Eddie Murphy in yellowface

by Carmen Van Kerckhove

Just when I didn’t think Eddie Murphy’s career could sink any lower, along comes his latest flick, Norbit. Check out the video of the trailer. Jenn at Reappropriate summarizes it thus:

In it, Murphy plays a dorky, meek Black man adopted as a child by an old Asian man and, in adulthood, who is dominated by a fat black woman stereotype. The catch? Murphy plays Norbit, Norbit’s girlfriend, and the Asian man who adopts him. As the Asian man, not only does Murphy wear yellow-tinted skin, but plays up the old Asian male stereotype, complete with poor Chinglish accent.

When are people going to stop finding black men in dresses funny? When are we going to stop using overweight people as comedic crutches? And when are people going to realize that yellowface is just as offensive as blackface?

I think Racialicious should hand out buffoonery awards. Tyler Perry is, of course, still in the lead for Buffoon of the Year (NAACP Image Award bedamned), but I gotta say after watching this trailer that Eddie Murphy’s a close second.

About This Blog

Racialicious is a blog about the intersection of race and pop culture. Check out our daily updates on the latest celebrity gaffes, our no-holds-barred critique of questionable media representations, and of course, the inevitable Keanu Reeves John Cho newsflashes.

Latoya Peterson (DC) is the Owner and Editor (not the Founder!) of Racialicious, Arturo García (San Diego) is the Managing Editor, Andrea Plaid (NYC) is the Associate Editor. You can email us at team@racialicious.com.

The founders of Racialicious are Carmen Sognonvi and Jen Chau. They are no longer with the blog. Carmen now runs Urban Martial Arts with her husband and blogs about local business. Jen can still be found at Swirl or on her personal blog. Please do not send them emails here, they are no longer affiliated with this blog.

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