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The Pain!! The great Jonathan Harris passes

I am – Hercules!!

Jonathan Harris, best known for his portrayal of Dr. Zachary Smith on “Lost in Space,” passed away Sunday. I can’t begin to explain how important this guy was to me at one point in my life.

I am one poor obit writer, and am too jammed up with real-world deadlines to write a proper tribute at the moment, but I also believe this news is too important to post belatedly.

Until we can revisit this great actor and his career, find a short piece from the Chiller Theatre site here. And I’m sure there are more than a few talkbackers who can honor this genius artist as well as I.

11/06/1914 - 11/03/2002

RIP





WOW!!! Uncool!!! Father Geek here with a bit on this... Jonathan was Soooooo much more than his great Dr. Smith character from the original LOST IN SPACE show.

I had the extreme pleasure of having lunch with Jonathan Harris a few years ago in Atlanta at one of that city's wonderful DragonCons. I was in the hotel cafe and I spotted him and asked if he would join me, which he gladly did. We had a great time talking about, not Lost In Space, but his long career as a voice actor. He was the voice of soooo many characters over the years: Lucifer on BATTLESTAR GALACTICA for one, and voices in TOY STORY 2, FREAKAZOID, DARKWING DUCK, SPIDERMAN, SUPERMAN, and RAINBOW BRITE tv shows to name just a few.

ANNNNND just last year at BUTT-NUMB-A-THON he made an appearance as the voice of "HUBERT'S BRAIN" in a phantastic short we featured at the fest that year (2001). So Long Jonathan all of us here at AICN Headquarters in Austin will miss you... thanks for ALL the great characters over the years...

Click Here for a List of His Work

Readers Talkback
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  • Nov. 4, 2002, 10:26 a.m. CST

    Pretty, pretty Dr. Smith RIP

    by bongjuice

  • Nov. 4, 2002, 10:47 a.m. CST

    Indeeed!

    by Shawn F.

    I loved the show quite a bit but the one thing that always stood out, even as a kid, was the banter between Harris and the Robot. Farewell, Dr. Smith. We'll miss you.

  • Nov. 4, 2002, 11:41 a.m. CST

    If they go in threes...

    by Kiyone

    ...will Robert Stack be next? I've heard he's terminally ill; I certainly hope he recovers, but he is in his late 80s. Another actor that's done a lot of animation voices late in life, but I'll always remember him best as Kramer from AIRPLANE! not to mention as the USOLVED MYSTERIES guy and Ultra Magnus!

  • Nov. 4, 2002, 11:49 a.m. CST

    Dr. Smith, we hardly knew ye

    by GypsyTRobot

    I'll never wear velour again without shedding a tear for the good doctor.

  • Nov. 4, 2002, 11:49 a.m. CST

    Never fear, Smith was here

    by 007-11

    This is worse than when Ray Walston went.

  • Nov. 4, 2002, 11:51 a.m. CST

    He Did for Alliteration What Huggy Bear Did for Platform Shoes

    by Aquatarkusman

    You cantankerous collection of clattering cogs!

  • Nov. 4, 2002, 12:19 p.m. CST

    His finest work was Space Academy

    by grillskill

    http://www.geocities.com/Hollywood/Hills/6009/spacea.htm http://filmationarchives.com/

  • Nov. 4, 2002, 12:44 p.m. CST

    Smith began Lost in Space as a dangerous saboteur but it was his

    by Regis Travolta

    Farewell Dr. Smith, you brought much laughter and fun to this boy's everlasting delight. Will Robinson never had a better friend even though you did use him as a human shield and job-doer. Your cowardice is legendary throughout the universe!

  • Nov. 4, 2002, 12:46 p.m. CST

    A little story about Jonathan Harris;

    by Otter

    It was my first sci-fi convention: Boston, 1990, and it was a Creation Entertainment show. Mr. Harris had sat down for autographs, and Creation's autograph policy is "no personalization on autographs, no pictures". A huge Steven Seagal wannabe was monitoring the line when a young woman in front of me asked Mr. Harris if she could have a picture. The Seagal wannabe muscled in and started to move her away,when Mr. Harris said "PISS OFF!!! GET HER A CHAIR!!!" The mongoloid sheepishly got her a chair as Mr. Harris said " Now dear, get close so we can get a nice picture together." A true class act, and I thanked him for his gentlemanly behavior. I continued to see him at conventions after that, and he was always gracious. I told him once that he gave a lonely young boy from Providence many years of entertainment, and it brought a tear to his eye. Rest in Peace, Mr. Harris. You've earned it.

  • Nov. 4, 2002, 12:52 p.m. CST

    Farewell, Doctor

    by Synn

    I know that Mr. Harris had an extensive career, but to me he'll always be Dr. Smith. He brought a lot of joy to my child hood, and I'm saddened by his passing. Ironically, as I child, I constantly confused him with Richard Harris, having them both go within a month of each other is very strange for me.

  • Nov. 4, 2002, 1:03 p.m. CST

    Hopefully in Heaven will Dr. Smith be able to make love to Bart

    by Filthy Fox

    You guys know what I'm talking about right?

  • Nov. 4, 2002, 2:06 p.m. CST

    Week of Harris deaths?

    by DoggyDaddi

    :( ... oh well.. I wis him and his voice

  • Nov. 4, 2002, 2:28 p.m. CST

    "Come along you bubble-headed booby!"

    by Bad Guy

    "Take the boy!" "Oh, the pain!" "Never fear, Smith is here!" Has there ever been a more quotable TV character? He made Lost in Space so damn entertaining. It was required viewing when I was a kid. RIP Mr. Harris.

  • Nov. 4, 2002, 2:35 p.m. CST

    Dr. Smith

    by tbrosz

    He will be missed. I don't think he got nearly the credit he deserved for his animation work, much less holding up "Lost in Space" almost singlehandedly. RE: Lacey Chabert. For a REAL good time, plug that name into Google's Image Search function.

  • Nov. 4, 2002, 3:11 p.m. CST

    Harris in Battlestar Glactica

    by Electric_Monk

    Lucifer: Good news, Baltar. Some of our fighters may have enough fuel to return to us. Baltar: Good. Have them reengage the Galactia. Lucifer (in astonished voice): But they just disengaged. Baltar (laughing): Yes, it will drive them crazy. Leaning towards a Cylon soldier, Lucifer: He is not the only one. **************************** Lucifer: We have news from our outpost on Arctica. Baltar: They

  • Nov. 4, 2002, 4 p.m. CST

    An important piece of my childhood just died !

    by RobinP

    I was a kid of the sixties. Great era to be a kid. We had "Batman" we had "Thunderbirds" and we had Irwin Allen productions. Back then, there were no internet spilers, geeks, freaks or nerds. Just kids and adults who watched sci-fi for a good time. I don't think cynicism had yet been invented. I sure wan't aware of it at the time. Of the Allen productions, the jewel in the crown was "Lost in Space". From its beginnings as a black and white adventure series with an exciting story arc about space colonisation to its eventual over the top pop art bizarreness, the stars of the show were always the bumbling, incompetent, workshy, dastardly Dr Smith and the faithful robot. He was the first tv villain I can remember that you couldn't help but like. My seeing Lost in Space at an early formative age moulded my interests, as well as most of you reading this, forever. Maybe it wasn't good "sci-fi" but it was damned entertaining and it wouldn't have been the same without tv's first weekly recurring special guest star. Thank you, Mr Harris for the memories of those great sunday evenings with my parents watching your performances. God speed.

  • Nov. 4, 2002, 4:05 p.m. CST

    Geez, what's with all the death?

    by Terry_1978

    Way too depressing, man...I need a breather.

  • Nov. 4, 2002, 4:06 p.m. CST

    It's a sad thinig to see Mr. Harris go.

    by Juggernaut125

    His elocution and timing made watching Lost in Space (reruns) quite a joy. If they do indeed come in threes. My money's on Bob Hope who has merely seven months left before his 100th birthday. GO BOB!

  • Nov. 4, 2002, 5:41 p.m. CST

    Oh dear, Oh dear, Oh dear....

    by jesuschrist

  • Nov. 4, 2002, 5:49 p.m. CST

    Why no news

    by zacdilone

    I can't find anything about this at any news site online. Is the media ignoring this?

  • Nov. 4, 2002, 5:50 p.m. CST

    Oh damn. Now this does make me sad.

    by MyNameDoesn'tFit

    So long, Dr. Smith. Your alliterative tirades will not be forgotten. Handsome, pretty handsome Dr. Smith, indeed. Rest in peace.

  • Nov. 4, 2002, 5:53 p.m. CST

    Rest in Space, Dr. Smith

    by wildmanofborneo

    As MacArthur Park slowly melts in the rain, I mourn for the Harrises, Richard & Jonathan. One from the past imagination (King Arthur in Camelot) and one in a Future we didn't used to be afraid to face. Two bookends of my childhood are now out there somewhere, hopefully sharing a heavenly cocktail.

  • Nov. 4, 2002, 6:10 p.m. CST

    Father Geek, you forgot JASON OF STAR COMMAND...

    by Monkey_King

    One of Harris' other Sci-Fi shows featuring him with a moustache and sans robot sidekick. He will be missed. He was pretty good as the Praying Mantis in A BUGS LIFE. Oh Dear indeed!

  • Nov. 4, 2002, 6:31 p.m. CST

    Thanks for that google image search tip

    by Terry_1978

    Very nice, my friend...LOL. And it's also awesome at locating pictures of those hard to find voiceover actors(why do they have such a problem with revealing themselves in photos, anyway?)

  • Nov. 4, 2002, 7:33 p.m. CST

    Harris was indeed a really nice guy to the fans

    by Smilin'Jack Ruby

    Saw him at a million conventions myself and he was always a class act. Really nice to everybody and ALWAYS a guy who made time for his fans.

  • A truly down-to-earth human being. The amazing thing is many people thought he was from British stock. He was born to Russian immigrants in New York. He used to have this thick Bronx accent when he was a kid and trained his voice to what we heard and loved. A one-of-a-kind gentleman who will be missed.

  • Nov. 4, 2002, 9:30 p.m. CST

    Monkey_King, you are thinking of Space Academy, not Jason of Sta

    by grillskill

    Jason of Star Command had James Doohan(Scotty)in it, not Johnathan Harris. They were both produced by Filmation and can be confused easily enough. http://www.geocities.com/Hollywood/Hills/6009/spacea.htm http://filmationarchives.com/

  • Nov. 4, 2002, 9:32 p.m. CST

    Oh Christ....

    by radio1_mike

    You know... I just logged on to check the site.. And I find out this. Yet, another great memory from childhood- gone. Well, we'll always have LIS and Star Academy...

  • Nov. 4, 2002, 9:35 p.m. CST

    Sorry.

    by radio1_mike

    It was Space Academy and Jason of Star Command... I always got those mixed up!

  • Nov. 4, 2002, 9:41 p.m. CST

    Jolly Jim's

    by radio1_mike

    I saw him just a few years ago at Jolly Jim's Show and Flea in the Bayside Expo Center. He was a nice guy, and you could tell he sincerely enjoyed his celebrity and fans... Man. this is really bumming me out. I always dug it, when Dr. Smith would be in danger, and he'd scream like a girl, push either Will or Penny in front him. Great guy and great actor.

  • Nov. 4, 2002, 9:42 p.m. CST

    Jolly Jim's

    by radio1_mike

    I saw him just a few years ago at Jolly Jim's Show and Flea in the Bayside Expo Center. He was a nice guy, and you could tell he sincerely enjoyed his celebrity and fans... Man. this is really bumming me out. I always dug it, when Dr. Smith would be in danger, and he'd scream like a girl, push either Will or Penny in front him. Great guy and great actor.

  • Nov. 4, 2002, 11:20 p.m. CST

    I remember seeing him on Conan...

    by KONG33

    Great guy, great sense of humor.

  • Nov. 5, 2002, 12:55 a.m. CST

    jonathan harris rip

    by jonas grumby

    i'm a tv producer and had the pleasure of interviewing jonathan last spring. he was a delight.. talking to him on the phone for the pre-interview was a hoot. he was funny as hell, cursing up a storm and just being honest. i wish i could have tapped the call. it's not often i meet a celebrity who is that cool. i'd trade a thousand julia roberts and brad pitts for one jonathan harris anyday. shame on hollywood for not using him more. bah rip. jonathan :)

  • Nov. 5, 2002, 1:10 a.m. CST

    filthy fox...

    by Biggus Dickus

    Yes, that was a classic Simpsons where Smith basically invited Bart out to the parking lot for some NAMBLA lovin'. I think that is the same one with the droid wrestling match-Cylon Raiders form Battlestar Galactica and the Homosexual robots from Star Wars...classic.

  • Nov. 5, 2002, 5:59 a.m. CST

    Oh my god im sick of this!!

    by EvilStar

    EVERYTIME a person in the entertainment industry from ANY era dies, they happen to have been SO goddamned important to Hercules and or Harry. No matter how obscure they are you can be sure they they meant SO MUCH to them!! its all show. for once I would like to see them report a death as news and leave it at that. you dont see tv news reporters just going all emotional over every single death they report ahhh!!!!

  • Nov. 5, 2002, 2:14 p.m. CST

    Oh! The pain! The pain!

    by ArchDiver

    Unhand me you unfeeling bucket of bolts! Leave me to wallow in my sorrow! Oh, woe! AD out

  • Nov. 5, 2002, 6:50 p.m. CST

    Rest In Peace, Space-Paedophile!

    by thecomedian

    RIP Doctor Smith, his excursions with Will where often quite disturbing. Though I detested those scenes chiefly because I the only reason I've ever watched Lost In Space is to masturbate perfusely to the Judy & Penny in those form fitting outfits. How awful to be halfway-to-goey-grey-splatterville when suddenly the TV cuts to Dr. Smith & Will Robinson, the only guys on TV who make Batman & Robin look like The Cartrights. OH, THE PAIN!