Especially for St Andrew’s Day, in no particular order of Scottishness
20 Connor MacLeod
Okay, let’s get the crappest sci-fi Scotsman out of the way first. He may have worn a kilt, but that accent was fooling no-one. Who had the bright idea of casting a Frenchman as a Highland warrior? Of course, the irony was that his Spanish mentor was played by a Scot – Sean Connery – who sounded more Scottish than Connor did. Oh, and don’t worry – we’re not going to fill half this feature with mentions of all the various Highlanders (Quentin from the animated series, Colin from the anime, Duncan from the live action TV series, etc). Consider this an entry the whole bunch of ’em. . .
Blimey, Scottish superheroes are hard to come by (well, mainstream Scottish superheroes, anyway) and Wolfsbane – a Scottish werewolf, basically (Scottie dog, anyone? No?) – is one of the few. Even then, she never made it into the big time. She’s been a member of six secondary X-teams – the New Mutants, Excalibur (the British X-Men), X-Factor, X-Force, X-Factor Investigations and New X-Men – without making it into the premier league. It could all be a subtle metaphor for Scottish football. . .
18 Grant Morrison
Glasgow-born creator of Animal Man and The Invisibles , he’s currently re-inventing Superman for DC’s new universe. He once wrote a comic strip for Doctor Who Magazine , “The World Shapers” which showed displayed some Caledonian solidarity by featuring the Doctor’s Scottish companion, Jamie McCrimmon. . .
17 Brigadier Alistair Gordon Lethbridge Stewart
We never really thought about his roots (though the name clearly should have clued us in) until he turned up in “Terror Of Zygons” – aka, Doctor Who And The Loch Ness Monster – wearing a kilt and proudly acknowledging his heritage, to the Doctor’s amusement. . .
16 Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
Edinburgh-born Arthur Ignatius Conan Doyle not only created Sherlock Holmes, but gave the world another more fanciful protagonist in the form of Professor Challenger, star of The Lost World and other stories. . .
15 Steven Moffat
Just as one Scot left – David Tennant – another came on board to run Doctor Who . And while Tennant disguised his real accent, Moffat was having none of that Scots denial nonsense. Forget the gay agenda, now we had the Scottish agenda: a Scots companion, gags about frying Mars bars, and a TARDIS that’s been repainted to look suspiciously bluer and whiter than ever before… . .
14 Nick Cutter
The ARC team’s original leader was your archetypal no-nonsense Scot, born in Edinburgh. Mercifully TV-Scot cliché-free, he didn’t have to prove his heritage by quaffing whisky, hunting haggis or playing with his sporran. He only had to open his mouth to prove he was Caledonian to the core. . .
13 Mark Millar
Born in Coatbridge, Scotland, Millar is now one of the most powerful comic writers on the planet, with Wanted and Kick Ass giving him Hollywood credentials. We’ve been hearing for ages that he wants to make his directorial debut with a Scottish superhero epic, but firm news is still yet to come. . .
12 Jamie McCrimmon
Yet another iconic Scots sci-fi character not actually played by a Scot. Jamie was the second Doctor’s companion for all but one story in the Patrick Troughton era. When originally cast, Frazer Hines, despite the name (he was born in Yorkshire) had to adopt a Scottish accent. Because he was only supposed to be in one story (“The Highlanders”) Hines initially opted for an authentic accent, but then the producers decided to make Jamie a companion, and he toned the accent down in subsequent stories to be more TV-friendly. He never lost the kilt, though. . .
11 Desmond Hume
Although born in Peru, and then moving with his family to Spain, actor Henry Ian Cusick had a Scottish dad and did spend a little while growing up in Glasgow, before then being uprooted more, this time to Trinidad and Tobago. It’s quite remarkable his Scottish accent survived all that, but luckily it did, when Lost was looking for an Irish or Scottish character to add to the cast with season two. . .
10 The Seventh Doctor
We’ve mostly avoided just highlighting Scottish actors who’ve played sci-fi roles (because there are so damned many of them) but it wasn’t just the fact that McCoy is Scottish that made us decide to include the seventh Doctor. He wore a tartan or Paisley scarf for much of his run on the show and sounded pretty Scottish to us. After all, every planet has a north of the border. . .
9 Moira MacTaggert
Dr Moira Kinross MacTaggert is a leading expert on genetic mutation in the X-Men comics, but a CIA agent in X-Men: First Class . She was also considerably more Scottish in the comics (as the word bubbles above prove). She also created a Mutant Research Center on Muir Island, off the coast of Scotland, which became the home to Excalibur for a while. They all got drunk in the local pub in one issue. . .
8 Ken MacLeod
MacLeod was born in Stornaway, in the Outer Hebrides, which is pretty impressively Scottish if you ask us. Best known for his hard SF novel with a strong political slant, but has yet to write a sci-fi satire on Scottish devolution. . .
7 John Hammond
Most people watching Jurassic Park for the first time spend the first half of the film wondering why Richard Attenborough is talking in that ridiculous fashion? Then it dawns on them that he’s supposed to be Scottish. Even he seems slightly embarrassed at his own attempts at times. Maybe it’s a subtle nod to the Scottish origins of Lost World creator Arthur Conan Doyle. . .
6 The McWitch
The loveably scatty Scottish witch played by the indisputably Scottish Molly Weir. There was probably a gag involving bagpipes or an exploding haggis. Subtlety wasn’t one of Rentaghost ’s strongest points. . .
5 Dr Douglas Monaghan
Sea Of Souls
Sea Of Souls , BBC Scotland’s fairly successful attempt to do a UK X-Files , was very, very Scottish. Bill Paterson plays Monaghan, the head of a parapsychology unit at the fictional Clyde University in Glasgow. It was actually films at Glasgow’s University of Strathclyde, but the university itself did not want to be named in the show, despite the fact it has a renowned psychology department, which the department in the show was partly inspired by. . .
4 Iain M Banks
Admittedly, he comes across a lot more Scottish in his Iain Banks books than he does in his Iain M Banks ones, but we’d like to think at least some of the inhabitants of the Culture deep fry Mars bars and toss cabers on their days off. . .
Admittedly we don’t know for sure if Nessie is Scottish. She may just visit the loch on her holidays. And if we’re to believe Doctor Who ’s “Terror Of The Zygons” (or even “Timelash”) she’s not even from this planet. But she’s Scottish enough for us for a St Andrew’s Day mention, and apart from Doctor Who , her sci-fi credentials include Loch Ness , The Water Horse: Legend of the Deep , The Tomorrow People and Futurama . . .
2 Amy Pond
Like the essence of Scotland infused into one red-headed firebrand, Amy Pond clearly eats thistles for breakfast. “You’re so Scottish,” Rory tells her at one point, and you’re just begging for her to respond with a Glasgow kiss. When she discovers that Scotland isn’t one of the nations on the ship in “The Beast Below” because the Scots wanted their own ship, her response is, “Good for them. Nothing changes.” A true patriot. We bet she’s been begging the Doctor to take her back to the Battle Of Falkirk. Just so she can get William Wallace’s autograph, you understand. Not to change history, or anything. . .
Yes, the most iconic Scot in sci-fi (he’s called Scotty! He likes whisky!) and so far he’s been played by a Canadian and a southern Brit (which is probably a worse ignominy).