***H.I.T.O.G. is a blog series dedicated to memorable actors we love, but don’t really know. You’ve seen their faces many times, but for any given reason, they aren’t part of the mainstream conscious. Sure Gibson or Clooney have got the fame, but these guys have the moxie. This is a tribute to those actors and actresses whom inspire your inner “Hey, it’s that one guy!”***
It was a recent viewing of 80’s b-movie tribute flick Night Of The Creeps where I found myself saying, “Hey, it’s that one guy!” I feverishly whipped out my I-Pod touch to look up the film’s credits…and it was there that I discovered his name. Tom Atkins…..more like Tom “Mustachkins”. This guy has a Bronson-like “don’t fuck with me” lip-drape and a brutal line delivery that makes one cower in his presence. As I reviewed his filmography I noticed some more choice gems from my past. His cheese-cop role in George Romero’s Bruiser made the film entertaining enough to sit through. He starred in the “not a sequel” sequel, Halloween III: Season of The Witch. We’ve recently seen him in My Bloody Valentine 3D, and he’s also made appearances in classics Lethal Weapon and Maniac Cop.
According to IMDB, Atkins was born in 1935, and is from Pittsburgh. He attended Duquesne University in Pittsburgh and was a member of the Gamma Phi Fraternity. Atkins made his film debut as a rookie cop in the Frank Sinatra private eye outing “The Detective;” it was the first of many police officer roles he’s played throughout the years.
Although a little before my time, Atkins has just as extensive of a TV resume, appearing shows such as The Rockford Files, Walker Texas Ranger and the prison-rape drama Oz.
If you haven’t seen it, defiantly catch Night Of The Creeps. Directed by Fred Dekker (The Monster Squad), this film combines 80’s cheese with 50’s drive-in, B-movie horror. The simplistic plot revolves around alien slugs that infect the residents of a small town, turning them into a zombie-like state. It’s up to Chris (European Vacation’s Jason Lively) and crippled pal James (Steve Marshall) to put a stop to the madness. During the mayhem, Atkins provides bad-ass directives through dialog and over-acting as Det. Ray Cameron. If you’re sittin-on-ass one day because you’re a geek like me, this is your movie to watch.
Check out more of Atkins credits through the following link, and stayed tuned for # 2 in the series “Hey, It’s That One Guy!”
You’re fuckin out! – Kenny Powers