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Home > Sci-Fi > 31 Days Of Flash Gordon #26

31 Days Of Flash Gordon #26

July 26th, 2010

Flash Gordon Month wouldn’t be complete without giving props to the supporting turns by two big-name actors not typically associated with sci-fi.

"Check the angular vector of the moon!"

Topol (aka “The Smoker’s Tooth Polish) is, of course, best known as Tevye from Fiddler on the Roof. In Flash Gordon, he’s Dr. Hans Zarkov, the only Earthman who recognizes that the strange disasters affecting the planet are otherworldly in origin. He’s so brilliant that he’s built a rocketship in his greenhouse, but not quite smart enough to figure out a way of cancelling out deadly G-forces other than to get someone to stomp on a big, red pedal.

Like Max von Sydow, Topol is game for all of the silliness. For example, when he explains how he was able to beat Klytus’ brainwashing ray:

Do you know why it failed? l started to recite Shakespeare, the Talmud, Einstein, anything l could remember, even The Beatles. lt armored me. They couldn’t wipe those things away! You can’t beat the human spirit!

And let’s not forget Timothy Dalton as Prince Barin. Long before James Bond, he buckled his swash as the Errol Flynn-ish ruler of Arboria.

He swaggers through the film with cocky arrogance. And why not? He not only gets hot ‘n’ heavy with Ming’s daughter, he gets in a balls-out whip duel with Flash atop Vultan’s spiky, tilting platform.

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