You might have loved him as the Doctor on Star Trek: Voyager, or maybe Coach Cutlip on The Wonder Years. But on the Stargate franchise actor Robert Picardo had a remarkable journey as Mr. Richard Woolsey.
Originally introduced as a hard-nosed I.O.A. investigator in the seventh season of Stargate SG-1, Woolsey grew (very slowly) into a sympathetic character. In “Inauguration” Woolsey gave the President the dirt he needed to expose the corruption of Vice President Kinsey. In “The Scourge” he and a group of international ambassadors found themselves on the run from flesh-eating bugs. And in “Misbegotten” he sided with Elizabeth Weir in his report to her bosses at the I.O.A.
By the time Robert Picardo joined Stargate Atlantis as a full-time cast member in the show’s fifth and final season, Woolsey was a charmingly awkward member of the team.
The actor recalled those early episodes and his character’s journey as a recurring guest star in a recent appearance on GateWorld’s weekly livestream show “Dial the Gate.”
In this conversation with host David Read he remembers those first episodes, slowly sanding off Woolsey’s rough edges, and one day getting the call to lead the Atlantis expedition.
“Every time they had me back, this completely unredeemable hatchet-man douchebag that I had introduced in the first episode had this glimmer of a positive quality each returning time,” Picardo said. “So … he’s a complete douchebag, but then he comes back and he’s like — oh, hes a douchebag who really believes in civilian oversight of secret military operations. So he has one little quality. This is one good thing about him.
“And then, he was a complete douchebag who really believed in civilian oversight of secret military operations, who really didn’t want to be a douchebag any more …”
Watch the 8-minute clip here:
For more with Robert Picardo be sure to catch the full-length, 40-minute conversation on the “Dial the Gate” YouTube channel!
Next up this weekend: David welcomes back Stargate writer and executive producer Joseph Mallozzi. They’ll talk about Season Eight of Stargate SG-1 live this Sunday at 12 p.m. Pacific time (3 p.m. Eastern, 7 p.m. GMT). Then at 2 p.m. PT Walter Harriman actor Gary Jones is back with another conversation with a Stargate fan. Join us live in the chat!