Episode 2 – 50 Years of Star Trek: The Pilots

In honor of the 50th anniversary of the airing of the first episode of Star Trek on September 8, 1966 we discuss the original pilot, the second pilot, and the first episode that was aired. We also go a bit into where Star Trek has gone during it’s 50 year continuing mission.

The Franchise

Star Trek TOS (‘66-’69)
Star Trek the Animated Series (‘73-’75)
Star Trek the Motion Picture (‘79)
Star Trek 2: Wrath of Khan (‘82)
Star Trek 3: Search for Spock (‘84)
Star Trek 4: Voyage Home (‘86)
Star Trek 5: The Final Frontier (‘89)
Star Trek 6: The Undiscovered Country (‘91)

Star Trek the Next Generation (‘87-’94)
Star Trek Generations (‘94)
Star Trek First Contact (‘96)
Star Trek Insurrection (‘98)
Star Trek Nemesis (‘02)*

Star Trek Deep Space Nine
Star Trek Voyager
Star Trek Enterprise

Star Trek (reboot) (‘09)
Star Trek Into Darkness (‘13)
*Star Trek Beyond (‘16)*
*Star Trek 4 (‘18?)*
*Star Trek the TV Series (?)*

Comics, novels, games, art, conventions (New York, 1972)

The Cage Plot
After finding an anomaly in space, an 18 year old distress signal is found. With the possibility of survivors, the Enterprise heads to a planet in the Talos system. The away team is separated from Captain Pike, who is lead away by the beautiful girl Vina. Captured and kept as a specimen deep underground, the rest of the Enterprise crew try fruitlessly to free him. Using their telepathic abilities to create elaborate illusions, the Talosians try to convince Pike to form a relationship with Vina and remain in captivity. Pike finds that primitive emotions such as hatred cannot be read by his captors. Thinking he just needs more convincing, the Talosians kidnap his Number 1 and Yeoman as additional women to choose from. Unmoved, Pike grabs a captor while they were trying to acquire weapons and break free. However the Talosians hold the Enterprise hostage. After threatening to kill them all with an overloaded phaser, and accruing all the data from the ship’s computer, the Talosians come to the conclusion that humanity is too dangerous to keep in captivity and breed slaves from. They reveal to Captain Pike that Vina is actually horribly disfigured, but decide to give her the illusion of beauty and happiness.

The Man Trap Plot (first aired)
Shapes shifting alien steals salt from crew using the shape of McCoys ex-girl friend.

Where No Man Has Gone Before Plot (successful pilot)
After finding distress signal of USS Valiant, the ship finds a force field outside of the galaxy. Mitchell is afflicted with ESP powers that corrupt him. His power grows until he is a danger to the ship and stranded on a planet with Dr Deyner, who also began turning. Kirk confronts them in this good vs evil showdown.

The Science

  1. Space travel
    1. Time Warp
    2. Deep Space travel ( vs close space)
  2. Aliens
    1. Talosians – Telepathic race driven underground by their own
    2. The shapshifter
  3. Telepathy and ESP

The Themes

  1. Women as peers (Yay Majel and Nichelle)
  2. Military influence (esp Naval)
  3. Gene Roddenberry’s vision of future (gender equality, secular, post-capitalistic)

The Production

  1. Twilight Zone, Outer Limits effects and creatures
  2. Talosians were women with male voices, to emphasize that their mental focus was detrimental to their bodies development
  3. Original pilot was too cerebral, intelligent, etc. for NBC. Second pilot had more action, though Hunter would not reappear as Captain Pike
  4. Treatment of women take a turn from peers and commander to a more flirtatious demeanor in the second pilot
  5. Introduction of voiceover journal

The Good

  • Gender Ethnic diversity
  • Campiness

The Bad

  • Quick to violence
  • Campiness

The theme music in this episode is URBAN JUNGLE 2061 by Eric Matyas www.soundimage.org

Episode 1 – Europa Report

Enjoy our first episode of Sci-Fi Nomads as we talk about Europa Report.

A deep space thriller, this movie was a good one to watch in the dark. It follows a diverse crew on their way to Europa, Jupiter’s icy moon thought to be the likeliest host for life. High points: The European landscapes are shown about as realistically as we can get without actually going there and recording and of course: The Alien. Low points: The “cutting out” transition and the non-linear story telling gets old fast. If anything can cause motion sickness it’s that.

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The theme music in this episode is URBAN JUNGLE 2061 by Eric Matyas