*

 

12.30.2018

Read These Blogs


13 moments in Asian America that moved us in 2018
"It was the year of cheering for Crazy Rich Asians and crying over Pixar's Bao; of Chloe Kim winning the world over and of Sandra Oh declaring, "It's an honor just to be Asian." From Hasan Minhaj making history on the late-night stage to a viral prank that opened a conversation about diversity in advertising, 2018 was full of laughter, happy tears, and moments that filled us with pride."

* * *

2018: When Asian-American Art Came Into Its Own
"Let's dispense with any niceties or equivocation: 2018 has been a year of Asian-American excellence."

* * *

Opinion: It's Time to Retire the Phrase "Diversity Is Good for Business"
"The lesson of 2018's "diverse" hits should be that movies and TV shows that depart from the norm, are inclusive and tell underrepresented tales do well not simply because they are fresh and new. They succeeded because they were damn good stories, made by a team of artists with an authentic understanding of the characters depicted, given all the tools and investment they needed to succeed."

* * *

Among Vietnamese, a generational divide arises in fight against deportation threat
The Trump administration's push to deport more Vietnamese American refugees is the latest controversy to underscore the growing generational divide within the Vietnamese American community.

* * *

An Rong Photographs Asian Couples in Love
"In America, it's rare to see Asian Americans in love. Are we not supposed to be in love with each other?"

* * *

Finding Chinese food, and home, in Nashville, Tennessee
"When we moved to Nashville in 1995, we quickly became intimately familiar with the seven or eight Chinese restaurants within driving distance, half of which seemed to be owned by my parents’ family friends."

* * *

In the Twin Cities, Asian chefs feel the sting of Andrew Zimmern’s insults.
"I'll back P.F. Chang's and their family any day of the week. Asians forever!" says Eve Wu. "If we have to be the generation that is going to be calling out problematic behavior, because in the past it hasn't been, then I'm going to do it... I will do a 100-year war with him."

* * *

The Meme-ification of Asianness
In one Facebook group, more than a million young people are trying to articulate what it means to be Asian.

* * *

Meet Rep. Chris Chyung, Indiana's first Asian-American state lawmaker
Newly-elected Democratic Rep. Chris Chyung already has made history by becoming Indiana's first Asian-American state lawmaker. At age 25, he's also the state's youngest current state lawmaker. And he's probably the only lawmaker who still lives with his parents as he works to pay off student debt.

* * *

Michelle Yeoh On A 'Crazy Rich' Career And Why Ballet Was The Key To Her Martial Arts Success
In this episode of the Deadline video series The Actor’s Side, Michelle Yeoh discusses her Crazy Rich Asians role and why she feels it is her homage to mothers she knows personally.

* * *

How Karyn Kusama Deconstructed The Noir Genre & Rebuilt It From A Woman’s Point Of View
Director Karyn Kusama talks about her latest film, the crime noir Destroyer.

* * *

The Grief of Others: A Conversation with Filmmaker Patrick Wang
Indie filmmaker Patrick Wang, director of The Grief of Others, talks about surprising trajectory of his career.


12.23.2018

Read These Blogs


Sikh bros light up NYC with 'ugly' sweaters, American flag turbans
Nothing says Christmas like a bunch of Sikhs in American-flag turbans and matching light-up sweaters.

* * *

2018 Was a Landmark Year for Asian American Representation
Crazy Rich Asians, Killing Eve, To All the Boys I've Loved Before, and the list goes on. 2018 has been a historic year for Asian American representation in pop culture.

* * *

Why the 'Model Minority' Ends With Second-Generation Asian Americans
A closer look into stats about Asian Americans and upward mobility.

* * *

Punjabi Sikh-Mexican American community fading into history
In the early 1900s, thousands of Punjabi-Mexican couples sprouted across the Southwestern U.S., in the face of mounting anti-immigration laws.

* * *

American Dreams in a Chinese Takeout
The grueling nature of Chinese restaurant work in the U.S. has been well-documented, but the immigrants living that life understand the trade-offs they've made. They see America as a place they might build a life for themselves. The question is how to go about building that life.

* * *

How Seeing Asian American Dads Onscreen Helps Me Face My Own Having seen Asian American dads onscreen, Mimi Wong reflects on her relationship with her own dad: “Our fathers may never know us the way we wish they would. And if we learned that ignorance is bliss, it's because we learned it from them."

* * *

Celeste Ng Is More Than a Novelist
Novelist Celeste Ng said that her drive to share her good fortune with her peers comes from her own early career uncertainties.

* * *

The Queen of Christmas
Elizabeth Chan, a full-time Christmas-song singer and composer, visits Santaland at Macy's.

* * *

Rohini Kosoglu Is Kamala Harris' New Chief Of Staff
Rohini Kosoglu is the only Asian American woman serving as the U.S. senator's chief of staff, and she looks forward to working with a more diverse Congress in 2019.

* * *

AAWW Staff Picks: Best of 2018
The staff, interns, and fellows of the Asian American Writers' Workshop select their favorite books, music, film, and art from 2018.

* * *

The Director James Wan: If 'Aquaman' Doesn't Work, Blame Me
Aquaman is an improbable movie, which in many ways makes James Wan the ideal person to direct it.

* * *

The Filmmaker Karyn Kusama Explores the Many Dimensions of Women's Rage
From Girlfight to Destroyer, filmmaker Karyn Kusama's movies are distinguished by her willingness not to revel in brutality but to look it in the face.

* * *

For Kim's Convenience star Paul Sun-Hyung Lee, business is good at last
Paul Sun-Hyung Lee plays the convenience-store-owning patriarch of the Kim family in CBC's Kim's Convenience, and has become Canada's favorite dad.


12.21.2018

Angry Reader of the Week: Dawn Lee Tu

"I am a shape shifter. I am what you least expect."



Hello, internet friends. It is time, once again, to meet the Angry Reader of the Week, spotlighting you, the very special readers of this website. Over the years, I've been able to connect with a lot of cool folks, and this is a way of showing some appreciation and attention to the people who help make this blog what it is. This week's Angry Reader is Dawn Lee Tu.

12.19.2018

Salon employee refers to Asian customer as "chinky eyes"

And then that salon employee got fired.



So you sit down in the salon chair to get your hair done... and get smacked in the head with some every day racism. That's what happened to an Asian woman who recently saw herself described as "chinky eyes" on a receipt at a Manhattan hair salon. Yup, the racial receipt. We know it well.

Briana Tae was getting her hair blown out at the Drybar in Murray Hill in anticipation of her upcoming nursing school pinning ceremony. But when she saw the receipt slip describing her service, she saw that under the category "Description" one of the employees had scrawled the derogatory slur to describe her.

"I'm sorry, what?" Tae wrote in a Facebook post, sharing a photo of the receipt. "I was the ONLY customer waiting with my friend and rather than describe me by my hair that was in a bun or by my black jacket or as a girl with a friend, I was described as a girl with chinky eyes."

12.18.2018

Man sentenced to 15 months in attack on Sikh taxi driver

"He attacked my faith, my dignity, and my entire community."



On Friday in Seattle, a man was sentenced to 15 months in prison after pleading guilty to the 2017 assault with a deadly weapon of a 53-year-old Sikh American taxi driver.

Swarn Singh, who maintains and unshorn beard and wears a turban in observance with this Sikh faith, was driving his taxi last December when Rory Benson, a passenger, brutally attacked him with a hammer.

On December 16, 2017, Singh had parked outside an apartment building to drop off Rory Benson and his mother. It was then that Benson, who was sitting in the front passenger seat, attacked Singh, grabbing the piece of cloth Singh kept in his taxi to wipe the windshield and attempted to suffocate him with it.

Singh immediately ran out of the taxi, but Benson, grabbing a hammer from his bag, chased him on foot. He caught up to Singh and hit him in the head repeatedly, specifically targeting his turban and knocking it to the ground. Singh suffered a scalp laceration and a skull fracture. Benson was arrested.

12.17.2018

Sign this petition to protect our families and communities

Sign on against amendments to the current U.S.-Vietnam repatriation agreement.


Vietnamese American community members protest in Little Saigon. (Los Angeles Times)

You may have heard that the Trump administration, in its ongoing aggression against immigrants, is resuming its efforts to deport thousands of protected Vietnamese refugees who have lived in the United States for decades -- many of them having fled the country during the Vietnam War.

The community is watching. A coalition of Vietnamese community members, and local, state and national immigrant, civil rights and human rights organizations are urging folks to speak out, sign this petition and let the Department of Homeland Security and Vietnam know the community is watching.

SIGN-ON AGAINST AMENDMENTS TO US-VIETNAM REPATRIATION AGREEMENT 2008

The petition demands that the protections afforded to Vietnamese immigrants under the current U.S.-Vietnam repatriation agreement be maintained, established in 2008, and oppose any amendments that further threaten to tear apart families and upend communities.

The petition has further information (also translated in Vietnamese):

12.16.2018

Read These Blogs


My Dad's Friendship With Charles Barkley
Shirley Wang tells the sweet story about the unexpected and unlikely friendship between former NBA superstar Charles Barkley and her late father, a Chinese immigrant and cat litter scientist.

* * *

Vietnamese Americans rally against Trump administration's push to deport thousands of war refugees
"Their faces were grim, but with their voices united in a common cause, Vietnamese Americans rallied in Little Saigon on Saturday to protest the Trump administration's push to deport thousands of war refugees."

* * *

I became a Democrat a year ago and found my own voice. It changed everything.
"I wrote my truth, held my breath and waited. I now care about lots more things than I used to, and I've finally embraced my Asian-American identity." A year ago, Kurt Bardella jumped ship from the Republican party.

* * *

I'm an Asian American Student at Columbia University -- and Nimesh Patel's Mic Needed to be Cut
Comedian and Saturday Night Live writer Nimesh Patel was performing at an Asian American event at Columbia University when he was asked to leave the stage by the event's organizers. The former president of Columbia's Asian American Alliance talks about what really happened.

* * *

The Return of the 'Bad Boys' of Chinatown
Back then, they were New York City Chinatown's "bad boys," sporting pompadours, smoking cigarettes, and making people around them nervous. Now, they carry photos of their grandchildren to show off at their reunions.

* * *

'Yellowface' in 'The Nutcracker' isn't a benign ballet tradition, it's racist stereotyping
It's time to end the racist stereotypes in ballet -- starting with The Nutcracker.

* * *

This High School Senior Invented a Device That Detects Contaminated Water, and It Could Save Lives
High school senior Anjali Chadha invented a 3D-printed arsenic sensor that has the potential to improve access to clean water around the world.

* * *

Meet Deqing Lian — A Deliveryman Trying to Make a Living in de Blasio's New York
New York City has been cracking down on food delivery workers, who are being treated as threats to public safety. The reality is that many of these workers are underpaid, overworked, and barely acknowledged by those who use delivery services.

* * *

How 'Subtle Asian Traits' Became a Global Hit
A group of Asian Australian students started a Facebook group to share jokes and memes about their experiences. Now, it has nearly a million followers all over the world.

* * *

How the Daughter of Vietnamese Refugees Founded 'Brown Folks Fishing'
Tracy Nguyen-Chung started the Instagram account Brown Folks Fishing to encourage communities of color to reconnect with the outdoors and conservation efforts through fishing.

* * *

Why 'Grieve' Is the Word of the Year
By Alexander Chee: "Grief never ends because love never ends."

* * *

Rituals of Style: An Interview with Yumi Sakugawa
The illustrator and comic artist talks the spiritual side of fashion, pho dresses, Claudia Kishi as an Asian American style icon, and her new book, Fashion Forecasts.

* * *

Bumblebee Screenwriter Christina Hodson on Girls, Geekdom, and Writing Superheroes
British screenwriter Christina Hodson on the inspiration behind Bumblebee, growing up geeky, and why Linda Hamilton in Terminator 2 remains one of the best onscreen heroines ever.


12.14.2018

Angry Reader of the Week: Chris Pang

"I really should have read these questions first before answering them."



All right, folks. Here's what's up. It is time, once again, to meet the Angry Reader of the Week, spotlighting you, the very special readers of this website. Over the years, I've been able to connect with a lot of cool folks, and this is a way of showing some appreciation and attention to the people who help make this blog what it is. This week's Angry Reader is Chris Pang.

Racist woman ruins everybody's morning commute

"It's too early for this shit."



So this was your morning subway shit show. In New York, a woman was arrested after attacking another passenger in a violent, racist assault on a subway train. It was, of course, all caught on camera.

The attack occurred Tuesday morning on the Brooklyn D train. In the video, the woman can be seen kicking, slapping, spitting, screaming and swearing at a fellow passenger, identified as Michelle Tung.

40-year-old Anna Lushchinskaya, who is apparently an attorney and has a previous train-related arrest, has been charged with menacing, weapons possession, attempted assault and harassment.

Fellow train passenger and Twitter user Juan Ayala recorded the altercation and posted it to social media, complete with this own bewildered commentary.

"It's too early for this shit." he says, basically summing it up.

12.13.2018

Steven Yeun to star in 'The Twilight Zone' revival

'The Walking Dead' actor returns to TV for Jordan Peele's reboot of the classic anthology series.


Steven Yeun in 'Sorry to Bother You'

Steven Yeun's post-Glenn career keeps chugging along. The Walking Dead and Burning star will lead an episode of director/producer Jordan Peele's upcoming Twilight Zone reboot for CBS All Access.

Steven Yeun cast in the new Twilight Zone series

Details are pretty slim, but according to Collider, Yeun will play the title character in the series' fourth episode "The Traveler," which follows two cops and a mysterious traveler. Say no more. I'm in.

Like Rod Serling's classic anthology series, which originally ran on CBS from 1959 to 1964, Peele's revival will tell self-contained stories in every episode, leaning on science fiction, fantasy and horror to spin tales that hold a mirror up to ourselves and our society.

12.12.2018

Trump wants to deport Vietnamese refugees

The administration is resuming efforts to deport certain protected Vietnamese immigrants.


Trump speaks in Hanoi in 2017. (Photo Credit: Associated Press)

Sooner or later, they will come for you, too. In its ongoing assault on immigrants, the Trump administration is reportedly resuming its efforts to deport certain protected Vietnamese immigrants who have lived in the United States for decades -- many of them having fled the country during the Vietnam War.

Basically, the administration has now decided that Vietnamese immigrants who arrived in the country before the 1995 establishment of diplomatic ties between the United States and Vietnam are subject to standard immigration law -- meaning they are all eligible for deportation.

From The Atlantic:

Ali Wong joins the cast of 'Birds of Prey'

'Baby Cobra' comedian will play a supporting role in DC's female-centered superhero movie.



Ali Wong has nabbed a supporting role in the upcoming DC superhero movie Birds of Prey.

According to The Wrap, the Baby Cobra comedian will reportedly play an associate of Rosie Perez's Renee Montoya in the Gotham police force. I don't suppose there's any chance that she'll play a nunchuck-wielding superhero (or villain) actually named "Baby Cobra"? That would be fun.

Wong, who voiced Felony in Disney's animated hit Ralph Breaks the Internet, is currently a series regular on ABC's American Housewife, and released her second Netflix special Hard Knock Wife earlier this year. She also co-wrote and stars opposite Randall Park in the upcoming Netflix romantic comedy Always Be My Maybe.

12.11.2018

Hey screenwriters! Apply to the CAPE New Writers Fellowship.

Submissions open through January 7, 2019.



Hey, screenwriters! This is an awesome opportunity. The Coalition of Asian Pacifics in Entertainment (CAPE) is now accepting submissions for one of its signature initiatives, the 2019 CAPE New Writers Fellowship, a talent and professional development program that trains emerging writers to succeed in Hollywood.

The New Writers Fellowship, led by top industry leaders, is comprised of a multi-week intensive with workshops and panels and a writing lab component. CAPE writers have been staffed on every major network, streaming platform and premium cable channel, as well as cable channels such as FX, Freeform, USA and more.

Here's some more information:

12.10.2018

Bao is the most-watched Asian American movie of 2018

Watch the acclaimed Pixar animated short online in its entirety.



I just recently came to our attention that Disney/Pixar has released Bao in its entirety online. In case you haven't seen it yet, or feel like re-watching it and weeping big wet salty soy sauce tears.

Domee Shi's acclaimed animated short, which preceded The Incredibles 2 in theaters, centers on an empty-nesting Chinese mom who gets another chance at motherhood when one of her dumplings springs to life. But she must come to terms with the bittersweet revelation that nothing stays cute and small forever.

Check it out:

Speak out to protect immigrants from public charge

Today is the last day to submit comments against the Trump administration's unethical "public charge" rule.



Today, December 10, is the last day to submit a public comment opposing the Trump administration's unethical "public charge" rule, a set of broad regulations that threatens the lives of immigrant families.

According to the proposed regulation, immigrants who apply for lawful permanent resident status could be denied if they or their dependents, including U.S. citizen children, use certain government benefits such as nutrition programs and housing assistance. This is, simply, a nasty attack on immigrant rights, targeting some of the most vulnerable members of our community. No one should have to choose between basic needs like health care or feeding their family and not getting deported.

The government has to respond to every single public comment submitted about a proposed rule change. You can still get one in under today's deadline. Here's some more information, written and illustrated by artist Thi Bui (adapted from this slideshow originally posted by Asian Health Services) on the public charge rule and, more importantly, how you can take action right now.

12.09.2018

Read These Blogs


'Crazy Rich Asians,' John Cho, Manny Jacinto honored for milestone year in Asian representation
'What a year, to say the least," said Jon M. Chu at Saturday night's Unforgettable Gala. This was in reference to his own life — getting married, having a baby, and directing the monstrously profitable movie Crazy Rich Asians -- as well as for Asian representation in Hollywood and beyond.

* * *

The public charge rule is another tactic to strike fear among immigrant families
"It’s hard to imagine what it would be like to have to choose between putting food on the table to feed your family and protecting your own immigration status. But that is exactly what the Trump administration will be forcing immigrants to do with its latest policy proposal."

* * *

Lucky Cricket's Bad Taste
Andrew Zimmern’s Lucky Cricket is not the Chinese-American chain it hopes to be. A review by Soleil Ho.

* * *

Victims of War, and Now Victims of the Trump Administration
What is an appropriate punishment for a crime? The plight of thousands of Vietnamese refugees convicted of crimes in the U.S. and now threatened with detention or deportation demands an answer to this question.

* * *

Amanda Nguyen Changed Sexual Assault Laws In America. Now She's Going Global.
27-year-old Amanda Nguyen has already substantially changed the way the justice system handles sexual assault cases in the U.S., and now she’s looking to make change internationally.

* * *

How This Founder Is Using Storytelling To End Racism and Sexism
Villy Wang had a crazy dream: to create a new kind of social enterprise that helps kids who, like her, grew up in housing projects. Raised by an immigrant single mother in New York City, Villy’s desire to tell her story forged a passion for using the digital media arts to capture stories untold and to create social change.

* * *

Planned Parenthood president: I have seen too many preventable deaths
"In my life as an immigrant living in low-income communities, as an emergency physician and as a public health advocate, I have seen more preventable deaths than I can count or recall."

* * *

After Years of Fighting for Trans Kids, Laywer Mia Yamamoto Came Out Herself
Mia Yamamoto was born in a Japanese internment camp and served in the Vietnam War. Then, after she became a leading criminal defense attorney, she came out as transgender.

* * *

How the Asian American Backlash to Affirmative Action Went Viral
WeChat has played a critical role in organizing anti-affirmative action activists.

* * *

Test prep is a rite of passage for many Asian-Americans
Professor Julie J. Park looks into why Asian American test prep scores experienced a gain over last year.

* * *

I'll Fight Anyone Who Says You Shouldn't Put Cheese on Your Ramyun
"Ramen is comfort food, a thing to soak up your regrets and get you through a rough day. But my favorite way to enjoy it has courted great controversy among my friends and family."

* * *

Inside EastMeetEast, the Controversial Dating App That Raises Thorny Questions About Identity
What's the point of an "Asian4Asian" matchmaking service in 2018?

* * *

How to Deal With "The Panic and Horror That Is Being a Human Right Now"
According to comedian Aparna Nancherla.

* * *

'Crazy Rich Asians' Writer on What the Movie Has Done for Asian-American Scribes (Guest Column)
Similarly themed projects are advancing in the wake of Crazy Rich Asians' breakout success, says co-screenwriter Adele Lim, as success no longer means having to "think and sound and write like a white dude from Yale."

* * *

Everyone’s Ready to Watch Greta Lee
A profile of scene-stealing actress Greta Lee, who's currently writing and developing the dark comedy Ktown for HBO. If the series gets picked up, it will be the first cable show ever centered on Asian Americans.

* * *

The original Power Rangers share memories of Yellow Ranger Thuy Trang, who died at age 27
As part of an extensive oral history in Entertainment Weekly celebrating the 25th anniversary of the hit Fox Kids series' first season, the original Yellow Ranger's castmates share memories of working with their friend.

* * *

‘Blindspotting’ Producer Jess Wu Calder Discusses Long Journey to Big Screen
An interview with Jess Wu Calder, producer of this year's Sundance smash Blindspotting.

* * *

How 'Shang-Chi' Could Be Marvel's Next 'Black Panther'
"Shang-Chi is an opportunity to depart from the Asian martial artist as the sleek, unphased fighting machine, and instead our chance to get to know a distinct and highly-skilled character faced with challenging the perception pop-culture has so often attached to the Asian hero. Shang-Chi can be so much more than Marvel’s Bruce Lee."


12.07.2018

Angry Reader of the Week: Sue Ding

"I'm a documentary filmmaker and interactive media producer, a storyteller and story collector."



Hello, good readers! It is time, once again, to meet the Angry Reader of the Week, spotlighting you, the very special readers of this website. Over the years, I've been able to connect with a lot of cool folks, and this is a way of showing some appreciation and attention to the people who help make this blog what it is. This week's Angry Reader is Sue Ding.

12.06.2018

A Film About Your Favorite Baby-Sitters Club Character

'The Claudia Kishi Club' explores the legacy of Claudia Kishi.



Here's a fun film project that could use your support. The Claudia Kishi Club, by documentary filmmaker Sue Ding, is a love letter to Claudia Kishi, the iconic Japanese American character from the Baby-Sitters Club book series, who inspired a generation of Asian American women and creators of color.

For many Asian Americans who grew up in the 80s and 90s, Claudia was the first time they saw themselves represented in popular culture. A main character in Ann M. Martin's best-selling series, she was one of the only Asian Americans in popular media when the books debuted in 1986. The Claudi Kishi Club explores the character's legacy as a rare Asian American protagonist, a meaningful role model, and of course, a style icon.

The film will feature interview with fans including YA authors C.B. Lee and Sarah Kuhn; comic artist Yumi Sakugawa; and me, Phil Yu, the founder of this website. They also interview producer Naia Cucukov of Walden Media, who is currently adapting The Baby-Sitters Club for a new live-action TV series.

Here's some more information about the film:

Hey! Look at all these Asians nominated for Golden Globes

Crazy Rich Asians, Killing Eve and American Crime Story score multiple nominations.



At this year's Emmy Awards, Sandra Oh declared "It's an honor just to be Asian." True that, but hey, winning some actual awards ain't too shabby either. Nominations for the 76th annual Golden Globe Awards were announced on Thursday morning, and this time, it looks like some Asian folks are invited to the party.

This summer's runaway rom-com hit Crazy Rich Asians scored two nominations, including Best Motion Picture - Musical or Comedy, and Best Actress in a Motion Picture - Musical or Comedy for Constance Wu.

Wu's nomination marks the first time in nearly half a century that an Asian woman has earned a Best Actress nod in either of the Golden Globe film categories. Previous lead actress contenders include Machiko Kyō for The Teahouse of the August Moon (1956), Nancy Kwan for The World of Suzie Wong (1960), Miyoshi Umeki for Flower Drum Song (1961) and Yvonne Elliman for Jesus Christ Superstar (1973).

12.03.2018

Shang-Chi will be Marvel's first Asian superhero movie

The studio has hired Dave Callaham to write the screenplay.



At long last, an Asian superhero is getting their own Marvel movie. Marvel Studios is fast-tracking Shang-Chi, aka The Master of Kung Fu, to be its first superhero movie tentpole franchise with an Asian protagonist.

The studio has reportedly set Dave Callaham, who is Chinese American, to write the screenplay, and is looking for an Asian or Asian American director to helm the potential blockbuster.

According to Deadline, they're looking to give Shang-Chi the Black Panther treatment: "introduce a new hero who blends Asian and Asian American themes, crafted by Asian and Asian American filmmakers."

More here: 'Shang-Chi' Marvel's First Asian Film Superhero Franchise; Dave Callaham Scripting, Search On For Director Of Asian Descent


12.02.2018

Read These Blogs


'Crazy Rich Asians' Flops at the Chinese Box Office
Hollywood summer hit Crazy Rich Asians received a tepid reception in its opening weekend in China.

* * *

Hasan Minhaj Invites You to Take Off Your Shoes
The host of Netflix's Patriot Act, turns a tested sphere -- the topical talk show -- into an immigrant home.

* * *

Tracy Ma Takes Us on a Typographic Tour of Manhattan's Chinatown
"Simplified Chinese doesn't equal accessibility."

* * *

How I Learned To Talk To My Filipino Mom About My Mental Health
Malaka Gharib had to find a way to talk to her Filipino mom about her mental health, and began with her acceptance of their different life experiences.

* * *

Meet Kerry Taniguchi, Chinatown/International District's Reluctant Santa Claus
In Seattle, a longtime Chinatown-International District volunteer flourishes in a new, unexpected role.

* * *

Finally, Transracial Adoptees Can See Ourselves Reflected in Literature
Celeste Ng's Little Fires Everywhere helped Taylor Moore process conflicted feelings about her own adoption.

* * *

Pep Talk from Min Jin Lee
Min Jin Lee, author of the acclaimed novel Pachinko, has some encouraging words for aspiring writers: "writing a book to find the answers to the questions of your heart will help you find the person you deserve -- it will give you your true writer's heart."

* * *

How Chinese Food in Los Angeles Emerged As the Best in the Nation
David R. Chan, who has eaten at 7,000 Chinese restaurants and counting, declares that the Chinese food in Los Angeles is the absolute best you'll find in this country.

* * *

The Green Book's Yellow Lining
While there have been many critiques of the film Green Book, Aki Marceau gives credit to the inclusion of Asian Americans in a story set in a developing New York of the 1960s.

* * *

The Extraordinary Vision of Hiro Murai
From Atlanta to "This Is America," it's been a breakout year for Donald Glover's chief collaborator. And the most thrilling part of all? Hiro Murai is just getting started.

* * *

Netflix's Lisa Nishimura is One of the Most Powerful Asian Americans in Hollywood
An interview with Lisa Nishimura, vice president of original documentary and comedy programming at Netflix.

* * *

The First Woman To Direct A Pixar Short, 'Bao's Domee Shi Is On Her Way To First Feature Project
The 20th helmer to take on a Pixar short since the mid-1980s, and the the first woman to do so, Bao's Domee Shi is now on the path to making her feature debut.

* * *

Why the women of Crazy Rich Asians reign supreme in their groundbreaking rom-com
The women of 2018's groundbreaking and box office-busting rom-com crown jewel Crazy Rich Asians have landed a coveted cover as one of Entertainment Weekly's "Entertainers of the Year."

* * *

Michelle Yeoh on Portraying "Formidable" Matriarch in 'Crazy Rich Asians'
The onetime action star also discusses the film's watershed moment for Asian representation, what made that mahjong showdown so thrilling and why the new crop of Asian actors are "our future."

* * *

Stop What You're Doing and Follow Peter Kim
Los Angeles-based stand-up comedian, writer, and actor Peter Kim talks about his start in comedy.

* * *

Tan France From Queer Eye's Tips For Style Confidence Are Actually All About Self-Love
Style expert Tan France's fashion and confidence advice is the perfect example of why Netflix's Queer Eye is such a success.


11.30.2018

Underdog candidate makes history with Ohio State Senate win

Tina Maharath is the first Lao American state senator in the United States.



Another close race, another historic election win. On Tuesday in Ohio, Democratic candidate Tina Maharath was officially declared the winner over state Rep. Anne Gonzalez in the State Senate race for District 3.

Democratic underdog Tina Maharath wins Ohio Senate seat

Maharath's victory not only makes her Ohio's first Asian American state senator and first Asian American woman in the general assembly, she is the first Lao American state senator in the United States.

She was, by most accounts, a political underdog. Maharath, a 27-year-old financial analyst with no prior campaign experience, was up against a veteran Republican lawmaker for a GOP-held Senate seat. But after all the provisional and absentee ballots were counted, Maharath edged out Gonzalez by just 705 votes.

Angry Reader of the Week: Chantal Thuy

"I am spending a lifetime still trying to figure it out."



Hey, everybody! It is time, once again, to meet the Angry Reader of the Week, spotlighting you, the very special readers of this website. Over the years, I've been able to connect with a lot of cool folks, and this is a way of showing some appreciation and attention to the people who help make this blog what it is. This week's Angry Reader is Chantal Thuy.

11.29.2018

TJ Cox declares victory in the last undecided House race

The 116th U.S. Congress will include 20 AAPI members -- the most ever.



More than three weeks after election day, we have a winner.

In California's 21st Congressional District, TJ Cox defeated three-term Republican Rep. David Valadao on Wednesday, giving Democrats a gain of seven House seats in the state and 40 nationwide.

Cox is only one of two Filipino Americans currently elected to the House of Representatives. Meanwhile, in New Jersey's 3rd District, Andy Kim became only the second ever Korean American elected to the House. Their victories, along with Michael San Nicolas' victory for Guam's delegate representative, solidifies a historic number of AAPI members in Congress.

The 116th United States Congress will include 20 AAPI members -- the most ever.

11.27.2018

They Call Us Bruce - Ep. 55: They Call Us Cartoon Creators

Jeff Yang and Phil Yu present an unfiltered conversation about what's happening in Asian America.



What's up, podcast listeners? We've got another episode of our podcast They Call Us Bruce. (Almost) each week, my good friend, writer/columnist Jeff Yang and I host an unfiltered conversation about what's happening in Asian America, with a strong focus on media, entertainment and popular culture.

On this episode, recorded live during Asian American Culture Con at Pacific Media Expo, we welcome animation storytellers Daniel Chong (We Bare Bears), Victor Cook (Stretch Armstrong and the Flex Fighters), Dan Santat (The Replacements) and Fawn Veerasunthorn (Ralph Breaks the Internet).

11.26.2018

They Call Us Bruce - Episode 54: They Call Us Primetime Asians

Jeff Yang and Phil Yu present an unfiltered conversation about what's happening in Asian America.



What's up, podcast listeners? We've got another episode of our podcast They Call Us Bruce. (Almost) each week, my good friend, writer/columnist Jeff Yang and I host an unfiltered conversation about what's happening in Asian America, with a strong focus on media, entertainment and popular culture.

On this episode, recorded live during Asian American Culture Con at Pacific Media Expo, we welcome actors Keiko Agena (The First), Jake Choi (Single Parents) and Ryan Potter (Titans) to talk about The Good, The Bad and the WTF of being Asians on TV.

11.25.2018

Read These Blogs


Decades After Clashing With The Klan, A Thriving Vietnamese Community In Texas
When Vietnamese refugees first settled in the coastal town of Seadrift, Texas, they encountered prejudice and resentment from some of the locals, culminating on November 25, 1979, when the Ku Klux Klan came to the fishing village. Four decades later, the Vietnamese are now a fixture along the U.S. Gulf Coast.

* * *

Meet Jin Park, The First DACA Recipient Awarded A Rhodes Scholarship
22-year-old Harvard University student Jin Park has become the first recipient of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals -- DACA -- to earn a prestigious Rhodes Scholarship.

* * *

The App at the Heart of the Movement to End Affirmative Action
While most Asian Americans support affirmative action, a vocal group of Asian Americans -- mostly Chinese American -- against affirmative action can be found effectively organizing on WeChat.

* * *

Why Does Andrew Zimmern Get to Create the Next P.F. Chang's?
Chef/TV host Andrew Zimmern wades into questions of appropriation with his new Chinese restaurant chain.

* * *

Full Q&A: ‘Dear America’ author Jose Antonio Vargas on Recode Decode
When he was 16, Jose Antonio Vargas found out that he is an undocumented immigrant -- and after years of secrecy, he decided to "come out." On Recode Decode with Kara Swisher, he talks about his new memoir Dear America: Notes of an Undocumented Citizen.

* * *

Jameela Jamil Hopes Celebrities Shit Their Pants in Public
This headline was too good not to share.

* * *

23-Year-Old Karen Chee Needs To Be Your New Comedy Obsession
Karen Chee originally aspired to be a speechwriter, but became obsessed with comedy as a student at Harvard.

* * *

Japanese Breakfast
Prolific Philly rock musician Japanese Breakfast talks work, death, dogs, anime, and wanting it all.


11.18.2018

Read These Blogs


I Love America. That's Why I Have to Tell the Truth About It
"In claiming that defiant Vietnamese self, one that disregards anyone else's definition, I claim my American self too. Against all those who say “love it or leave it," who offer only one way to be American, I insist on the America that allows me to be Vietnamese and is enriched by the love of others."

* * *

Feeling Conflicted on Thanksgiving
Viet Thanh Nguyen ponders the meaning of Thanksgiving as a Vietnamese refugee and a father of a young son.

* * *

Toning Down Asian Stereotypes to Make 'The Nutcracker' Fit the Times
With New York City Ballet and the Balanchine Trust encouraging modified choreography to the Chinese Tea segment of The Nutcracker, many hope that other companies will follow suit.

* * *

I'm Adopted, But I Won't Be Celebrating National Adoption Month
"Everyone asks me -- an adoptee -- what I'm doing to celebrate National Adoption Awareness Month. As if I should rejoice each November because I'm so "lucky" to have been adopted."

* * *

Google Translate for My Asian Parents
"Have you eaten yet?" means "I love you."

* * *

50 Years Later, Former UC Berkeley Students Celebrate the Asian-American Movement They Began
"I went in Oriental and left Asian-American."

* * *

Who is Andy Kim? Meet N.J.'s first Asian-American congressman
Andy Kim had never run for elected office before deciding this year to take on two-term incumbent Tom MacArthur in New Jersey's 3rd congressional district. But he did. And he won.

* * *

Lost and Found With Hansol Jung
With plays like Wild Goose Dreams -- currently at the Public Theater in New York -- Korean playwright Hansol Jung is making a splash on American stages with stories of displacement and hope.

* * *

How Silicon Valley's Favorite Chinese-American Restaurant Was Born
Since opening in 1970, Chef Chu's has played host to tech elites and numerous heads of state.

* * *

Henry the First
Crazy Rich Asians wasn't supposed to be the biggest rom-com of the past decade. Henry Golding was never supposed to be an actor. So what expectation is he going to shatter next?

* * *

Steven Yeun, A Star On Both Sides Of The Pacific, Talks Toggling Between East & West
For Steven Yeun's latest role in the film Burning, the actor tapped into his feelings of isolation as a child.

* * *

An Alien Invasion Was Happening in Searching, You Just Didn't Notice It
Most people think Searching is just a movie about John Cho looking for his missing daughter that takes places completely on a computer. That's true, but it's also an alien invasion movie... Kind of.

* * *

Stan Lee's final superhero was inspired by a Chinese pop star
Just weeks before Stan Lee died, the comic book legend's movie studio unveiled his final creation: a Chinese pop star who tours the world by day and saves it by night.


11.17.2018

Angry Reader of the Week: Bao Tran

"Andy Lau's forgotten half-brother."



Hello, internet! You know what time it is. It's time to meet the Angry Reader of the Week, spotlighting you, the very special readers of this website. Over the years, I've been able to connect with a lot of cool folks, and this is a way of showing some appreciation and attention to the people who help make this blog what it is. This week's Angry Reader is Bao Tran.

11.13.2018

When You Gotta Avenge Your Master, But You've Got Day Jobs

Bao Tran's indie feature 'The Paper Tigers' is an underdog story about three out-of-shape kung fu fighters.



This one's for the underdogs. The Paper Tigers is an upcoming martial arts action movie about three out-of-shape kung fu fighters who have to avenge their master... except they've got day jobs and kids to feed. The debut feature from writer/director Bao Tran, this cool-looking indie project is currently raising production funds.

A dead-beat dad, an insurance scammer, and an MMA coach find themselves in the middle of a gang war when they must avenge their kung fu master's death. But first... they need to call in sick at their 9-to-5 jobs. This is a story about family, both born into and adopted, and what you owe to keep those families together.

"Imagine Bruce Lee in his 40s, out of shape and divorced, estranged from his kids, trying to figure out his place in the world," Tran says. "Then imagine that same Bruce Lee's comeback. Family, career, and life might have consumed us, but there will always be a part of us that is dying to do a few spin kicks in the backyard. This movie is dedicated to those who are one kick away from pulling their hamstrings... one lap away from a smoke break."

Here's Bao and producer Al'n Duong with the more information about the film::

11.12.2018

May You Find Summer Romance Aboard 'Love Boat: Taiwan'

Valerie Soe is making a documentary about the legendary Taiwanese cultural program, aka "Love Boat."



Here's a film project that could use your help... It's the final fundraising stretch for Love Boat: Taiwan, a documentary that looks at the allure of the Taiwan Love Boat, one of the longest running summer programs in the world, where young Taiwanese Americans get closer to their history, their culture and each other.

In the late 1960s, Taiwan's government established the Study Tour to Taiwan as an outreach program to college-aged Taiwanese Americans and Chinese Americans, to increase their awareness and support for Taiwan. Since then, young people from all over the world have attended this program.

Although it was advertised as a cultural enrichment program -- Mandarin language, martial arts, brush painting, etc. -- the Study Tour's popularity came from another source: its (somewhat notorious) reputation as an excellent place to find romance. Thus earning its more widely known nickname: Taiwan Love Boat.

Director Valerie Soe, who attended the Taiwan Love Boat as a college student in the 1980s, has been working on a documentary chronicling this important part of our community's history.

11.11.2018

Read These Blogs


Why Do Asian Americans Remain Largely Unseen in Film and Television
There have been recent gains in Asian American representation in film and television, but Thessaly La Force thinks that Hollywood can do more. Bonus: classic movie casts re-imagined with Asian American actors.

* * *

This 43-year-old running for president in 2020 wants to give everyone $1,000 a month in free cash
Part of entrepreneur Andrew Yang's platforms in his run for president -- of the United States of America -- is implementing a Universal Basic Income, granting $1,000 for all citizens ages 18-64.

* * *

California politics must accommodate growing share of Asian American voters
Asian Americans, one of the largest immigrant groups and the fastest-growing racial group in California, account for one in every seven votes in the state. Yet they are often overlooked for their political importance.

* * *

The War Inside 7-Eleven
7-11, the world's largest convenience store chain, has been battling its store owners for years over franchise matters. The company seems to have found a new tool: U.S. immigration authorities.

* * *

What Wong Kar-wai's Films Meant to Young Asians in America
For Sophie He, Wong Kar-wai's films illuminated how to navigate that liminal space between tenderness and loneliness, connection and alienation, East and West.

* * *

Kim's Convenience co-creator on anglicization, role models and comedy as a uniting force
An interview with Ins Choi, co-creator of the hit Canadian sitcom Kim's Convenience.

* * *

How Awkwafina Went From Viral Vagina Video to Movies and 'SNL' Host
Crazy Rich Asians breakout star Awkwafina, aka "your average Asian trumpet player turned rapper turned actress," is seeking her path amid a meteoric rise.


11.09.2018

This Virginia Tech flyer for international students doesn't feature any actual international students

Perpetual foreigner syndrome strikes again!



Virginia Tech recently printed up a promotional flyer urging international students to complete an upcoming survey to help make the campus better for international students. The flyer, posted around campus, featured a photo of smiling Asian students at Virginia Tech. You know, international students. Cool, right?

There's just one problem: none of the students in the photo are international students.

If you're wondering what the problem is, it looks like these students just got inadvertently smacked in the face with the perpetual foreigner stereotype -- the idea that no matter how long or how much or how far Asian Americans make our way in this country, we'll always be perceived as foreign -- never quite enough American.

In this case, whoever put together this flyer saw a photo of a bunch of Asians kids at Virginia Tech and erroneously assumed they must be international students. Not the kind from "here."

11.08.2018

They Call Us Bruce - Episode 53: They Call Us Not Quite Not White (with Sharmila Sen)

Jeff Yang and Phil Yu present an unfiltered conversation about what's happening in Asian America.



What's up, podcast listeners? We've got another episode of our podcast They Call Us Bruce. Each week, my good friend, writer/columnist Jeff Yang and I host an unfiltered conversation about what's happening in Asian America, with a strong focus on media, entertainment and popular culture.

On this episode, recorded live at the Harvard Asian American Alumni Alliance Summit, Jeff -- flying solo without me -- talks to Sharmila Sen, author of the book Not Quite Not White: Losing and Finding Race in America.

11.04.2018

Read These Blogs


If Asian Voter Turnout in the Midterm Elections Is Strong, Everything Could Change
"In an election year when we’re constantly being reminded of the importance of voting, Asian-Americans have the chance to fulfill our potential as a 'sleeping political giant.' With our booming population and growing presence in strategic battleground states like Nevada, Arizona, and North Carolina, we stand to make a critical difference across the electoral board."

* * *

Birthright citizenship: A Trump-inspired history lesson on the 14th Amendment
Meet Wong Kim Ark, the Chinese American cook who was at the center of a landmark but often forgotten Supreme Court decision.

* * *

I'm An Asian-American Harvard Student — Here's Why I Testified In Support Of Affirmative Action
Sally Chen, a Harvard senior and student representative in the Harvard affirmative action case, explains why she supports a race-conscious admissions policy.

* * *

The false narrative driving the Harvard affirmative action case
"In suggesting that the admit rate for Asian Americans applying to Harvard would increase with the end of affirmative action, Blum is selling a narrative to Asian Americans that is shockingly similar to the one sold by President Trump to white Americans feeling the pinch of their (perceived) declining status."

* * *


His wedding date canceled. So he found a new one on Reddit.

Four days before his friend's brother's wedding, Minsoo's plus-one bailed on him. So he put a call out on Reddit.

* * *

Why LOVE BOAT: TAIWAN still matters: Romance, culture and soft power
Valerie Soe's documentary Love Boat: Taiwan investigates the ways in which the "Love Boat," the iconic summer cultural program for young Taiwanese Americans, uses soft power to gain support for Taiwan.

* * *

The Joy Luck Club
You don't see many Asian leads in Western cinema, that's why The Joy Luck Club's all-Asian cast was so radical. Its portrayal of complicated mother-daughter relationships and the immigrant experience spoke to Amy Choi as a child -- and again as a mother.

* * *

How Kavi Vu and Phi Nguyen use Facebook to get Asian American Atlantans engaged in politics
The duo launched their web series last year. With support from the Center for Civic Innovation and others, they're working to increase Asian American voter turnout and keep the community informed.

* * *

Why You Should Be Watching Maangchi, the Korean Cooking YouTube Star
Meet Maangchi. This relentlessly cheerful cook, author and internet personaity is a go-to guide for many looking for a non-intimidating approach to their favorite Korean recipes.

* * *

Christina Hodson is shaping Hollywood's blockbuster future — and centering female stories
Bumblebee and Birds of Prey screenwriter Christina Hodson grew up devouring Hollywood blockbusters. Now she's writing them.

* * *

How Cathy Yan Landed The ‘Birds Of Prey' Directing Gig: U.S.-China Entertainment Summit
Cathy Yan talks about her upcoming big studio directorial, Warner Bros./DC's Birds of Prey.

* * *

When Jason Mendoza Turned Up at a Jaguars Game
Manny Jacinto, star of NBC's The Good Place, opens up about race, football, and Better Luck Tomorrow.

* * *

Behind The Real Sex And Love Addiction In The Musical Film 'Unlovable'
Charlene deGuzman co-wrote and stars in in the new film Unlovable, which is loosely based on her own experience with sex and love addiction.

* * *

There’s a secret about Burning that only Steven Yeun knows
Steven Yeun on his approach to creating his fascinating character in Burning, as well as his own experience moving between different mediums, cultures, and languages as an actor and Korean American.

* * *

Not My Job: We Quiz 'Crazy Rich Asians' Writer Kevin Kwan On Crazy Itch Reasons
NPR's Wait, Wait... Don't Tell Me! invited Crazy Rich Asians author Kevin Kwan to play a game called "Crazy Rich Asians, meet crazy itch reasons" — three questions about strange things that might make you itch.


11.02.2018

Angry Reader of the Week: Sylvia Kwan

"I am all about staying at home and taking care of my plants."



Hey, folks! You know what time it is. It's time to meet the Angry Reader of the Week, spotlighting you, the very special readers of this website. Over the years, I've been able to connect with a lot of cool folks, and this is a way of showing some appreciation and attention to the people who help make this blog what it is. This week's Angry Reader is Sylvia Kwan.

11.01.2018

Your Halloween Costumes

Our annual gallery of reader-submitted Halloween costume photos.



How was your Halloween? As you put away your pumpkin decor and tumble down from your candy-induced sugar high, let's look at how everybody dressed up. In what has become a really fun and popular tradition, we put the call out to you, the good readers of this blog, for photos of your totally awesome, culturally-appropriate, non-asshole Halloween costumes to feature in our annual gallery. As usual, you answered the call.

Above, we have Alexa as the littlest Cobra Kai. Thank you to everyone who sent in photos! If you'd like to submit one, send yours in and we'll add it to the gallery. Cute kid photos are always super-welcome.

10.30.2018

2018 Asian American Halloween Costume Wish List

Pop culture costume suggestions from Asian America (and beyond)



It's official: these little kids win Halloween.

Dressed as your favorite characters from the hit movie Crazy Rich Asians -- Araminta, Peik Lin, Rachel and Bernard -- their costumes boast the lethal combination of hilarious, cute and culturally relevant. Posted on Instagram by Jessica Gueco Klein, the photos have even received a social media seal of approval from the stars of the movie themselves, including Awkwafina and Jimmy O. Yang, and director Jon M. Chu.

That's when you know you're having a cultural moment -- when you've inspired a Halloween costume. When I was growing up, aside from a few notable exceptions, Asian American pop culture-inspired costumes were few and far between. I'm not talking about generic ninjas and stuff. But the past couple of years have given way to some pretty great costume-worthy Asian characters and icons.

Each Halloween, we run a reader-submitted costume gallery that has become a popular annual feature. Given the great pop culture options out there, here's a wish list of some of the costumes we'd love to see this year. Some of you creative and resourceful readers have already got it done. Please, send in your awesome, cute, spooky, fun and non-offensive Halloween costume photos (of course, they don't have to be on this list).

Send them in, and some of the photos will be updated here...

10.28.2018

Read These Blogs


Hasan Minhaj Breaks Down Threat to Affirmative Action in 'Patriot Act' Premiere
"Now Asians -- and I am lumping all of us together right now -- I find it hilarious that this is the hill we're willing to die on," says comedian Hasan Minhaj of a lawsuit against Harvard over its admissions policy.

* * *

This Is My Unbelievable But Totally True Transgender Ghost Story
Just in time for Halloween: a ghost story of sorts about identity, a Korean shaman and a bygone ancestor.

* * *

The Missing Images of Chinese Immigrants
Reclaiming an American history where Chinese immigrants had been erased.

* * *

My journey as an undocumented immigrant
When Yin Yin Chan was seven, she and her family came to the U.S. from Taiwan and lived as undocumented immigrants -- an experience that has shaped her entire life.

* * *

My Immigrant Life: Why I'm Here and Why I Fight Back
John Yap sees the danger in the proposed rule changes to Public Charge, which would perpetuate the falsehood that immigrants demand and take more than they give back.

* * *

Michelle Yeoh ('Crazy Rich Asians') would be first Asian actress nominated for an Oscar in 12 years
The case for an Academy Award nomination for Michelle Yeoh's performance in Crazy Rich Asians.

* * *

Stuntwoman, armorer, and author S.L. Huang talks Zero Sum Game and the power of math
S.L. Huang has worked as a stunt woman and armorer on shows like Battlestar Galactica, and now has a book out called Zero Sum Game. Also, she's excellent at math.

* * *

Steven Yeun on Why He Had to Go to South Korea to Feel at Home as an Actor
The Burning actor on escaping the "American white gaze" and finding his greatest role yet.

* * *

Riz Ahmed On Rapping, Acting And Being His (Sometimes Shirtless) 'Most Complex Self'
It's hard to miss Riz Ahmed -- he's the co-star in Venom, as well as in the western Sisters and Brothers. Oh, and he's an MC, and an outspoken advocate for many things, including complex roles for actors of color.

* * *

Jonny Sun Knows That Twitter Can Still Be The Internet's Good Place
The Twitter humorist turned author-illustrator has a book—co-created by Lin-Manuel Miranda—that might just convince you not to delete those social media accounts

* * *

One Perfect Night in NYC With 'Crazy Rich Asians' Actor Ronny Chieng
An Indian feast, speakeasy cocktails, and of course some stand-up are on the agenda

* * *

Darker Before They Get Brighter
Director Yen Tan on growing up gay in Malaysia, his journey in America, and how it all relates to his poignant AIDS drama 1985.