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Exploring New 90210 Drama with Michael Steger

Actor Michael Steger of 90210 has settled into the role of Navid Shirazi, the newscaster, interviewer, and politico style journalist of the new West Beverly Hills High. After struggling through feelings for 90210 theater student, Adrianna, played by Jessica Lowndes, that led to a relationship and break-up after Adrianna got pregnant, the Michael Steger embodied Navid had some tough 90210 decisions on the downside of love. The tension between Navid and Adrianna reached a peak when Steger’s character witnessed his ex buying drugs for someone else that led to Navid getting pushed down a flight of stairs.

Ahead of the March 9 episode of 90210, “Rats and Heroes”, we hopped on the line for an exclusive 90210 one-on-one with Michael Steger to learn more about where things will head with Navid throughout the rest of the season, where his feelings stand for Adrianna, and how things will shape up with the rest of the 90210 characters.

THE DEADBOLT: So how does it feel to be the proverbial odd man out in this new love triangle?

MICHAEL STEGER: Well, it’s interesting because he’s not for the love triangle. So once he realizes Adrianna is dating someone else, he retreats in his work. It’s like he’s wrapped up playing video games in his own room. He’s just so involved in The Blaze and he ends up finding someone else who’s equally invested into journalism and that’s Lila, his star reporter. So he’s found the perfect combination of love and work and he’s happy right now. He’s found his happy distraction.

THE DEADBOLT: What kind of ripple effect do you think this tenuous relationship between Navid, Adrianna, and Gia will cause for the rest of the characters, especially since it’s not the type of triangle people are expecting?

STEGER: I think it’s almost that the seed has been planted in Navid that he might have done something wrong to make her gay. And it’s always like, I think any guy will feel this way if they just got out of a long relationship and their ex is gong for someone they’re going to question. They’re gong to analyze every single thing. The interesting thing about Navid is that he dissects and he analyzes and he will just focus all of his energy on something. I think he’s focusing on the fact he may have made Adrianna gay. So he’s kind of looking way into it and he’s uncomfortable with the idea he may have done that [laughs].

THE DEADBOLT: Navid does have a tendency to feel that he sort of has to play the hero when it comes to Adrianna. Is he going to have that hero complex again and try to get her back on track if things don’t go well for her?

STEGER: Yeah, and I think he doesn’t really want to be in that position. But I think he’s come to the situation where it was plainly obvious that Jasper was selling drugs for Adrianna. So it’s almost like seeing that first hand was a flashback and almost like true life was going to repeat itself again and that could not happen. So even if they weren’t friends, or if they were enemies, he wouldn’t want to stop that. And Jasper is also manipulating Navid’s best friend, so there’s this thing where Navid has to do something about this one guy who could possibly ruin these people’s lives.

THE DEADBOLT: We’ve seen Navid grow into his own in the last season and a half and he’s becoming very ambitious and driven. How is that going to make things difficult for him, especially considering his vendetta against Jasper?

STEGER: Well, it’s made Navid refocus all of his energy on recovering from the relationship and just trying to do his work. He needs to do something about it. He was pushed down stairs and his life was close to being ruined. I mean, he could’ve been killed. So he’s just trying to save himself and others from this guy.

THE DEADBOLT: There are spoilers online right now about the new episode, especially concerning your season finale confessions. How is that going to leave the show? How is that going to end off?

STEGER: I really can’t say how the show is going to end off. But I do know that Navid does finally form a friendship with his ex and that Jasper, no matter what Navid tries to do, or what any of the authorities try to do, he’s just really resilient. It’s tricky with the writing and his story and his character. He’s capable of manipulating people at the master level and you don’t realize that a teenager can have the ability to outsmart so many people. It’s a fascinating approach that the writers took on because this kid is conniving, he’s smart, and he’s caused a lot of damage.

THE DEADBOLT: Regarding about the issues that 90210 is raising right now. We have the same sex relationship between Adrianna and Gia. How do you think that’s going to help open doors for other issues that haven’t been getting exposure on primetime television?

STEGER: It’s interesting because we’re dealing with a way more mature audience. I think kids are much more mature and there’s just a plethora of ideas of storylines that they could tackle. In fact, I think the best ones are the most honest ones and dealing with real issues and not going too astray. I think the writers have done a good job with that. But yeah, I think there are so many ideas to tackle and I would like to see where they go in season three. But that’s mainly the writer’s department.

THE DEADBOLT: Other shows on The CW, like Gossip Girl and Melrose Place, are glamorous and focus on big issues. Navid drives a Lamborghini and his father is in the porn industry. How is he going to deal with his own self esteem issues being financially stable while also dealing with all of the regular problems that teenager has to figure out?

STEGER: I think Navid does try to deflect all of the power and materialism that’s thrown his way. I mean, he does drive a Lamborghini, he does live in a mansion, but I really think that that’s something he tries to not use. He tries to not let that identify him. He wants to be identified as the worker, the kid who works for it. He would much rather be the underdog than that kid that has everything given to him. So I think he struggles with that and he struggles to be grounded. I think he struggles to be real and that’s his inner struggle.

THE DEADBOLT: How is the journalism aspect of Navid’s life going to allow him to grow as a character?

STEGER: I think it’s going to help him shed more light on other characters. I think he’s slowly becoming the voice of reason and I think he’s using The Blaze as his channel for that. I think he’s slowly becoming a better character and the characters around him are kind of dealing with a lot more issues than he is. He’s just like the kid at the beach on a bench just watching everybody, people watching in a way, and observing. I think as a journalist, he’s an observer.

THE DEADBOLT: With the original cast members leaving and the reigns being turned over to the new kids, how is that going to affect season three?

STEGER: I look at the new season as an adventure. You never know what’s going to come, or what’s going to be put on the plate, but it’s always exhilarating to have a new challenge. I think our newest challenge is to just stay strong as an ensemble and keep on telling the stories. The great thing about being an ensemble is that we always have new people come up and help us with he show and bring new ideas and new storylines. So yeah, I think it’s going to be more of an adventure.

THE DEADBOLT: How do you feel a potential hook up between Liam and Annie will affect the series?

STEGER: Oh, wow! I don’t know. Navid’s not big on relationships right now. I don’t know. That’s a good question. I think they would be great together.


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