From Stereotype to a New Kind of Hero

Posted by Matt Birchler
— 1 min read

Walter Chaw: It Took Me Nearly 40 Years to Stop Resenting Ke Huy Quan

I carried resentment of these characters with me into adulthood. They amplified my feelings of otherness. I grew up wanting to be Luke Skywalker in a culture that could only see Asian men as sexless sidekicks or (also sexless) kung fu masters: the socially non-threatening nature of them, of me

I don't pretend to understand what this feels like, but it is a similar story to what I've heard from numerous Asian people both in my life and randomly online.

I'm not one to get emotional (especially at award shows), but I'd be lying if I wasn't a bit choked up when Ke Huy Quan won the Oscar for Best Supporting Actor last night, and I'm happy that it was a feel-good story for many reasons to many people.

It’s not the awards that matter, it’s only this. I used to be embarrassed to be set against Quan in some way; now I can’t imagine a kinder comparison. I’m old, but I’m teachable. Maybe there’s hope for us, yet.

Beautiful stuff, and just another reason Everything Everywhere All At Once deserved all the awards it received.