Geordi La Forge didn’t date much on Star Trek and LeVar Burton noticed.
Star Trek: The Next Generation brought Geordi La Forge out front for all to see. This is ironic considering Geordi was blind in the show. His iconic visor made his look memorable but it was the acting work of LeVar Burton that brought the character to life in a way that fans everywhere could relate to.
Yet, there was a problem with how Geordi was written on Star Trek: The Next Generation; he never seemed to have any real romantic couplings. This is something Burton is very keenly aware of and something he’d insist was done differently if given the chance.
Speaking to Rolling Stone, Burton expressed his frustration with not being given any romances; despite even the android, Data, getting his fair share.
"…It’s insulting. 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."
LeVar Burton is right about the optics of Geordi La Forge’s love life
The interviewer brought up the fact that Geordi could be seen as an “incel”, an individual who’s angry over his lack of romantic success. Burton disagrees with this thought but does point out the fact that his character was at times deliberately written to be “creepy”. When talking about Geordi making a holographic girlfriend, Burton was very candid.
"In their attempts to be cute, they inadvertently created an aspect of Geordi’s character that is very uncomfortable."
There’s also something to be said about his point on The Next Generation and other Star Trek shows at the time. Unless they were immensely popular, a lot of people got left holding the bag, so to speak. Worf and Benjamin Sisko were the only two that really stood out as having significant romances, and for both men, it took some time for it to happen. Especially Sisko.
Chakotay, Harry Kim, Travis Mayweather, and even Julian Bashir for some time were all either ignored or made into comedy relief with their romantic endeavors. If Burton thought La Forge got it bad, maybe he didn’t see how Garrett Wang’s Kim was written on Voyager.
This doesn’t mean Burton’s bitter about Star Trek, on the contrary, it seems to be his only real gripe and if you work somewhere for seven years and that’s the only issue you have with your job; that ain’t bad.