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John Cho's One Issue With The Original Star Trek Was Sulu's Lack Of Action

By the time John Cho auditioned for the 2009 "Star Trek" reboot film, he had already made a name for himself in the stoner comedy trilogy "Harold & Kumar." Yet despite this, he told the Guardian that, if he didn't land the part of Sulu, he might have quit acting. And apparently, a big reason he was so determined to get the role is because of how important George Takei, who played Sulu on the original "Star Trek" series in the '60s, was to Cho for being such a pioneer for Asian American actors.

Much was made about the fact that Sulu is gay in the Kelvin Timeline despite being straight in the original series. In an interview with Variety, Cho expressed his hope to be able to inspire the same feeling in young gay viewers seeing him on-screen as he had when seeing Takei on-screen. But as much as Cho has talked about the importance of Sulu on the original "Star Trek," he also once mentioned that there is one thing about the character that he never liked.

John Cho was happy they made the role of Sulu more physically demanding

In an interview with Female.com.au, John Cho expressed his appreciation that his role in the 2009 "Star Trek" reboot film would be physically demanding, saying, "That'd probably be my one issue with the original series, just as the Asian viewer, [I] wanted to see him get out of the chair more often." On the original "Star Trek," Sulu is the helmsman of the USS Enterprise, so there's actually a pretty good reason for him to be sitting on the bridge most of the time instead of getting involved in the action.

Fans seem to agree that Sulu doesn't get enough action on the original series, with Redditor u/James-T-Picard calling Sulu and Chekov (Walter Koenig) "interchangeable," saying, "Typical B-cast, they had something to do but were never allowed to steal the spotlight from Kirk/Spock/Bones." While it's true that "Star Trek" often focuses on William Shatner's Captain James T. Kirk; his first officer, Leonard Nimoy's Spock; and his chief medical officer, DeForest Kelley's Dr. Leonard "Bones" McCoy, there are occasionally storylines that give secondary characters such as Chekov, Scotty (James Doohan), Sulu, and Uhura (Nichelle Nichols) some screen time  — just not ones with much of the action.