Doctober 10: Top 10-10-10

I don’t often believe in signs, but when I realized that the very unique date of 10-10-10 was going to happen during the great month of Doctober, I took this as a sign that I needed to do something a little extra special on this auspicious occasion. And so I give you not one, not two, but three Top 10 lists associated with Dr. Beverly Crusher. I warn you now: This is more than likely going to be both the longest and most elaborate Doctober post I do. But, again, how often does a perfectly balanced stardate like this come along in a lifetime?

So we start the party with a list that I actually encountered several years ago. The original list was a bit hit-or-miss, so I’ve spiced it up a bit. Hopefully, I’ve made it a little bit funny…

Top 10 Pet Peeves of Dr. Beverly Crusher

10. The way those spandex spacesuits never stay where they should…and always end up bunching where they shouldn’t.

9. Of all the starships in all the quadrants, she had to be put in charge of the one with Reg Barclay, Super Hypochondriac.

8. When Riker has too much synthehol at the weekly poker game, drunk-dials her and asks her to call him “Odan” once more for old times.

7. Just once, she’d like to finish the line, “Jean-Luc, there’s something I’ve been meaning to tell you.” Just once, dammit!

6. Other mothers get cards or flowers on Mother’s Day from their children. She gets trapped in a collapsing warp bubble by hers.

5. People who expect her to have raging temper to match red hair. She could just KILL THEM!!! OOOOOH!

4. Worf’s annual stool sample.

3. No matter how many rewrites she does, the Enterprise‘s theater troupe keeps rejecting her script for the new musical, Dancing & Diagnosing.

2. Dr. Selar refuses to engage in chummy Sickbay banter.

1. Dammit, she’s a doctor, not a hairstyle model!

Insert rim shot here.

Speaking of hairstyles (and tasty segues), ever notice how often Dr. Crusher’s ‘do changed throughout the course of the show? That’s because throughout most of the series, that wasn’t actually Gates McFadden’s hair. She wore a wig most of the time, because the producers felt that her real hair was a tad bit too long for the Enterprise‘s Chief Medical Officer (which is kind of silly when you realize that some of the wigs that they designed for her were almost as long as her actual hair at the time…but only really HUGE Crusher geeks would know that bit of trivia). Here, then, are 10 of the most interesting ways in which Dr. Crusher’s hair fluctuated throughout the show. Believe me, there were plenty more styles throughout the six seasons that featured Dr. Crusher (everyone always made such a huge deal about Captain Janeway’s hair, but Janeway’s ‘do had nothing on the good doctor’s!).

1. Crayola Crusher. The first season saw the only instance of Dr. Crusher with this somewhat “color not found in nature” red hair. It was deep, dark, and a bit primary color. Then again, this was also the only season during which she wore a deep, dark, somewhat primary color blue uniform. I actually liked the cobalt of the first season medical uniforms and missed them when they disappeared in the third season for the more familiar teal. I didn’t necessarily miss this hair color, but I did miss Dr. Crusher when she disappeared the next season, replaced by a post-sex-change Dr. McCoy Dr. Pulaski.

2. Lil Orphan Beverly. Thankfully, Dr. Crusher returned in the third season after Data shot Dr. Pulaski out of a torpedo tube after finally deciding he’d had enough of her snarky comments about him being an android. This time, Dr. Crusher’s wig more closely matched the color of Gates McFadden’s actual hair. However, I only ever think of one thing when I see short, curly red hair (and it’s not what you rather filthy-minded denizens are thinking right now!): Lil Orphan Annie. Thankfully, the wig stylist decided against the curl as well and straightened the hair soon after this wig’s debut in the third season.

3. Miracle Grow. Star Trek has never been famous for its respect of continuity. However, one of my favorite bits of WTFery is this photo, taken from the third season episode “The Enemy.” This episode occurs six episodes after “Evolution,” which is the episode from which the previous photo was taken. That is some amazing hair growth in that span, no? I’m thinking either Dr. Crusher has a hella good prescription for Rogaine, or she’s somehow learned how to program the replicators to make her hair whatever length she’s in the mood for that day.

4. Somewhere In Between. So by the end of the third season, the stylists had moved to somewhere in between the super short and super long looks and came up with this length. However, I’m not so sure they had really decided yet about the proper length because, correct me if I’m wrong, one side of Dr. Crusher’s hair is noticeably longer than the other side. Which is fine, I suppose. Everyone is entitled to making statements. I mean, Deanna wore a hairstyle in the first season that looked a bit like a toilet plunger stuck to the top of her head. Dr. Crusher’s different lengths is much better in my opinion.

5. When I’m 65. The fourth season brought about a glimpse of an older Dr. Crusher, this time in the episode “Future Imperfect.” I liked how the stylists made her hair a bit darker (which actually often happens to redheads, depending on the type of red), and gave her nice, subtle hints of gray. They modified this look for the appearance of “Captain Beverly Picard” in the final episode of the show, but I think this one’s a little more elaborate.

6. Bangs? We Don’t Need No Stinkin’ Bangs. Apparently, this particular wig stylist was of two opinions: Less bangs, more curls. I don’t really have much to say about this style other than I really didn’t like it at all.

7. Long and Straight. The highlight of the next season was this scene from “Violations,” which I think shows Dr. Crusher sans wig. I do believe this was McFadden’s actual hair (that is not, however, Patrick Stewart’s actual hair…although it could very well be the toupee that he wore to one of his first auditions for the role of Jean-Luc Picard).

8. Ribbons and Bows. It takes a strong personality to be able to rock a pink hair ribbon with the medical uniform. Either that or a certain degree of eccentricity. I’m not sure which of those Dr. Crusher has more of, but thankfully the pink ribbon never returned after this one appearance in the episode “Cause and Effect.”

9. Almost There. Finally, by TNG’s sixth season, I do believe they were no longer making McFadden wear wigs. I could be wrong, but I’m almost positive that this photo shows McFadden’s real hair. The bangs are slightly shorter than normal, but this was pretty much almost the look that she stuck with for the rest of the series. It’s about time!

10. The Final Frontier Hairstyle. And here, then, is the final style ever seen on Dr. Crusher in the show’s run, and probably my favorite style of them all. Why? Because it looked like her actual hair rather than a wig. Because it was.

When Dr. Crusher wasn’t stressing about her hair, she was busy planning her next big Halloween costume! Yeah, I bet you didn’t know this, but Dr. Crusher actually really loved this ancient Earth holiday. Here, then, are Dr. Crusher’s top 10 Halloween costumes:

10. She started out small, just painting her face like a 20th century mime. However, her staff loved it and so did her patients, so she made the decision to make this an annual tradition.

9. The next year, she decided to wear the costume that Q had left all of them from their adventure in “Sherwood Forest.”

8. Then she went with the outfit that she smuggled back from her away mission to retrieve Data’s severed head from 19th century San Francisco.

7. Liking the medical theme that she’d started the previous year, Dr. Crusher decided to go this time with a more modern medical icon: Nurse Christine Chapel.

6. Counselor Troi wanted in on the festivities the following year, so they dressed up as the sisters from What Ever Happened to Baby Jane?

5. Not feeling very creative the next year, she worked with Data to rig holoprojectors throughout the ship that would broadcast the image of a traditional Halloween “ghost” at various parts of the ship (which was a far easier PhotoShop task for the wolf in charge of capturing these costumes in images).

4. For some reason, Captain Picard became obsessed with an ancient Terran comic called The X-Men, so Dr. Crusher humored him by dressing as the character known as “Dark Phoenix.” Captain Picard joined her in dressing up that year as the character “Professor Xavier,” but he just wore a suit that looked like one of his Dixon Hill outfits and insisted that sickbay replicate him a wheelchair, which she found bizarre and slightly creepy.

3. By this point, Dr. Crusher was realizing the untapped potential of costumes enhanced by her medical expertise. For her costume as the Red Queen from Alice in Wonderland, she increased her cranial size and blanched her skin color to an even paler complexion than normal. All in all a great costume, but the bruising she sustained from banging into things or from losing her balance was a bit much.

2. This costume actually got her tossed in the brig for a few days once Captain Picard saw it…but it was totally worth it.

1. And, finally, she went all out to turn herself into a Na’vi. The changes she implemented took about 3 weeks to fully reverse (and she still had a bit of a blue pallor almost 2 months later), but this was by far her favorite costume of them all (and Loba’s favorite PhotoShop trick as well!).

So, there you go: three top 10 lists dedicated to Dr. Beverly Crusher. Was it worth it to wade through all three? I hope so. I definitely had a blast thinking them up. Oh, and special thanks to Without their amazing Beverly Crusher theme gallery, I would have had a much more difficult time finding the images I needed for two of these three lists.