Highlights from a ’93 interview with Majel Barrett

On Number One:

Gene never got around to fleshing her out, so I made up her back story. I saw her as a genetically bred human from another planet, a place never disclosed. Although she was cloned, I decided that she had grown up in a normal human family kind of atmosphere. She was totally by the book, never smiled and had most of Mr. Spock’s characteristics.

On Nurse Chapel:

She’s not my favourite character. I get chastised a lot for that attitude, but that’s okay…The fact is that it’s very difficult to work up a lot of emotion when all you’re saying is ‘Yes, doctor,’ and ‘No, doctor.’ I never got a great deal of pity, sympathy or anything for her. I just figured that she is somewhat of a weakling. She was a doctor, but signs on as a nurse with an obvious demotion in rank and pay. She finds her fiancé, who is an android, and obviously can’t do her any good. Yet, she signs back on board this Starship for another five-year mission and promptly falls in love with a Vulcan who only comes into heat every seven years. I mean, this woman is a real loser!

On Lwaxana:

She has the unlikely position of being Roaming Ambassador of Protocol for the Federation, which is the worst possible job for her because she’s a Betazoid. She reads minds, therefore she cannot lie. Back on Betazed, there’s no such thing as lying because everybody reads minds. There’s no diplomacy in this woman whatsoever. She starts out playing shallow, but she’s smart and knows right from wrong. Gradually, she’s gaining warmth and dimension. I loved the Deep Space Nine episode called The Foresaken, about her affair with Odo, which ran the full gamut of emotions. You laughed and cried with both of them.

Majel Barrett in The Official Star Trek Fan Club of Canada magazine, Fall 1993.

Leave a Reply