Date: 2017-07-17 04:19 am (UTC)
From: [personal profile] long_silence
1. Tilda Swinton replaced an Asian character and they kept the location in Asia. Do you see the difference? Why keep Kamar-Taj in the Himalayas if the Ancient One, the oldest and most experienced living sorcerer supreme wasn't of Asian descent? Because they wanted to use the exotic and oriental mysticism without actually giving focus or importance to Asian characters.

Big Hero 6 took an American made story about Japanese people, and changed almost everything but the names and still managed to give the main role to the Japanese-American protagonist.

2. I agree that it's debatable whether Fred is Jewish. But I never said that I was okay with him replacing the Ainu Fred. I simply wanted to point out that you were ignoring the coded Jewish representation by insisting on calling him white.

There's a huge difference in the visibility of a character like Cyborg and a minor Z-List character like Fredzilla. Fred's Ainu heritage was only mentioned once in his entire existence. And it was by another character not Fred himself. That's not to say that his inclusion isn't important, but that most people simply wouldn't have read that scene and thus they wouldn't know he was Ainu.
Cyborg has existed for decades, has appeared in multiple cartoons, games, and movies. He exists in the public consciousness as an African American man
Almost nobody had heard about Fred before the movie came out.
That's just not an equivalent comparison.

3. Khan IS an Asian character, his full name is Khan Noonien Singh. Cumberbatch got some critical blowback online but his career hasn't suffered for it at all. If anything its stronger than ever.
Tilda Swinton's career hasn't suffered either. She still has a number of major roles coming up.
It was a paycheck to them and they don't really care if anyone was offended.

And that's another side of the whitewashing issue. Benedict Cumberbatch, Tilda Swinton, Finn Jones and Scarlett Johanson didn't need these roles. They are successful actors who have plenty of other job prospects. Since these movies and shows were using Asian cultures to tell their stories, these were potential opportunities for Asian and Asian-American actors

4. First of all the Big Hero 6 miniseries by Claremont and Nakayama that introduced Fred and Wasabi wasn't even set in Japan. It was set in the US.
Could the Disney movie have been set in Japan? Sure

Secondly what about Japanese-American people? They have their own perspectives on the blending of Japanese and American culture. How many of them were offended by San Fransokyo?

I am not Japanese so I can't really say whether or not San Fransokyo was an offensive appropriation of Japanese culture. I haven't seen anyone Japanese complain about it, but maybe I'm just not looking in the right corners of the internet. But as the descendant of Asian immigrants to Canada, I felt that it was a beautiful combination of Eastern and Western culture, the design, architecture, art, and even food. To me it spoke to the immigrant experience, and the difference between assimilating to the American way of life and creating a new culture from pieces of both. But your mileage may vary.
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