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Updated: May 30, 2022

Mark Goddard:

is an American film actor who has starred in a number of television shows. He is most widely known for his role as Dr. Zachary Smith's (played by Jonathan Harris) long-suffering space partner and adversary, Major Don West, in the cult 1960s TV series, Lost in Space.

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. Goddard appeared as Norman Tabor in the 1960 episode "Surprise Party" of CBS's anthology series The DuPont Show with June Allyson.

Goddard was also signed for a role lasting three years in the TV show The Detectives Starring Robert Taylor, another series produced by Four Star Television. The Detectives was a hit series which ran on ABC and NBC from 1958-61, and starred movie actor Robert Taylor, along with actors Tige Andrews, Russell Thorson, and Goddard as Detective Chris Ballard.

In 1963, Goddard appeared as Roy Mooney in the Perry Mason episode 180, "The Case of the Potted Planter". He appeared at the time 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 1964-1965, Goddard starred in another one-season CBS series, Many Happy Returns, in which he portrayed Bob Randall, the young husband of Joan Randall, played by Elinor Donahue, formerly of Father Knows Best and The Andy Griffith Show. The program starred John McGiver (1913-1975) as the head of the complaint department of a fictitious Los Angeles department store. Elena Verdugo and Mickey Manners were also in the cast.

Goddard's next role was for the three seasons of the CBS television series Lost in Space (1965-68), playing Major Don West. There were two pilots shot for the series. The original 1965 pilot was much different from the pilot that aired and the episodes that followed in the actual series. There was a blossoming romance between Don West and Judy, the eldest daughter of the Robinson family, but it didn't extend further than the first season. By the middle of the second season, the show took on a more comic tone.

The plotlines increasingly centered around 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-2 the Robot (Bob May) and Will Robinson (Bill Mumy), the youngest of the three Robinson children. Castmates included Guy Williams, the former star of Zorro (1957-59), as Professor John Robinson and the credited star of the series; June Lockhart, the former star of Lassie (1959-64), as Dr. Maureen Robinson; Marta Kristen as elder daughter Judy Robinson, and Angela Cartwright (The Sound of Music as well as in all seven seasons of the classic 1957-64 Danny Thomas sitcom Make Room for Daddy), as young daughter Penny Robinson.

Goddard's on- and off-screen chemistry with Jonathan Harris had been very remarkable. After Goddard's best-known role on Space, Goddard remained very close to Harris. On June 14, 1995, he and the rest of his cast paid tribute to producer Irwin Allen who had died late in 1991. On October 16, 1997 (the same day the show's fictional Jupiter-2 spaceship was supposed to take off in the original episode), Goddard and the rest of the surviving Lost in Space cast also appeared on the inside cover of TV Guide, to promote the new Lost in Space movie while at the same time the Sci-Fi Channel had planned to do a Lost in Space marathon, according to the network. Goddard was grief-stricken when on November 3, 2002, his mentor and friend of 35+ years, Jonathan Harris, died. He, along with Harris and the rest of his cast were looking forward to doing the movie, Lost in Space: The Journey Home, which didn't come to fruition with NBC.

Goddard guest starred on series such as The Fugitive, The Mod Squad and The Fall Guy. At one point he moonlighted as a Hollywood agent. In 1976, he starred as politician Edward Fleming in the movie Blue Sunshine. In 1970, Goddard co-starred opposite Kent McCord, and Martin Milner, in a very poignant episode of the police drama 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." He played a support role in a first season episode of Quincy M.E. as an attorney, about 1976. In 1978, Goddard starred with Liza Minnelli in The Act.

He appeared 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 1998, in the movie Lost in Space, as the general in charge of the Jupiter Mission, and superior officer to his former character, Major Don West.

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