Seeking an actor who deeply understands an epic story of warring empires and bad 1980s hair, FX’s The Americans has added to its cast Frank Langella, the veteran, Tony-winning, Oscar-nominated actor who once played Skeletor. In a rare television role, Langella will play Gabriel, the former KGB handler of Matthew Rhys’ and Keri Russell’s characters, who comes out of retirement to reassume his responsibility from Margo Martindale’s Claudia. It’s unlikely that “Gabriel” is just a code name chosen by Skeletor. But then, nothing is as it seems in the world of espionage.

After all, there are certain, undeniable similarities. Like Skeletor, Gabriel demands total subservience to an unyielding ideology—in this case, the communist dictatorship of the Soviet Union, and officially not the powers of darkness lurking within the shadows of Castle Grayskull. Like Skeletor, Gabriel’s plan is to wage bitter war against the forces of good—in this case, the U.S. intelligence department, and not He-Man. Like Skeletor, Gabriel possesses a Cosmic Key that can open a portal to any point in time and space. This Cosmic Key is called a “wig.”


Skeletor joins The Americans when it returns this January.