From time to time, I run into interesting people that I mostly fail to track down. Thus, I turn to you, the internet.

There is an English character actor named David Collings who keeps turning up in things. He plays Silver in Sapphire & Steel, has had several supporting roles in Doctor Who (Poul in Robots of Death and Mawdryn in Mawdryn Undead, and one other I can't recall at the moment), and did the usual flurry of appearances on all those murder mysteries I watch, mostly in the '80s and '90s, that mean I've started to recognize his face. The most prominent thing he seems to have done on film was take the role of Bob Cratchit in the 1970 version of Scrooge.

He's done a lot of Shakespeare on stage, including some that were filmed, but seems to do mostly radio these days. (He's done "The Dorabella Variation". "A Question of Proof" and "Money With Menaces" for BBC Radio. I provide them here strictly because if there is a way to legitimately pay someone for them, I can't find it.) He so consistently lands parts -- still! -- that require him to unabashedly flirt with pretty women a small fraction of his age, and he does it so well, that I am now quite curious as to whether he's actually like that most of the time. He must have gotten up to something at some point in his life, as one of the few candid snaps Google Image Search turns up shows what looks like a wedding ring on his left hand. If it is, his partner isn't in the entertainment industry; IMDb is completely silent on the subject.

What little there is on YouTube is all clips of performances. If there is any video footage of him out of character, it's buried by its rarity, and by Google insisting that I obviously meant to type "Collins" instead. I can find only a few very short print interviews, in which he presents in manner I can only describe as "pleasantly daffy". If it's at all an accurate reflection of his own personality, the role of Silver is quite close and was probably very easy for him to pick up. He's the only one who chose to reprise his role in S&S when Big Finish picked up the rights, possibly because he was conveniently already doing dubbing and other voice work.

If anyone can feed the curiosity monster, please do cough up. Oftentimes the universe spontaneously decides to help me with these things -- honestly, I managed to pick up Michael J. Fox's book right before he announced he was coming back to do guest work on TV again -- but so far it hasn't kicked in. I don't know if he works consistently enough as an actor (probably, but I don't have terribly good sources for stage companies in the UK, touring or otherwise) to keep himself in tea and biscuits, or if not, what else he might be up to in his free time.


  1. Did you see (about him, not by him)?

    1. I did find that. There's not a lot there, although there are signs that it was also once located by someone who's actually on speaking terms with the man. He persists in being pleasantly daffy. Shame he's not around more where I can see him.


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