In 2021, there was no one more talked about from the “Star Trek” acting stable than LeVar Burton. Fans worldwide were rooting for the ‘Geordi La Forge’ actor to be the next host of the popular game show “Jeopardy!”
So, other than William Shatner, Burton was the most focused on name from the Trek world. After longtime “Jeopardy!” host Alex Trebek died, Burton was in the running to take over the reins of the show. He lost out on the job but recently told Rolling Stone that he has always acted in a way as not to “embarrass” his family.
He said this because both Ken Jennings and Mike Richards, the two guys who were in line to replace Trebek, had unsavory backstories which were unveiled in the quest for a new “Jeopardy!” host.
“I would imagine that if I did, they would have come out at this point,” Burton told Rolling Stone. “One of my goals throughout this 45-year career has been to make my family proud. Or maybe, inversely, to not embarrass them. So far, so good.”
Geordi will not appear on ‘Picard’ — Yet
While many fans speculated that Burton’s beloved character would return to action in Season 2 of “Star Trek: Picard,” he told writer Angie Martoccio that Geordi would not be back. But he did not rule out a possible return for Season 3, which has already been green-lit by Paramount.
“I’m not psychic,” said Burton in the Rolling Stone interview. “Look, I love ‘Star Trek.’ I love my castmates. Here’s what I will say about Picard: I do believe that whatever else is going on in his life, in the storytelling that they’re engaging in now, he still knows these people.”
“It is certainly feasible, if not plausible, that they should show up at some point during this current adventure,” said Burton. “We’ll see.”
This is roughly the same attitude held by Gates McFadden, who portrayed Dr. Beverly Crusher on “The Next Generation.”
No “Lid” For Geordi’s “Pot”
Even though he loved his time with the TNG cast, there is still one thing that bothers Burton about the character’s development to this day — his lack of success finding love. Geordi’s encounters with the opposite sex always ended in failure. The most notable example was during the Season 4 episode, “Galaxy’s Child.”
That story centered around Geordi working closely with Dr. Leah Brahms (actress Susan Gibney) to save a newly discovered alien. The problem with this tale was that she was married, and he had feelings for her thanks to a favorable representation of her on the holodeck in the episode “Booby Trap.” Basically, Geordi fell in love with a hologram, and the real person was very different. Martoccio said that it was weird that Mr. Data (Brent Spiner) had more luck with the ladies than Geordi did.
“Weird? It’s insulting,” Burton said in the interview. “Whether they are aware of it or not, those white men who wrote the show had an unconscious bias that was on display to me and to other people of color.”
“Their blind spot is revealed in the fact that a Black man never was successful at one of the basic and most … My wife says, ‘There’s a lid for every pot.’ It’s true. The idea that Geordi never found a lid for his pot is ludicrous. It’s preposterous, and it’s insulting.”
Burton told Martoccio that if TNG was a current show, then he’d make sure Geordi would “get laid.”