Category Archives: Star Trek

Secondary Character Saturday: James Montgomery “Scotty” Scott

James Doohan as Scotty.  [Image courtesy: Paramount Pictures]

James Doohan as Scotty.
[Image courtesy: Paramount Pictures]

WHO: James Montgomery Scott

FROM: Star Trek

BY: Created by Gene Roddenberry

PUBLISHED: The series premiered in 1966.

PROS: Loveable, brave, funny,  and  super smart, Mr. Scott knows every thing there is to know about the Enterprise. He’s the ultimate engineer, so he’s got that going for him too.

Scotty's position on the far left of this cast picture puts him firmly in the Secondary Character rhelm... But what would the crew of the USS Enterprise have gotten with out him? Pulled over to a service station and had the dilithium oil checked? I don't think so.

Scotty’s position on the far left of this cast picture puts him firmly in the Secondary Character category… But what would the crew of the USS Enterprise have gotten without him? Pulled over to a service station and had the dilithium oil checked? I don’t think so.

CONS:  Mr. Scott was very proud of his ship… blindingly proud… and it often got him in trouble, like when he…

started a bar fight aboard Deep Space Station K-7 when the Klingon named Korax suggested that the ship should be hauled away as garbage. As a result, he was confined to his quarters by Kirk. Scott smiled and told Kirk the punishment would give him a chance to catch up on technical journals he had not had time to read. [Memory]

MOST SHINING MOMENT:  Every other episode when he fixed the transporter, cajoled the engines to perform at warp 9 (plus) for an extended period of time, or otherwise earned his  nickname of “the miracle worker.”

LEAST SHINING MOMENT:  Being accused of murder on Argelius (3 times!) Fortunately it was just the alien reincarnation of Jack the Ripper.

MEMORABLE QUOTE: “I’m giving it all she’s got Captain..”

In the Star Trek prime universe Mr. Scott was played by Canadian character actor James Doohan. In the 2009 / 2013 reboot movies he’s played by Simon Pegg.

[Images courtesy: Universal Pictures]

[Images courtesy: Paramount Pictures]

For an in-depth tribute to Mr. Scott see this You tube clip:

Pez Mr. Scott is ready to beam aboard from my bookshelf.

Pez Mr. Scott is ready to beam aboard from my bookshelf.


Secondary Character: Alan Rickman; Alexander Dane — Galaxy Quest

[Image Courtesy: Outcast]

[Image Courtesy: Outcast]

Who: Alexander Dane / Dr. Lazarus

From: Galaxy Quest

Alexander Dane was a stage actor famous for his portrayal of Richard III, for which he received five curtain calls. He then took a job portraying Dr. Lazarus on the ’80s TV show “Galaxy Quest,” a space-travel story about an intrepid crew and their travels across the universe. The TV show was cancelled and the GQ actors have been reduced to living off their fame by attending sci-fi conventions, presiding at the opening of new stores, and allowing rabid fans to film interviews in their garages and basements… [IMDb]

By: David Howard

Produced: 1999

[Image courtesy: Outcast Studios]

[Image courtesy: Outcast Studios]

Pros: Dedicated to his craft. Has a cool catch phrase –“By Grabthar’s hammer, by the suns of Warvan, you shall be avenged!” Shakespearian trained actor. Awesome latex headpiece.

Cons: Jealous of his co-star, Jason Nesmith, who played the Cmdr. Peter Quincy, the captain of the Protector on the show.  Hates his cool catch phrase. Generally wallows in misery and self-pity.  Full of himself.

Most Shining Moment: Loosing his ego and embracing his character in order to comfort dying Quellek, an alien who idolizes his character Dr. Lazarus.

[Image courtesy: Outcast Studios.]

[Image courtesy: Outcast Studios.]

Why Rickman is so good in this movie: Rickman is deliciously snarky and sarcastic in this movie. It is one of his best comic roles and he gives it 100%. [For another dark comedic Rickman role, you should also see him in Dogma, but his role there is much smaller there… more of a Tertiary Thursday Character than a Secondary Saturday Character.) As much as Alexander Dane, the actor, has a certain snobbishness towards his role of Dr. Lazzrus, you can see that Rickman is having a ton of fun throwing himself at his role as the actor-playing-an-alien — especially when his prosthetic rubber headpiece starts to fall apart.

Why I Picked Galaxy Quest: As you may have guessed from this week’s bioBLOGS on Leonard Niimoy  (Mr. Spock of Star Trek) and  Nathan Fillion (Captain Mal Reynolds of Firefly) I rather enjoy my Science Fiction, and Galaxy Quest is a terrific send up on the sometimes too serious take on the medium. (Although Firefly/Serenity never took itself too seriously, Star Trek — especially the Star Trek movies — could get a bit big for its britches.) So A) I like the movie. B) Rickman is hilarious in it. And C) it was requested by one of my most loyal readers.


Well, I guess that’s about it for our month of Alan Rickman Secondary Character studies. I hope this little salute has inspired you to put one or two Rickman movies in your queue. Cheers, Rita

Alan Rickman, The Awesome

Alan Rickman, The Awesome (Photo credit: ManaMalipeddi)

Leonard Nimoy 3.26.13 Thought of the Day

“The miracle is this: the more we share the more we have”–Leonard Nimoy

“Logic is the beginning of wisdom, not the end” — Nimoy as Spock

Nimoy as Spock [Image courtesy: Fanpop]

Nimoy as Spock [Image courtesy: Fanpop]

Leonard Simon Nimoy was born on this day in Boston, Massachusetts, USA in 1931.  He is 82 years old.

He is the youngest son of Max and Dora Nimoy. His parents and grandparents were Yiddish speaking Orthodox Jews who fled from the Ukrainian region of Stalinist Russia and settled in the West End neighborhood of Boston. Max owned a barbershop and was a neighborhood fixture. Leonard and his older brother Melvin sold newspapers in Boston Commons. His parents wanted him to go to college or at least take up the accordion so he’d have a  reliable means to make a living, but Leonard was set on being an actor. It was his Grandfather who stood up for him and encouraged him to pursue his dream.

Nimoy started to act in neighborhood theater when he was eight. He continued to act while at Boston’s English High School.

…After his graduation in 1949, he attended Boston College. While playing the role of Ralphie in a collegiate production of Clifford OdetsAwake and Sing, Nimoy noticed that another Odets play was making a professional, pre-Broadway debut in Boston. After seeking career advice from one of the play’s established cast members, Nimoy submitted an application to California’s Pasadena Playhouse. He made his way out to the West Coast using money he earned by selling vacuum cleaners. []

He landed a few guest spots on tv before getting his first starring role as a boxer in Kid Monk Baroni.

He served in the United States Army and reached the rank of Sergeant before being honorably discharged in November of 1955. He went back to acting, taking small parts in film and television and larger roles on stage.

After carving out a niche with day-player roles on the likes of Dragnet, The Rough Riders, Sea Hunt, Bonanza, The Twilight Zone, Dr. Kildaire and Perry Mason, Nimoy’s featured role on a 1965 episode of The Lieutenant earned the attention of producer and writer Gene Roddenberry. []

Roddenberry was developing a science fiction series, Star Trek,  and he needed a tall, thin, logical, intelligent science officer. Nimoy got the role of Mr. Spock.

Half-Vulcan and half-human, Spock is largely emotionless and operates on a level of pure logic, serving as a counterpart to Shatner’s more combustible Captain James T. Kirk. It was Nimoy himself who came up with the concept of the Vulcan Nerve Pinch, since he believed it would be out of character for Spock to punch or chop an enemy combatant. [Daily]

He also introduced the Vulcan hand salute in the episode “Amok Time.” It is a derivation of a Jewish blessing. The show ran from 1966 to 1969. Nimoy earned three Emmy nominations for the iconic role of Mr. Spock.

Looking very logical in a publicity still from Star Trek. (Image courtesy:

Looking very logical in a publicity still from Star Trek. (Image courtesy:

Nimoy was almost immediately picked up by Mission: Impossible where he played master of disguise The Great Paris.

…He was one of the world’s greatest magicians (billed as ‘The Great Paris’)…after Rollin Hand quit his position with the Impossible Missions Force …Paris was recruited … as the team’s master of disguise. … Paris has played everything from a Japanese kabuki actor to a mobster … [IMDb]

Still from Mission Impossible with Nimoy in disguise. [Image Courtesy : Ribbonrain]

Still from Mission Impossible with Nimoy in disguise. [Image Courtesy : Ribbonrain]

After Star Trek and Mission Impossible he went back to the stage, notably as Tevye in Fiddler on the Roof, as Vincent Van Gogh in his one man show Vincent, and in Sherlock Homes and  Equus.

Back on TV he was the narrator for paranormal series In Search Of... and he picked up another Emmy nomination for his role as Golda Meir’s husband in 1982’s  A Woman Called Golda.

His post Star Trek time also included directing, photography and writing (poetry and autobiography.)

[Image courtesy:]

Back on the big screen he starred alongside Donal Sutherland in the remake of Invasion of the Body Snatchers in 1978 before putting the pointy ears on once again.

Buoyed by the success of George Lucas’ 1977 Star Wars, Roddenberry and crew brought the Star Trek franchise back to life with a big budget for the big screen.

The film, Star Trek: The Motion Picture, was released in 1979. It was a box-office smash, and was nominated for three Oscars. Nimoy returned for 1982’s sequel, Star Trek: The Wrath of Khan, and even directed the third and fourth installments in the series — 1984’s Star Trek III: The Search for Spock and 1986’s Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home. [IMDb]

The movie series limped on with two more releases (Final Frontier and Undiscovered Country) and Nimoy played Spock in guest spots on Star Trek: The Next Generation, and voiced the character for video games and on-line. He was Spock “Prime” for the J.J. Abrams reboot of the series in 2009 and got to meet his Spock doppelgänger (actor Zachary Quinto) in the final scenes of the movie.

In between he’s done lots of made-for-television movies, while “honing his directing chops, voicing animated projects, and appearing in the occasional acting role.” [Ibid]

A 2003 photo from The Jewish [Image courtesy: Jewish]

A 2003 photo from The Jewish [Image courtesy: Jewish]

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