Who's Who In Hellhound
The word has come down to us that some people are interested in knowing "who plays who in Hellhound." It should be obvious, given the illustrations and the inside jokes, that we aren't just pulling these faces out of our fevered imaginations, and are instead indulging ourselves by casting all our favorite raves and, in some cases, ughs, as characters in the so-called on-going saga. I don't see any reason to apologize for this, as I'm sure professionals do it all the time, right? Hellhound is, essentially, character-driven, the plot ("hey! let's all fight a revolution!") being secondary to all the twisted, insane, and hopefully entertaining things Servalan and her minions do to our beleaguered and not always completely admirable heroes. It's been that way from the beginning.
I should add that at this beginning, Susanne and I had it all planned out and swore a vow to follow a certain list of rules, one of which was that, since the number of books and the characters therein had already been decided on, we would not add anyone, no matter how fascinating his/her addition might be. Most of the rules we followed religiously, however, the one about the characters went belly-up in Book Three—but where would we be without Blood? It is very, very difficult, upon seeing someone who could bring excitement and thrills to writing, to turn him down—particularly when you're trying to keep writing ten books worth and you're feeling a little bored. So instead of switching fandoms, we just added more new faces, causing confusion for readers who were understandably curious about what these people looked like.
Yet, to be honest, I have my reservations about revealing which actors, musicians and others inspired the "original characters" for several reasons. The first reason is that I know that most readers of any story do their own mental "casting" of who's who, and I hesitate to dash anyone's cherished assumptions. One woman's meat (okay, this is sexist, but apt) may be another woman's poison, and some people are sure to be disappointed, disgusted, and will possibly lose all their interest in a certain character upon finding that his inspiration isn't someone they find suitable for the part. Hey, I was annoyed to find out that Michael Keaton was playing Batman, and I'm not even a Batman fanatic. As for the female characters, well—"she is not worthy" is the phrase that comes to mind. (No kidding, someone described Steffany White in these exact words.) Also, I know that some of these people are, how do you say—"obscure"—and it might not be easy to find a mug shot, unless you have eclectic tastes and a collection of movie, rock and roll, and hockey magazines from the 80's and 90's lying around, or just happened to have taped certain episodes of Mystery or Masterpiece Theatre. Hopefully, in the future some artists will be able to draw a suitable likeness from a photo reference—if we can find them—but until that day, revealing some of these names might be worse than no name at all. Readers should also be aware that there have been changes in height, eye color, weight, etc.—and that age is also fluid. Someone who is young in Hellhound will not look like the "actor" does at forty—especially if he or she has undergone a strange hair-do or weight fluctuation, as some of those from the music business are wont to do. (At least three of them are, sadly, now dead.) I guess we should also apologize to the fans of those who play the "bad guys." It's true that we do tend to "cast" people we like—and we "cast" them in parts we think they can fit—whether they're good, bad, or something in between. (We like Pierce Brosnan! Honest!)
In writing this first installment of what should be a three-part series, I am including only characters who are actually based on someone. If a character appears to be missing, it probably means that we had no one in mind for that part. Feel free, however, to write with any questions about these characters which you feel are not answered.
"God From the Machine"
The obvious inspiration for Gamaliel Weaver is Tom Baker's Dr. Who, but from the description it should be equally obvious that there are many changes. Think of him as Tom's much taller, red-headed, nasty big brother. Phelan Dagonrath is Simon LeBon of the band Duran Duran, this being the first, but by no means the only appearance of a member of this band in Hellhound. I think that drummer Roger Taylor is the only one who didn't make the cut.
"Cross of Diamonds"
Jules Greggory is actually Glen Greggory, the lead singer of the British band Heaven 17. Their album "The Luxury Gap" will give you an idea, although the inside drawing is a lot better than the one on the outside. Marilyn and Jody Danziger are Alanna Curry and Tom Bailey, from the Thompson Twins. (When we last heard, they were married.) At the time, we had no idea that Tom was to have a much more important role to play in Hellhound...
"Only the Thunder"
Poor Jeanine Orly got terrible reviews, through no fault of her own -- she was scheduled to die from the word go. She is Stevie Nicks of Fleetwood Mac. We don't really like Stevie Nicks, and it's easier to kill someone you don't really like. My husband likes Stevie, and thinks this was a terrible thing to do. Morten Hendricks is British soul singer Paul Young. He once dropped a microphone on his face, hence the discussion about proper mike handling with Luka Solvek in "Shadows More."
This story contains a thinly disguised version of the "Buckaroo Banzai" cadre—which explains, in part, why it is totally improbable, yet told completely "straight." Cobra Calhoun, however, is Don Johnson. Bruce Canton is Peter Weller. MTV Vanderbilt -- his role is tiny, but we're fond of him—is Jud Nelson. Encore to follow. Mallory Lawrey is Lothaire Bluteau, probably best known in fandom as a French-Canadian nutter on a Miami Vice episode, and a boffo performance it was. Sarah Miller is Madonna! Remember what I said about hair! Golden DuSable is dead, but he was Lewis Smith.
(As far as I know, however, Lewis Smith is not dead—just Golden. Let's not start any rumors.)
"When the Black Ship Came"
Nik Theodorides is George Michael. We never really liked ol' George. Sorry, Wham! fans. David Gyre is Glenn Tilbrook, lead singer for Squeeze. Later re-cycled as Ian Cussick...
"The Blood-Red Thread"
As this prequel was published in the Book I reprint, and it introduces a lot of characters who show up later, I am including it here.
Trahern Serada is Richard Jordan, Jahove Restal is Maurice Gibb of the Bee Gees, and Tayn Sibonek is Michael Brandon. Lew Brody is Lewis Collins—duh! Alesandro Malaren is Stuart Adamson, lead singer of Big Country. Since we pinched all his lyrics, it was the least we could do. "The Mutoid Controller" (later we learn his name is Jordan Kendall) is Ken Wahl. Ansel Butcher is Willem Dafoe (I thought he'd make a good mutoid for the story "One of My Kind," but Susanne protested vehemently!) and Prima (not to be confused with Jule's wife Prima) is Jenette Goldstein—cute couple.
"Where Were You Hiding?"
Bev Hastings is Annie Lennox of the Eurythmics. Elroy Vincent was Pete Burns, gender bender British rocker of the Boy George era.
"Rebel Without a Choice"
The thankless role of Steffany White fell on Stephanie Zimbalist. We discussed who would play this character for some time before we decided that Stephanie's looks would make her the right woman for the job (no glamour gal, but certainly attractive enough)—and we ran out of imagination when it came time to name her!
"Grip Earth and Let Burn"
A story rich in "original characters" who aren't based on anyone in particular, including the tragic (sob!) Naroo. I do know what Naroo looks like, and I believe I still have a drawing of him somewhere. Fil Serada is James Freud, lead singer of the Models, an Australian band.
"Ghost of Cain"
The two stories before this one have no significant "original characters" who haven't already shown up earlier. (Someone at this point is sure to say that they want to know who Sevran is. Well, he's only a little kid right now, and for my illustration, I used the cover of a National Geograhic magazine with a feature article about Norwegian Laplanders.) I do know who Daniel McIvar looks like, but I don't know his name—it was one of those cases when I saw someone in a featured part, thought he'd make a good character, and "cast" him without knowing his name. I do recall that he resembled Newt Gingrich -- heh heh heh... Chloe McIvar is Deborah Van Walkenburgh. Marc Avon is Dennis Hopper. Susanne discovered his amazing resemblance to Paul Darrow, pointed it out to me, and we simply couldn't buy the BBC version of "Avon's brother"—Hopper is too perfect. This is probably the only time we ignored the original casting of the show. Jilly Peet is Cher in a drab mode. For Cher in a glamorous mode, see Diama Rochellia. Ral Peet is Mike Peters, lead singer of the Alarm. Again, we stole his lyrics, so we owed him one.
Fen Payne is Eric Bazillian, guitarist for the band the Hooters. Blood Hakharrian is the second coming of Tom Bailey—I guess Avon didn't notice his amazing resemblance to Jody Danziger because his face was messed up. Blood was the first character we added after the fact (well, much of those in "Blood Red Thread" came in after the fact, but that story was written long after "Finders Keepers.")
There you have it. If any of this bothers you, feel free to change the casting in your own mind—believe me, I have a long list of who I would have called up for "Titanic" before I got to Leonardo DeCaprio...
— Katrina Larkin
Read my Dreambook!