Monday, January 23, 2023

Skilled Villian

      Nope, this is not yet another item on the clown circus that is Congress, not even the over-top-characters who have managed to be too much even for the junior body, by design raucous, conflicted and experimental.

      Nope, it's about a far better man who played far worse men: Michael Dunn, best known as the marvelously scenery-chewing Dr. Miguelito Loveless on The Wild, Wild West.  He stood three feet ten inches and commanded the stage from that height.  And he did his own stunts!

      MeTV, an over-the-air network specializing in reruns, has brought back the TV series, leading off their Saturday Westerns.  Dunn shows up early and returns often, an ideal foil for James West's 19th Century 007.  He was a talented singer despite limited lung capacity, and about those stunts?  This was a man with lifelong osteoarthritis and a hip dysplasia that limited his range of motion.  You can notice the latter when he walks -- sometimes.  But every motion cost him a price in pain and he never shows it, reveling in the role of a mad scientist to end all mad scientists.

      Michael Dunn died in 1973 at the age of 38, leaving behind a body of work on stage, film and TV screen that most actors would envy.  He is reported to have put considerable time and effort into encouraging children with challenges similar to his own to pursue their own goals -- and is an example to anyone with big dreams.

      We'd be a lot better off with 435 Michael Dunns in the U. S. House of Representatives than the fakes, bad actors and blowhards we've got now.  We might even be better off with 435 clones of Dr. Miguelito Loveless, though I'm not altogether sure about that.


  1. Ah, don't forget his role in the ST (TOS) episode, "Plato's Stepchildren" as Alexander, the only one without the psychic power.

    Of course, the hole through which one can propel an elephant from that ep is why that magical potion was never again used, changing the structure of Federation society for all time, but who's going to pick nits.

  2. He was a likeable villan, and those are the best kind.


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