José Tyler was a male Human Starfleet officer in the 23rd century. He served in the command division aboard the USS Enterprise in 2254 under the command of Captain Christopher Pike. Tyler was one of the ship's navigators.
That same year, Tyler was one of a number of Enterprise crewmembers injured during a battle on planet Rigel VII. After the incident, Captain Pike ordered the Enterprise to Vega colony in order to replace any crewmembers who required hospitalization. En route, however, the crew detected a distress signal from the SS Columbia, an Earth vessel which had disappeared in the Talos star group eighteen years previously.
Later, when it became clear that the distress signal was an elaborate trap set up by the Talosians in an effort to capture Captain Pike, Tyler participated in the unsuccessful attempts to rescue him. (TOS: "The Cage")
Footage of his experience aboard the Enterprise under Captain Pike during the original visit to Talos IV, from thirteen years prior, was transmitted from that planet during Spock's fictional court martial aboard the same ship in 2267. (TOS: "The Menagerie, Part I", "The Menagerie, Part II")
Tyler was played by Peter Duryea.
Tyler's name was not spoken on screen, but was rather derived from the character biography, which later appeared in The Making of Star Trek:
The Navigator. José (Joe) Tyler, Boston astronomer father and Brazilian mother, is boyishly handsome, still very much in the process of maturing. An unusual combination, he has inherited his father's mathematical ability. José Tyler, in fact, is a phenomenally brilliant mathematician and space theorist. But he has also inherited his mother's Latin temperament, fights a perpetual and highly personalized battle with his instruments and calculators, suspecting that space – and probably God, too – are engaged in a giant conspiracy to make his professional and personal life as difficult and uncomfortable as possible. Joe (or José, depending on the other party) is young enough to be painfully aware of the historical repute of Latins as lovers – and is in danger of failing this challenge on a cosmic scale.
The script of "The Cage" described Tyler as "Mid-twenties, sometimes appearing even younger, very much in the process of maturing, both physically and socially. But beneath this exterior is a computer-like mind and strange mathematical brilliance." Also in the script, Tyler made repeated failed attempts to flirtatiously draw Yeoman J.M. Colt's attention to him, though he doesn't do that in the episode's final version. In a scripted but ultimately unused line of dialogue, Tyler also worried that the Talosians might be dissecting Captain Pike or possibly doing even worse things to him.
"The Cage" Director Robert Butler was involved in casting Peter Duryea in the role of Tyler and later recalled, "I think Peter was simply a good choice from casting. I think we had seen a lot of people, and I remember that he had terrific energy." (The Star Trek Interview Book, pp. 98-99) Butler was also pleased with how Duryea portrayed Tyler on screen, commenting about the actor, "He did a wonderful job." (Star Trek Monthly issue 6, p. 53) Duryea was overjoyed to be cast as Tyler, expecting the role to become a series regular. When Star Trek was recast, Duryea was devastated by the fact that the role of Tyler was dropped, the actor later remembering, "It knocked me out. When I lost that role, I cried for two weeks." (Star Trek Magazine issue 171, p. 37)
Tyler's first name was based on background production references; the navigator described in the original Star Trek pitch was named "José Ortegas".
- José Tyler made an appearance in the Pocket TOS novel The Rift.
- According to the novel The Enterprise War, by 2256 Tyler had left the Enterprise for a command of his own, thus explaining his absence from the events of Discovery Season 2.