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What do you consider the first Star Trek episode?

Star Trek's pilot "The Cage" might have been the first episode filmed, but "The Man Trap" was the first episode that aired in September of 1966. It became the first voyage of the Enterprise to broadcast on television.

Yet, "Where No Man Has Gone Before," the series pilot that eventually aired two weeks later on September 22, was technically filmed first. In fact, "The Corbomite Maneuver," which was the tenth episode of season one, was actually the first non-pilot episode of Star Trek produced. But! There was another pilot, "The Cage," produced before the "Where No Man Has Gone Before" pilot. That was filmed in 1965 and rejected by the network, though eventually it was reworked into the two-parter "The Menagerie" (November 17 and 24, 1966) — and finally aired in 1988.


Superfans are sticklers for details. There are arguments to be made for all of these episodes, and we haven't even begun to unravel the knotty process of logging stardates.

Trekkies who are faithful to narrative chronology might raise their hands (in a Vulcan salute, naturally) and vote for "Where No Man Has Gone Before." Or perhaps even "The Cage." On the other hand, television purists honor the experience of how the original series was presented. Then again, if you're British, this could be moot, as the BBC began broadcasting Star Trek in 1969 with "Where No Man Has Gone Before."

This is merely one tiny particle of what makes Star Trek fandom so fun. So, what do you consider to be the first episode of Star Trek?



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