One of the most epic beer runs in television history comes to an end tonight. According to an article in Ad Age, a Dos Equis commercial scheduled to debut during a Lakers-Cavaliers game on TNT will feature the last performance ever by actor Jonathan Goldsmith, 77, as the cultured, smooth-talking, and vaguely Bond-inspired Most Interesting Man in the World, the man whose face (and voice) launched a thousand memes. Nevermore will he advise viewers to “stay thirsty, my friends.” The campaign will continue this fall with a different actor, Heineken USA promises. Much like Poochie before him, Goldsmith’s character is being dispatched to outer space in his farewell appearance. The Most Interesting Man is headed to Mars, never to return. Hopefully, unlike the cartoon dog, he will not die en route. The successful campaign, created by Havas Worldwide (formerly Euro RSCG), has been running since 2006; during that time, Dos Equis sales have doubled. The spokesman switcheroo comes as the actor is entangled in a lawsuit brought by a talent management firm, but Dos Equis says that the two events are unrelated.
Before Goldsmith bows out, the MeTV Network has prepared a retrospective of the actor’s extensive career in television. Before he was shilling for Dos Equis, he was appearing on such classic shows as Star Trek (he was supposedly an unbilled Red Shirt there), The Rockford Files, and Mission: Impossible. In the very earliest days of his career, he was known as Jonathan Lippe. That’s the name he used when he appeared in Perry Mason in 1964 in an episode promisingly called “The Case Of The Blonde Bonanza.” Goldsmith did not sport his trademark beard for most of these guest roles, appearing clean-shaven in Charlie’s Angels, MacGyver, and Dallas. But MeTV did manage to track down a picture of the actor with facial hair from his appearance on T.J. Hooker, during which he shared screen time with Heather Locklear. It’s amazing none of these adventures came up when Goldsmith was discussing his life in all those beer commercials.