Actor John Fleck logs many hours in the make-up chair for his reptilian role as Silik on Enterprise. "He's a Suliban," the Star Trek vet tells TV Guide Online. "They're shapeshifters — even though they don't shapeshift that much, because it's not in the budget. But that's what they're supposed to be!"

This fall, he'll co-star with Terminator 3's Nick Stahl in Carnivale, HBO's spooky new series about a 1930s traveling freak show. Fleck plays Gecko the Snake Man. "It's weird. This guy's a lizard, too!" the 52-year-old laughs. "And one of the assistant directors on Carnivale said, 'I met you 20 years ago. We worked on this low-budget movie called Mutant on the Bounty.' I had played Lizardo, another lizard. Dang, I guess I'm reptilian."

Curious how Fleck looks in the flesh? His just-released indie flick, On_Line, features him as a normal human male. Well, normal might be pushing it. "It's about online sex workers," he says. "I play this guy who does German Nazi bondage fantasies. I'm also the mature gay lover to this younger man. Variety said I was 'delicious' and stuff. I'm good in it!"

Playing gay isn't new to Fleck, who is out himself in real life. For two years, he was Louis Hines, the gay squad room secretary on Murder One. Like his pal Bill Brochtrup — who's the gay squad room secretary on NYPD Blue — he didn't get too many speaking lines on-screen. "I've learned to do small parts good," he laughs. "You get one line, like, 'The Prince of Darkness to see you, sir.' So you make it shine, baby."