Q: Was Karl Malden a guest star in "Hawaii Five-0" recently? I thought he died about 10 years ago, but it sure looked like him.

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Adam Thomlison / TV Media

You've made the same mistake probably thousands of other people have made, mistaking the great crime show character actor Richard Herd with the great big-screen character actor Karl Malden.

Just about every biography and description of Herd and his career starts by pointing out how much he looks like the frankly better-known Malden (one clever website had some fun with it, inventing the "Karl Malden or Richard Herd Quiz"). Quite a few minds were probably blown in 1977 when Herd and Malden shared the screen together in an episode of Malden's hit TV cop drama "Streets of San Francisco."

And so you can be forgiven for thinking it was Malden showing up in the ninth-season episode of "Hawaii Five-0," titled "Pua a'e la ka uwahi o ka moe" (they're all given Hawaiian names). You can also be forgiven for wishing it was Malden, if only because, sadly, he indeed died in 2009, at the age of 97.

Herd, thankfully, is still going strong at age 86. As I said earlier, naming his appearances in "Hawaii Five-0" and "Streets of San Francisco" just scratches the surface of his crime show pedigree. He's done guest spots in some of the greats, including "Kojak," "The Rockford Files" and "Starsky and Hutch," as well as modern ones such as "JAG" and "NYPD Blue."


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