Category Archives: asian-american

Samurai Girl premieres

by Guest Contributor Angry Asian Man, originally published at Angry Asian Man

Samurai Girl, which we’ve been anticipating for the better part of a year, finally premieres tonight on ABC Family, and runs through the weekend as a three-night “original event.” The network has been hyping the hell out of this thing, with nonstop commercials, a panel at last month’s Comic-Con, and all sorts of crazy stuff on the show’s website (“samurai-ize your desktop”). If the premiere goes well, it’s likely that Samurai Girl will be picked up as a full series.

Well, I have seen the first two hours of the show… and it’s not very good. Okay, everything we’ve seen and heard about the show so far hasn’t been very promising. But I’ll admit, I was secretly hoping the show would pull out some pleasant surprises, rather than falling back on the usual stereotypes. That’s not happening. Samurai Girl is bad, and then really bad.

Based on a series of popular young adult novels, the show stars Jamie Chung as a 19-year-old Japanese girl named Heaven who discovers that the wealthy businessman who adopted her as an infant is really the head of the Yakuza(!) and responsible for murdering her beloved brother. She breaks from her family and begins training to become a samurai, and with the help of a group of new American friends, sets out to take down her father’s evil empire.

I know I’ve said this before, but it’s worthing asking again: why must every other Asian-related Hollywood project involve secret samurais and ninjas and yakuza clans? Not that there’s anything wrong with a good samurai/ninja/yakuza story… but this ain’t it. Continue reading

Racist Mother Goose and Grimm Cartoon

by Guest Contributor Angry Asian Man, originally published at Angry Asian Man

Kimchi Mamas first blogged about this a couple of weeks ago… What kind of messed up nonsense is this? This Mother Goose and Grimm comic strip is a couple of weeks old, but dude, what the hell? Come on! Really? They really had to go there with the idiotic Korean dog-eating joke? And then take it one step further with the Kim Jong Il caricature?

I’m no fan of Kim Jong Il, and honestly, I welcome any kind of intelligent lampooning of his evil dictator craziness. Because the man is nuts. But this is a one-note jab, a cheap laugh that squarely aims for Kim Jong Il’s ethnicity. And then seen by millions of Americans, in newspapers nationwide. That’s racist!

(Thanks, Toni.)

Edited to Add:

Reader Katie points out that the Kimichi Mama’s post also shows how to take action:

OKAY KIMCHI MAMAS…
A protest unspoken is never heard. There is a contact for feedback on the Mother Goose & Grimm comic site. I don’t know if mike peters actually sees the comments, but it’s worth a try. There is power in numbers; speak from a position of power!

Send email to: ben@grimmy.com
Subject: Grimmy Feedback

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Helloooooo, Cho!: Margaret Cho’s new reality show

by Special Correspondent Fatemeh Fakhraie

I finally caught a rerun of The Cho Show, Margaret Cho’s VH1 reality sitcom-y show.

And I really enjoyed it. Not because I like Cho’s comedy. Not because she’s a woman of color on TV (one more for the team!). But because I can identify with her.

How can a twenty-something heterosexual Iranian-American identify with a thirty-something bisexual Korean-American? We’re both misfits.

Cho’s first episode revolves around her struggle with accepting an award from the KoreAm magazine for the Korean of the Year. She says herself that she’s felt a very cool reception from Koreans in the U.S. and feels at odds with the community because of past experiences. “They want me to perform, and they’re gonna hate me. I don’t play golf, and I’m not a good Korean that way,” Cho tells her parents about her nervousness regarding the award. She states that her biggest fear is “bombing in front of a room full of Koreans,” highlighting perhaps a desire to be accepted by her community for who she is at the same time that she expresses her anger over the lack of acceptance they’ve given her in the past. Continue reading