The only man to play a Klingon on three ‘Star Trek’ series has died

August 5, 2013

Michael Ansara played Kang in the 1968 episode "Day of the Dove." Here he is in a sword fight with Captain Kirk, played by William Shatner. In this episode, an energy creature that feeds off the hatred of others has trapped Kirk's crew on the Enterprise along with a group of Klingons led by Kang. Kirk urges Kang to lay down his weapons, arguing that if Kang kills Kirk, the creature will merely bring him back to life to continue the fighting.

A quarter-century later, the producers of the "Star Trek: Deep Space Nine" episode "Blood Oath" brought Ansara back to reprise his role as Kang. He appeared alongside two other men who had played Klingon leaders on the original "Star Trek" — John Colicos as Kor and William Campbell as Koloth — as a trio of then-legendary Klingon warriors. Ansara also appeared in the "Star Trek: Voyager" episode "Flashback."

Contrary to the Associated Press's reporting, Ansara did not play "the original Klingon." That honor goes to Colicos. Colicos's episode was in Star Trek's first season, while "Day of the Dove" was in the third season. Colicos died in 2000.

Ansara's long career included many other television roles, including Cochise in "Broken Arrow." He died last Wednesday in California.

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Brian Fung · August 5, 2013