Diana Muldaur’s 3 Star Trek TOS & TNG Characters Explained – News Today

Diana Muldaur’s 3 Star Trek TOS & TNG Characters Explained

Diana Muldaur appeared in two episodes of Star Trek: The Original Series long before she took on the role of Dr. Pulaski in Star Trek: TNG.

Diana-Muldaur-Star-Trek

Summary

  • Diana Muldaur played three different characters in the Star Trek franchise, all of whom happened to be doctors.
  • In her appearances on Star Trek: The Original Series, Muldaur played Dr. Ann Mulhall and Dr. Miranda Jones.
  • Muldaur later joined Star Trek: The Next Generation as Dr. Katherine Pulaski, the Chief Medical Officer of the USS Enterprise-D.

Diana Muldaur has played three different Star Trek characters in Star Trek: The Original Series and Star Trek: The Next Generation. Diana Muldaur is one of the few actors to have visited both the Enterprise of Captain James T. Kirk (William Shatner) and Captain Jean-Luc Picard’s (Patrick Stewart) Enterprise-D. While Leonard Nimoy, Deforest Kelley, and James Doohan all briefly reprised their original roles on TNGMuldaur played different characters in all three of her Star Trek appearances. While none of her three characters are related, all of them happen to be doctors.

In Star Trek: The Original Series season 2, episode 2, “Return To Tomorrow,” Diana Muldaur plays Dr. Ann Mulhall, an astrobiologist on the Enterprise. Later, in TOS season 3, episode 5, “Is There In Truth No Beauty?,” Muldaur plays the unrelated character of Dr. Miranda Jones, a telepathic psychologist. While on TOSMuldaur became friends with Star Trek creator Gene Roddenberry, which led him to cast her in some of his other projects, including TNG. She went on to portray Dr. Katherine Pulaski in 20 episodes of Star Trek: The Next Generation season 2.

Outside of Star Trek, Diana Muldaur is perhaps best known for playing lawyer Rosalind Shays on L.A. Law, a role that earned her two Emmy nominations.

Star trek enterprise archer the next generation picard captain burnham

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Dr. Ann Mulhall

Star Trek: The Original Series Season 2, Episode 2 – “Return To Tomorrow”

Star Trek Return to Tomorrow Diana Muldaur

In Star Trek: The Original Series‘ “Return to Tomorrow,” Diana Muldaur’s Dr. Ann Mulhall joins Captain Kirk, Spock (Leonard Nimoy), and Dr. Leonard McCoy (DeForest Kelley) as part of an away team where they encounter a powerful, god-like being named Sargon (voiced by James Doohan). Sargon and his two companions, Henoch and Thalassa, had survived the destruction of their planet and had stored their minds in glowing spheres. These beings requested to inhabit the bodies of Kirk, Spock, and Dr. Mulhall to construct android bodies they could then transfer themselves into. In the bodies of Spock and Mulhall, Henoch and Thalassa try to take over their new bodies permanently, but are eventually stopped by Sargon and the Enterprise crew.

Dr. Ann Mulhall holds the rank of Lieutenant Commander, making her the highest-ranking female officer to appear on Star Trek: The Original Series.

Since Dr. Mulhall spends most of the episode being possessed by Thalassa, not much is learned about her as a character. Mulhail served as an astrobiologist and must have been a fairly recent addition to the USS Enterprise crew, as Captain Kirk did not recognize her when she joined their landing party. Mulhall was initially reluctant to allow Thalassa’s mind to inhabit her body, correctly suspecting the beings had ulterior motives. She eventually agrees and very nearly loses her body in the process.

Dr. Miranda Jones

Star Trek: The Original Series Season 3, Episode 5 – “Is There In Truth No Beauty?”

Star Trek In Truth No Beauty Diana Muldaur

In her second Star Trek appearance, Diana Muldaur portrays Dr. Miranda Jones, a telepathic psychologist who arrives on the Enterprise alongside the Medusan Ambassador Kollos. The Medusans were non-corporeal beings whose appearance drove humans insane, so Kollos boarded the Starship Enterprise in a transport carrier. With the aid of a protective visor, Jones could look upon Kollos, as could Spock, due to his telepathic abilities. Jones had spent four years on Vulcan honing her psychic abilities so she could block out unnecessary noise.

Jones was also unaffected by Kollos’ appearance because she was blind, although she did not want others to know this. She wore a beautifully designed sensor web over her dress, which allowed her to perceive the objects and people around her. Although Jones exhibited some jealousy of Spock because of his higher Vulcan telepathic abilities, she generally wished to avoid human emotions. Despite her jealousy, she saved Spock’s life when he inadvertently viewed Kollos without a visor. Jones later established a true mental link with Kollos that brought her a sense of peace and allowed her to carry on with her assignment.

Dr. Katherine Pulaski

Star Trek: The Next Generation Season 2

After Gates McFadden was not asked to return as Dr. Beverly Crusher for Star Trek: The Next Generation season 2, Diana Muldaur was brought aboard as Chief Medical Officer of the USS Enterprise-D. Dr. Katherine Pulaski was meant to be a female version of Bones from Star Trek: The Original Series, but this did not quite work. Diana Muldaur did her best with the role and Dr. Pulaski had her moments, but overall, the character simply didn’t gel with the cast of TNG. In her earliest days on the Enterprise, Pulaski was particularly rude to and dismissive of the android Lt. Commander Data (Brent Spiner), but she warmed to him throughout the season.

Star Trek Dr Pulaski

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Diana Muldaur only appeared in one season of Star Trek: The Next Generation as Dr. Katherine Pulaski, and she gives her side of why she left the show.

An intelligent and competent doctor, Pulaski was particularly skilled at heart surgery, and she saved the life of Captain Picard in TNG season 2, episode 17, “Samaritan Snare.” Despite her sometimes prickly personality, Pulaski cared deeply about her patients and fought to help those in need. Although Dr. Pulaski only served on the Enterprise-D for one season, she was a part of some great episodes of TNG and Diana Mulduar has certainly left an indelible mark on the Star Trek franchise.

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