IRON FIST, Cultural Appropriation in Media and Racism in Comics

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2 Responses

  1. Tristan Tsuji says:

    I’m a culturally western 4th generation Japanese Canadian, a product of the Internment. I just want to point out that for Asian westerners, there is very little in the way of strong cultural role models in western media, Sulu from Star Trek, Jet Li(who is often portrayed in typical meek beta male with martial arts prowess stereotype) and not many others. There’s a history in Hollywood to suppress any respectful portrayal of Asian men and women. In the Netflix series he is a terrible martial artist, condescending, arrogant, and colonial. He basically seals the whole thing by banging colleen wing his culturally ambiguous Asian sidekick/prop/whore. She could have been portrayed as a strong Asian woman and ally who didn’t have to give herself up sexually to the “Iron Fist” which she eventually starts blindly excusing for his idiocy, even telling Claire Temple on the luxury Jet to a hairbrained daytime stakeout from 10 feet away of a hand heroin factory in China, a country with military intelligence services that would have been on his ass the second he entered their airspace. Its terribly written, disrespectful, and a lost opportunity to start being inclusive of one of the most ignored and invisible minorities of the western world. Even speaking about my feelings on it from the viewpoint of an Asian Canadian I’ve received harsh criticism and “whitesplaining” as much as I hate to use an SJW term but what else do you call it in one word when white males tell an Asian he is wrong to feel offended and misrepresented culturally in a show that while it has Chinese not Japanese cultural themes still borrows from and misrepresents Japanese cultural aspects.
    I mentioned Nick Fury, and received the answer that they changed it in the comics.
    My response to that is that it just speaks volumes about how the “model minority” is seen and respected.

    • Erik Koehn says:

      Your feelings are heard and important. I wrote this piece mostly from my point of view and history and without watching the show as it wasn’t out yet. But having now watched the first 9 episodes I have to say I agree with just about every point you have here. I’m probably going to do a review of the show next week and bring up a lot of this. Especially how absolutely lousy that actor’s martial skill is. Worst horse stance ever. It was never my intention to whitesplain in my article. Just hoping to offer up some context from me the white guy that did study kung fu for years. But you ain’t wrong to feel offended. That show is offensive in many ways.

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