Armstrong Loved 'Enterprise' BestBy Michelle
November 28, 2005 - 8:59 PM
Vaughn Armstrong said he felt very fortunate not to have joined the ranks of the infamous "evil admirals" who often plagued original series and next generation captains, saying that of all the roles he played on Star Trek, the Mirror universe Forrest may have been his favourite. "I actually got to be Captain of the Enterprise," he said. "Who could ask for more?"
Speaking to Starbase972, Armstrong spoke about how his experiences in Vietnam helped him play a military officer, his convention experiences playing the ukulele and how much fun he had dying twice as the same character on Star Trek: Enterprise.
"I really try to stay in the moment as much as possible and do my work. The focus I need to just get the lines and live the character at the same time is the most fun of the whole job, for me," he said, adding that his focus "keeps me away from most of the shenanigans" and the fun he witnessed on the set. "I was only there about once every three weeks or so. I had to keep myself together or my performance fell apart. I had a reputation of getting things right and wanted to keep it that way."
Though he played characters on all the contemporary Star Trek series, including Klingons, Cardassians, a Borg and a Romulan, Armstrong cited Forrest as his best-loved character. He greatly enjoyed playing the Mirror universe's Maximilian Forrest as well, because, "let's face it...I'm 55 years old...my first day of shooting included several hours of an intimate scene with Linda Park (Hoshi). It doesn't get much better than that for an old man like me."
Enterprise was his favourite among the series, he noted, "mostly because Scott Bakula (Archer) is one of the finest men I've ever seen in a lead role on any show. He is kind and professional at all times. That attitude spread through the set like wildfire." He blamed franchise fatigue rather than the quality of the show for its cancellation and said he thought that the series remained true to Gene Roddenberry's vision despite criticisms to the contrary from some fans.
Of the other 10 characters he played, the first Next Generation Klingon role, Korris, remains one of his most memorable. "We actors were pretty much left on our own to come up with the characters," he recalled. "I had been a warrior, sort of, in Vietnam. And I had done a lot of Shakespeare and the character seemed to have a lot of classic qualities. But he was also an animal." He joked that he enjoyed the squeals he would receive from women when he walked around wearing the Klingon forehead.
And Armstrong would like to don the forehead once more, either in some yet-unconceived series or in a flashback. "My most favorite plot would have been the following: Korath, the last Klingon in Voyager played by yours truly, would have come back in time with that time machine that Janeway stole from me in Voyager," he explained. "He would have been trying to prevent Admiral Forrest from sending Archer into space, either by killing Archer or killing Forrest, or both. That would have pitted me against myself as villain and hero. It would have been a hoot!"
The full interview is at Starbase972.