Batman has been around for decades. The comic book hero Batman was created in 1939 by Bob Kane and Bill Finger. The “Bat-Man,” as he was known at the start, brought punishment to the evil-doers of Gotham City. Even though he is nearly 100 years old, Batman is still one of the most popular characters in popular media. Every few years, a new creative team takes a stab at reinterpreting the mythos for the movies or television, all the while new stories in comic books and video games keep Bruce Wayne’s adventures fresh.
Fans know that “Star Trek” first hit televisions in 1966 and has been a force on TV, film, books, cartoons, and even comic books ever since. The road Batman traveled to pop icon status has also been trodden by Gene Roddenberry’s creation. So it should not be a surprise that the two franchises have crossed paths on more than one occasion.
Recently, StarTrek.com writer Terry Parrett cataloged the times where performers from 1966’s “Batman” television show appeared on “Star Trek: The Original Series.” In his piece, Parrett skipped the easily recognizable Batman / Trek crossovers (like Frank Gorshin, Yvonne Craig, Roger C. Carmel, and Julie Newmar) and detailed the more obscure characters.
As Trek has changed through the years, Batman has too. From the 1950s and ’60s, the Caped Crusader was an almost comedic character, and his enemies were also silly. That all changed in 1986 when writer Frank Miller unveiled his take on Batman — “The Dark Knight Returns.” This angry, gritty Batman set the tone for most of the films which followed the publication of “Returns.” Tim Burton’s “Batman” put this new “dark” Batman into the public arena in 1989. As popular as Adam West’s surfing and shark repellent Batman was in the 1960s, this new Batman was here to stay — thanks to massive box office earnings.
While Parrett stuck to the 60s Batman/Star Trek crossovers, there have been numerous times where Trek actors appeared in the “Dark Knight” era.
Star Trek fans are familiar with Ron Perlman as the Reman Viceroy from “Star Trek: Nemesis.” As he is a prolific performer, it might surprise no one that Perlman also appeared in Batman shows — albeit as an animated character. Perlman was the voice of Clayface on “Batman: The Animated Series” and “The New Batman Adventures.” He voiced Killer Croc for “The Batman” and was the voice of Batman himself in the 2006 video game, “Justice League Heroes.”
Danny Goldring is a frequent guest on Trek, appearing on “Deep Space Nine,” “Voyager,” and “Enterprise.” Goldring’s connection to Batman was his role in 2008’s “The Dark Knight,” where he portrayed one of the Joker’s henchmen. Though he was wearing a clown mask for the part, Goldring told the Chicago Tribune that “you might recognize my voice.” In three out of the five times Goldring appeared on Trek, he was in prosthetics, meaning that fans had to recognize him by his voice as well.
Tony “Tiny” Lister, Jr.
For years, the late Tiny Lister was known as “Zeus” after the character, bringing him his first fame. Lister played opposite of Hulk Hogan in the movie “No Holds Barred.” Lister would appear in many films after that, including “Friday,” “The Fifth Element,” and “Austin Powers: Goldmember.” Lister appeared as a quiet yet intense convict on “The Dark Knight.”
Fans might remember his part on “Star Trek,” when Lister played the role of Klaang on the first episode of “Enterprise.”
Those who are diehard DS9 fans will remember Brett Cullen from the episode “Meridian” as the guy who lived only in the corporeal world for a few days over 60 years. It happened that on one of those days, Jadzia Dax fell in love with him. Cullen appeared in 2010’s “The Dark Knight Rises” as a state senator who was smitten with Catwoman (Anne Hathaway). He also appeared as Bruce Wayne’s father in 2019’s “Joker.”
Fans of J.J. Abrams’ Trek films recognize Bruce Greenwood as Christopher Pike in “Star Trek” and “Star Trek Into Darkness.” Greenwood is the third actor to portray Pike in Trek. Fans might remember him from many films, including “13 Days” and “I, Robot.” The Canadian actor was the voice of Batman/Bruce Wayne for Cartoon Network’s animated “Young Justice.”
One might imagine that a Batman movie or Trek show might require people of a specific talent. This is true for the folks who do the stunts. This is true for Pat Romano, who appeared in three Trek films, and “The Dark Knight Rises.” Same for Mark Chadwick, who worked on “Voyager,” “Enterprise,” and two Trek films. Chadwick played a truck driver in “The Dark Knight.” Trampas Thompson appeared on “Enterprise” and performed stunts on “The Dark Knight Rises.”
Scott Schneider is a digital set designer and model maker who has worked on Trek projects starting on “The Next Generation” all the way to the present with “Star Trek: Picard.” Schneider served a similar role on “The Dark Knight.” Aaron C. Fitzgerald, a set production assistant, worked for Abrams on “Mission: Impossible III” and rejoined Abrams on 2009’s “Star Trek.” He served in the same role for “The Dark Knight.”