Everything You Wanted to Know About Harry Mudd... and More

Everything You Wanted to Know About Harry Mudd... and More

His name is Mudd... Harcourt Fenton Mudd. He's been labeled a scoundrel, reprobate, con-man, forger, thief, sociopath and much worse. To know him isn't so much to love him as it is to be swindled at every available chance. Conceived by screenwriter Steven Kandel as a comic foil to the ultra-serious James T. Kirk, Harry Mudd immediately charmed fans thanks to the wonderfully campy performance of the late Roger C. Carmel. 

The Original SeriesMudd's WomenI, MuddThe Animated SeriesMudd's Passion

Harry was slated to return in a third TOS episode titled "Deep Mudd," which sadly never came to pass. Reportedly, Gene Roddenberry later considered bringing the character into the 24th century by having him among those revived from cryogenic suspension in "The Neutral Zone," and there was also talk of his appearing as a character witness at Kirk's trial in Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home. However, Carmel's tragic death in 1986 prevented his return. He would have turned 83 today, September 27.

Saying Mudd has committed a few crimes is like saying Tribbles have had a few babies. His conviction record is a legend among criminologists, matched only by his ability to avoid facing the consequences. The following file represents a mere sampling of Mudd's infractions as depicted on television, as well as in the books, comics and games, from which a solid picture of the walking shenanigan that is Harry Mudd begins to emerge.


• Name: Harcourt Fenton "Harry" Mudd • Future Police Record-Code: X731248
• Height: 6 feet, 1 inch • Weight: 240 pounds (fluctuating with age)
• Eyes: Brown • Hair: Brown • Complexion: Fair
• Identifying Details: Receding hairline, handlebar mustache, jowls, pendulous abdomen
• Aliases: H.F. Mudd, Harcourt Fenton, Leo Francis Walsh, Blackbeard Teach, Socrates, Grand Qaal of Eulus, Emperor Mudd the First, Harry Patton
• Personality: Jovial, hedonistic, dishonest, cunning, cowardly, charismatic and manipulative, with an almost sociopathic inability to discern right from wrong
• Criminal Profile: Shows a penchant for ventures involving mining colonies or alcoholic beverages


Mudd was born in 2219 on Antares Pi Four. He married a woman named Stella, whom he considered the love of his life, but abandoned her two months later to escape her incessant nagging, by stowing away aboard a freighter. The two eventually divorced, with no children. Stella's mother, a thin, ornery hillbilly, openly detested Harry and was skilled with a shotgun, which scared him. ["Mudd's Women" (early script draft), Mudd in Your Eye, Mudd's Angels]

In his later years, with no children to carry on his legacy, Mudd took under his wing a young thief named Shilo. Despite both being unscrupulous criminals, the two formed a genuinely close father-daughter bond. ["The Sky Above, The Mudd Below"]

In at least one reality, Mudd may not have been childless. In an alternate universe resulting from the Romulan Nero's temporal incursion, Mudd is believed to have fathered a half-Bajoran daughter, first name unknown, who worked as a trader. In 2259, she helped Robert April and Section 31 provide Starfleet weaponry to one side of a civil war on Phaedus IV, in violation of the Prime Directive. That timeline's James Kirk impounded her K'normian trading ship, which he and his crew used a month later for a mission to arrest John Harrison (Khan Noonien Singh) on Qo'noS. [Countdown to Darkness, Star Trek Into Darkness]


Star Trek Log Three
Mudd's Angels
Mudd in Your Eye

Star Trek Log Three

Mudd salvaged a derelict extraterrestrial spaceship in the Harrapan System, then peddled items from the vessel as Mudd's Miracle De-grimer, Mudd's Limited Coffee Substitute, build-your-own telescope kit lenses, novelty paints and more, with which he conned (and angered) a band of Elasi pirates. After issuing a distress call (which the Enterprise answered), the con-man become infected with mysterious alien drugs and inadvertently erased a priceless archive of computer records. As penance, Kirk forced him to donate five of every artifact he found to research, while Uhura informed Stella of her deadbeat husband's whereabouts. ["Another Fine Mess"]

At around this time, Mudd launched a company called HFM Enterprises, hired a buxom Orion receptionist named Verlida and began altering the habitat of the Saganicus giganticus in order to draw in tourists on Tttnicktttnor. Although the Federation had no jurisdiction on that world, he agreed to cease such activities, in exchange for assistance from Uhura and Spock in creating a "Ride on the Enterprise" holodiorama as a replacement attraction. ["A Sucker Born"]

During a galactic dilithium shortage, Kirk met with miners on Muldoon, Coridan and Akladi, who sold their dilithium rights to the Galactic Trading Company after Starfleet failed to renew contracts. Based on Liticia, Galactic operated subsidiaries named after the British East India Co., Yukon Fur Trading Co., Muscovy Trading Co., South Sea Bubble Co., Great Western Railway Co., Vocational Trading Institute, and Governors and Company of the Merchants of the Levant, all dubious traders of the 18th century.

In actuality, Liticia was Mudd's Planet. Mudd had bought out Starfleet's contracts by trading android wives to the miners, until eventually cornering the market. He loaded the crystals aboard his cargo ship, the Superstella, to auction on the open market, but when his ship entered the galactic energy barrier, the crystals started to expand. The vessel exploded, destroying the Large Magellanic Cloud and causing a time-loop that erased these events from happening.

The androids charged Mudd with first-degree androlepsy, charlatanry, barratry, multiple civil rights violations, crossing planetary boundaries for immoral purposes, embezzling, pandering, malversation, privateering, tax evasion, piloting without a license, speculation and solicitation, but Mudd argued that since the time-loop prevented his crimes from occurring, he couldn't be tried for them. Though granting him that point, the androids nonetheless deemed him a menace and exiled him from the galaxy on a ship designed to self-destruct if he ever re-entered the barrier. [Mudd's Angels]

Mudd apparently circumvented this restriction and returned to Federation space. Paying the Denebians to clear his name, he avoided further charges for years. During this time, Vulcan hired him as a consultant to learn how he had managed to breach the planet's computer network and steal the fuel synthesizer. Harry eventually re-surfaced in the Nevis System, ending a 12,000-year war between the planets Prastor and Distrel by forging a deal to distribute palko fruits throughout the galaxy. He had come to Nevis to steal a long-range transporter allowing instantaneous galactic travel without a starship, which he had learned about while scouring the androids' archives for a way to escape. But the peace talks stalled when Prastor invaded its neighbor.

Mudd was killed in the conflict, but was rejuvenated by a computer designed to circumvent death on both worlds by reincarnating all casualties of war. The system then malfunctioned while trying to revive the non-living form of Mudd's android escort, Stella. Showing uncharacteristic courage, Mudd challenged the Grand General of Distrel to a duel, volunteering to temporarily die in order to restart the computer. This restored normalcy to the system—though Mudd, once rejuvenated, absconded with the Nevisians' technological secrets. [Mudd in Your Eye]

Mudd became a pawn of Ron Tracey when the disgraced officer plotted revenge on Kirk for getting him drummed out of the Service. Tracey forced Harry to enter an alien mechanism on Triangularis III that altered his form, down to his DNA, to be a perfect replica of James Kirk. He then blackmailed Mudd into infiltrating a Starfleet base on Tau Delta IX and stealing computer data so Tracey could betray the Federation to a Klingon invasion armada led by Captain Koloth.

Mudd outsmarted Tracey by purposely being caught so he could alert Starfleet. Since Harry risked his life to help thwart Tracey's plans (even if only to get his own body back), Kirk convinced Starfleet to reduce all outstanding charges and let him return to Earth a free man (albeit with Stella as his parole officer). With no way to reverse the transformation, Mudd was stuck in his new Kirk-like body, much to his outrage. As a consolation, Doctor Leonard McCoy used a cellular growth accelerator to regrow Harry's handlebar mustache. ["Made Out of Mudd"]

At some point, however, Mudd apparently regained his original form.

Bridge Simulator


Where Sea Meets Sky, Art of Star Trek


Author Bio:

Rich Handley is the author and editor of numerous science fiction reference books, and the editor of Hasslein Books (hassleinbooks.com). He has contributed to IDW's two newspaper strip reprint books (with two more to come), Sequart's anthology, and magazines, and GIT . His resemblance to Harry Mudd is only superficial, dear boy.
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