May 21, 2014

Skip Homeier: Gay-Vague Villain and his Nude Model Son

On February 21, 1969, Star Trek encounters the counterculture when a group of groovy, extremely muscular space hippies take over the Enterprise to fly to the legendary  planet of Eden.  Unfortunately, the plant life turns out to be poisonous.  Moral: don't be a hippie.

The gang is led by the long-eared Dr. Severin, played by Skip Homeier (left, with Charles Napier).
The kids watching probably didn't realize that Skip Homeier got his start as a prettyboy child star.  In 1944, the 14-year old debuted in Tomorrow, the World!, a tour de force about an American family who adopt a boy from Nazi Germany, only to find that he is spouting Nazi propaganda and bullying his classmates from "inferior" races.

During the 1930s, there was a fad for homoromantic dramas, starring Mickey Rooney, Jackie Moran, Jackie Cooper, Freddie Bartholomew, Frankie Darro, and a dozen other teen actors.  But by the 1940s, the fad was over.  There is no particular gay subtext in Tomorrow, the World! or in most of Skip's later teen roles, except for some buddy-bonding vestiges in Boys Ranch (1946).

As an adult, Skip worked steadily in war movies, science fiction, Westerns, and many tv dramas, usually playing gay-vague villains or good kids who go bad.

I've seen him in The Burning Hills (1956),  as the gay-vague Jack Sutton, who sends his hired muscle to kill Trace Jordan (Tab Hunter).  Isn't it ironic that the heterosexual guy plays gay-vague, and the gay guy plays heterosexual?

And in Day of the Badman (1958), as the snively gay-vague son of the villain.

In 1982, at the age of 52, Skip retired from acting and moved back home to Chicago.  I'm pretty sure that Christian Homeier (top photo), who posed for Playgirl in 1992 and now manages a smoothie bar in Springfield, Illinois, is his son.  Or maybe his nephew.