Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Oh, No. Not Him Too!

According to the Associated Press, “Ricardo Montalban, the Mexican-born actor who became a star in splashy MGM musicals and later as the wish-fulfilling Mr. Roarke in TV’s ‘Fantasy Island,’ died Wednesday morning at his home, a city councilman said. He was 88.”

Forget Fantasy Island. I remember Montalban for his guest-starring roles in Burke’s Law (he did two turns on that show), The Man from U.N.C.L.E. (again playing in two different episodes), Star Trek (portraying Khan Noonien Singh, a role he reprised in 1982’s Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan), Ironside, Columbo, Murder, She Wrote, and ... well, he used to be everywhere on television, it seemed.

If there really is such a thing as Heaven--and you won’t get any bets on that from me--I hope Montalban gets to spend his time there enjoying the comfort of “soft Corinthian leather.”

(Hat tip to Bill Crider’s Popular Culture Magazine.)

READ MORE:Dropping Like Flies,” by Ivan G. Shreve Jr. (Thrilling Days of Yesteryear); “Ricardo Montalban, R.I.P.,” by Mark Evanier (News from Me); “Ricardo Montalban Sings ‘The Monkey in the Mango Tree,’” by Jaime J. Weinman (Something Old, Nothing New); “Good-bye, Lieutenant Morales,” by Xavier Lechard (At the Villa Rose); “R.I.P., Ricardo Montalban,” by Eric C. (The Latin Americanist.).

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I also mourn the loss of the man. Another memorable performance by Ricardo M. was in the film "Neptune's Daughter," in which he plays a "South American polo player" and woos swimming sensation Esther Williams. This movie, besides being very cool, is also notable because it introduced the wonderful Frank Loesser tune "Baby, It's Cold Outside." In the movie, Ricardo and Esther sing it straight, then Red Skelton and Betty Everett sing it for laughs -- and reverse the gender. Great stuff.