In an interview with Newsweek.com, the Discovery star spoke about her time on Discovery thus far, how she feels Georgiou has grown in Season 2 and the plans for her Section 31 spin-off.
The first time we were introduced to the character of Georgiou, it was as a Starfleet Captain, in command of the U.S.S. Shenzhou. Georgiou was the kind of Captain anyone would want to serve under, kind, compassionate, level headed and one of Starfleet’s finest, so much so Sarek sought her out to guide Burnham in her journey to find her humanity, when describing Captain Georgiou, Yeoh said:
“I thank my writers every day,” Yeoh said. “The writers who dreamt up this character of Captain Philippa Georgiou. She’s such a regal, heroic mentor that everyone wanted to learn from and be with. When she died in Episode 2, I had trekkies who would come up to me and be like, ‘Why would you let them kill you?!’”
“In Season 1, Georgiou is trying to instill humanity in Michael Burnham. You can feel all these emotions—love, compassion—and use them, rather than feeling like she should be a Vulcan devoid of emotions. It took her like seven years to break down the egg shell around Michael Burnham. But she got there,”
Later when Emperor Georgiou was introduced it was a complete polar opposite of Captain Georgiou, she was the typical Terrain with a cutthroat mentality. Yeoh describes her Terrain alter ego as
But, being stranded in the Prime Universe she has had to adapt, but she hadn’t lost her edge and was still looking to gain the upper hand
“Because of Michael Burnham she’s dragged into this universe where everybody is so lame (as far as she’s concerned),” Yeoh said. “She’s thinking of how she’s going to take over this place from that weakling Leland (Alan van Sprang). That’s ingrained in her from the Mirror Universe. You have to be the best one. You have to take it over. You have to play these mind games.”
Nevertheless, during season two we have seen her character grow into a more complex and compassionate version of herself while retaining what makes her character such a delight to see on screen.
In her own words, Yeou describes the change in her character
“Who is the real mother here? It’s almost like here you can see that Michael Burnham is trying her very best to instill the human side. Not everything can be going in and shooting a missile into the planet,” Yeoh said. “So she’s come around to understanding that if I don’t kill first and ask questions later, we can sit around and think about it a bit more.”
One of season twos most noticeable changes in her character was her interactions towards Burnham, in the episode “Read Angel” you saw that she genuinely had concern and love for Michael.
Moving on to the topic of her spin off show, Yeou said:
“Section 31 is in the works as we speak. We will shoot Season 3 of Discovery first, and then move on to Section 31,”
“Section 31 will be more fun—less intense and more fun-driven. Visiting more planets. Going around rescuing people in our own way,”
Asked to describe what we might see in her Section 31 character she added:
“there’s this nicer, gentler side, but you never know when she’s going to switch around again.”
Just recently Yeoh has been cast in the new Avatar sequels and will portray scientist Dr Karina Mogue.