In the second part of a two-part interview, Chase Masterson talked more about Leeta, including her sexuality, relationship with Rom and what Leeta might be doing today in the Deep Space Nine universe. Masterson also shares the good and the bad of Trek fandom and her other non-Trek projects.
Masterson sometimes gets comments about Leeta’s sexuality, but for a Dabo girl, Leeta was rather demure. “As far as being scantily clad during the run of the series, yes, of course, my Dabo girl uniform was meant to be sexy, but they purposely didn’t make it as overt as most of the other Dabo girls, and I’m glad.”
In one nude shot with Robert Picardo, Masterson had more on than most realized. “I was actually wearing more during the shooting of that scene with Bob than a lot of girls wear running around town,” explained Masterson. “From the point where the camera’s view cut off on down, I had on a flesh-colored body suit that went down to my ankles. Polyester. Not at all attractive.”
A woman who dresses sexily can be anyone and her character can’t be judged by her clothes, says Masterson. “…keep in mind that dressing sexily, on camera or off, doesn’t necessarily say anything about a girl’s character, ability as an actress, intelligence level, or frankly, personal activities,” said Masterson. “An upstanding, good-hearted girl can dress sexily. Sometimes, it’s fun. And mostly, it’s pretty much just part of the job.”
During the series, Leeta and Rom became a couple, and Masterson felt that Leeta was able to handle that relationship between two people from very different cultures very well. “Leeta and Rom brought new meaning to the term ‘opposites attract,'” said Masterson. “And the pairing of people from a spiritually-oriented culture and a greed-oriented culture is the perfect allegory to give us a view into our own, individual relationships between spirituality and money. Don’t get me wrong, I fully believe that a good relationship with God and with each other, my definition of strong spirituality, can co-exist with a good relationship with money. But we are given choices in our lives on a regular basis that can compromise one or the other. Which do we choose? I think that part of the reason that Leeta and Rom had a strong relationship is because they made a lot of the right choices. And they focused on the many ways they were alike, instead of on their differences.”
If Leeta is still carrying on in the universe of Deep Space Nine, what would she be doing now? “Now that Leeta has a position of influence, as the First Lady of the Ferengi Alliance, I’d like to think she’s working to help people who need it,” said Masterson.
Masterson, like many other Star Trek actors, has interacted with Trek fans via the convention circuit. She has had both good and bad experiences when it comes to fans. “I’ve met countless inspiring people, fans and friends who care about Trek because they care about the world,” said Masterson. But some fans are not so inspiring. “There was an issue that I had years ago with a member of my fan club who committed a horrific act that involved serious invasions of my privacy and had horrible consequences,” said Masterson. “It took a drastic toll on my life, and on my son’s life, and on my career, my finances, everything. … But you can’t judge an entire fanbase by a few incredibly sick people’s actions. And in the long run, the good has been way more powerful than the bad. It always is, if you let it be. And I’m thankful for both. I’ve learned a lot about human nature and a lot about me.”
Post-Trek, Masterson has worked both on-screen and off-screen. “Onscreen, undoubtedly, I’m proudest of my work in Yesterday Was a Lie,” she said. “And there are off-screen projects of which I am extremely proud, too. For over three years, I’ve been a mentor at Homeboy Industries, which is the largest program for gang intervention in the U.S. Most of the guys and girls who come to Homeboy come to us straight out of jail. … when they decide that they want to turn their lives around, we help them do it.”