Oh, ’70s TV: An odd combination of rising stars, flash-in-the-pan faces we never saw again and an endless parade of faded celebrities from the past, all there to swallow their dignity and collect a paycheck.
Who knew we’d be watching this show 30+ years later, thanks to (in my case) TiVo Actor Wishlists that steer you to these unlikely guest spots.
Here are some very strange pop culture moments as these actors — known for far different fare — met the Angels.
The Rat Pack crooner (then 61) guest starred in the two-part Season 3 opener “Angels in Vegas” (1978) and romanced Kate Jackson, who was then 30. He played Tropicana Casino owner Frank Howell, who calls the Angels to Las Vegas to investigate some suspicious deaths.
2. Christopher Lee
Surprisingly, the intimidating Dracula star isn’t the main villain in the 1980 two-parter that introduced new Angel Tanya Roberts (“Angel in Hiding”), but he does run a rather shady modeling agency and he definitely inspires awe as he towers disapprovingly over Angels Kelly (Jaclyn Smith) and Kris (Cheryl Ladd), who’ve decided to gate-crash and audition without an invitation.
My mind is still kind of melted over the Hammer Horror legend entering the Aaron Spelling universe.
3. Tommy Lee Jones
The ultra-serious Oscar winner on a jiggle show? Yep, Jones appeared in the 1976 pilot episode as Aram Kolegian, who meets Kelly and Sabrina, who both pretend to be a missing heiress who was his childhood sweetheart. Once the ruse is revealed, he agrees to help since they’re there to uncover a shady murder plot.
He tells Jackson, “Shake ’em up, Sabrina.”
4. Jonathan Frakes
I wasn’t really familiar with Frakes’ work prior to Star Trek: The Next Generation, but the actor paid his dues with guest roles on The Dukes of Hazzard, Eight is Enough, Quincy, The Fall Guy, and yes, Charlie’s Angels. Specifically, a 1978 episode in which he’s a volleyball beach dude who extends a helping hand to an amnesiac Cheryl Ladd.
5. Jack Albertson
Sure, “The Man” in Chico and the Man wasn’t much of a people person, but casting him as a photographer who strangles beautiful young models after he’s captured their image?
Hardly believable, especially since the ’70-plus Albertson was looking especially frail in this 1980 episode, “Angel in Hiding.” He died a year later of cancer
Check out some appearances from other guest stars including Kim Basinger, Tom Selleck, Timothy Dalton, Kim Catrall and more!