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Star Trek - Original Series The one that started it all...

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Old July 17 2013, 01:46 AM   #16
Navigator_NCC2120
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Re: The Menagerie/The Cage

Robert Comsol wrote: View Post
@ alexianyc

I might be reading more into it than what's there, but still:

ONE: Then they could still be alive, even after eighteen years.
PIKE: If they survived the crash.
SPOCK: We aren't going to go, to be certain?
PIKE: Not without any indication of survivors, no. Continue to the Vega Colony and take care of our own sick and injured first.

...

SPOCK [on monitor]: Mister Spock here. We're intercepting a follow-up message, sir. There are crash survivors on Talos.

Spock is not the XO under Captain Pike, that's Number One. Maybe it's still the producers looking for Mr. Spock's identity in this pilot film, but his question is somewhat out of line for somebody who is just a member of the Bridge crew, IMHO.

Bob
Actually in "The Cage" Spock was not just a member of the Bridge crew, he was the Second Officer. He was in command of the Enterprise once Pike and Number One were trapped on Talos 4. At that point Spock decided to leave Talos 4, but he waited too long and the Talosians had taken control over the Enterprise.

Here is a picture of Spock in command of the Enterprise from "The Cage" courtesy of www.trekcore.com .


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Old July 17 2013, 05:42 AM   #17
HarryM
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Re: The Menagerie/The Cage

Shawnster wrote: View Post
Anwar wrote: View Post
The biggest plot hole in this episode wasn't Mendez, it was how everyone forgot about Morse code and didn't think of getting Pike to communicate that way.
From Menagerie:
MCCOY: We've learned to tie into every human organ in the body except one. The brain.
Except that McCoy's able to quickly rig a remote control for Spock just 2 years later in Spock's Brain.

Morse Code. Or the computer system Hawking uses. Granted, Hawking's tech wasn't available in the 60s, but Morse Code was. Johnny Got His Gun, anyone?

Yeah, that gets my vote for biggest plot hole or oversight.
Well, it was Pike's body that was deteriorated, not his mind (according to the script), basically the opposite of Spock in "Spock's Brain".
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Old July 17 2013, 09:59 AM   #18
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Re: The Menagerie/The Cage

Shawnster wrote: View Post
Anwar wrote: View Post
The biggest plot hole in this episode wasn't Mendez, it was how everyone forgot about Morse code and didn't think of getting Pike to communicate that way.
From Menagerie:
MCCOY: We've learned to tie into every human organ in the body except one. The brain.
Except that McCoy's able to quickly rig a remote control for Spock just 2 years later in Spock's Brain.

Morse Code. Or the computer system Hawking uses. Granted, Hawking's tech wasn't available in the 60s, but Morse Code was. Johnny Got His Gun, anyone?

Yeah, that gets my vote for biggest plot hole or oversight.
My wife is a nurse and works with the disabled. She uses a cardboard chart with the letters of the alphabet arranged in a grid to communicate with her patients that can't speak or move. It is as low tech as it gets, but it works, and would have allowed Pike to communicate to Kirk, McCoy and anyone else much more than just the "yes or no" that his beeping chair light allowed in the episode.

Of course, Pike's inability to communicate was essential to the plot, so his being able to warn someone about Spock's plan would have ended the story pretty quickly.
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Old July 17 2013, 10:27 AM   #19
Robert Comsol
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Re: The Menagerie/The Cage

@ Navigator NCC2120

Regardless, during the scene I mentioned he was Number Two and out of line questioning the captain's hinted decision (in front of the Bridge personnel) not to go to Talos IV, IMHO.

@ Push The Button

An even greater plothole, IMHO, is that Spock is abducting Captain Pike against his will!

Not only is that a display of disrespect for your former superior, but it also strikes me as something totally incompatible with Vulcan manners and philosophy.
And was Spock competent to exclude that Pike might not have suffered a stroke or nervous breakdown? After all, Pike's former senior officer was about to commit suicide on Pike's behalf (the Talos death penalty), something he would have never agreed to.

In a real world, Spock would have probably told Pike about his plan, but this could have deprived the story of some extra (redundant, IMHO) drama.

Bob
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Old July 17 2013, 12:08 PM   #20
ZapBrannigan
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Re: The Menagerie/The Cage

Agreed. And I'm not the first to observe that the framing story inverts the moral of "The Cage" by saying that, now, Pike should want to be a captive living in an illusion.
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Old July 17 2013, 04:30 PM   #21
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Re: The Menagerie/The Cage

ZapBrannigan wrote: View Post
Agreed. And I'm not the first to observe that the framing story inverts the moral of "The Cage" by saying that, now, Pike should want to be a captive living in an illusion.
It does have a lot of holes. Another one is that the Talosians may not be as evil as they first appear, but they are not exactly benevolent. They torture Pike with the illusion that he's burning in hell and "punish" him another time as well. Talos isn't exactly a place I'd leave a completely disabled man.

But in spite of the weaknesses of the framing story I think it's a compelling, dramatic episode. Pike in that chair is horrifying, particularly when the flashbacks start and you see him as he was before the accident.
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Old July 17 2013, 08:20 PM   #22
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Re: The Menagerie/The Cage

But in spite of the weaknesses of the framing story I think it's a compelling, dramatic episode. Pike in that chair is horrifying, particularly when the flashbacks start and you see him as he was before the accident.
Agreed, the episode isn't perfect but this is really why it works for me.

It's terrifying because it is something you can actually relate to. When I watch the episode I can actually put myself in the shoes of the characters and wonder what I would want in that situation. I think that is what makes it such a compelling episode.

However the whole thing about Spock's crimes doesn't really work for me when it is all brushed aside so easily at the end.

So the stuff with Pike is excellent to me but the stuff with Spock is somewhat of a disappointment.
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Old July 17 2013, 10:07 PM   #23
Grant
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Re: The Menagerie/The Cage

Push The Button wrote: View Post
Shawnster wrote: View Post
Anwar wrote: View Post
The biggest plot hole in this episode wasn't Mendez, it was how everyone forgot about Morse code and didn't think of getting Pike to communicate that way.
From Menagerie:
MCCOY: We've learned to tie into every human organ in the body except one. The brain.
Except that McCoy's able to quickly rig a remote control for Spock just 2 years later in Spock's Brain.

Morse Code. Or the computer system Hawking uses. Granted, Hawking's tech wasn't available in the 60s, but Morse Code was. Johnny Got His Gun, anyone?

Yeah, that gets my vote for biggest plot hole or oversight.
My wife is a nurse and works with the disabled. She uses a cardboard chart with the letters of the alphabet arranged in a grid to communicate with her patients that can't speak or move. It is as low tech as it gets, but it works, and would have allowed Pike to communicate to Kirk, McCoy and anyone else much more than just the "yes or no" that his beeping chair light allowed in the episode.

Of course, Pike's inability to communicate was essential to the plot, so his being able to warn someone about Spock's plan would have ended the story pretty quickly.


A simple game of 20 questions would have worked using the lights---it was in idiotic bit of dialogue from day 1 and amazing that it got by. They could have simply said, "does this have to do with Spock?

Bingo first guess is right, Spock's plan uncovered.

second idiotic statement Spock nerve piches Chief Humboldt sends false Kirk message and then says to Enterprise, "We'll be warping out in AN HOUR" !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Realy? an hour---extra hard nerve pinch? or did he then hypo him hide the body and then expect no-one wouk come back within an hour and say, "Where's Humboldt?"

I guess no one questioned GR's scripts "hey GR--this makes no sense."

"Hmm, you're fired."

"Any other input? Okay we're all set."
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Old July 17 2013, 10:30 PM   #24
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Re: The Menagerie/The Cage

It is one of my favorite episodes, and it was the first commercial videotape I bought after getting a VCR in 1984 or so (which I had bought to tape TOS reruns). Given that "The Menagerie" was a rush job because otherwise they would have missed an airdate, it holds together if not looked at too closely. But they didn't expect us to be still analyzing these shows nearly 50 years later.
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Old July 18 2013, 03:21 PM   #25
Warped9
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Re: The Menagerie/The Cage

It's possible the Enterprise crew were under Talosian influence before they got to starbase. Kirk says Spock received a message from the starbase---but why Spock and not whoever was manning communications? Even if it was a personal message intended specifically for Spock it still comes through the comm board.

Given this it appears the Talosians were manipulating pretty much everything. There could even have been an illusionary Kirk back on starbase fooling Mendez long enough for the real Kirk (with illusionary Mendez in tow) to attempt chase in the shuttlecraft.

The attempted chase in the shuttlecraft makes little sense either. Even a warp powered shuttlecraft would have no hope of catching the Enterpriise if the starship really steps on the gas. The starship would have to be pretty much puttering along at maybe Warp 2 or 3 or so and staying teasingly just out of the shuttlecraft's reach. If the plan had been simply to grab Pike and go for Talos 4 then the chase would have been thoroughly pointless. Obviously everything was staged so that in the end Spock is most likely to be exonerated.
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Old July 20 2013, 10:46 AM   #26
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Re: The Menagerie/The Cage

Warped9 wrote: View Post
Given this it appears the Talosians were manipulating pretty much everything.
Then why would Spock have gone to the trouble of using the voice synthesizer to fake Kirk's orders?

I don't see the Talosians as evil so much as desperate. At the end of "The Cage," Pike suggests working together, but the Keeper declines, asserting that humanity would learn the same powers and destroy itself, too.

The reason for leaving Pike with the Talosians in "The Menagerie" becomes clear when one sees how the Talosians gave Vina her illusion of health and comfort.

But what about the race of slaves angle? Pike fought that battle and won -- the Talosians considered humanity too wild and intractable. (On top of that, Pike may have been "damaged" in that regard from his exposure to the delta rays.)
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Old July 20 2013, 11:32 AM   #27
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Re: The Menagerie/The Cage

From the way it was presented Pike's life was essentially over. The Talosians offered him something Federation science apparently couldn't. He and Vina could perhaps enjoy the illusion of a family, but likely never the reality. And the Talosians could experience family through Pike and Vina without the idea of slavery ever being an issue.
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Old July 20 2013, 03:48 PM   #28
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Re: The Menagerie/The Cage

Just caught this on TV part way through and during some of The Cage scenes Spock has a limp... maybe I've just forgotten but can anyone tell me why?
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Old July 20 2013, 03:56 PM   #29
Warped9
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Re: The Menagerie/The Cage

Shazam! wrote: View Post
Just caught this on TV part way through and during some of The Cage scenes Spock has a limp... maybe I've just forgotten but can anyone tell me why?
Earlier in the episode Pike makes reference to needing to tend to their own sick and injured first after a prior event on Rigel. Spock might indeed have been limping as an affirmation of Pike's reference.
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Old July 20 2013, 06:27 PM   #30
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Re: The Menagerie/The Cage

Robert Comsol wrote: View Post
If I remember correctly, the Talosians lured Pike and his Enterprise to their planet with a fake (mind produced) distress call, this already established their capability to have telepathic influence over great distances.
Like the episode establishes, there's no way to tell whether a given thing is illusion or reality. Quite possibly, the distress call was a perfectly physical radio wave, just like our heroes thought. No need for long range, then.

This is in line with Spock's capability to establish telepathic mind links over great distances (e.g. V'ger's call in TMP).
Good point, and already sufficient to explain all of "The Menagerie".

As for details such as how just Kirk came aboard in a supposed beam-for-two event, let's remember just how the Talosian mind control works. It's not a case of them directing their pulsating foreheads at specific people. Rather, the entire area, the entire landing party, the entire starship starts to see things that aren't there (the survivors), not to see things that are there (the elevator), to do things they don't even realize they are doing, despite having already reasoned that they must be doing it themselves (going through the memory banks of the ship)... AND THE AUDIENCE IS AMONG THE VICTIMS!

That is, we don't see Spock pressing buttons to send Talosians information from the ship's databanks. Instead, we see the illusion of him staring helplessly as the databanks send this information "all by themselves".

There's no need for details, as the Talosians project entire story arcs that their victims find utterly plausible from start to finish. If something doesn't add up, the victims fix things so that everything makes sense again. And again, this applies to the audience as well. We're supposed to see a happy end, but what we see is probably 100% false. We have no real reason to assume that there ever was a Vina, or that Mendez was an illusion, or that the real Mendez sent any messages, or that Pike is happy down on the planet. It's just a satisfactory wrap-up that allows the heroes and the audience to leave the adventure behind.

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