*Jaleel White played iconic TV super nerd Steve Urkel for nine seasons on “Family Matters,” and while he distanced himself from the character after the series ended, in an effort to avoid being typecast, he now says he looks back on the experience with “fond memories.”
In a recent conversation with The Huffington Post, White even teased the possibility of bringing back his character’s famous catchphrase while competing on the Food Network’s “Worst Cooks in America: Celebrity Edition.”
“I might’ve had a, ‘Did I do that?’ moment on the show,” said White, to which HuffPost replied, “Did you do that?”
“You have to watch the show,” laughed White. “I don’t think you’re gonna be disappointed in my participation.”
Below are excerpts from his interview, which you can read in full here.
What’s it like looking back on “Family Matters”?
White: You know, for me it was puberty. It’s real simple. I don’t even really look back on the role. It was just puberty. So imagine somebody always asking, you know, “Hey, how was life in junior high or high school?” And you’re like, “Yeah, well I probably had a few more pimples than I wanted back then, you know, the girl I wanted to talk to she wasn’t noticing me.” It was puberty, man. It’s kind of different to be a “Seinfeld” cast member or “Friends” cast member. I was not an adult at the time, and so I still have time to define myself as an adult.
Would you ever bring back Urkel?
White: I don’t know. I know that there’s something funny to do with it. The “Key & Peele” sketch showed me that. I’ll never say never, but it’s really tough if you don’t take the right approach based on how much life has changed. It was puberty for me, and I’m passed puberty now. I don’t know how I’d look in the uniform.
So would a “Family Matters” reboot have to be edgier?
White: You can definitely reboot it at PG-13 or R. And you can have a lot of fun, and I think people would like it, but there’s different people out there. They’re like, “No, I just want to go back in time like a time capsule.” It’s like, “What? Don’t we all.”
Catch Jaleel attempting to improve his cooking skills on “Worst Cooks in America: Celebrity Edition” airing Wednesdays on Food Network.