No quality TV drama of the 1970s would be complete without some scenery chewing by the great thespian WilliamShatner.
The year after the original Star Trek TV show had finished up its third and final season, seemingly fated to an obscure footnote in TV history, Shatner guest-starred on Medical Center in March 1970, playing a brilliant but arrogantly single-minded researcher touting his new miracle cure for Hodgkin’s disease.
In a curious age, apparently before such things as an FDA approval process, Shatner’s Dr. Eli Neily pushes for human trials of his drug at Medical Center. But Mr. Integrity Dr. Joe Gannon, played by Chad Everett, pushes back in a board meeting, raising concerns about such trifles as patient safety, evidence-based practices and “side effects.”
“I cannot offer conclusions on a non-existent factor,” Shatner’s Dr. Neily sniffs.
Minutes later, Shatner and Chad Everett’s Joe Gannon clash in the hall. “Don’t patronize me, Mister,” Shatner snarls, and he then goes red-faced and launches into full Shatner rage mode, as he did so memorably in “The Enemy Within,” one of Star Trek’s all-time greatest episodes.