The Appeal of Captain Pike

Captain-Pike-in-Star-Trek-Discovery
Image of the three actors to portray Captain Pike on television taken from Screenrant @ https://screenrant.com/star-trek-discovery-captain-pike-explained/

WARNING: SPOILERS MAY FOLLOW

Last week saw Anson Mount’s Captain Pike exit Star Trek: Discovery, to many a viewer’s chagrin. I have been a tremendous fan of Mount’s portrayal of Pike and will miss his presence in the show. I feel that Discovery has done a wonderful job expanding Pike’s character and has successfully elevated him to the same legendary level of other Star Trek captains.

Indeed, this season’s revelation that Pike was shown his eventual fate, disfigured, unable to move, and trapped in a mechanical chair only able to transmit simple yes-and-no responses, and that he embraced it was perhaps one of the most emotionally satisfying moments of the show thus far. All at once, the character’s sense of right action, of honor, and of the love he feels for those under his command become his defining traits.

I always wondered at the depth of loyalty that Spock felt for his old captain in the Star Trek episode “The Menagerie,” a bond so powerful that he would risk the ire of Captain Kirk and his crew, the end of his Starfleet career, and likely even death for visiting a forbidden planet. But it makes sense now. Spock risked everything for Captain Pike because Captain Pike once did the same for him. Let us also appreciate that Captain Pike was Gene Roddenberry’s first draft of his idealized heroic captain character, making Pike the intellectual ancestor of every other Star Trek captain we have come to love.

(And don’t forget to sign the petition asking CBS to consider a spin-off series about the adventures of Captain Pike and the Enterprise here!)

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