Portrait of a Character – Malcolm (Ian) Reed
This character is canon, but he’s probably still called Malcolm. He is the Mirror Universe counterpart to the original canon character.
I didn’t like that, so I switched his name to Ian. I really liked the idea of the character attempting, but ultimately failing in life, to reinvent himself.
As in canon, Ian is played by actor Dominic Keating. Keating is the only person I can see in this role.
Ruthless and nasty, Ian has very little to recommend him. In Fortune, Beth Cutler and Tripp Tucker refer to him as “cruel and sadistic”. But there is another side to Ian, at least at the time of his death. In Throwing Rocks at Looking Glass Houses, Ian is partly blinded and knows that he’s got very little time left. His remaining life is pain and misery, as he has been mauled by a Gorn. Plus Hoshi Sato is running wild and has declared herself Empress.
Ian decides that he doesn’t want to be called Malcolm anymore. He decides that he will be Ian and he wants to return to Terra, to live out the remainder of his days. He hopes for some small measure of peace.
But Hoshi can’t allow that.
In a fit of Machiavellian pique, she ruthlessly murders everyone on the senior staff except for Tucker and Mayweather. Cutler is moved over to Sick Bay, and Hoshi hires a new doctor (Cyril Morgan). But before Ian’s death, Cutler is given two lethal syringes and is presented with Ian and Phlox. She has to kill both of them. Which one gets which syringe (one of which will be faster and somewhat painless)? Cutler helps her fellow human, and gives Ian the marginally better death.
Did Ian and Beth have a relationship? I’ve been asked this and, frankly, I’m not sure. The truth is, his best realized relationship is as a guide for Lili. When Ian holds her, comforts her, and otherwise cares for her, without any expectation of return, it allows him to advance in his atonement and move toward a modified state of grace.
“There’s the time, and I am sorry to be so mysterious. But tonight was to tell you who I am. That way, when you are next visited by me, you won’t be quite so alarmed.”
For me, this is a beloved character. I’ll have to figure out a way to bring him back.
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