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James Howell
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Posted: 29 February 2016 at 1:52am | IP Logged | 1  

Sigh..another "Make a white hero a Person Of Color! See? I'm not Racist!" article by a spoiled middle-class white female, pretending to care about Asians.

Laurence Fishburne being Perry White did nothing for Blacks, so I don't know how making Iron Fist Asian will make any difference either.

But that's not the point for these internet "activists".
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Michael Roberts
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Posted: 29 February 2016 at 1:57am | IP Logged | 2  

Sigh..another "Make a white hero a Person Of Color! See? I'm not
Racist!" article by a spoiled middle-class white female, pretending to
care about Asians.

-----

What article are you referring to?
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Michael Roberts
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Posted: 29 February 2016 at 2:04am | IP Logged | 3  

Laurence Fishburne being Perry White did nothing for Blacks, so I don't
know how making Iron Fist Asian will make any difference either.

------

These two things are not the same.
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John Byrne
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Posted: 29 February 2016 at 6:50am | IP Logged | 4  

Laurence Fishburne being Perry White did nothing for Blacks, so I don't know how making Iron Fist Asian will make any difference either.

------

These two things are not the same.

••

How are they different?

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Fabrice Renault
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Posted: 29 February 2016 at 7:00am | IP Logged | 5  

My thoughts : People with such agenda should use their energy at creating characters fitting their needs rather than bickering about characters older than them.
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John Byrne
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Posted: 29 February 2016 at 7:50am | IP Logged | 6  

I think it has already been said, but the notion that a kung fu expert MUST be Asian is kinda racist, no?
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Eric Ladd
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Posted: 29 February 2016 at 9:18am | IP Logged | 7  

I had hoped an acquaintance of mine; Alain Moussi, would have had a shot at the role, but I guess not. I will have to reach out and see if he was ever considered.

I admit not knowing a great deal about Iron Fist, but I had always assumed the fact Danny Rand was Caucasian had a barring on the character.
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Brian Rhodes
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Posted: 29 February 2016 at 11:37am | IP Logged | 8  

Funny. Iron Fist was one of the most diverse books of its time...or any other, for that matter. Colleen Wing was Asian, Misty Knight was a black undercover detective. Danny was a white martial arts expert in an interracial relationship with Misty...in the 70's! Then he partnered - and I think it's safe to say became best friends - with Luke Cage. If there's any character that should receive zero "diversity" backlash, it's Iron Fist.


Edited by Brian Rhodes on 29 February 2016 at 11:39am
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Michael Roberts
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Posted: 29 February 2016 at 12:32pm | IP Logged | 9  

Laurence Fishburne being Perry White did nothing for Blacks, so I don't
know how making Iron Fist Asian will make any difference either.

------

These two things are not the same.

••

How are they different?

------

Casting a black guy as Perry White is an attempt to add diversity.
Making Iron Fist Asian-American is an attempt to mitigate some of the
problematic things caused by the fact that Iron Fist is an outsider white
dude exploring an exotic, mystic Asian culture. As I stated upthread, I'm
not convinced it's the right solution, but it's disheartening to see people
chiming in without understanding why Asian-Americans would think
Iron Fist is problematic and treating the issues like they were some new
internet millennial whining and not something that Asian-Americans
have been discussing amongst themselves for decades.

K'un-Lun is based on an actual place in Chinese mythology, as written
by white guys as a mishmash of Western ideas about mythic Asia. It
feeds into the "mystic Orient" crap that reinforces the stereotypes that
leave Asian-Americans feeling like outsiders and fetish objects in their
own country today. The argument is that an all-American Danny Rand
of Asian descent would at least serve as a balance to Asian
representation. K'un-Lun would be as foreign to the Asian guy as it
would be to the white guy, and not all the Asians on screen would be
exotic things. And yes, this route does mean you have the Asian
stereotypically being the martial artist.

The other problematic thing about Iron Fist is that he's part of the
"White Savior" stereotype. White guy visits some an exotic, outsider
culture, learns their ways, becomes the best at it, and saves the day.
The underlying message is that white people are superior and make
better Native American warriors/samurai/giant blue aliens than actual
Native American warriors/samurai/giant blue aliens. Making Iron Fist
Asian-American would remove those connotations.

Like I said, I'd prefer a blond Danny Rand and think that there are other
solutions like using Shang-Chi and/or Colleen Wing as a counterpoint
or making K'un-Lun completely alien and removing the Orientalist
aspects of it. But people should understand that the issues with Iron
Fist are nothing new and not unique to Iron Fist.

Edited by Michael Roberts on 29 February 2016 at 12:58pm
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Bill Guerra
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Posted: 29 February 2016 at 1:15pm | IP Logged | 10  

For all you know, Michael, K'un-Lun may be completely alien, like Asgard has been shown to be. We haven't seen it yet, so don't jump to conclusions about that.

Honestly, the only "problems" with this casting is the mental gymnastics people are doing to make it a problem.
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John Byrne
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Posted: 29 February 2016 at 1:19pm | IP Logged | 11  

Casting a black guy as Perry White is an attempt to add diversity. Making Iron Fist Asian-American is an attempt to mitigate some of the problematic things caused by the fact that Iron Fist is an outsider white dude exploring an exotic, mystic Asian culture.

•••

You might want to read the book before you make pronouncements like this.

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Michael Roberts
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Posted: 29 February 2016 at 1:39pm | IP Logged | 12  

For all you know, Michael, K'un-Lun may be completely alien, like
Asgard has been shown to be. We haven't seen it yet, so don't jump to
conclusions about that.

------

????
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David Miller
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Posted: 29 February 2016 at 2:03pm | IP Logged | 13  


 QUOTE:
Laurence Fishburne being Perry White did nothing for Blacks,

However, it did provide a job for Fishburne, which more the point. 


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John Byrne
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Posted: 29 February 2016 at 2:26pm | IP Logged | 14  

However, it did provide a job for Fishburne, which more the point.

••

Was he struggling?

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John Byrne
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Posted: 29 February 2016 at 2:33pm | IP Logged | 15  

Funny. Iron Fist was one of the most diverse books of its time...or any other, for that matter. Colleen Wing was Asian, Misty Knight was a black undercover detective. Danny was a white martial arts expert in an interracial relationship with Misty...in the 70's! Then he partnered - and I think it's safe to say became best friends - with Luke Cage. If there's any character that should receive zero "diversity" backlash, it's Iron Fist.

•••

But people -- even some here -- are clearly not concerned about what the character/book was about. They're concerned only with what they think it should be about. And what we have seen even here shows that concern is not based on facts. Those just get in the way.

(When I was on the book, mostly as art robot, Chris was building a whole backstory with K'un L'un as a crashed spaceship. The people were humanoid aliens, not Asians. Don't know how much of that he got installed before he left, tho I did a long shot of the city that showed the ship quite clearly.)

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John Byrne
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Posted: 29 February 2016 at 2:47pm | IP Logged | 16  

Just took a look at the actor. Surprisingly, he seems to have the boyish good looks the character requires.

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Michael Roberts
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Posted: 29 February 2016 at 2:56pm | IP Logged | 17  

But people -- even some here -- are clearly not concerned about what
the character/book was about. They're concerned only with what they
think it should be about. And what we have seen even here shows that
concern is not based on facts. Those just get in the way.

-----

Whatever the book was about when you were working on it, the book
since then has played up the Chinese mythological aspects of it. And
the hooks in the Daredevil Netflix series thus far have been Asian
mystics, not space aliens.
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Wallace Sellars
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Posted: 01 March 2016 at 8:07am | IP Logged | 18  

Funny. Iron Fist was one of the most diverse books of its time...or any other, for
that matter. Colleen Wing was Asian, Misty Knight was a black undercover
detective. Danny was a white martial arts expert in an interracial relationship
with Misty...in the 70's! Then he partnered - and I think it's safe to say became
best friends - with Luke Cage. If there's any character that should receive zero
"diversity" backlash, it's Iron Fist.

—

If only the decision makers would stick with this. I know I'd be interested. (For
some reason I thought Colleen was bi-racial.)

Has there been any talk of Marvel doing something with Shang-Chi?
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John Byrne
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Posted: 01 March 2016 at 8:13am | IP Logged | 19  

(For some reason I thought Colleen was bi-racial.)

••

Despite her name, Wing, she was written by some as Japanese. This necessitated retrofitting a Japanese mother to go with her Chinese father.

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John Byrne
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Posted: 01 March 2016 at 8:14am | IP Logged | 20  

Has there been any talk of Marvel doing something with Shang-Chi?

••

The half-Asian son of a character Marvel does not own?

That could be interesting...!!

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John Byrne
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Posted: 01 March 2016 at 8:31am | IP Logged | 21  

But people -- even some here -- are clearly not concerned about what the character/book was about. They're concerned only with what they think it should be about. And what we have seen even here shows that concern is not based on facts. Those just get in the way.

-----

Whatever the book was about when you were working on it, the book since then has played up the Chinese mythological aspects of it. And the hooks in the Daredevil Netflix series thus far have been Asian mystics, not space aliens.

••

Alters not a jot about what has already been said -- and not just by me -- about the book and the character. Danny Rand was/is a White guy fully immersed in a pseudo-Asian culture. He respects that culture, and considers it his own. Complaining about that misses the central point of the character.

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Michael Roberts
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Posted: 01 March 2016 at 1:27pm | IP Logged | 22  

Danny Rand was/is a White guy fully immersed in a pseudo-Asian
culture. He respects that culture, and considers it his own. Complaining
about that misses the central point of the character.

-----

But Danny Rand being a white guy fully immersed in a pseudo-Asian
culture is exactly the issue. That people don't get why Asian-Americans
would have an issue with that is part of the problem.

There was this hilarious/horrifyingly depressing blog called "Creepy
White Guys" (plus numerous other websites and video channels
devoted to the same topic) devoted to the creepy things white men say
to Asian-American women on dating sites, saying things along the lines
of how they prefer Asian women because they are submissive or how
they'd treat them better than Asian men because Asian men are cold
and domineering or all sorts of really racist crap. I've sat there reading
these things aloud to my sister (who's never been on a dating site) who
confirmed that she's heard a lot of these, and the ones that she hadn't
heard personally, her friends had received. I've been around on
numerous occasions when the weird Asiaphile dude (of which there are
many) will come up to one of my friends, try to impress her by talking in
Japanese, and start talking about how he's learning martial arts, all the
while I'm rolling my eyes wanting to say, "Dude, she's Korean and was
born and raised in the Valley". And all those guys would probably jump
up and down and insist they were not racist because they love Asian
culture or want to fuck an Asian girl, not realizing that their weird,
fetishized ideas of Asians and Asian culture were kind of racist.

And that's just one small aspect of the issue. I've spoken before here
about my experiences with the stereotype of the Asian-American as the
perpetual foreigner. When Asian-Americans from all parts of the
country with different backgrounds and life experiences, with nothing in
common but their ethnicities, are all talking about having the same
experiences with these types of interactions, is it manufactured
outrage? It's hilarious, because I'm the furthest thing from being
politically active about Asian-American issues, have zero-interest in my
parents' culture (except maybe the food), totally resented my friends'
attempts to get me to join AA organizations in college (or the fact that
they existed at all), and am teased by my own family about how "white"
I am, and despite all that, the issues surrounding Orientalism are
blatantly obvious to me. When multiple people from outside your realm
are telling you that there is no problem, it's like "Thanks for invalidating
my experience!"

As I said, I am fine with and prefer that Danny stay as he is. I don't think
it needs to fall on IRON FIST to "fix" the issue, but I think the production
should be sensitive to it. In a world where Asian-American
representation were better, it be a complete non-issue, but right now,
it's still kind of weak.

To a certain extent, I agree with Joe upthread, it's a relatively small
concern. Most of the time you just roll your eyes and shrug it off, but it
does foster a sense of being "separate but equal". But how much of the
shitty representation and soft racism is enabled by one's willingness to
shrug it off?
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Michael Roberts
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Posted: 01 March 2016 at 1:28pm | IP Logged | 23  

Ugh, sorry about the weird line breaks from posting on the phone.
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John Byrne
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Posted: 01 March 2016 at 1:54pm | IP Logged | 24  

Iron Fist is basically a variant on the Mowgli/Tarzan story. The "foreigner" who is adopted into an culture other than his own and, with effort, becomes a fully integrated part of that culture.

Kipling and Burroughs used imaginary animal cultures to tell their tales, but other writers have used a variety of native peoples, including plenty of tales about White children being adopted into Native American tribes.

What distinguishes Iron Fist is that his is NOT a story of White supremacy. Danny Rand rises thru the hierarchy of K'un L'un by dint of effort. He becomes the "ultimate warrior" because he EARNS it. There is even a literal "baptism of fire."

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Charles Valderrama
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Posted: 01 March 2016 at 2:13pm | IP Logged | 25  

So true, JB…. Danny becomes the "ultimate warrior" and earns the power of the mystical iron fist… and I really hope THAT remains the central story in Netflix's take on this character.

-C!
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