This is the latest installment in a series of "Character Insight" articles regarding the rich history of characters in the Star Trek universe. An audio version will appear on the This Week in Trek podcast, available for direct download here.
Welcome back to Character Insight! This week, we profile the large pale man who stands behind Lwaxana Troi from TNG, her attendant Mr. Homn.
(Lurch and Mr. Homn are not all that different, if you think about it, courtesy memory-alpha.org)
Mr. Homn arrives with Lwaxana during most of her early appearances on board the Enterprise. As her attendant, he helps her with everything from tailoring a wedding dress, to planning a picnic for Riker and Deanna, to trying to find a husband. Perhaps making up for the overabundance of volume that comes out of her mouth, this character speaks only with sign language for the most part.
The one exception to this came in his first appearance, in the episode Haven. Following a dinner with Captain Picard, he says:
"Thank you for the drinks"
And that's all you get as far as quotes. Speaking of drinks, we know that Mr. Homn frequently consumes large amounts of alcohol without experiencing apparent effects. Of course, when your boss continuously leaves half-full wine glasses at the dinner table and when you have no qualms finishing those off, it's easy to get a belly full of alcohol.
His best moment likely came in the episode Dark Page, where he helps Deanna figure out why her mother has gone into a coma. When it is realized that she is in a coma to suppress the memory of a dead daughter Kestra who died as an infant, he reveals a saved picture of the child from 40 years ago which helps Lwaxana come to grips finally with her grief.
Just like she says about Captain Picard, Lwaxana says Mr. Homn harbors outrageously lustful thoughts, but it's hard to know how believable she is. After all, Mr. Homn stays around as attendant while the person he replaced in the role was Mr. Xelo, who was fired for lusting after Lwaxana too much. It must be a real hoot to have your boss read your mind all the time.
Lurch, I mean Mr. Homn, is an interesting background character who provides a nice contrast to Deanna's boisterous mother whenever she is around. While she is one of the more loathed characters in Star Trek, he generally seems to have positive reviews. But I guess when you stand next to Jar Jar Binks all the time, me se thinks you look super good.
Carey Struycken played Mr. Homn, and he of course played Lurch in the Addams Family movies around the same time as TNG. He's also known for his roles as the Giant on Twin Peaks, and as an alien on Men In Black.
Until next time, bang that gong Mr. Homn. (insert gong sound)
Feedback can be sent to me with future segment suggestions on Twitter @BuckeyeFitzy. Until next time, live long and prosper...