon discovered that the ascension ceremony involved connecting the First Servant directly to Majalis' power systems to keep the city afloat. Pike was disgusted at the idea of a civilization being built on the suffering of a child, and brusquely requested to be beamed back to his ship, leaving a tearful Alora behind. ( SNW : " Lift Us Where Suffering Cannot Reach ")

Pike and Vina, 2257

Pike and Vina reuniting

Christopher Pike first met Vina when the Enterprise made contact with Talos IV in 2254. ( TOS : " The Cage ")

Three years later, in 2257 , Pike and Vina reunited when the Talosians used their powers to project Vina's image to Pike on the Discovery . ( DIS : " If Memory Serves ")

Ten years later , following Pike's delta radiation exposure accident, Spock commandeered the Enterprise and transported Pike from Starbase 11 to Talos IV , where The Talosians allowed Pike to function in his normal state, and he and Vina were finally reunited in person. ( TOS : " The Menagerie, Part I ", " The Menagerie, Part II ")

Marie Batel [ ]

Pike and Batel

Pike and Batel kissing

Sometime after returning to Earth, Pike and fellow Starfleet Captain Marie Batel began a romantic liaison. The day before Captain Batel was supposed to ship out, Pike made breakfast for the two of them at his home in Bear Creek , Montana . Batel inquired about if he had made a decision about returning to captain the Enterprise or resign. She also inquired about what was bothering him but Pike told her that it was so classified that even her high security clearance wouldn't allow him to tell her. Before she left, Batel told Pike that she hoped he wasn't around when she returned as she believed he had better places to be. ( SNW : " Strange New Worlds ")

Pike's relationship with Batel continued as the Enterprise and her ship, the USS Cayuga , participated in upgrades to outposts along the Romulan Neutral Zone. In the course of that mission, Batel was forced to arrest Una Chin-Riley for her illegal genetic modifications, placing a strain on their relationship, although Batel admitted that she didn't like her arresting Una any more than Pike did. ( SNW : " A Quality of Mercy ")

Memorable quotes [ ]

" You either live life – bruises, skinned knees and all – or you turn your back on it and start dying. "

" Wherever our mission takes us, we'll try to have a little fun along the way, too, huh? Make a little noise? Ruffle a few feathers."

" Be bold. Be brave. Be courageous. Black alert ."

" Our mission? We explore. We seek out new life and new civilizations. We boldly go where no one has gone before."

"Right up until the very end, life is to be worn gloriously because, until our last moment, the future is what we make it"

- Pike to The Kiley council ( SNW : " Strange New Worlds ")

Catchphrases [ ]

" Hit it. "

Opinions of Pike [ ]

" Chris, you set standards for yourself no one could meet. You treat everyone on board like a Human being except yourself. "

" What are the three most salient facts about Captain Pike?" " One, his capacity for hearing out another point of view is exceeded only by his willingness to change his own once he's heard you out. Two, even though he is the most heavily decorated fighting captain in Starfleet, he views resorting to force as an admission of failure. And three... he is utterly unsentimental except when it comes to horses. "

" I know diplomacy is one of your many, many strengths. That and patience, forgiveness, benevolence... really great hair. "

Key dates [ ]

  • Early 2200s – Pike is born in Mojave , California on Earth
  • Stardate 3201.4 : graduates from Starfleet Academy
  • Assigned to the USS Antares
  • Assigned to the USS Chatelet
  • Assigned to the USS Aryabhatta
  • 2240s– 2250 : Assigned to the USS Enterprise under Captain Robert April as First officer
  • 2250: Appointed captain of the USS Enterprise
  • 2250s : Sets out on a Five-year mission
  • 2254 : Achieved first contact with the Talosians
  • 2256 – 2257 : Along with the rest of the Enterprise crew, sits out the Federation-Klingon War
  • Temporarily appointed captain of the USS Discovery
  • Achieved first contact with the New Eden Humans on Terralysium
  • 2258: Returns to the Enterprise on Stardate 1050.8
  • Achieved first contact with the Kiley on Kiley 279
  • Achieved first contact with the Shepherd
  • Promoted to fleet captain
  • 2266 : Exposed to delta radiation leaving him disfigured and confined to a wheelchair .
  • 2267 : With assistance from the Talosians, is able to live out a life of illusion on Talos IV

Appendices [ ]

Appearances [ ].

  • " The Cage "
  • " The Menagerie, Part I "
  • " The Menagerie, Part II "
  • " Brother "
  • " New Eden "
  • " Point of Light "
  • " An Obol for Charon "
  • " Saints of Imperfection "
  • " The Sound of Thunder "
  • " Light and Shadows "
  • " If Memory Serves "
  • " Project Daedalus "
  • " The Red Angel "
  • " Perpetual Infinity "
  • " Through the Valley of Shadows "
  • " Such Sweet Sorrow "
  • " Such Sweet Sorrow, Part 2 "
  • " Q&A "
  • " The Trouble with Edward "
  • " Ask Not "
  • " Strange New Worlds "
  • " Children of the Comet "
  • " Ghosts of Illyria "
  • " Memento Mori "
  • " Spock Amok "
  • " Lift Us Where Suffering Cannot Reach "
  • " The Serene Squall "
  • " The Elysian Kingdom "
  • " All Those Who Wander "
  • " A Quality of Mercy "
  • " The Broken Circle "
  • " Ad Astra per Aspera "
  • " Tomorrow and Tomorrow and Tomorrow "
  • " Among the Lotus Eaters "
  • " Charades "
  • " Lost in Translation "
  • " Those Old Scientists "
  • " Under the Cloak of War "
  • " Subspace Rhapsody "
  • " Hegemony "

Background information [ ]

Identifying performers [ ].

Robert Herron, The Cage

Pike's stunt double Robert Herron

Captain Pike was played by Jeffrey Hunter in the original unaired pilot, " The Cage ", and in segments of archive footage from that episode which were included in " The Menagerie, Part I " and " The Menagerie, Part II ".

Actor Sean Kenney portrayed a disfigured Pike in the "The Menagerie" two-parter, because the part of a wheelchair-bound Captain Pike was a bit role in the context of the script and would not justify the expense of hiring back the more popular Jeffrey Hunter for such a small part, especially since he had moved on to other projects. Hunter's stunt double for the role, Robert Herron , made appearances in "The Cage" and "The Menagerie, Part II".

In Star Trek: Discovery , Star Trek: Short Treks and Star Trek: Strange New Worlds , Christopher Pike was portrayed by Anson Mount .

Name and preliminary depictions [ ]

Christopher Pike was originally named Robert April , which was then changed to James Winter. ( Star Trek Creator: The Authorized Biography of Gene Roddenberry , pp. 206 & 209) James Blish noted that the scripts for Star Trek 's original unaired pilot, " The Cage ", were "heavily revised in various handwritings and Pike confusingly appears from time to time as 'Captain Spring' and 'Captain Winter.'" A revised draft of the script for "The Cage", from 20 November 1964 , listed him as Captain James Winter. [4] However, that moniker was used only briefly; the name change from James Winter to Christopher Pike was made on 25 November . ( Star Trek Creator: The Authorized Biography of Gene Roddenberry , p. 206)

An ultimately unused concept for the depiction of Captain Pike was suggested to Gene Roddenberry by "The Cage" Director Robert Butler . " I begged him to do […] a captain who had been out there for seven [years] […] but it all fell on deaf ears, " Butler recalled. ( The Star Trek Interview Book , p. 101)

In the aforementioned script, Captain Winter was described thus; " Our first and most important impression is that he would not be completely out of place on the bridge of a naval cruiser in our own day. About thirty-four , he is a complex personality with a sensitivity and warmth which the responsibilities of command often forces him to hide. "

Star Trek consultant and historian Larry Nemecek once claimed the character's full name, by the time the part was filmed for "The Cage", was changed to "Christopher R. Pike". Nemecek also suggested a holdover of the middle initial as a possible reason for why a tombstone commemorating Captain Kirk in TOS : " Where No Man Has Gone Before " is emblazoned "James R. Kirk", though his middle name was later established as "Tiberius". ( Star Trek Monthly  issue 98 , p. 37) However, no canonical evidence provides Pike's middle initial as "R", or even states he had a middle name.

In reality, LeVar Burton knew, when he auditioned for the role of Geordi La Forge in Star Trek: The Next Generation , that the name of the captain from the original Star Trek pilot had been "Christopher Pike". He used that knowledge to "break the ice" with John Pike , the President of Paramount Network Television, during the audition. ( Stardate Revisited: The Origin of Star Trek - The Next Generation , Part Two: Launch , TNG Season 1 Blu-ray special features)

The American author Kevin McFadden (b. 1955) took "Christopher Pike" as his pen name.

Original casting [ ]

Trying to find a suitable lead actor for Star Trek was the most difficult factor in casting "The Cage". The role had several requirements. These included physical attractiveness, the ability to project a huge degree of personal warmth to increase the chances of likeability and, thirdly, believability in the part, such as by looking athletic and being convincing in a position of leadership. ( Star Trek: The Original Series 365 , p. 007; The Making of Star Trek , p. 111) By the time Star Trek started casting for the lead actor, so many other series were in production that there were very few performers available. Those who were could afford to be selective about what part they took. ( The Making of Star Trek , p. 111)

Before Gene Roddenberry wrote "The Cage" (but once the captain's name was Christopher Pike), he asked Lloyd Bridges to accept Star Trek 's lead role. ( The Star Trek Interview Book , p. 9; These Are the Voyages: TOS Season One , "Chapter Three: Designing Star Trek "; Star Trek Encyclopedia , 4th ed., vol. 2, p. 146) " When I approached him with it, " stated Roddenberry, " he said, 'Gene, I like you, I've worked with you before in the past, but I've seen science fiction and I don't want to be within a hundred miles of it…' " ( The Star Trek Interview Book , p. 9) Not only had Bridges seen science fiction, he had been burned by it. Less than two years had passed since Daily Variety had complained about an episode of The Lloyd Bridges Show wherein he had played an astronaut who landed on an alien planet. Thus, Bridges was not eager to participate in another outer space adventure any time soon. ( These Are the Voyages: TOS Season One , "Chapter Three: Designing Star Trek ") Concerning the performer's anxious reaction to the prospect of featuring on Star Trek , Roddenberry noted, " I understood what he meant then. " ( The Star Trek Interview Book , p. 9) This was because Roddenberry accepted that science fiction of the time was poor. Hence, he thought the choice Bridges made "wasn't a foolish move on his part." ( Star Trek - Where No One Has Gone Before , p. 9) Roddenberry attempted to make a persuasive argument that he could do science fiction differently, but was not yet sure himself if he could manage to do so. ( The Star Trek Interview Book , p. 9) Ultimately, Bridges made it clear that he strongly believed appearing in an outer-space series would obliterate his future credibility.

Following Lloyd Bridges' rejection, Gene Roddenberry spent several weeks in search of a suitable actor to play the part. ( Star Trek Memories , paperback ed., p. 41) " I came to realize […] that there just weren't a lot of actors who would do it, " he related. " I was talking about what was in many people's eyes a silly show. " ( The Star Trek Interview Book , p. 9) Nonetheless, many actors were considered. Roddenberry noted, " We went through a lot of film in casting the part. " ( Star Trek - Where No One Has Gone Before , p. 9) Several casting consultants submitted lists of names to Roddenberry, which he then analyzed. One such list was comprised of forty names, including the following:

Though not included in the above list, James Coburn was an additional possibility; Majel Barrett strongly suggested him to Gene Roddenberry and a group of other men. Barrett found her suggestion rejected because Coburn – in the opinions of the aforementioned men, including Roddenberry – "wasn't sexy enough," although Roddenberry later revised his judgment. ( Star Trek Creator: The Authorized Biography of Gene Roddenberry , p. 209; The Star Trek Interview Book , p. 9)

After analyzing the lists from his casting consultants, Gene Roddenberry sent a shorter list of names to the television network NBC for their comments. This list included James Coburn, Jeffrey Hunter , Dan O'Herlihy, Patrick O'Neal, and Tom Tryon. The next day, he was notified by Herbert F. Solow , via memo, that the network was "very much against" Jeffrey Hunter and two others on the list. NBC proposed several alternatives, including Patrick McGoohan and Mel Farrar. The memo ended by saying, " There was a strong reaction for both James Coburn and Patrick O'Neal. " ( Star Trek Creator: The Authorized Biography of Gene Roddenberry , pp. 209-210)

Jeffrey Hunter and Gene Roddenberry with the 3-foot Enterprise model

Jeffrey Hunter, dressed as Pike, with Roddenberry and the Enterprise

Gene Roddenberry finally selected Jeffrey Hunter – who had recently portrayed Jesus in King of Kings – to feature as Captain Pike. ( Star Trek Memories , paperback ed., p. 41) " Jeff Hunter seemed to be about the closest to what I had in mind for a captain, " Roddenberry stated. ( Star Trek - Where No One Has Gone Before , p. 9)

At this point, Robert Butler – director of "The Cage" – was unfamiliar with Jeffrey Hunter, who was aged thirty-seven. ( These Are the Voyages: TOS Season One , "Chapter Three: Designing Star Trek ") Butler remembered, " Jeffrey Hunter had probably been cast beyond my control, which is the way it goes, but I certainly knew of him. " ( Star Trek Monthly  issue 6 , p. 53)

Joseph D'Agosta , a casting director who Gene Roddenberry consulted, later explained that the casting of Jeffrey Hunter as Pike was "a network-producer- Desilu decision." ( Star Trek Creator: The Authorized Biography of Gene Roddenberry , p. 211) D'Agosta clarified about the actor, " That was a selection made from the name list given by the network and the studio. I was not even involved in that. " ( The Star Trek Interview Book , p. 213) However, D'Agosta also laid claim to having somehow "dealt" with Hunter from a casting perspective. ( Star Trek Memories , paperback ed., p. 58)

Though Jeffrey Hunter had found starring as the title character in the short-lived television series Temple Houston to have been a disastrous experience (one year earlier), he nonetheless accepted the Star Trek role, agreeing to make another TV pilot. The reference book These Are the Voyages: TOS Season One ("Chapter Three: Designing Star Trek ") postulates that he did so while possibly motivated by "fearing his initial failure in television had hurt his chances to reclaim big screen status." In a comment Hunter made upon acquiring the Captain Pike role, he joked that any actor able to rule over all of Christianity could easily command a starship crew. After some typical haggling between agents, Hunter was hired. ( Star Trek Memories , paperback ed., p. 41) Hunter was contracted to play Pike over the course of sixteen days, receiving US$10,000 in return. ( Star Trek Creator: The Authorized Biography of Gene Roddenberry , p. 211) The captain was the final role in "The Cage" to be cast. ( The Making of Star Trek , p. 111)

At about this time, Jeffrey Hunter was highly enthusiastic about Star Trek , particularly about the potential of the series. He talked enthusiastically about the project, after production on "The Cage" ended. In an interview for the Los Angeles Citizen News , he raved, " It's a great format because the writers will have a free hand [regarding the kinds of stories they could tell]. " In addition, he told the same publication (on 30 January 1965 ) that the thing which most intrigued him about the show was the high reliability of its projections as regards the future. ( These Are the Voyages: TOS Season One , "Chapter Four: Test Flight & Filming 'The Cage'" and "Chapter Five: Double or Nothing: A Second Pilot")

On 19 March 1965 , Gene Roddenberry sent a note to Jeffrey Hunter, inviting him, his wife and a few other people to a Desilu screening of "The Cage". ( These Are the Voyages: TOS Season One , "Chapter Five: Double or Nothing: A Second Pilot"; Star Trek Creator: The Authorized Biography of Gene Roddenberry , p. 225) Although NBC had unofficially revealed they planned to give the unprecedented go-ahead for the making of a second pilot (having been dissatisfied with "The Cage"), Hunter's contract required his participation in only one pilot, not two. If the already-produced pilot sold, he would be locked into a five-year contract. If the pilot was not purchased, he was contractually free to pursue other interests. ( These Are the Voyages: TOS Season One , "Chapter Five: Double or Nothing: A Second Pilot") Recollected Herb Solow, " We therefore had to devise a plan that would enable us to keep Jeff Hunter in the fold [[…] ] We […] looked forward to running the completed pilot for our star, Jeff Hunter. We hoped it would convince him to do another pilot. " ( Inside Star Trek: The Real Story , paperback ed., p. 63)

The screening, which turned out to be a fateful event, was held on 25 March 1965 . ( Star Trek Creator: The Authorized Biography of Gene Roddenberry , p. 225) Remembered Herb Solow, " Gene and I waited in the Desilu projection room for [Jeff Hunter] […] to arrive. He never did. " Hunter's wife, Joan 'Dusty' Bartlett, attended the ceremony in his stead. " We traded hellos, and I nodded to Gene, " Solow carried on. " He flicked the projection booth intercom switch. 'Let's go.' And so it went. As the end credits rolled, and the lights came up, Jeff Hunter's wife gave us our answer: 'This is not the kind of show Jeff wants to do, and besides, it wouldn't be good for his career. Jeff Hunter is a movie star.' Mrs. Hunter was very polite and very firm. She said her good-byes and left, having surprisingly and swiftly removed our star from our new pilot. " ( Inside Star Trek: The Real Story , paperback ed., p. 63) Having decided she hated the pilot episode, Bartlett didn't want Hunter to remain in the role of Captain Pike. She convinced him that, being a dutiful husband, he didn't want to resume the persona either and that science fiction was beneath him. ( Star Trek Creator: The Authorized Biography of Gene Roddenberry , p. 225; The Star Trek Interview Book , p. 10) In contrast to how Pike firstly contemplates resigning his commission and retiring from Starfleet but later changes his mind, Hunter's change of heart led him to want to quit. ( Star Trek: The Original Series 365 , p. 007)

In his 1993 autobiography Star Trek Memories (paperback ed., p. 70), William Shatner alleged that Jeffrey Hunter was essentially "fired" from playing the part of Captain Pike. Shatner asserted, " Apparently there were problems with Jeffrey. Not while he was shooting or on the set or anything like that, but afterward. They started when the go-ahead came in for the second pilot, and Hunter's wife, who was an ex-model, suddenly started coming to production meetings. Evidently she hated the first pilot, and as a result she began to frequently storm into Gene's office, loudly making demands like 'from now on, my Jeff must only be shot from certain angles,' and apparently it became 'Jeff wants this' and 'Jeff demands that.' Gene later told me that he'd much rather be dealing with Jeff and his agent, or even Jeff and a gorilla, than Jeff and his wife. He continued that there were so many tantrums, restrictions and ultimatums being laid out on the table that he finally thought, 'Well, I can't possibly do an entire series like this. They'll drive me nuts.' " In Leonard Nimoy 's 1995 autobiography I Am Spock (hardback ed., p. 32), Nimoy agreed with Shatner, saying, " Jeff Hunter was let go when his wife began to represent him and made what Gene considered excessive demands. "

In reality, Jeffrey Hunter – having decided to give up the character of Pike – made his feelings known to Gene Roddenberry within two weeks of the Desilu screening. On 5 April 1965 , Roddenberry responded with a private letter between them in which he stated, " I am told you have decided not to go ahead with Star Trek . This has to be your decision, of course, and I must respect it. You may be certain I hold no grudge or ill feelings and expect to continue to reflect publicly and privately the high regard I learned for you during the production of our pilot. " ( Star Trek Creator: The Authorized Biography of Gene Roddenberry , pp. 225-226)

Even though a second Star Trek pilot was commissioned, Jeffrey Hunter was insistent that he not participate in the making of that episode, entitled " Where No Man Has Gone Before ". " Business affairs negotiated with Jeffrey Hunter, " remembered Oscar Katz , " and we all thought it was the usual actor/network situation. They don't want to do it for reason XYZ, and it's a device […] for getting the price up. We kept increasing the price and he kept saying no. One day I said, 'What's up with Jeffrey Hunter?' and I was told he just won't do it at any price. Finally I said, 'Tell Jeffrey Hunter to get lost. Tell him we're going to do the pilot without him.' " ( Captains' Logs: The Unauthorized Complete Trek Voyages , p. 14) Shortly thereafter, once the trade papers began reporting about a second Star Trek pilot, Hunter told J.D. Spiro for his Milwaukee Journal report, " I was asked to do it, but, had I accepted, I would have been tied up much longer than I care to be. " Hunter's decision to depart was propelled specifically by the fact he wanted to focus on his career in feature films, instead of resuming his participation in television productions. ( These Are the Voyages: TOS Season One , "Chapter Five: Double or Nothing: A Second Pilot") In his autobiography, Shatner acknowledged that the "official" story reported over years had been that Hunter turned down the role of Pike and was unable to commit to the series due to a film commitment, despite Shatner disputing this account. ( Star Trek Memories , paperback ed., p. 70) Hunter's departure left an opening for the series lead. " I just had to pick someone else, " noted Roddenberry. William Shatner was who he picked, Shatner going on to regularly appear as James T. Kirk . ( The Star Trek Interview Book , p. 11) The replacing of Hunter with Shatner was reported in Daily Variety on 4 May 1965 . ( These Are the Voyages: TOS Season One , "Chapter Five: Double or Nothing: A Second Pilot")

Desilu and NBC executives had discussed possibly broadcasting "The Cage" as a movie-of-the-week if Star Trek did not proceed as a series. After that pilot episode was rejected, Jeffrey Hunter was approached by Desilu; they requested he rejoin the cast in order to enable the filming of enough additional footage to make the movie option viable. ( Star Trek: The Original Series 365 , p. 092) The year was 1965 when Gene Roddenberry proposed to film added scenes to lengthen "The Cage" into a feature-length movie. He also planned to try organizing a theatrical release for it. Hunter refused, though, to have any participation in these plans. ( Inside Star Trek: The Real Story , paperback ed., p. 251)

Rewriting the part [ ]

Despite Jeffery Hunter's rejections, the canon portrayal of Christopher Pike was affected when the decision was made for the archive footage from the original pilot to be edited into a two-parter together with contemporary scenes that would form an "envelope" around those depictions of the past. In an early version of the two-parter – which was called "From the First Day to the Last" and was written by John D.F. Black – an official review of Pike's actions on Talos IV took place at Trium Supply Base after Spock asked Kirk to take Pike, who was now in a disabled condition and confined to a wheelchair but was still capable of nodding, back to the planet, to die there. The request was opposed by Commander Jermane, a desk-bound officer who had placed a ban on travel to Talos IV, because he believed the Talosians were a menace, and he wanted to do everything he could to make Pike look bad. Although otherwise residing at the base hospital, Pike attended an initial, morning review session. He was then examined by his doctor at the hospital, who decided the strain was too much for him. After Jermane persuaded the doctor to change his mind, however, Pike was forced to attend another review session that afternoon, an arrangement Doctor McCoy protested against without success.

In the second part of the "From the First Day to the Last" two-parter, Kirk expressed that he was determined to enable Pike to return to the planet but that an imperative question for the review to consider was whether Pike had escaped from Talos IV or solved "the problem of Talosian menace" there. Despite the potential consequence of being hanged, McCoy was ready to take Pike out of the hearing room if he seemed at all to be becoming too ill. As the afternoon session got underway, Pike glared at Commander Jermane, moments before the footage of Pike's previous visit to Talos VI began to be displayed and analyzed by the group. After their review of Pike's past actions and a private (unseen) discussion between Kirk and Jermane, Kirk returned to the hearing room and asked Pike how he was feeling. Pike managed to answer Kirk with a small nod, just as a male nurse arrived to take Pike back to the base hospital.

As it turned out, "Commander Jermane" was actually a Talosian who had taken the place of the real Jermane, who had dreamt of personal glorification and had sought that dream on Talos IV but had died in the instant when the Talosians had given him it. Pike had been restricted from being returned to Talos IV because the Talosian impostor strongly believed that the gift of complete illusion was too powerful for any person to have. When the Talosian admitted defeat to Kirk, however, Pike was permitted to be taken back to Talos IV aboard the Enterprise on the condition that Kirk, even in his personal log, would subsequently maintain a lie that Pike had been murdered by the Talosians. Kirk felt this requirement extremely hard to accept, but the impostor insisted it was necessary in order to keep the planet restricted.

Pike, in his wheelchair, was beamed aboard the Enterprise together with Kirk, Spock, and McCoy. At Kirk's suggestion, he was given a tour of the ship by Spock, who, at one point in the tour, mentioned that Pike had made numerous reports and recommendations about enlarging the Jefferies tubes , suggestions that Spock pointed out had evidently been taken notice of. Pike reacted to this discovery with a smile that was almost imperceptible but noticed by Spock. Other areas of the Enterprise which Pike viewed were the recreation room , engineering, and the bridge, the last of which nearly brought a tear to his eye. As Spock said farewell to Pike in the ship's transporter room, Pike tearfully nodded in response to Spock saying he hoped Pike would be successful in finding what he wanted to find on the planet, McCoy also wishing Pike "good luck ." He was then transported down to Talos IV along with Kirk alone, although Spock had wanted to accompany them too. Pike's return to Talos IV, by the time it actually happened, felt very important to him. Upon beaming down to the planet, he and Kirk found nobody there, though a Talosian soon arrived and pushed Pike, in his wheelchair, away. The next thing Kirk knew, Pike seemed to be miraculously transformed into his younger, able-bodied form and appeared to walk up a slope with the youthful Vina, pause to turn back and wave, then move on, to which a surprised-looking Kirk waved back but not with vigor. Later, in his captain's log, Kirk mentioned he had " left Captain Christopher Pike in the care of the Talosians per his request. " Contacted by "Commander Jermane" from Trium Supply Base, Kirk refused to lie about what had happened to Pike, explaining that his example provided evidence that, despite being potentially dangerous, illusion was not necessarily corruptive nor overly powerful.

While Roddenberry was scripting " The Menagerie, Part I " and " The Menagerie, Part II " in 1966, the production staff had some puzzlement about whether Jeffery Hunter would okay segments of footage from "The Cage" to be reused throughout the forthcoming two-parter. On 14 September 1966 , Robert H. Justman wrote a fairly apprehensive message to Ed Perlstein at Desilu Legal, wherein – among other related points – Justman wondered, " Does Jeff Hunter's original contract allow for this sort of contingency? Perhaps you ought to check it out with his agent. " ( These Are the Voyages: TOS Season One )

Gene Roddenberry had the idea, while the two-parter was in development, of casting another actor in the role of Christopher Pike for the new scenes. That method was to be used in the foreseeable eventuality that Jeffrey Hunter declined to take part in the envelope scenes himself. After Roddenberry turned in his first draft script for part one of the duology (on 21 September 1966 ), Herb Solow sent the teleplay draft to Grant Schloss and Jerry Stanley at NBC, telling them, " Should Jeff Hunter's wife won't [sic] agree to let him appear in any envelope, Roddenberry has come up with an interesting device to treat Pike [sic] Character (Hunter) as having been injured beyond recognition – this so the actor can play the part. " ( These Are the Voyages: TOS Season One ) The dramatic device of disfiguring Pike beyond recognition did allow a replacement actor to appear in the same role, apparently at an older age. ( Star Trek: The Original Series Sketchbook , p. 188)

In the final draft script of " The Menagerie, Part I " (dated 7 October 1966 ), Pike was described as " A shadow of a man, the marks of Delta ray burns, impossibly thin and sagging, hair dull white, without life, skin pale, almost lifeless. He sits in a complex power wheelchair which operates on brain impulses. The dull eyes, once clear and blue. " The script went on to say that, aside from merely a single tear, "the sagging, lifeless muscles are incapable of emotion."

Jeffery Hunter eventually agreed for the necessary archive footage featuring himself as Captain Pike to be reused in the two-parter. He was paid US$5,000 for the reuse of this footage, and his residuals were minimal. ( Star Trek Creator: The Authorized Biography of Gene Roddenberry , p. 259) On 18 October 1966 , Ed Perlstein wrote a memo to Shirley Stahnke at Desilu Business Affairs, announcing the news he had closed a deal to pay Hunter US$5,000. ( These Are the Voyages: TOS Season One ) Hunter was unwilling, though, to take part in further filming for the budget-saving remake of "The Cage" into the two-parter. ( Star Trek: The Original Series Sketchbook , p. 188) Since he had turned down the prospect of "The Cage" becoming a movie, there was no chance he would cooperate to redo the pilot episode for televised Star Trek . ( Inside Star Trek: The Real Story , paperback ed., p. 251) He was not only unavailable but also unaffordable for what amounted to a minor supporting role. ( The Star Trek Compendium , 4th ed., p. 48) Therefore, finding another actor became a necessity to produce the two-parter.

Recasting the part [ ]

Since the story imagined Pike as being confined to a 23rd century wheelchair and so permanently wounded as to be unable to speak, there was considerable latitude in recasting the role. ( Star Trek: Aliens & Artifacts , p. 38) On the other hand, the two actors had to look somewhat alike. " Because Jeffrey Hunter wasn't available to play the disabled Capt. Pike, they had to find an actor who had the same facial structure and features, " Sean Kenney pointed out. ( Captain Pike Found Alive! , "Chapter Three: The Formula")

At first, John D.F. Black – who had recently departed from working on Star Trek from behind the scenes – was asked to represent the disabled Pike. John's wife, Mary Black (who had also been involved in the show from a production perspective), offered, " Dorothy [Fontana] called and said that they had this really fun idea. Because John's eyes matched the eyes of Jeffrey Hunter – and they couldn't find another actor who had the right eyes, and they were so sure John's did – they wanted him to come in and sit in the wheelchair and be Captain Pike, with lots of makeup on. " John Black himself stated, " Both of us immediately had the attitude that that wouldn't be very much fun. I didn't hesitate at all in turning it down. " The search for a suitable actor resumed. ( These Are the Voyages: TOS Season One )

Sean Kenney was initially invited to try out for the role of Christopher Pike one evening right after making a one-off appearance in the Los Angeles stage show "The Deputy", on its opening night. As he removed his makeup backstage, a woman who turned out to be talent agent Mitzi MacGregor approached him and explained that she wanted him to meet with a man at Paramount called Gene Roddenberry, even though Kenney didn't yet know who he was. ( Star Trek Magazine  issue 175 , p. 74; Captain Pike Found Alive! , "Chapter One: Lift Off!") The agent arranged to schedule an appointment between the two men, on the condition that Kenney – who didn't have an agent at that point – signed with her. ( Star Trek Magazine  issue 175 , p. 74) " My life completely changed that night, " admitted Kenney. MacGregor agreed to ensure him a lead role on Star Trek , which was in the very early days of its creation at Paramount. ( Captain Pike Found Alive! , "Chapter One: Lift Off!") Kenney eagerly accepted the arrangement proposed by MacGregor. ( Star Trek Magazine  issue 175 , p. 74; Captain Pike Found Alive! , "Chapter One: Lift Off!") A profile picture of the actor was then promptly sent to Paramount. ( Star Trek Magazine  issue 175 , p. 74)

One week after Sean Kenney first met Mitzi MacGregor and the image of him was dispatched, Kenney was interviewed by Joseph D'Agosta. ( Star Trek Magazine  issue 175 , p. 74; Captain Pike Found Alive! , "Chapter Two: Ground Zero") D'Agosta recommended Kenney for the part of former starship captain Christopher Pike to Gene Roddenberry, with whom the actor met during the next week. ( Captain Pike Found Alive! , "Chapter Two: Ground Zero") Years later, Kenney noted, " Gene Roddenberry himself interviewed me and OKed my casting in the part. " ( Starlog #113) The interview between them was in October 1966. " I felt like I was in 'alpha state' when I entered Desilu Studios […] I was ushered into a small interviewing office and waited about ten minutes until Gene's secretary came by and stated, 'Mr. Roddenberry wants to interview you personally. Would you please step into his office?' […] [After doing so] I sat facing his desk and noticed my casting photo was lying there. I waited only a few minutes and when he came in, I stood up and shook his hands. " ( Captain Pike Found Alive! , "Chapter Two: Ground Zero")

Gene Roddenberry began the discussion by speaking about the concept of Star Trek and the fact he had been searching for a lead actor to portray former starship captain Pike. " As I sat back down, " continued Sean Kenney, " Gene got up and walked around me holding my casting photo in his hand. " ( Captain Pike Found Alive! , "Chapter Two: Ground Zero") Meanwhile, Roddenberry looked at Kenney from every side. The actor, though, was perplexed by this behavior. Roddenberry finally stopped circling Kenney and spoke. ( Star Trek Magazine  issue 175 , p. 74) " Continuing, he said that the lead character, Pike, had been severely injured in a training accident and was unable to speak or move any body parts. Much of this role would come from emoting feeling through my eyes. " Roddenberry outlined that the Star Trek creative team would age Kenney to look about eighty years old and that Pike would answer all questions with "yes" or "no" replies using a specially rigged light system. Kenney contemplated the seeming oddness of hiring a young actor to play an old man, a main part without any lines whatsoever. " I'm thinking, why me, why don't they just get an old guy? " the performer related. Roddenberry also voiced some direct questions. For instance, he inquired about whether Kenney would be able to handle intensive makeup for the part. ( Captain Pike Found Alive! , "Chapter Two: Ground Zero") Another example was Roddenberry asking the interviewee if he had a problem with being confined within a tight area for long durations, to which Kenney declared he would be honored to play Pike. ( Star Trek: Aliens & Artifacts , pp. 38 & 40) He believed the reasoning why Roddenberry "asked so many pointed questions when [Kenney] […] grabbed the role of Captain Pike" was that Roddenberry wanted to ensure the actor could be trusted to know what he was doing and was going to deliver reliable performances as Pike, whatever happened on the set. ( Captain Pike Found Alive! , "Chapter Twenty-One: Thespian Style")

According to a statement made by Gene Roddenberry in his interview with Sean Kenney, Jeffrey Hunter was unavailable because he was busy filming a movie in Spain. ( Captain Pike Found Alive! , "Chapter Two: Ground Zero") Of course, Kenney owed much to Hunter for his inclusion in the "The Menagerie" two-parter. " I received the part of Captain Pike in the wheelchair because of my strong resemblance to Jeff Hunter, " Kenney explained. ( Starlog #113) He elaborated that his extreme physical similarity to Hunter was "to the point that nobody else in town resembled him as much as I did, though I was only 24 years old." ( Star Trek Magazine  issue 175 , p. 75) The huge resemblance between the two performers was first noticed by Joseph D'Agosta. ( Star Trek: Aliens & Artifacts , p. 38) Roddenberry noted aloud the strong degree of likeness between the actors, during Kenney's interview with him. ( Captain Pike Found Alive! , "Chapter Two: Ground Zero") Kenney later hypothesized, " Maybe there is some ancestral DNA at play here. Jeff's real name was McKinney and most likely his family was from Ireland like my own. " ( Captain Pike Found Alive! , "Chapter Ten: Watch Your Back!")

Disfigured portrayal [ ]

Despite the similarities between Sean Kenney and Jeffrey Hunter, the role of Christopher Pike required Kenney to undergo some drastic physical alterations. After-the-fact, Director Marc Daniels remarked, " It took a considerable amount of preparation and work to get it done properly. " ( Captains' Logs: The Unauthorized Complete Trek Voyages , p. 33)

During their initial meeting with one another, Gene Roddenberry informed Sean Kenney that the sides of his eyes would be taped down with extensive makeup, that his hair and eyebrows would be dyed stark white and that latex makeup would be extensively used on his face, with the same makeup reconstructed every day for at least a week. ( Captain Pike Found Alive! , "Chapter Two: Ground Zero") In fact, Roddenberry even went as far as to explain that the latex makeup would so inhibit Kenney's movements he would likely end up having to eat through a straw. ( Star Trek: Aliens & Artifacts , p. 38) When Roddenberry asked if Kenney had any problem with having his hair and eyebrows dyed white, the actor stated he had absolutely no such difficulty, very eager to accept the role. Towards the end of their first encounter, Roddenberry ascertained the actor had no allergies to latex makeup. ( Captain Pike Found Alive! , "Chapter Two: Ground Zero")

Disfiguring Sean Kenney gave the makeup team a lot to do. " In retrospect, regarding the makeup, I have a few insights, " detailed Kenney. " The two makeup geniuses who worked on my face, Fred Phillips […] along with a young artist named Ray Sebastian , had their work cut out for themselves. " ( Captain Pike Found Alive! , "Chapter Three: The Formula") The creation of the makeup soon began. " When Fred Phillips, who was Paramount's head makeup man, had me come into the studio the week before, " Kenney recounted, " we experimented with the different types of scars and aging processes available. I was then screen-tested for matching with Jeff's facial structure, makeup reality and hair color […] Fred Phillips wanted to perfect the makeup by making a life mask of my face during the early stages of the experiments. They applied plaster of Paris to my face with […] two little rubber hoses in my nostrils for breathing. " ( Starlog #113) Phillips' interest in constructing a life mask was so he could use it as a makeup-testing device. ( Star Trek: Aliens & Artifacts , p. 40)

Sean Kenney found the creation of a life mask of his own face was "a scary time" and highly claustrophobic. " And, I'm no claustrophobe! " he exclaimed. " My face hardened up like a rock and suddenly, I wondered whether I was going to breathe or not. It was quite an experience. " ( Starlog #113)

Meanwhile, hairstylist Virginia Darcy commenced work on Sean Kenney's hair. Gene Roddenberry wanted it white and brittle, not merely streaked with temporary makeup, but dyed so white it made the entire character seem damaged as well as aged. After Darcy finished, she and Roddenberry walked Kenney to the set for testing his hair under the studio lights. The actor's hair was so bright, it was off the color band and consequently made the television signal almost crackle. ( Star Trek: Aliens & Artifacts , p. 40) " Gene felt the first screen test showed my hair to be too white looking on camera, " he recalled. " They sent me back to the Paramount hairdresser who agreed something was amiss. So she dyed my hair to a light blonde color. " ( Captain Pike Found Alive! , "Chapter Three: The Formula") The synthetic dulling of Kenney's hair was done with a beige powder. ( Starlog #113) Darcy combined this with a hair preparation and combed the resulting mix through Kenney's hair, before allowing it to dry. Afterwards, the hair color passed the color registration assessment, then Kenney was moved onto another stage of makeup tests. ( Star Trek: Aliens & Artifacts , p. 40) In hindsight, he decided he "wasn't too happy about" the dying of his hair. ( Starlog #113)

Two days before filming, Fred Phillips and Ray Sebastian initiated camera tests on the makeup layouts they'd devised using Sean Kenney's life mask. Applying the designs for real and testing them on camera depended on a six-and-a-half-hour application procedure. Sebastian, instead of Phillips, was in charge of applying the makeup and was assisted by Fred Obringer . The makeup was arranged directly on Kenney's own skin, rather than using latex appliances. The first step of the technique was applying spirit gum all over the actor's face to produce a tacky surface on the skin, which subsequently was covered with cotton. The excess cotton was removed. Then, liquid latex was stippled onto various parts of Kenney's face while the skin was stretched tightly. Owing to the fact they were working under tight time constraints throughout the process, the makeup artists used hair dryers to quicken the drying time, opting not to wait for the latex to dry naturally. They next applied a second coat of latex. ( Star Trek: Aliens & Artifacts , p. 40)

Representing the scar on the right side of Pike's head was originally very difficult, when the Sean Kenney mask was under development. ( Star Trek: Aliens & Artifacts , p. 40) After the makeup appliances began to melt a lot in rehearsals, a piece of fabric was designed to be incorporated into the makeup. Recalling how this came to be, Kenney offered, " One day, they were so frustrated with the melting of the horrific scar on the side of my face that Ray [Sebastian] came up with an ingenious solution. He reached down and cut out a piece of his own Levis he was wearing, made it into the shape of the scar, then taped it to the side of my face, creating an ideal radiation burn scar that would not melt or appear to be healing. " ( Captain Pike Found Alive! , "Chapter Three: The Formula") After the material was applied, a base color of Rubber Mask Greasepaint was put on, covering nearly all of Kenney's face. The only exception was the artificial scar, which was next colored with a blueish-purple center and a deep red outer area to make it seem constantly painful. The entire makeup was lastly set with a translucent face powder. ( Star Trek: Aliens & Artifacts , p. 40)

The makeup designers gave Pike's eye special attention because, amid their tests, they realized Pike would appear more sympathetic if he had a drooping eyelid. Hence, Ray Sebastian pulled down the outer edge of Sean Kenney's eyelid using clear medical tape. ( Star Trek: Aliens & Artifacts , p. 40) Tying the corners of the actor's eyes down with scotch mending tape had the added effect of giving him an aged appearance. ( Starlog #113)

The development time for the Pike makeup was at least twenty hours. ( Captain Pike Found Alive! , "gallery pix") Daily, it took the makeup artists nearly five hours to apply. ( Starlog #113) " Every day, they would have to start from scratch applying the same makeup, " Sean Kenney reported, " and placing that valuable piece of jean material in the correct spot [[…] ] The makeup job on the first day took almost five hours to construct while on the last day they had it down to two and a half hours. " ( Captain Pike Found Alive! , "Chapter Three: The Formula") As a result of the multiple reapplications that were needed each time over the course of five production days, Kenney found the proceedings painstaking and tedious. ( Star Trek: Aliens & Artifacts , p. 40) Because the appliances started to often melt in rehearsals, his time in front of the camera was extremely limited. ( Captain Pike Found Alive! , "Chapter Three: The Formula") He practically lived in the makeup room, spending ten to twelve hours there each day of the shoot. ( Star Trek: Aliens & Artifacts , p. 40)

Due to Sean Kenney's long hours in makeup, the shooting company did not become familiar with the appearance of the actor under all those appliances. " I'd come in before everyone to get the make-up on and left after everyone because I had to get the make-up off, " Kenney recollected. " It was the weirdest feeling, because no one ever saw me. " ( Star Trek Magazine  issue 175 , p. 75) Moreover, Kenney was rendered unable to converse with any of the cast and crew due to the restrictive makeup. ( These Are the Voyages: TOS Season One ; Captain Pike Found Alive! , "Chapter Two: Ground Zero") Looking back, he said, " With the Captain Pike makeup limiting my socializing, I didn't linger on the set after we wrapped for the day. I would quickly remove my […] latex mask [[…] ] Through that whole eight day shoot, I walked and talked to everyone outside the studio as a perfect looking albino gent. " ( Captain Pike Found Alive! , "Chapter Three: The Formula") Kenney's predicament during the shoot elicited pity from fellow actor Malachi Throne , who mentioned, " Poor Sean – Sean was stuck in the box. " ( These Are the Voyages: TOS Season One )

Sean Kenney once described his latex mask as "dreaded." ( Captain Pike Found Alive! , "Chapter Three: The Formula") " The appliances were very tight around the face, " he expressed. " Eating was very difficult [due to the heavy makeup restrictions] so my lunches were taken through a straw, consisting of soups and mush, so to speak. " ( Starlog #113) Kenney elaborated, " On the set, I actually felt like I was being starved. " ( Captain Pike Found Alive! , "Chapter Two: Ground Zero")

For his portrayal of Christopher Pike, Sean Kenney concentrated much of his attention on his eyes. " Most of the feeling had to come through my eyes, " he stated, " especially due to the fact that they would tie the corners of my eyes down with scotch mending tape. " ( Starlog #113) The actor clarified, " It was an immense acting challenge, trying to say so much only through my eyes. "

For one specific scene, Sean Kenney thought about his father having died when he had been eight years old. " That's where the tears came from in my big scene, " he reflected. " I remember everyone saying, 'OK, we got it.' " ( Star Trek Magazine  issue 175 , p. 75)

Towards the end of filming the scenes involving the injured Christopher Pike, an issue arose concerning the scrap of denim used as the character's scar. Sean Kenney remembered, " About the eighth day into the shoot, Ray [Sebastian] was so tired he placed the scar on the wrong side of my face. When I looked in the mirror, I knew something was wrong and we both cracked up, realizing exhaustion had finally taken its toll. " ( Captain Pike Found Alive! , "Chapter Three: The Formula")

Reception and aftermath [ ]

First portrayal [ ].

Originally, NBC, Herb Solow, Gene Roddenberry, and Robert Butler were all delighted they were able to secure Jeffrey Hunter for the part of Christopher Pike in "The Cage". ( Inside Star Trek: The Real Story , paperback ed., p. 36)

Robert Butler was left with the feeling Jeffrey Hunter's stint as Christopher Pike was not wholly satisfying. " I thought he was probably a good, chiseled hero for this type of part, " Butler critiqued about Hunter. " He was an extremely pleasant, centered guy, and maybe decent and nice to a fault… I remember thinking, 'God, he's handsome,' and this was sadly the opinion of him at the time. When one is trying to bring reality into an unreal situation, that usually isn't a wise thing to do – to hire a somewhat perfect looking actor. You should find someone who seems more natural and more 'real.' " ( These Are the Voyages: TOS Season One , "Chapter Three: Designing Star Trek ") Butler also stated about Hunter, " I […] found him to be a real cooperative good guy. He was a little heroic and a little stiff, and I tried to modify that a little bit, and maybe I did and maybe I didn't. " ( Star Trek Monthly  issue 6 , pp. 53-54)

According to Joseph D'Agosta and Robert Justman, the executives at NBC opted for William Shatner as James T. Kirk rather than Jeffrey Hunter as Christopher Pike because they were disappointed with Hunter's depiction of Pike. ( Cinefantastique , Vol. 27, No. 11/12, p. 56 Captains' Logs: The Unauthorized Complete Trek Voyages , p. 14) " The network seemed to feel that Jeff Hunter was rather woolen, " remembered Justman. ( Captains' Logs: The Unauthorized Complete Trek Voyages , p. 14) D'Agosta concurred, " When they saw the pilot, they didn't like Jeffrey Hunter. They'd pick up Star Trek based on recasting him. " ( Cinefantastique , Vol. 27, No. 11/12, p. 56) In accordance with these opinions, the Press-TV Radio reported in 1967 that Hunter was let go from Star Trek because "he didn't cut the meteoric mustard as the Captain." ( Star Trek Magazine  issue 166 , p. 55) However, in the book Inside Star Trek: The Real Story (paperback ed., p. 60), Herb Solow recorded that, upon specifying their wants and desires for the second Star Trek pilot, NBC proclaimed, " Jeffrey Hunter was okay, and if you want to use him again, that's fine with us. " In the book Star Trek Memories (paperback ed., p. 70), Shatner referred to Hunter as "one of the few cast members [from 'The Cage' who was] spared the wrath of the network."

Robert Justman thought Jeffrey Hunter lacked a sense of energy in his portrayal of the captain, whereas William Shatner provided the much-needed quota of energy. ( Inside Star Trek: The Real Story , paperback ed., pp. 71-72) Justman also claimed he and Roddenberry felt strongly that Hunter was a less "accomplished" actor than Shatner, with less "dimension" and unable to exhibit as varied an emotional range as Shatner could. ( These Are the Voyages: TOS Season One , "Chapter Five: Double or Nothing: A Second Pilot"; Captains' Logs: The Unauthorized Complete Trek Voyages , p. 14) Joseph D'Agosta agreed with this notion. ( These Are the Voyages: TOS Season One , "Chapter Five: Double or Nothing: A Second Pilot") However, Roddenberry himself speculated about Hunter, " He would have made a grand captain. " ( Captains' Logs: The Unauthorized Complete Trek Voyages , p. 14) Likewise, writer D.C. Fontana once commented that, in her view, Hunter regularly appearing as Pike would have resulted in "a good captain," and also said, " He wouldn't have been Captain Kirk; his approach would have been very different, but I think he would have been perfectly fine. " ( Star Trek Magazine  issue 128 , p. 45) TOS fan and Star Trek spin-off writer/producer Ira Steven Behr concurred, " I would have been just as happy if Jeffrey Hunter had played the lead. I liked him a lot. " ( Cinefantastique , Vol. 23, No. 6, p. 42)

Actor Mark Lenard once voiced an alternative opinion, commenting, " Using a straighter fellow like the original choice, the character would have been stiffer than [William] Shatner with less of a personality. I don't think it would have worked as well with Jeffrey Hunter in the lead. " ( Cinefantastique , Vol. 27, No. 11/12, p. 77) Leonard Nimoy similarly expressed that he believed Pike's relationship with Nimoy's own character of Spock would not have been anywhere near as successful as that between Kirk and Spock. " Hunter was more reticent and less dramatic in his acting choices, " Nimoy criticized, " leaving Spock's maneuvering space less clearly defined. " ( Starlog #63) Despite liking Jeffrey Hunter as an actor, Ronald D. Moore was also doubtful that Pike would have been as successful in the lead character role as Kirk turned out to be. " I don't think Jeffrey Hunter, as Captain Pike in the adventures of the Enterprise was really going to work, " he noted. In agreement, Michael Taylor commented about Pike, " Looks like he stepped out of Forbidden Planet or something. " ( audio commentary , Star Trek III: The Search for Spock (Blu-ray) special features)

By 2009 , Jeffrey Hunter's performance as Captain Pike had become highly popular. Bruce Greenwood , who played the alternate reality version of Christopher Pike , referred to Hunter as having a "legion of fans he had from creating that role." [5] " People feel so strongly about every tiny little aspect of it, " Greenwood stated. ( Star Trek Magazine Souvenir Special , p. 34) On the other hand, Hunter's portrayal of Pike is less well known than William Shatner's depictions of Kirk and Leonard Nimoy's take on Spock, a situation which Greenwood pointed out. ( Star Trek Magazine  issue 175 , p. 16)

In the critical review reference book Trek Navigator: The Ultimate Guide to the Entire Trek Saga (pp. 144, 29 & 30), Mark A. Altman and Edward Gross make remarks on Jeffrey Hunter's characterization of Captain Pike. Altman refers to it as "a powerful performance" and reckons of Hunter, " Although he probably wouldn't have proved Shatner's equal in a continuing series, he shines in his sole Star Trek outing. " Gross opines, " Jeffrey Hunter is a bit stiff as Captain Pike, but he's an effective enough progenitor of William Shatner's James T. Kirk. "

British writer Paul Cornell found Jeffrey Hunter in the role of Captain Pike particularly memorable and a performance "no one is ever likely to forget." ( Star Trek Monthly  issue 19 , p. 75) Similarly, British journalist and author Andy Lane rhetorically asked, " Who can resist speculating on an entire parallel Star Trek history where Christopher Pike is captain of the U.S.S. Enterprise ? " ( Star Trek Monthly  issue 28 , p. 40) American writer Robert Greenberger observed, " There's a lot of [Horatio] Hornblower in Jeffrey Hunter's Pike, but it's mixed with a dash of Hamlet . " ( Star Trek: Enterprise Logs , "Introduction") American writer Stuart Moore noticed a particularly curious element of the character, commenting, " Pike […] had an interesting set of relationships with the women under his command. " ( Star Trek Magazine  issue 154 , p. 9)

Reiteration [ ]

Michael Okuda thought recasting the character of Christopher Pike for the "The Menagerie" two-parter, due to the unavailability of Jeffrey Hunter, worked "perfectly" and was done in an exceedingly clever fashion. Concerning how Sean Kenney adopted the role of Pike, Okuda supposed, " This is probably his most famous role, on Star Trek at least. " (" The Menagerie, Part I " Starfleet Access , TOS Season 1 Blu-ray )

In the two-parter, Christopher Pike is highlighted in the credits. " I guess they figured top feature credit, " Sean Kenney speculated, " was the least they could do to compensate all the restructuring to my anatomy and reward my patience. " He revealed, " I had no misgivings about not being recognized. It was a thrill to be in the show […] All in all, I felt proud of my efforts. " ( Starlog #113) However, he also conceded, " I'm not tooting my own horn I hope, I just happened to be in the right place at the right time for their sake and for mine. " ( Captain Pike Found Alive! , "Chapter Three: The Formula")

Sean Kenney's appearances as Pike were highly successful with Marc Daniels , who directed Kenney in the "The Menagerie" two-parter, as well as with the creative staff at large. Daniels characterized the method in which they dealt with Jeffrey Hunter's absence as "a neat way out if it." Additionally, the director commented, " We were all satisfied by the results. " ( Captains' Logs: The Unauthorized Complete Trek Voyages , p. 33)

Gene Roddenberry also approved of Sean Kenney's performances as Pike. Said the actor, " On the last day of the shoot Gene came up to me and congratulated me for my terrific 'emoting job' […] He said that I had put up with a lot and he wanted to reward my tenacity and good spirit. I certainly agreed with his point. " ( Captain Pike Found Alive! , "Chapter Three: The Formula")

One reason why Sean Kenney concurred with the idea he had gone through a lot was because he was still suffering hair loss. He specified, " My hair was falling out from the two dye jobs they'd done on me […] After the show wrapped [the Paramount hairdresser] […] had to dye my hair back to its original dark brown color (a third dye job within a month). My hair was coming out in large clumps. I remember she used a product called Fermadil from Austria (placenta from unborn sheep), and rolled it into my scalp and it stopped the hair loss. " ( Captain Pike Found Alive! , "Chapter Three: The Formula")

After playing the deformed Christopher Pike, Sean Kenney sent a photograph of himself in the part to Fred Phillips. On it, the performer had written a message including the statement, " Thank you for your wonderful 'face lift'. " ( Star Trek: The Original Series Sketchbook , p. 188) The photo was from the series of screen tests conducted while the Pike makeup had been in development. The particular image Kenney used showed the makeup in its "final" form. ( Captain Pike Found Alive! , "gallery pix")

In 1966, a TV Times Preview – misunderstanding that the wheelchair-bound Pike was Jeffrey Hunter under heavy makeup – was amazed by the performance. The publication praised Hunter for doing "excellent work" in the part. ( Star Trek Magazine  issue 166 , p. 55)

The representations of Christopher Pike in "The Menagerie" inspired curiosity in J.K. Woodward , who (decades later) collaborated with Stuart Moore on the comic Captain's Log: Pike . Woodward's interest in Pike was piqued when he saw "The Menagerie" at age seven. He related, " I remember thinking at the time, 'What's that guy's story? How do you get from being like Captain Kirk to being stuck in that chair?' " ( Star Trek Magazine  issue 154 , p. 9)

Sean Kenney's stint of playing Christopher Pike was instrumental in landing him the role of Lieutenant DePaul , the casting of which was one way Gene Roddenberry attempted to reward Kenney for the job he had done as Pike. While Kenney was playing DePaul in " Arena ", however, very few people really knew he had played the earlier part. When McCoy actor DeForest Kelley became curious how such a young actor could have been cast as DePaul, it was one of the men assigned to the makeup department who revealed Kenney's previous role, to which Kelley either responded, " You were Pike? Damn, you're so young, " or " You played Pike? You're so damn young. " ( Captain Pike Found Alive! , "Chapter Three: The Formula"; Star Trek Magazine  issue 175 , p. 75)

Pike was to have been mentioned in the original version of the episode " Bem ", undeveloped for TOS. ( The Trek 25th Anniversary Celebration , p. 51) In the original outline of that installment (dated 14 March 1968 ), Kirk told Spock, " I remember reading Captain Pike's reports on the trouble you had adjusting. "

One night after ten years had elapsed since his appearances on Star Trek , Sean Kenney was visiting Chuck Norris' wife's restaurant in Marina Del Ray when he had an encounter with Jeffrey Hunter's wife, Emily McLaughlin. " As I approached her table, her face nearly turned white, " Kenney related. " I did resemble her late husband quite a bit and by now I was in my late thirties and more mature looking than when I played Pike. As I sat, I calmed her nerves and relayed the story of how Gene Roddenberry had hand-picked me to play Pike because Jeff was not available. She kept shaking her head at the strong resemblance […]] I often wish that I had met Jeff at some point, while he was still alive. " ( Captain Pike Found Alive! , "Chapter Ten: Watch Your Back!")

Andy Lane noted that Pike's disfigured face is "not unlike that of the Phantom of the Opera." Lane went on to comment, " The result on the audience is horror tinged with disquiet […] We are only too aware that disease or accident might one day result in us wearing the same face. " ( Star Trek Monthly  issue 9 , p. 15)

In Cinefantastique (Vol. 22, No. 3, p. 27), the mistake of crediting Jeffrey Hunter with the role of the disfigured Pike was made by critic Thomas Doherty. He also likened the character's fate, as established at the end of " The Menagerie, Part II ", to the experience of watching science fiction fantasy. He concluded, " Like the viewer, locked in a chair, Pike is free to roam the galaxy in his mind. "

Star Trek: Enterprise Co-Executive Producer Chris Black reckoned that, had he recommended that ENT adhere to canon by portraying someone other than Jonathan Archer as the first captain of the starship Enterprise , he would have suggested that Pike had historically filled that role (whereas Robert April had actually preceded Pike). Black therefore reasoned that he would have submitted that Pike, rather than Archer, be prominently featured in ENT. ( The Fifty-Year Mission: The Next 25 Years , p. 646)

Christopher Pike was an influence on one particular military protocol, which Sean Kenney learned when two F-16 pilots approached him. One of the pilots, who was extremely military-looking, asked Kenney if he was aware the Air Force uses "a Captain Pike code" when flying over hostile territory in Iraq. Kenney was highly surprised and at first questioned whether the pilot was joking. ( [6] ; Star Trek Magazine  issue 175 , p. 73) " He said, 'No. When we break radio silence we say, "Is that a one-beep or two-beep Roger?" Only a person who is a Trekker would know that code,' " Kenney relayed. ( Star Trek Magazine  issue 175 , p. 73) He was still stunned by the news. " I thought that's hilarious, " he expressed, " that now I'm a code in Iraq for the pilots there. " [7]

Shortly before his death in 2008 , a wheelchair-bound Robert Justman introduced himself to Sean Kenney at an annual Star Trek convention in Las Vegas and thanked him personally for having played Pike. " He told me, " relayed Kenney, " that if Gene and he hadn't found me for the role of Pike they were in big trouble. " ( Captain Pike Found Alive! , "Chapter Three: The Formula")

Sean Kenney was proud of the ways in which his representation of Captain Pike inspired physically disabled people, in general. When interviewed in 2010 , he mused, " Here was a guy, Captain Pike, who was almost the first physically challenged person anyone saw on TV in a major part […] I meet people now [in wheelchairs] who roll up to me and say, 'When I saw that show I thought, what if I lost my voice? I've only lost my legs.' " ( These Are the Voyages: TOS Season One ; [8] )

At a San Francisco signing show called Wondercon in November 2012 , Christian Slater directly thanked Sean Kenney for, in Kenney's words, "the Pike inspiration." ( Captain Pike Found Alive! , "Chapter Twenty-Two: Looking for a Galaxy… Try Ours!")

In 2013 , Sean Kenney referenced Pike in the title of his autobiography, Captain Pike Found Alive! He ended the book by addressing Star Trek fans with the statement, " I […] want you to remember what Captain Pike would have wanted to say to you as you look toward the heavens… 'Your being here does matter.' " ( Captain Pike Found Alive! , "Chapter Twenty-Six: The Future")

Bruce Greenwood learned about the popularity of the Pike character, especially Jeffrey Hunter's presentment of it, after he received the task of adopting the alternate reality variant. [9] " Regardless of what I choose to do, I thought I'd better know what other people's frame of reference is, " he remembered. ( Star Trek Magazine Souvenir Special , p. 34) He noticed the original Pike was highly ambivalent and torn about remaining with Starfleet, whereas these qualities seem to be essentially reversed in the character's alternate reality counterpart. ( Star Trek Magazine  issue 175 , p. 16) Greenwood pointed out, " The central dilemma for Jeffrey Hunter is not the central dilemma for my Pike. " [10] The actor suggested, " They are almost opposites […] Yet you can look at it as though they are two sides of the same coin, because of the parallel universe. " Owing to the relative obscurity of Hunter's portrayal of Pike (compared to William Shatner's and Leonard Nimoy's depictions of Kirk and Spock respectively), Greenwood admitted feeling no need to infuse any of Hunter's performance style in the way he re-enacted the character, being unsure if such likenesses would actually be apparent. As a result, only one unmistakable "tip of the hat" to televised Pike was included in Greenwood's portrayal, which was that Pike ends up in a wheelchair at the end of the film Star Trek . ( Star Trek Magazine  issue 175 , p. 16) Despite this, Sean Kenney reckoned, " I think Bruce was inspired by Jeffrey Hunter's work because, obviously, I played the crippled Pike. " He also announced, " If J.J. Abrams ever goes into looking for the crippled Pike, I'd love to do it again. " [11]

Although the alternate reality version of Pike dies in Star Trek Into Darkness , a scene in Star Trek Beyond , involving Captain James T. Kirk and Doctor Leonard McCoy , was inspired by Pike's interaction with Dr. Boyce in "The Cage". Beyond director Justin Lin , during his boyhood, had repeatedly been confused by seeing Pike in that episode, while Lin was watching out-of-sequence reruns of TOS. ( SFX , issue 276, p. 47)

Discovery [ ]

In 2019, Anson Mount appeared in the role of Christopher Pike during the second season of Star Trek: Discovery , serving as the captain of the USS Discovery in-between stints on the Enterprise . Reception to Mount's portrayal of Pike was largely positive. In a review of the season as a whole, Kyle Hadyniak of the site TrekNews cited Mount's portrayal of Pike as the highlight of the show's second season.

Paramount Mountain 3

Christopher Pike and Dora the Explorer in a commercial for Paramount+

He stated that Mount " brought charm, intelligence, gravitas, and authority " to a character that had previously been seen only briefly in the franchise and that it was easy to see why fans had grown attached to the character.

[12] Keisha Hatchett of TV Guide described Mount's portrayal as dashing and charismatic, stating that he was " very much the man Gene Roddenberry envisioned so many decades ago but never feels like a relic of the past. " [13]

Following the news that Mount's Pike character would not be a part of the program's third season, fans began a petition for the character to return to the franchise in some form, possibly as part of his own spin-off series. Mount expressed openness to the idea, saying " It’s a character I love; it’s a franchise I love; it’s an experience that I have already loved. " [14] In May 2020, the series Star Trek: Strange New Worlds , featuring Mount's Pike character, as well as Spock and Una Chin-Riley, was announced.

The fan reception to the characters was stated to have played a part in the decision to create the series. [15]

Mount was inspired by Shatner's portrayal of Kirk: "I saw this thing from Shatner that he used to do, which is really smart actually. When he would sit in the command chair, and he would have his elbow up on the armrest like this, right? Which is very smart because what he’s doing is getting his hand into the frame. While you’re remaining focused, and a decision has not yet been made, your hand can kind of subtly reveal what’s going on inside. " [16]

Apocrypha [ ]

Outside of the canon information derived from Christopher Pike's on-screen appearances, Diane Carey 's Final Frontier novel lists his full name as "Christopher Richard Pike." His adventures as captain of the Enterprise were the center of Marvel 's Star Trek: Early Voyages comic book series, establishing his father as retired Admiral Josh Pike. Pike was also featured in a handful of novels and comics, some of them depicting his life after being injured and left on Talos IV, some of them depicting his earlier adventures.

The Pocket novel Vulcan's Glory by TOS script writer D.C. Fontana states that Pike previously commanded the starship USS Yorktown , a reference to the original name intended to be given to the Enterprise . Some stories (published prior to it becoming canon in DIS : " Brother ") have also said that Pike served as the executive officer on board the Enterprise under Captain Robert T. April. ( Crisis on Vulcan ; Star Trek: Federation - The First 150 Years )

In the Star Trek novel Enterprise: The First Adventure , Pike is promoted to commodore upon relinquishing command of the Enterprise . This could indicate that "fleet captain" was considered a position and not a rank.

Pike is also the main focus of the non-canon novel Burning Dreams , which gives a detailed account of his life and career, as well as The Captain's Table #6 : Where Sea Meets Sky . Burning Dreams establishes that, after the incident on Talos IV, Pike spent much of the rest of his career wondering if his life and everything that he was experiencing in life was an illusion and if he was still in the cell on Talos IV, until, while on a mission with Spock, Pike asked him about it. Spock clearly refutes the idea, saying the idea that the Talosians could have made such a perfect illusion that none of the crew ever saw through it as extremely unlikely. According to the novel, his parents were Charlie Pike and Willa McKinnies, and he lived on Elysium as a child.

In the Star Trek: Deep Space Nine novel Unity , Ezri Dax said that Pike was part of the joint Starfleet- Trill mission where the parasitic being was first discovered. At that time, Pike was a fleet captain. This is from The Lives of Dax .

The novel The Enterprise War depicts Pike and the adventures of the Enterprise and its crew during the 2256-57 Federation-Klingon War.

External links [ ]

  • Christopher Pike at Memory Beta , the wiki for licensed Star Trek works
  • Christopher Pike (Star Trek) at Wikipedia
  • 1 Daniels (Crewman)
  • 2 Star Trek: Prodigy
  • 3 USS Voyager (NCC-74656-A)

The Pike Scene In Star Trek 2009 That Was 'Hideously Uncomfortable'

Star Trek 2009 JJ Abrams Bruce Greenwood as Captain Christopher Pike

Anson Mount is currently making Trekkies swoon in his role as Captain Christopher Pike on "Star Trek: Strange New Worlds." Before him, though, there was Jeffrey Hunter (who played Pike in the original, unused "Star Trek" pilot "The Cage" ) and Bruce Greenwood (who played Pike in the two J.J Abrams-directed "Star Trek" films). 

"Star Trek" cleverly canonized "The Cage" by reintroducing Pike as Jim Kirk's (William Shatner) predecessor as captain of the Enterprise. The 2009 "Star Trek" film (an alternate timeline origin story for the original series) took that a step further and featured Pike as Kirk's mentor. His first scene is him pushing Kirk to sign up for Starfleet. 

In that role of a fatherly commanding officer, Greenwood was perfectly cast. He's an authoritative and personable screen presence, one who can even make a death merchant like opioid king Roderick Usher on "The Fall of the House of Usher" charming. With his strong but soothing voice, it makes sense that Greenwood has also played an animated Batman several times, mostly in stories that emphasize the Dark Knight as a surrogate father ("Batman:Under The Red Hood" and "Young Justice").

Of course, Pike isn't the hero of "Star Trek" — Kirk (Chris Pine) and Spock (Zachary Quinto) both are. For them to step up, Pike needs to be out of the picture. So, he spends most of the movie not commanding the Enterprise, but as a captive of time-traveling Romulan villain Nero (Eric Bana).

Speaking to in 2009 , Greenwood revealed that Pike's torture was as uncomfortable for the performer as it was for his character.

Star Trek's Captain Pike was tortured with Centaurian Slugs

Nero, having captured Pike and intent on destroying the Federation, employs a Centaurian slug. The creature enters through a host's mouth and releases a truth-serum neurotoxin; Pike thus spills the beans about Federation defenses — wouldn't you empty your guts after getting a mouthful of slug? (A deleted scene reveals that Nero and his crew spent time as Klingon prisoners and stole the slugs from them when they escaped.)

Abrams wasn't a Trekkie, but screenwriters Alex Kurtzman and Roberto Orci were. The slugs are a homage to the Ceti Eels featured in "Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan," but have a different name and burrow down the throat instead of the ear canal. Greenwood recalled that when he read Kurtzman and Orci's script, he figured the prop used for Pike's interrogation wouldn't be a real "scorpion." Alas, as he soon discovered, "It is a real thing and they dropped it down my was horrendous. It was a creature that they created, and it had a solenoid in it so it would wiggle and twist and writhe and it was sharp and pokey."

Despite the "painful" two day shoot, Greenwood attested that he "would do it again in a heartbeat." He even encouraged the crew not to go easy on him:

"They did it a bunch of times and would yell 'cut' and pull it away from my mouth and I felt that we were getting to the end of the coverage and I said to J.J. 'You are not going to drop it down my mouth?' and he was like 'Really?" and I was 'F**k yeah –- let it drop, it's not going to kill me'...It f**king near killed me."

Truly some bravery worthy of the captain of the Enterprise.

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Star Trek: Captain Pike

Star Trek: Captain Pike (2016)

Tells a pre-Kirk story about what happened on Rigel VII prior to The Cage episode of the original Star Trek series. This is the story of Captain Pike when he first takes command of the Enter... Read all Tells a pre-Kirk story about what happened on Rigel VII prior to The Cage episode of the original Star Trek series. This is the story of Captain Pike when he first takes command of the Enterprise and his first mission aboard her. Tells a pre-Kirk story about what happened on Rigel VII prior to The Cage episode of the original Star Trek series. This is the story of Captain Pike when he first takes command of the Enterprise and his first mission aboard her.

  • Walter Doty
  • Gene Roddenberry
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  • Lieutenant Susan Kelly

Eric Roberts

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Linda Park

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Ray Wise

  • Admiral Joshua Pike

Bruce Davison

  • Captain Robert April

Walter Koenig

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Walter Jones

  • Captain Sean Devin

Sean Kenney

  • Commodore DePaul

Tom Berklund

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Krystal Vee

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Chalet Lizette Brannan

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Jasmine Hester

  • Captain Christopher Pike

Sam Greenspan

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  • Trivia This is the first time in Star Trek that Walter Koenig has played a character other than Pavel Chekov.

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  • raggedycolbath
  • Apr 14, 2019
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Captain Kirk’s long-lost ‘Star Trek’ props up for auction

By Dean Murray via SWNS

Captain Kirk's long-lost phaser and communicator are to boldly go to auction.

The props, used by William Shatner in the iconic 1960s sci-fi show, have not been seen in public for over fifty years.

Los Angeles-based Julien's Auction says they come with a "conservative estimate" of $100k - $200k each.

The original owner of the phaser and communicator, a now-deceased relative of the current owners, was a Hollywood prop industry veteran who is believed to have acquired them from a former employee at Paramount Pictures, the studio that has owned "Star Trek" since 1968.

The iconic props, created in 1966, are the "hero" versions featuring intricate details and moving parts that were unique to a select few props, making them exceedingly rare.

Don Hillenbrand, a long-time "Star Trek" prop collector and researcher, authenticated both remarkable pieces by a "screen-matching" method that identifies unique details and flaws on a prop to verify its appearance in the show.

The phaser is seen in "Star Trek" classic episodes such as "The Cloud Minders" and "The Gamesters of Triskelion", as well as in photographs in the 1968 book "The Making of Star Trek." The communicator, featuring a spinning dial, is seen in William Shatner’s hands in "Day of the Dove," and in the episodes "Catspaw" and "Friday’s Child."

Also to be auctioned is a tongue-in-cheek shirt worn by Ryan Reynolds in the highly anticipated  Deadpool & Wolverine film, and featuring multiple pictures of actor Ryan Gosling (estimate: $2,000-$3,000).

An image of Reynolds wearing the shirt in the film appeared on his Instagram in April, causing Ryan Gosling to react with, "I mean, I just want my shirt back… He borrowed that shirt from me and I need it back".

David Goodman, CEO of Julien’s Auctions, said: "We are extremely honoured to present at our exhibition the holy grail of the original 'Star Trek' series props, the original phaser and communicator used by William Shatner as Captain James T. Kirk that were newly discovered after more than 50 years and are thrilled to have Ryan Reynolds join in the fun with the auction of his one-of-a-kind pieces from his upcoming film 'Deadpool & Wolverine.'"

The items feature in two Julien’s Auctions and TCM events, with the shirt to be auctioned on July 28, and the "Star Trek" items under the hammer on November 9.

The post Captain Kirk’s long-lost ‘Star Trek’ props up for auction appeared first on Talker .

"Star Trek" Captain Kirk phaser and communicator used in the 1960s TV show. (Julien's Auction via SWNS)

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Star trek: tng's dr. crusher almost romanced a romulan defector.


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5 Ways Dr. Crusher Deserved Better On Star Trek: TNG

That '70s show's 24-year-old unseen character reveal creates a paradox after that '90s show s1 story, what aemond being chosen over alicent means for house of the dragon.

  • Dr. Crusher's compassion shines as she almost romances a Romulan defector in "The Defector."
  • Gates McFadden's character, Dr. Beverly Crusher, had various romances on Star Trek: TNG.
  • Although hinted at, Crusher and Picard never officially became a couple on the show.

Dr. Beverly Crusher (Gates McFadden) had several romances throughout Star Trek: The Next Generation , but one episode almost paired Beverly with a Romulan defector. With her profound sense of empathy and compassion, Dr. Crusher made an excellent Chief Medical Officer on the USS Enterprise-D. Beverly lived and worked on the Enterprise-D for six out of TNG's seven seasons, but her character was one of the least developed of the show's main cast. Although TNG teased romantic feelings between Beverly Crusher and Captain Jean-Luc Picard (Patrick Stewart), the two never officially became a couple on the show.

​​​In Star Trek: The Next Generation season 3, screenwriter Ronald D. Moore joined the show's writing staff, thanks largely to one particular episode. Moore would go on to have a long history with Star Trek, working on Star Trek: Deep Space Nine after TNG, and writing the first two TNG feature films. After penning TNG season 3, episode 5, "The Bonding," Moore was given the opportunity to write another episode, which became TNG season 3, episode 10, "The Defector." Although other writers contributed to the script, Moore's work on "The Defector" earned him a position on the TNG writing staff.

Despite being an interesting and popular character, Gates McFadden's Dr. Beverly Crusher was often sidelined on Star Trek: The Next Generation.

Star Trek: TNG's "The Defector" Almost Had Dr. Crusher Romance A Romulan Defector

Jarok has a wife and daughter he left on romulus..

As Star Trek: The Next Generation produced over twenty episodes per season, the writing process was often quick and sometimes involved several writers working on one script. This was the case for "The Defector," which originally featured an interesting subplot for Dr. Beverly Crusher. When the USS Enterprise-D receives a distress call from a supposed Romulan defector, they suspect it could be a ploy to lure the Federation Starship into a trap. Although it's unknown who originated the idea, according to Star Trek: The Next Generation Companion , "The Defector" once had a romance subplot between Dr. Crusher and the Romulan defector, Admiral Jarok (James Sloyan) .

While Dr. Crusher's plotline is absent from Star Trek: The Next Generation' s aired episode, it's easy to see how the story could have gone in that direction. When Admiral Jarok first boards the Enterprise, he has been injured while fleeing from the Romulans. Captain Picard is understandably skeptical of the Romulan's claim and most of the crew members treat Jarok with obvious suspicion. Dr. Crusher, however, is never anything but kind to Jarok, treating him just as she would any other patient. Still, there is no hint of attraction from either party, and that's probably for the best, as Jarok's story is more powerful knowing that he was trying to prevent a war to give his daughter a better life.

Dr. Beverly Crusher had recently learned more about Romulan physiology, as she treated a severely injured Romulan in Star Trek: The Next Generation season 3, episode 7, "The Enemy."

Dr. Crusher Had Strange Star Trek Romances

From amnesiac patients to trills to glowing green ghosts..

Despite the hints that Dr. Beverly Crusher had feelings for Captain Picard, she was involved in several other romances throughout Star Trek: The Next Generation . In TNG season 3, episode 25, "Transfigurations," Dr. Crusher treats an amnesiac patient referred to as John Doe (Mark LaMura). As Beverly treats John Doe's physical injuries, she becomes fascinated by his own rapid healing abilities and his ability to heal others. Unfortunately for Beverly, when John regains his memories, he turns into a powerful energy being, thus putting an end to a continuing love story. Dr. Crusher embarks on another romance with Trill Ambassador Odan (Franc Luz) in TNG season 4, episode 23, "The Host."

Beverly and Odan's relationship seems to be going well until Odan is killed and his symbiote is transferred to a new host. This proves to be too much change for Beverly, and she breaks off the relationship. Dr. Crusher's strangest romance happens in Star Trek: The Next Generation season 7, episode 14, "Sub Rosa," when she falls for her grandmother's ghost lover, Ronin (Duncan Regehr). This particular episode has become somewhat infamous for its odd love story and Beverly's uncharacteristic behavior. Even Gates McFadden found it bizarre . Dr. Beverly Crusher didn't always get the best storylines on Star Trek: The Next Generation and an additional romance with a Romulan may just have been one odd romance too many.

Star Trek: The Next Generation

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Star Trek: The Next Generation is the third installment in the sci-fi franchise and follows the adventures of Captain Jean-Luc Picard and the crew members of the USS Enterprise. Set around one hundred years after the original series, Picard and his crew travel through the galaxy in largely self-contained episodes exploring the crew dynamics and their own political discourse. The series also had several overarching plots that would develop over the course of the isolated episodes, with four films released in tandem with the series to further some of these story elements.

Star Trek: The Next Generation (1987)

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‘Star Trek: Starfleet Academy’ Series Casts Kerrice Brooks, Bella Shepard, George Hawkins

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Starfleet Academy cast

“ Star Trek: Starfleet Academy ” is building out its freshman class.

Kerrice Brooks, Bella Shepard, and George Hawkins have all been cast as cadets in the upcoming Paramount+ series. The trio join previously announced stars Holly Hunter , who will play the captain and chancellor of Starfleet Academy, and Paul Giamatti , who will play the season’s main villain.

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Shepard will make her return to Paramount+ with “Starfleet Academy,” having previously starred in the streamer’s series “Wolf Pack.” She previously starred in shows such as “Two Sides,” “A Girl Named Jo,” and “On the Ropes,” and appeared in shows like “The Wilds,” “Orange Is the New Black,” and “Grace and Frankie.”

She is repped by Untitled Entertainment, Jill Fritzo PR, and Innovative Artists.

Brooks has previously appeared in projects like “The Prom” and “On My Block” at Netflix and “How We Roll” on CBS. She will next be seen in the film “My Old Ass” from director Megan Park and the period comedy “Feeling Randy.” She is also a highly-accomplished dancer, having performed with artits like Billie Eilish, Kanye West, and Lil Nas X.

She is repped by Authentic Talent.

Hawkins graduated from London’s Mountview Academy of Theatre Arts in 2023. He most recently appeared in the ITV series “Tell Me Everything” and also starred in the films “Boiling Point” and “Gassed Up.”

He is repped by Denton Brierley and Piekoff Mahan.

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  1. Star Trek: Discovery's Captain Pike Explained: Who Is the Original

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  1. "Star Trek" The Cage (TV Episode 1966)

    The Cage: Directed by Robert Butler. With Jeffrey Hunter, Susan Oliver, Leonard Nimoy, Majel Barrett. Capt. Pike is held prisoner and tested by aliens who have the power to project incredibly lifelike illusions.

  2. The Cage (Star Trek: The Original Series)

    Contents. The Cage ( Star Trek: The Original Series) " The Cage " is the first pilot episode of the American television series Star Trek. It was completed on January 22, 1965 (with a copyright date of 1964). The episode was written by Gene Roddenberry and directed by Robert Butler.

  3. "Star Trek" The Menagerie: Part I (TV Episode 1966)

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  4. Christopher Pike (Star Trek)

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  8. The Menagerie (Star Trek: The Original Series)

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  10. What Happened To Captain Pike On Star Trek: The Original ...

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  15. "Star Trek" The Menagerie: Part II (TV Episode 1966)

    The Menagerie: Part II: Directed by Robert Butler, Marc Daniels. With William Shatner, Leonard Nimoy, Jeffrey Hunter, Susan Oliver. At Spock's court martial, he explains himself with mysterious footage about when Capt. Pike was kidnapped by powerful illusion casting aliens.

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  19. What are the key Discovery episodes with Captain Pike : r/startrek

    Pike is in all 14 episodes of season 2, Spock is in nine, and Una is in three, with the last two episodes having all three characters involved. That said, there's very little in terms of direct continuity that carries over from DIS to SNW, SNW was definitely designed to be comprehensible even as your first Trek series.

  20. List of Star Trek: The Original Series episodes

    Episodes Pilots (1964-65) Star Trek ' s pilot episode, "The Cage", was completed between November 1964 and January 1965, and starred Jeffrey Hunter as Captain Christopher Pike, Majel Barrett as Number One, and Leonard Nimoy as Spock.The pilot was rejected by NBC as being "too cerebral" among other complaints. Jeffrey Hunter chose to withdraw from the role of Pike when creator Gene ...

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    Star Trek's Mirror Universe is back in Star Trek: Prodigy season 2, and co-executive producer Aaron J. Waltke explained the state of the dark alternate reality after Star Trek: Deep Space Nine. The Mirror Universe has recently been the purview of Star Trek: Discovery, but in terms of the Star Trek timeline, the furthest point previously seen of the Mirror Universe was in Star Trek: Deep Space ...

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    Star Trek: Captain Pike: Directed by Todd Shawn. With Chase Masterson, Eric Roberts, Linda Park, Ray Wise. Tells a pre-Kirk story about what happened on Rigel VII prior to The Cage episode of the original Star Trek series. This is the story of Captain Pike when he first takes command of the Enterprise and his first mission aboard her.

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