SF’s Serial Guest Stars

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1. MARK SHEPPARD

What is there left to say about the man who nabs the high point in our esteemed Top 10? We doubt we have to introduce him to you – if you’ve watched any sci-fi TV in the last 20-odd years, you’ll know him, and if you don’t you’ve been watching it with your eyes closed.

From the fire-starting loony who made rooms burst into flame with a click of his fingers in The X-Files episode “Fire” in 1993, to the FBI agent who joined forces with the Doctor a few weeks ago in “The Impossible Astronaut” and “Day Of The Moon”, Sheppard has been (and we mean this in all politeness) “putting it about a bit”.

He’s bloody good, you see. He does sarcasm and sneering like nobody else (see: Crowley on Supernatural; Badger in Firefly). He can play Americans left, right and centre despite being defiantly Lahndan. He can exude authority in a courtroom (see: Romo Lampkin, one of the best things about Battlestar Galactica) and he can scare the willies out of us as a twisted killer (his three episodes of Medium).

Give him a role, he’ll rock it. He is the greatest guest-star working today for a reason. And to top it off, he reads SFX! (Although that had nothing to do with him topping this list. Honest.)

TV shows: The X-Files, Sliders, Star Trek: Voyager, The Invisible Man, Charmed, Firefly, Jake 2.0, Medium, Bionic Woman, The Middleman, Battlestar Galactica, Dollhouse, Chuck, Warehouse 13, Doctor Who, Supernatural
Movies: Mysterious Island*

*Speaking of Sheppard’s forthcoming project Mysterious Island – which he has also directed – he shares the role of Captain Nemo with his father, William Morgan Sheppard, in the same way that his dad played the older version of him in Doctor Who recently. Sheppard Sr is no slouch himself when it comes to guest starring in sci-fi shows and films, having popped up over the years in (deep breath): The New Avengers, Star Trek (2009), Charmed, Doctor Who, Hawk The Slayer, The Day Of The Triffids, Star Trek: The Next Generation, Star Trek VI, seaQuest, Quantum Leap, Babylon 5, American Gothic, Voyager, Kingdom Hospital, Alias, The Prestige and Transformers. See that awe over there? We’re in it.