Series: Star Trek: The Original Series
Season, Episode #,and Episode Name: Season 1, Episode 1, “Pilot: The Cage” and Episode 2, “The Man Trap”
Setting the Stage: I started at 1:50 pm on January 1, 2020 with “Pilot: The Cage” and then followed up “The Man Trap”. I’m watching via Netflix, so I’m using their viewing order. With me is my dog, Professor Zoom, and at least one of my cats. I am firmly keeping in mind that these were filmed in the 1960s as I blaze ahead.
Quick Summary: “The Cage” opens to some dude who is later revealed to be Captain Pike and he’s obviously having some sort of mid-career crisis. The doctor looks like he’s a dirty old man, and I truly hope he isn’t a regular. There’s a woman on deck, later found out to be the Lieutenant, and she’s quickly my favorite. I can hear her eye roll as Pike puts his foot in his mouth and later when he “regrets” he has to leave her on the ship in order to have a senior officer on deck. Alien stuff happens, there’s trickery afoot, and then there’s a scene where they all take turns shooting at a rock and I’m reminded “DON’T CROSS THE STREAMS” – oh wait, wrong universe. Pike and a blonde woman are stuck in this illusion, there’s a brief appearance of “She-Hulk”?, and there’s totally a point where Pike is trying to channel the Dark Side (yes, yes I made a Star Wars reference, you’ll be fine). The aliens cede control and everyone makes it back to the ship, except the blonde who I’m sure we all feel sorry for. Cue the music and the tiny flying starship, end scene.
“The Man Trap” opens with almost an entirely different crew, which I am 1000% okay with. We now have Captain Kirk and Dr. McCoy and :cue Chicago accent: “they’re on a mission from God”, and by “God” I mean the Federation to conduct some medical tests. There’s some death, some old flame romance, some talk about salt, and some shapeshifty murder mystery to be solved. Back on the ship, there is some more color on screen – and not just in relation to the skin color of some of the crew, there are red uniforms! Red happens to be my favorite color, but that’s not important. There’s some hint of how Spock is different than his human counterparts, but mostly the episode is trying to keep track of who the creature has become. The salt monster is finally revealed, and killed by McCoy. What is it with two sad endings? More music and more tiny starships flying through 1960s “space”.
My Impressions: Although the Lieutenant (Number One) doesn’t have a lot of air time, she’s absolutely my favorite character of this episode. She’s got some bad ass nails, a kick ass attitude, and is good in a crisis. I’m a little sad she doesn’t make it to the series as a regular, but I’m happy with the changes to the crew from the Pilot to the next episode. For the ‘60s, this was damn progressive. It does warm my computer science heart to listen to unemotional Spock. I think I am going to relate most to him, as I value logic and efficiency. I also think I’m going to love Sulu and Kirk if they continue to eat all the time, I am a food based lifeform as it were. Okay, we’re all food based lifeforms… but it’s my love language. I’m also a bit disappointed that every single red shirt survived, I was led to believe that they are the only ones who die! Okay, I’m not really disappointed… just amused. What I really want to know is, does Jose ever get his peppers?