by Latoya Peterson
Some interesting intersections between pop culture, visual culture, and race surfaced in the last week.
Machete, one of the joke trailers featured in Grindhouse is actually becoming a full movie – and the cast of Machete decided to send “a special message to Arizona” post SB 1070. Michelle Rodriguez, Jessica Alba, and Danny Trejo all recorded some new scenes directly speaking to the tension over immigration. While most of the embeddable trailers have been removed due to copyright claims, Ain’t It Cool News still has a video, so go check it out.
My favorite scene so far was Jessica Alba’s Malcolm X moment (“We didn’t cross the border, the border crossed us!”) but it all looks full of win.
Reader Kristi sent in a disturbing restaurant promotion, originally called out by Jezebel:
A California sushi restaurant has been offering free edamame — as long as you’re willing to say “Me love you long time” to the waitstaff. And apparently the idea worked so wonderfully that it’s spreading!
The Huntington Beach branch of chain RA Sushi seems to have launched the promotion in early April, according to a Facebook post. The company’s Facebook wall also included the lovely image above. Of course, saying “Me love you long time” (a line originally uttered by a Vietnamese prostitute in Full Metal Jacket) requires patrons to a) copy a racist caricature, b) copy a racist caricature of a person from Vietnam, a country not necessarily known for its sushi, and c) totally humiliate themselves.
I was just going to put this Blacklava tee up as a response:
But then, while hanging over at Resist Racism, spoken word duo Yellow Rage attacks both the action and the underlying issues with perpetuating these types of phrases: