• nagleonce

    Ming Na Wen is the unusual heroine here. She’s not young. She doesn’t wear skimpy outfits, although she has the body for it. She’s quiet, but not cold; when her teammates need emotional support, she’s there for them. It’s good to see a character that’s a bit out of the usual stereotype.

  • http://www.bionicdreamer.com Geoffrey Lee

    You’re forgetting another big one… Grace Park in Battlestar Galactica. I wouldn’t categorize her character under nerdy, geek, or dragon lady.

  • xxxtine

    Actually, I didn’t forget her because Battlestar Galactica is no longer on television producing new episodes. It’s a finished series. And yes, I would agree it would be difficult to plot her on the weird Venn Diagram I just made up but the point I was trying to get across was that regardless of the complexity of the character being portrayed, actors of colour will almost always get catagorized in a stereotype. Someone will reach for it, no matter how minute it may be.
    Smart = nerdy, Assertive = Dragon Lady, Woman = Eye candy etc.
    I will say that the Sci-Fi genre, for the most part, does a decent job in casting diversely allowing characters portrayed by actors of colour to be seen as their characters should be in a world similar, yet different to ours.

  • xxxtine

    I’m all for the middle-aged heroine. Here here for Melinda May and River Song (Doctor Who). I hope to be as fabulous and sassy as they are when I hit their ages.
    As for Melinda May being warm, for the most part she is, but the last episode, she can get ice cold very very fast. I hesitate to say she’s actually encompassing a stereotype at all, but rather portraying the characters experience. Had she been played by another actress like Gina Torres or Sigourney Weaver (i’m pulling names out of a hat here.) it still would’ve worked as her character is not defined by ethnicity.

  • Fracist

    The problem is Asian actors who continue to take on these roles for money. They NEED to learn how to say NO. Christopher Larkin(from Squad 85) he’s currently in the 100 on CW he said something he said he doesn’t understand Asian American actors who continue to take on stereotypical roles and he will never do that and he has a second job. Aaron Yoo also said he won’t ever take on a stereotypical role. I like Will Yun Lee and Maggie Q, but damn it’s like why take on stereotypical roles? Is the money worth it?

  • Kat

    So, basically an asian can’t play a tv role without it being a stereotype? I mean come on! You’re just trying to make a problem where there is none! A woman can’t be smart, pretty or sassy? You’re diagram means that pretty much an asian woman acting would be on your bad list.

  • xxxtine

    I’m not entirely sure what you’re implying? That Maggie Q is playing an Asian stereotype of a character that originally was written as French, or that Lucy Liu is playing another form of an Asian stereotype of a character that originally was a British white man?
    What I was subtly alluding to was there will always be someone who says so and so is portraying a stereotype, especially if they’re a person of colour. I mean, why CAN’T an Asian actor play a smart character w.o being called a nerd? Or play a specialist or whatever? I say, if they have lines that doesn’t call for executing them with an Asian accent, then by all means.
    The way I see it, just because a character may have a trait (like smart, specialist, fighter) that falls under ‘Asian stereotype’ isn’t just cause to dismiss a role.

  • xxxtine

    You clearly missed the sarcasm of the piece as illustrated by the first and last Venn Diagram.

    For actors of colour, there will always be people who will see stereotypes when there is none (for whatever reason). Hence my frustration with the linked article. I was merely responding to it in my own way. If you were to replace the Venn Diagram labels with similar words, they wouldn’t come across as stereotypes as all. (ie: Nerdy=Intelligent, Eye Candy=Bimbo, Dragon Lady=Assertive Ball Breaker, Geek=Outcast.)

    To be clear, my argument was that the character these Asian actresses are playing aren’t stereotypes and that the author of the NYTimes article was reaching.

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