Monday, September 26, 2011

Poll result and variegated toupological miscellany.

Our most recent poll asked for your thoughts on the question of when - or if - Bill Shatner went fully Patrick Stewart-style bald.

Only one voter thought that this was only in recent times; 5% thought it was during the 1990s, while he was in his 60s; 10% thought it was during the 1980s, while he was in his 50s; 18% thought it was during the 1960s, while he was in his 30s; 28% said: "Never. There's probably still something on top, though not much." The most votes, 35%, went to the 1970s option, while Bill Shatner was in his 40s.

Bill Shatner circa 1972 - was he already fully bald underneath?

Thanks for voting! Now for the variegated toupological miscellany part...

Firstly, we have a truly incredible image - perhaps the defining image of our age - Bill Shatner looking knowingly at a bald eagle. Is he angry? After all, the bald eagle isn't actually bald. So why call yourself bald if you're not? Doesn't that do a disservice to people like Bill Shatner? Or is it only fair? Bill Shatner doesn't call himself bald and he is, so why not the other way round? Or was Bill Shatner angry because he moved to the US when he learned that its national symbol was the bald eagle - and then he discovered that it wasn't really bald.

The image was on sale at eBay (apparently it's from a 1971 documentary).

To make matters even more poignant, here's Bill Shatner in 2008 talking about the plight of this bird (using the word "bald" three times) and contrasting it to action on climate change. Perhaps he feels great affection and empathy with any creature who is labelled as "bald"!

Next, it seems that Bill Shatner is increasingly sneaking the word "hair" into almost every interview he undertakes these days. Is this part of a process to make the actor more comfortable with such matters? Or is he giving a nod - as politicians often do - to his base?

Firstly, we have a recent radio interview in which Bill Shatner talked to Howard Stern (with George Takei also present - the full interview can be heard in three parts here).

The debate shifts to that eternally fascinating question of why Bill Shatner, now both wealthy and well into his autumnal years, still works so hard. Stern then reveals that he only works three days a week. Bill Shatner asks what he does with the rest of his time before adding "Well, I mean, cut some hair...!" An interesting suggestion for one's free time. Does Bill Shatner use his free time to work on his hair?

And did Bill Shatner know that there are questions about Stern's own hair too?

Next, we have a recent interview between Bill Shatner and his daughter Lisabeth, in which Captain Kirk set the nerdosphere ablaze by claiming that Star Trek was better than Star Wars (full clip here). Once again, Bill Shatner manages to sneak the word "hair" into the mix:

In this case, the actor's statements are pretty ironic considering his own toupological history.

"God knows what those actors [in Star Wars] look like in reality with all those special effects. I mean, there's no telling what ILM did for those faces and those hairdos. They may have walked around with nothing on! ... We don't know! We don't know what they were like."

Image sourced here.

The above words really could not have more double-meaning. The same, of course, can be said for Captain Kirk in the original series. Can we ever truly appreciate what the Star Trek hair department did for Bill Shatner? When the cameras were off, he too could have been walking around without his toupee - and, well, we don't know!"

Some of you also noted some interesting idiosyncrasies of Bill Shatner's "Denny Katz" in the aforementioned clip.

Was the toup dyed or colored darker than Bill Shatner's real hair at the back of his head (we'd say the answer to that is probably yes)? And what's going on at the sides?

And, as some of you wondered, is Bill Shatner's hair undergoing another major shift - perhaps a return to a style more akin to the "Jim Kirk lace" (perhaps as part of lobbying efforts to be in the next Trek movie)? Or is he simply utilizing the "flexible booster pack" abilities of the "Denny Katz"?

According to our "Department of Toupological Alterations" which is responsible for maintaining its color-coded "Toupological Advisory System", the risk of a major hairstyle shift still remains low. Their advise, at present, is: "Remain calm but vigilant as there are some minimal signs that Bill Shatner would perhaps like to make his 'Denny' a little more 'Jim-like'".

"That guy next to me actually has hair but shaves it! What's the world coming to?"

Finally, as reader "Clayton Forrester" pointed out, talk-show host Craig Ferguson recently included a Bill Shatner toupee joke in his monologue.

Toupee joke around 2m 44s.

What makes this all the more significant is that this was just days after Bill Shatner appeared as a guest on his show. We doubt very much that there were any negative vibes during that appearance or malice intended during the latter. Rather, it appears that the opposite is true.

So does Bill Shatner welcome good toupological jokes, even in public, from his friends (so long as he isn't there directly)? Or has Ferguson committed a major faux pas?

Thanks, as always, to our readers for your endless tips!


  1. Who knows, perhaps he is planning to dig out the TJ curly from the back of his wardrobe or "...wherever they shift bitter old toupee's to when they retire".

  2. shats own real syrupSeptember 27, 2011 at 1:34 AM

    wow that was something, a toupee joke! is he also in on the act? And he joked about shatner being overweigh, even in it just me or is that craig furguson's real hair himself? At least he has not been egg bald from about 1968.....just my guess, by how quickly, your photos show that he was thining. And men it was fast.

  3. He had katz make the sides of his toup look more curvy and natural because he read your blog and freaked out!

  4. I just want to thank the owners of this site for the great work they do here. When the site goes a week without an update I start to get withdrawal symptoms.

    btw, I listened to that interview on the stern show. It is amazing this man is 80 years old and works as he does. It was a strange contrast to stern's new 3 day a week schedule with 13 weeks off a year.

    I also need to mention an interview shatner did during the release of the motion pictue with the today show. The host mentioned his hair changes since the series and shatner almost turned white. He eventually replied "things Change". I need to find that clip and get it to you. Very good psychological toup study in that clip.

  5. Many thanks to the WSSTS for the fine work that it does, and for posting the Craig Ferguson clip. One interesting note: Craig never actually says "Shatner wears a toupee"; he merely _asks_ if Shatner wears a toupee (and impersonates a Shatneresque denial). This echoes the final line of Shatner's book: "Do I wear a toupee?" Maybe this hints at the type of good-natured toup-ribbing Shats is prepared to tolerate from his friends: Comments similar to those he has already made about himself.

  6. Thanks for your comments! @markm - That would indeed be a most significant find! -ST

  7. shats own real syrupSeptember 27, 2011 at 10:26 PM

    @ markm i so hope you can found that william sayings "things change" in that clip, is almost like himself saying "well things change, like i thought about having a toup, that would stay on my head whatever happend, unlike my old jim kirk toup"......just an interesting thought?

  8. Don't know if you'll be able to find that video, but Shat's reaction when Jane Pauley mentions his hair in that mid-70's interview is priceless.

  9. Toupee or not toupeeSeptember 29, 2011 at 12:00 AM

    I wonder if he ever takes his toupee off? Do his wife/family/household or friends ever see him sans wig? Does he wear his wig in the shower to convince himself it's real? Why do I care?!!!

    Maybe any original hair on his head rubbed off millenia ago due to friction of the wig or lack of sunlight.

    1. I wonder if he ever takes his toupee off? Do his wife/family/household or friends ever see him sans wig? Does he wear his wig in the shower to convince himself it's real? Why do I care?!!!

      These are the fundamental questions this website should address. Perhaps its time for an interview with William Shatner himself?

  10. I'm sure he doesn't ever take his toupee off now himself and I doubt that he has ever taken off his toupee on his own in the past 30 or so years. In all that time he has been wearing hair systems which are meant to be worn 24/7 including in the shower and are only replaced every few weeks by a professional.

  11. Our apologies to reader "tmk" for his/her comment being stuck in hyperspace for several days. An automatic spam detector made a wrong identification. -ST

  12. I"m so happy that Bill's gone back to wearing lousy toups. The clip in which he is wearing a red shirt shows as mentioned it coming up in the back but always ridiculously thick even for a man in his 20's. For while I thought thatthe transplant/light lace look was here to stay. Thankfully Shat is back to poor judgment he used in the early 70's and 80's.