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Kim Cattrall Star Trek VI

Stars Who Trekked

10 Stars You Didn’t Know Played Aliens in Star Trek Movies

Catch an all-day Star Trek movie marathon Wednesday, December 30th starting at 7:15AM on IFC.

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Paramount/courtesy Everett Collection

By Raven Snook 

William Shatner, George Takei and the late Leonard Nimoy may forever be associated with Gene Roddenberry’s groundbreaking sci-fi franchise. However, lots of actors more famous for their work in Cheers, Back to the Future, Sex and the City, and other projects logged time as extraterrestrials in the original ten Star Trek films. Can you recognize these stars under all that latex? Know your celebrity aliens before tuning in to IFC’s Star Trek movie marathon on Wednesday, December 30th starting at 7:15AM.

1. Kirstie Alley as Saavik in Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan

Years before she played a jock tease on Cheers or came out of Veronica’s Closet, this sitcom star played Lieutenant JG Saavik, a Vulcan Starfleet officer who bombs the no-win Kobayashi Maru training exercise in the first few minutes of Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan. She spends the rest of the film trying to prove she’s smart and humorless (ironic, given Alley’s future career). Although Saavik returned in Star Trek III: The Search for Spock and Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home, Alley did not because she demanded too much money (she was replaced by Robin Curtis). Hey, as a Scientologist she gets to hang out with real aliens, right?


2. John Larroquette as Maltz in Star Trek III: The Search for Spock

The same year he debuted in the role that would win him four consecutive Emmys–womanizing ADA Dan Fielding on Night Court– Larroquette also played Maltz, a cutthroat Klingon officer serving under Commander Kruge (portrayed by another sitcom star, see below). Although Larroquette’s trademark sarcasm is as buried as his features under makeup, he does have one wry exchange with Kirk, who promises to give him an honorable death in exchange for Maltz’s help, only to later renege. (“You said you would kill me!,” Maltz pleads, to which Kirk replies,  “I lied!”)


3. Christopher Lloyd as Kruge in Star Trek III: The Search for Spock

Great Scott! That really is Doc Brown from Back to the Future playing Klingon Commander Kruge, only he’s driving a Bird-of-Prey warship instead of a homemade DeLorean time machine. Kruge and Kirk play cat-and-mouse throughout the film and, at the end, engage in a knock-down-drag-out fistfight on the dying Genesis planet as molten lava shoots up around them…possibly inspiring a future lava-filled, sci-fi space battle?


4. Kim Cattrall as Valeris in Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country

As the gleefully promiscuous Samantha on Sex and the City, Cattrall got herself into some (pun ahead!) sticky situations. But she never broke a man’s heart in quite the same way she does Mr. Spock’s in Star Trek VI. She plays Lieutenant Valeris, Spock’s Vulcan Starfleet protégé who has ulterior motives, but a forced mind meld reveals her guilt. Just listen to that anguished scream — it sounds just like Samantha’s orgasm!


5. Malcolm McDowell as Soran in Star Trek: Generations

Sure he may look human, but Doctor Tolian Soran is actually an El-Aurian scientist who’s so obsessed with entering the extra-dimensional, desire-manifesting realm the Nexus, he’s willing to off anyone who gets in his way, even Captain Kirk. Despite his franchise-changing role, the Clockwork Orange star isn’t a big fan, claiming he actually did Trekkers “a favor” by helping to kill off Kirk, and griping that “Patrick Stewart spouting off for another forty minutes…if you find that exciting, hey go watch paint dry!”


6. Whoopi Goldberg as Guinan in Star Trek: Generations

Decades before the comedian and commentator started spouting her opinions on The View, she played an El-Aurian “listener,” Guinan, a.k.a. the USS Enterprise-D’s trusty bartender/unofficial therapist. As a little girl, Goldberg became a Star Trek fan when she spotted Nichelle Nichols as Lieutenant Uhura and exclaimed, “There’s a black lady on TV and she ain’t no maid!” Once famous, she lobbied for a part and ultimately appeared as Guinan in 28 episodes of Star Trek: The Next Generation plus two movies, always acting super-Zen. The lack of Elisabeth Hasselbeck surely helped.


7. Tom Hardy as Shinzon in Star Trek: Nemesis

A decade before he terrorized one-percenters at the New York Stock Exchange as Bane in The Dark Knight Rises, Hardy was out for Picard’s blood — literally. As Shinzon, a clone of the Enterprise Captain made by the Romulans in secret, he needed a transfusion from Picard to avoid certain death. Talk about daddy issues! He had no love for his Romulan creators, either, and led an army of Remans against both of the races that he felt did him wrong.


8. Ron Perlman as Reman Viceroy in Star Trek: Nemesis

Nope, that’s not Nosferatu. It’s the Reman Viceroy, Shinzon’s right-hand man in his war against, well, seemingly everyone. Previously, Perlman played romantic lion-man Victor in Beauty and the Beast and, later, the titular character in Hellboy, so he’s used to transformative makeup. However, it’s safe to say the Viceroy is his most nauseating role, both outside (for obvious reasons) and in (for participating in the telepathic rape of Deanna Troi. Ew).


9. Tom Morello as a Son’a officer in Star Trek: Insurrection

Paramount

Paramount

Blink and you’ll miss the Rage Against the Machine guitarist’s cameo as an uncredited Son’a officer in Insurrection. A devoted Trekker, Morello begged Trek producer Rick Berman for a bit part, but even though he didn’t have any lines, he still spent five hours in the makeup chair. He had such blast, he subsequently guest-starred on Star Trek: Voyager, although this time he opted to play a human — a lot less latex!


10. Adam Scott as a conn officer in Star Trek: First Contact

OK, so we’re cheating a bit with this last one. Yes, the Parks and Recreation star and Comedy Bang! Bang! guest really was in a Star Trek movie, First Contact to be exact. However, he played a plain old human, and a nameless one at that: USS Defiant’s conn officer. But hey, he drives the ship! When asked about his Star Trek role, he gave an honest response: “For me it was rent at the time but it was fun. Jonathan Frakes was directing, he was a really nice guy, but I was never much of a Trekkie.” That’s Trekker, dude!

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Hacked In

Funny or Die Is Taking Over

FOD TV comes to IFC every Saturday night.

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We’ve been fans of Funny or Die since we first met The Landlord. That enduring love makes it more than logical, then, that IFC is totally cool with FOD hijacking the airwaves every Saturday night. Yes, that’s happening.

The appropriately titled FOD TV looks like something pulled from public access television in the nineties. Like lo-fi broken-antenna reception and warped VHS tapes. Equal parts WTF and UHF.

Get ready for characters including The Shirtless Painter, Long-Haired Businessmen, and Pigeon Man. They’re aptly named, but for a better sense of what’s in store, here’s a taste of ASMR with Kelly Whispers:

Watch FOD TV every Saturday night during IFC’s regularly scheduled movies.

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Wicked Good

See More Evil

Stan Against Evil Season 1 is on Hulu.

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Okay, so you missed the entire first season of Stan Against Evil. There’s no shame in that, per se. But here’s the thing: Season 2 is just around the corner and you don’t want to lag behind. After all, Season 1 had some critical character development, not to mention countless plot twists, and a breathless finale cliffhanger that’s been begging for resolution since last fall. It also had this:

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The good news is that you can catch up right now on Hulu. Phew. But if you aren’t streaming yet, here’s a basic primer…

Willards Mill Is Evil

Stan spent his whole career as sheriff oblivious to the fact that his town has a nasty curse. Mostly because his recently-deceased wife was secretly killing demons and keeping Stan alive.

Demons Really Want To Kill Stan

The curse on Willards Mill stipulates that damned souls must hunt and kill each and every town sheriff, or “constable.” Oh, and these demons are shockingly creative.

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They Also Want To Kill Evie

Why? Because Evie’s a sheriff too, and the curse on Willard’s Mill doesn’t have a “one at a time” clause. Bummer, Evie.

Stan and Evie Must Work Together

Beating the curse will take two, baby, but that’s easier said than done because Stan doesn’t always seem to give a damn. Damn!

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Beware of Goats

It goes without saying for anyone who’s seen the show: If you know that ancient evil wants to kill you, be wary of anything that has cloven feet.

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Season 2 Is Lurking

Scary new things are slouching towards Willards Mill. An impending darkness descending on Stan, Evie and their cohort – eviler evil, more demony demons, and whatnot. And if Stan wants to survive, he’ll have to get even Stanlier.

Stan Against Evil Season 1 is now streaming right now on Hulu.

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SO EXCITED!!!

Reminders that the ’90s were a thing

"The Place We Live" is available for a Jessie Spano-level binge on Comedy Crib.

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Unless you stopped paying attention to the world at large in 1989, you are of course aware that the ’90s are having their pop cultural second coming. Nobody is more acutely aware of this than Dara Katz and Betsy Kenney, two comedians who met doing improv comedy and have just made their Comedy Crib debut with the hilarious ’90s TV throwback series, The Place We Live.

IFC: How would you describe “The Place We Live” to a fancy network executive you just met in an elevator?

Dara: It’s everything you loved–or loved to hate—from Melrose Place and 90210 but condensed to five minutes, funny (on purpose) and totally absurd.

IFC: How would you describe “The Place We Live” to a drunk friend of a friend you met in a bar?

Betsy: “Hey Todd, why don’t you have a sip of water. Also, I think you’ll love The Place We Live because everyone has issues…just like you, Todd.”

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IFC: When you were living through the ’90s, did you think it was television’s golden age or the pop culture apocalypse?


Betsy: I wasn’t sure I knew what it was, I just knew I loved it!


Dara: Same. Was just happy that my parents let me watch. But looking back, the ’90s honored The Teen. And for that, it’s the golden age of pop culture. 

IFC: Which ’90s shows did you mine for the series, and why?

Betsy: Melrose and 90210 for the most part. If you watch an episode of either of those shows you’ll see they’re a comedic gold mine. In one single episode, they cover serious crimes, drug problems, sex and working in a law firm and/or gallery, all while being young, hot and skinny.


Dara: And almost any series we were watching in the ’90s, Full House, Saved By the Bell, My So Called Life has very similar themes, archetypes and really stupid-intense drama. We took from a lot of places. 

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IFC: How would you describe each of the show’s characters in terms of their ’90s TV stereotype?

Dara: Autumn (Sunita Mani) is the femme fatale. Robin (Dara Katz) is the book worm (because she wears glasses). Candace (Betsy Kenney) is Corey’s twin and gives great advice and has really great hair. Corey (Casey Jost) is the boy next door/popular guy. Candace and Corey’s parents decided to live in a car so the gang can live in their house. 
Lee (Jonathan Braylock) is the jock.

IFC: Why do you think the world is ready for this series?

Dara: Because everyone’s feeling major ’90s nostalgia right now, and this is that, on steroids while also being a totally new, silly thing.

Delight in the whole season of The Place We Live right now on IFC’s Comedy Crib. It’ll take you back in all the right ways.