Creator / Jonathan Frakes
Jonathan Scott Frakes (August 19, 1952-) is best known for two things: the voice of Xanatos in the animated series Gargoyles
and the role of Commander William Riker, aka Number One
, in the critically acclaimed Star Trek: The Next Generation
. Both of which were excellent showcases for his Badass Beard
and Badass Baritone
voice. He is also one of the few actors to have appeared in all four modern-era Trek
series, although his last appearance as Commander Riker
wasn't without controversy
A well-regarded actor with a long and respectable career, he's largely stepped away from being in front of the camera in favor of becoming a highly-prolific television director. As a director, he is known for a highly economical shooting style that earned him the nickname of "Two Take Frakes" during the production of Star Trek: First Contact
. Shows he's directed episodes of include:
He also had a brief stint as a feature film director, making films that ran the gamut in terms of quality and acclaim. His films include Star Trek: First Contact
(widely considered one of the finest Star Trek
movies ever) and Star Trek: Insurrection
(widely considered one of the worst), as well as Gargoyles
, and two The Librarian
movies. All of which have Star Trek references in them at his insistence.
However, his theatrical directing career was brought to a screeching halt
with the notorious flop that was Thunderbirds
(he even called himself the "alleged director
" on the DVD commentary), although it was more Universal
's fault as well as the lengthy Development Hell
the film went through than anything he did as a director.
He continues to make the occasional on-screen appearance, having played a dramatically heavy role in Criminal Minds
and hammed it up
in ''Angie Tribeca
. He also occasionally inserts himself
into shows he directs, making very brief blink-and-you'll-miss-it cameos.
He is the famed Trope Maker
for Growing the Beard
, because there had been a writers' strike between the first two seasons of Star Trek: The Next Generation
he, erm, grew a beard
during the unexpectedly extended break (see right): the facial topiary's presence at the script readthroughs for the second season was mere happenstance, but Trek
creator Gene Roddenberry
felt it gave him a far more dignified appearance and decided to Throw It In
to his character's appearance too. The beard staying then coincided — and has become synonymous — with the show's generally-agreed development from something good into something great in the next year or two. All thanks to Frakes' face.
Frakes is a part of one of the longest-lived Hollywood marriages in the history of celebrity-dom. He and his wife, actress Genie Francis (of General Hospital
fame, who he met while making North and South (Trilogy)
) have been married for 29 years and counting.