Mark Goddard has been Lost in Space for almost 50 years, and is proud of the long history of the classic sci-fi TV show, as detailed in his book he will be signing as he meets with fans at the upcoming NorthEast Comic Con & Collectibles Extravaganza March 15-17 at the Regency Hotel & Conference Center in Boxboro MA.
A local New Englander, Mark starred as Major Don West, assisting the Space Family Robinson on their adventures, along with having a small role in the 1998 remake motion picture.
Mark Goddard was born Charles Harvey Goddard in Lowell, MA, the youngest of five children, and grew up in Scituate, MA. He led both his high school baseball and basketball teams to the state championship finals. Goddard dreamed of becoming a basketball player, but eventually turned to acting. He originally attended Holy Cross College after high school, but he then transferred and studied at the American Academy of Dramatic Arts in New York City. After two years, he moved to Los Angeles, California.
In 1959, after just three weeks in Hollywood, he landed a role in the CBS Four Star Television series Johnny Ringo, having played the character of Cully, the deputy to Don Durant‘s character of Ringo. At this time, he changed his name to Mark Goddard at the suggestion of his friend and mentor Chuck Connors of The Rifleman. Goddard appeared as Norman Tabor in the 1960 episode “Surprise Party” of the CBS anthology series The DuPont Show with June Allyson. He was cast as Sheldon Hollingsworth in the 1960 episode “To See the Elephant” of the ABC Western series The Rebel, starring Nick Adams. He played Tod Rowland in the 1960 episode “The Mormons” on Dick Powell’s Zane Grey Theater.
Goddard also was signed for a role lasting three years and 64 episodes in The Detectives, another series produced by Four Star Television. The Detectives was a hit series which ran on ABC and NBC from 1958 to 1961. In 1963, Goddard appeared as Roy Mooney on the Perry Mason episode “The Case of the Potted Planter”.
In 1965, he played Lester Crawford in “The Case of the Frustrated Folk Singer”. He also appeared with Keir Dullea as sparring college roommates in an episode of ABC’s drama series Channing, costarring Jason Evers and Henry Jones. He was featured in the 1965 film A Rage to Live, starring Suzanne Pleshette. From 1964 to 1965, Goddard starred in Many Happy Returns, in which he portrayed Bob Randall, the young husband of Joan Randall, played by Elinor Donahue.
Goddard’s next role was for the three seasons of Lost in Space (1965–68), in which he played Major Don West. The original 1965 pilot was much different from the pilot that aired and the episodes that followed in the actual series. A blossoming romance existed between Don West and Judy, the elder daughter of the Robinson family, but it did not extend further than the first season. By the middle of the second season, the show took on a more comic tone.
Plots increasingly drew on the mishaps of Dr. Zachary Smith (Jonathan Harris) and his friends, who could always be counted upon to save him and all of the inhabitants of the Jupiter II.
In December 1990, Mark and the entire living cast of Lost In Space (without Guy Williams who passed away in 1989) reunited at the Collectibles Extravaganza at Bayside Expo Center in Boston for the 20th Anniversary and first time since the show wrapped. Produced by NEComicCons producer Gary Sohmers, the event was legendary as a fan could have purchased an autograph of all 10 cast members for only $40 after an $8.00 admission. The 1995 reunion for the 25th Anniversary was also produced by Sohmers for his Collectibles Extravaganza and drew record crowds to meet the cast.
Goddard guest-starred on three ABC series, The Fugitive, The Mod Squad, and The Fall Guy and for a while, moonlighted as a Hollywood agent. In 1976, he starred as politician Edward Fleming in the movie Blue Sunshine. In 1970, Goddard co-starred with Kent McCord and Martin Milner in an episode of Adam-12, in which he plays a friend of Pete Malloy (Milner), who is killed in the line of duty. The episode was entitled “Elegy for a Pig” (so titled and announced by Jack Webb himself).
Goddard played a supporting role in a first-season episode of NBC’s Quincy M.E. as an attorney. In 1978, Goddard starred with Liza Minnelli on Broadway in the musical The Act. In 1979, Goddard was in the disco movie Roller Boogie featuring Linda Blair and Jim Bray. Goddard starred as Ted Clayton on One Life to Live and Lt. Paul Reed on The Doctors. Later, Goddard starred as Derek Barrington on General Hospital. He made a cameo appearance in the reboot film Lost in Space (1998) as the general in charge of the Jupiter Mission and superior officer to his former character Major Don West.
Goddard finished college 30 years after beginning his studies and received his master’s degree in education from Bridgewater State College. From 1991 through at least 2009, he served as a special education teacher at the F.L. Chamberlain School in Middleboro, Massachusetts, where he taught an acting class. In 2009, he released an autobiographical memoir To Space and Back. While at Bridgewater State College, he met his future wife, English professor Evelyn Pezzulich. The couple has one child, John. His second wife, actress Susan Anspach, brought two children to their marriage.
Mark will be appearing in a Q&A, will be signing autographs and offering selfie photo ops with fans (both for a fee).
Tickets are available online at NEComicCons.com/ticket-page.