Trek guest actors in maybe surprising roles

Discussion in 'Star Trek - The Original & Animated Series' started by Maurice, Mar 12, 2013.

  1. DarrenTR1970

    DarrenTR1970 Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    I can't say this enough - If you can get your hands on a copy of "The Complete 'Mission: Impossible' Dossier", either through eBay, Half Price Books, or some other retailers, you won't be disappointed.
     
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  2. DarrenTR1970

    DarrenTR1970 Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Again, without spoiling anything, a lot of the first season episodes were written with guest spies in mind, but they were written out and replaced with Rolin, because, as producer Joseph Gantman and the writers interviewed for the book, it was simply easier to write for one character who was good at many things than many who were good at only one. Landau even acknowledges in the book that he was getting parts that should have been going to someone else, but he wasn't about to turn down a $5000 paycheck per episode.
     
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  3. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Yeah, you can see that in the early episodes, how each one was written around a central guest star. In the pilot it was Landau, of course. "Memory" was written around Albert Paulsen's character. "Operation: Rogosh" centered on Fritz Weaver as the titular villain. "Old Man Out" showcased Mary Ann Mobley (to my great enjoyment). But once you get to things like "Wheels" and "A Spool There Was," they're getting written around Rollin again.

    Star Trek kind of went the same way. Roddenberry overtly said he planned to emulate Wagon Train's anthology-like focus on guest stars of the week, and you can see that with things like "Where No Man..." focusing on Mitchell and Dehner, "The Corbomite Maneuver" centering on Dave Bailey's arc, "Mudd's Women" centering on Harry and Eve, and "Charlie X" being self-explanatory. But then Spock became the breakout character and the stories started to emphasize him more, with Roddenberry and Shatner insisting on keeping Kirk equally central, and McCoy becoming the third member of the triumvirate by virtue of his relationships to the other two. So it became more focused on the leads than on the guest stars as originally planned.

    Coincidental that it happened with Landau and Nimoy simultaneously, given that Nimoy replaced Landau on M:I, and given the longstanding but now-debunked rumors that Landau was offered the role of Spock before Nimoy. (I think it was more that he was on a list of alternate candidates, but Nimoy was always the first choice.)
     
  4. Neopeius

    Neopeius Admiral Admiral

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    I think that's what makes the 1st season of Trek stand out. I'm enjoying the second season, but I don't like the increasing focus on The Big Three (which never, ever ends...)
     
  5. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    At least it's not as bad as the way Dr. Smith totally took over Lost in Space. I mean, at least Kirk and Spock were the nominal lead characters from the start. What happened with LiS was more like if Harry Mudd had supplanted Kirk as the main character.
     
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  6. Neopeius

    Neopeius Admiral Admiral

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    Star Trek: Mothers in Law
     
  7. J.T.B.

    J.T.B. Rear Admiral Premium Member

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    Watching Gunsmoke in order for the first time, it's striking how much the focus shifted to guest star stories in season seven with the change to hour-long episodes. While the character "bantering" scenes among the four regulars often felt like a time-out in the half-hour episodes, in the full hour they seem even more set apart, contrasting with the focus on a guest character storyline. I'm interested to see how it develops in later seasons.

    Usually TOS big three incidental dialogue is fairly well integrated, but I find Gunsmoke's is better written and more enjoyable. That may have developed from the cast, too, who were said to have close friendships offscreen.
     
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  8. CorporalCaptain

    CorporalCaptain Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Saw Harvey today, with Charles Drake (Commodore Stocker) as the psychiatrist.
     
  9. Forbin

    Forbin Admiral Admiral

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    Watched the 1963 Vincent Price/Roger Corman horror film "Haunted Palace" yesterday on Amazon Prime. And right at the start, there was weasely barfly Elsha Cook, seeing a ghost.
    [​IMG]
     
  10. DarrenTR1970

    DarrenTR1970 Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Nichelle Nichols is one of the celebrity guests on 'Super Password' this evening on Buzr.
    Aside from Shatner, I wasn't aware of any other 'Star Trek' alumni appearing on game shows.
     
  11. johnnybear

    johnnybear Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Malachi Throne, Paul Carr in The Bionic Woman:Part One, an episode of The Six Million Dollar Man!
    JB
     
  12. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    I remember her guest stint there. It's the first time I heard her mention "Nyota" as Uhura's first name, the first time I heard it spoken aloud (though she said it as "Nigh-oh-tah" rather than "N-yo-tah" as it's been pronounced in Kelvin and SNW).

    I still remember the one where William Christopher's partner was bewildered when he used "Charybdis" as a clue for "whirlpool." (In retrospect, I wonder if that was a deliberate schtick. I guess "reality" TV has made me doubt that anything in unscripted television is truly spontaneous or authentic.)
     
  13. Neopeius

    Neopeius Admiral Admiral

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    Last week yielded two Joan Collins appearances (the 9-23-67 Virginian and 9-21-67 Batman):


    [​IMG]

    "One day soon man is going to be able to harness incredible energies, maybe even crude oil. Energies that could ultimately hurl us to other cities in some sort of self-propelled buggy. And the men that reach out across the country will be able to find ways to feed the hungry millions of the world and to cure their diseases. They will be able to find a way to give each man hope and a common future, and those are the days worth living for."

    [​IMG]

    "Well, maybe not..."
     
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  14. Maurice

    Maurice Snagglepussed Premium Member

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    Here's a funny one and in line with the long-ago forgotten original intent of this thread: a Star Trek guest actor in a "surprising role".

    It's Morgan "Simon Van Gelder/Capt. Tracey" Woodward as he appeared as Andy Renko's dad on Hill Street Blues over several 2nd season episodes.

    But that's not the surprising part. In the episode "Invasion of the Third World Body Snatchers" Woodward appears in a single scene, as the accidentally-heisted corpse of said dad. His only action is to flop over from being propped up against a wall in an alley, and then to roll his face into a hat when Joe Coffee releases his shoulder.

    Screenshot 2022-09-27 12.41.45 AM.png

    Probably the easiest role he ever played. :D
     
  15. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Since it was at the end of a multi-episode arc for the character, I'd guess that they filmed this shot during his work on the previous episode or two, while they had him available.
     
  16. johnnybear

    johnnybear Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Elisha Cook Jr, Mickey Morton in Once A Thief, an episode of The Bionic Woman!
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  17. ItsGreen

    ItsGreen Captain Captain

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    Mannix looking at John Colicos (6 times in the series he was featured) thinking,
    "What, you again!"
    [​IMG]
     
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  18. Neopeius

    Neopeius Admiral Admiral

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    Aside from Joan Collins (q.v.) this week's big Trek appearance was the welcome sight of Janet MacLachlan on the 9-25-67 episode of I,Spy (quite a good one).

    [​IMG]
     
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  19. Commishsleer

    Commishsleer Commodore Commodore

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    Saw the end of "A Raisin in the Sun" and spotted John Fiedler from "Wolf in the Fold"
     
  20. johnnybear

    johnnybear Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Malachi Throne, Paul Carr in The Bionic Woman:Part Two, an episode of The Six Million Dollar Man!
    JB