Christopher Judge, who plays Teal’c on SCI FI Channel’s original series Stargate SG-1, told SCI FI Wire that his character undergoes one notable change in the upcoming eighth season: He grows hair. “Yes,” Judge said in an interview during a break in filming on the show’s Vancouver, B.C., set. “It took a lot of years of begging and groveling for me to finally get it, but yeah, … that will be the most obvious change, definitely.”
Judge, who is not naturally bald, said that seven years of shaving his head daily took its toll. “I got really tired of it,” he said. “Just shaving my head every morning. And by three quarters of the way through the season it was really painful to actually shave. So, you know, this is very welcome. Very welcome. Hopefully the fans will like it.”
Judge added that it took a little persuasion to get the show’s producers to allow such a dramatic change to his character’s appearance—and he even tried a more radical look. “It first was at least considered when there was going to be all the changes this year,” he said. “I’d done a bunch of conventions and had cornrows [during hiatus], so I talked to [executive producer] Rob Cooper before I left, and he said, ‘OK, maybe so.’ So I kind of unveiled the cornrows at the conventions. So we got here [when filming resumed], and it was the Friday before the Monday we started shooting, and pictures were sent down to MGM. And they didn’t like it. So I had to shave the cornrows. But this is what’s left.”
Judge’s hair is now closely cropped. “Believe me, I’m grateful for it,” he said with a smile. “I think it was time for it. You know, I mean eight years for this character to be on Earth? I just think that was the next move toward his … final assimilation. So yeah, I think the timing is right.”
So how will the show acknowledge Teal’c’s new do? “Nothing’s said about it until we find [star] Rick [Dean Anderson, who plays O’Neill] in … the first episode of the season. And he comes out of the little chamber and says, ‘So what’s with the hair?’ In typical O’Neill fashion.” Stargate SG-1 begins its eighth season on July 9.