Rainn Wilson Must Think Like a Shark When He Boards the USS Discovery

Wilson will have to delve deeper into his manipulative side than when he played Schrute.

Okay, so we still don’t know when Star Trek: Discovery is going to hit our screens, but we do know that the cast list is starting to fill up with some big-name stars. We already know that Jason Isaacs (aka Lucius Malfoy in Harry Potter) will captain the Starship Discovery as Lorca. We also know that The Walking Dead star Sonequa Martin-Green will play Rainsford, a lieutenant commander, and Doug Jones will be the science officer Saru.

To this growing cast of luminaries, we can now add Rainn Wilson. According to a report by The Hollywood Reporter, Wilson will take the role of Harry Mudd when the CBS All Access drama finally goes live. At this stage, it’s not clear how many episodes Wilson will feature in, but Mudd was one of the characters from the original Star Trek series. However, playing the part of Mudd, an interstellar con man, will certainly be a departure from the straight-laced, tightly wound Dwight Schrute he shot to fame as in the US version of The Office.

Wilson Developed a Poker Face in The Office

During his time as Dunder Mifflin’s leading salesman/know it all/security advisor/anything he wanted to be, Schrute always the right side of the law. However, there were a number of occasions when he showed us his tricky side. The famous “meatball” ruse during which Schrute and coworker Stanley conned Jim into giving them meatballs (Jim thought he was pranking them, but in fact, he was punking himself) showed that Schrute could be sneaky when he wanted to be.

However, when he assumes the guise of Mudd, Wilson will have to delve deeper into his manipulative side than when he played Schrute. Perhaps this is where his fondness for poker could come in handy. During his time on The Office, Schrute spent a lot of time with Brian Baumgartner (Kevin Malone in the show) who is a self-confessed poker player. Although Malone’s claim that he won a bracelet at the 2002 World Series of Poker isn’t true, Baumgartner has played in Las Vegas a number of times.

From this, it seems Wilson has followed suit as he’s been known to play with The Office cast members such as Jenna Fischer and it could be this experience at the felt that could help in become a master at psychology when he plays Mudd. Indeed, despite describing his own poker “tell” as a painting of a “fecal clown mask“, Wilson will need to be, in poker terms, a shark at the table.

To Play Mudd Wilson Will Need to be a Shark

When you look at the breakdown of certain personality types at the poker table, the “shark” is always the most feared. Aside from an acute understanding of the game, they are masters are setting traps. In fact, according to 888poker ambassador Bruno Kawauti, sharks typically like to “dominate games” from the first hand and that’s very much the same mentality as a conman.

Getting into someone’s head early and bombarding them with ideas and information is a tactic used to bamboozle someone into submission. Wilson certainly has a way with words (you only have to

look at some of the monologues from Schrute in The Office to know that), so if he can combine this with some of his experience at the poker table he may just be the perfect man to play Mudd.

Of course, the proof will be in the pudding, but when we’ll get to sample the next intergalactic delight is anyone’s guess. For now, we’ll just have to keep looking up at the stars and hope for a sign from the Star Trek gods. However, at least we now know that we can count on Wilson to give us something to smile about when the show finally airs.

Ian Cullen is the founder of scifipulse.net and has been a fan of science fiction and fantasy from birth. In the past few years he has written for 'Star Trek' Magazine as well as interviewed numerous comics writers, television producers and actors for the SFP-NOW podcast at: www.scifipulseradio.com When he is not writing for scifipulse.net Ian enjoys playing his guitar, studying music, watching movies and reading his comics. Ian is both the founder and owner of scifipulse.net You can contact ian at: ian@scifipulse.net
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