First episodes are something of a proverbial crapshoot.  Given that most pilots are done well in advance as a test run, there’s a chance that the dreaded Early Installment Weirdness will rear its head.  Sheldon might not be as weird, there might be a different Yellow Ranger, and Davy may be obviously younger than in episode two.  Still, a really good pilot is about the broad strokes and not always the details, which is why BOTH Star Trek pilots ended up being used as episodes of the Original Series and making for solid episodes, leading to today’s trial balloon query…

The MS-QOTD (pronounced, as always, “misquoted”) has always been a little bit bugged by that ‘James R. Kirk’ tombstone, though, asking: Which first episode makes the best pilot?

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Once upon a time, there was a young nerd from the Midwest, who loved Matter-Eater Lad and the McKenzie Brothers... If pop culture were a maze, Matthew would be the Minotaur at its center. Were it a mall, he'd be the Food Court. Were it a parking lot, he’d be the distant Cart Corral where the weird kids gather to smoke, but that’s not important right now... Matthew enjoys body surfing (so long as the bodies are fresh), writing in the third person, and dark-eyed women. Amongst his weaponry are such diverse elements as: Fear! Surprise! Ruthless efficiency! An almost fanatical devotion to pop culture! And a nice red uniform.

3 Comments

  1. Daniel Langsdale on

    I saw the ‘Lost’ pilot when it first aired and it sucked me right in. Never mind where it might have gone over the next many years, but that was one heck of a compelling pilot for a very solid first season.

    For something closer to the OG Trek experience, there’s ‘Firefly,’ which thanks to Fox aired its intended pilot 11th, and commissioned another story to kick it off.

  2. Jarmo Seppänen on

    I don’t even remember TV pilots anymore, it’s been so long time I’ve watched anything like that. That said, one thing I’ll never forget and stop appreciating how Starfleet uniform was a blouse.

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