Iggy Pop is another rock star whose unique looks are perfectly suited to playing an alien. His appearance as the Vorta, Yelgrun, in Deep Space 9 was uncanny as if the grey skin and black eyes were just natural parts of his anatomy. And the way his cheekbones fit neatly into the prosthetics for the weird Vorta ears still gives me chills. Generally, the Vorta have no chill, but Yelgrun was the opposite, he was all chill, as he deadpanned his way through prisoner exchange negotiations with Quark’s mom in one of Trek’s funniest episodes, season 6’s The Magnificent Ferengi.
That deadpan delivery is the most striking aspect of Pop’s performance. For obvious reasons, Star Trek aliens almost always speak English, with recognizable Earthbound accents. So it isn’t remarkable that Pop kept his Michigan accent. But Pop’s speaking voice sounds other-worldly even when he’s not acting. Here, that accent sounds downright alien.
Showrunner Ira Stephen Behr is a fan and actually wanted Iggy for the season 3 episode Past Tense, but Iggy was on tour at the time. He was however available for this appearance, as he’d injured himself in a mosh pit (which I imagine is just one of the hazards of being Iggy Pop). Although, in that role, he’d have played a human, so I can’t help but think everything worked out exactly as it should’ve.