Asian confusion

Discussion in 'General Trek Discussion' started by magarity, Nov 4, 2012.

  1. billcosby

    billcosby Commodore Commodore

    I've never heard the term 'racebending' before... interesting.

    A film produced in a nearby town when I was in high school cast some Asian students in my class as Native Americans... needless to say everyone was pretty stoked about it and I don't recall anyone finding the racebending issue unacceptable... just that it was fun to skip class and be in films.
     
  2. Captain Rob

    Captain Rob Commodore Commodore

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    If I'm not mistaken. I think Variety ran a help wanted ad back in 1965 for a casting call for Vulcans. But nobody showed up. I think that they're all hanging out in Pennsylvania masquerading as Menonites. They use those hats to cover up those ears. Nimoy happened across the ad and showed up spouting some BS that Vulcans were Orthodox Jewish, so acting was against their beliefs. So he got the job.
     
  3. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Actually the majority of Mexicans are of partly or fully indigenous ancestry -- including Beltran himself. He refers to his ethnicity as "Latindio," a portmanteau of "Latin" and "Indio," the Spanish word for Native American.
     
  4. marksound

    marksound Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    If people want something to complain about Hollywood could always go back to the Charlie Chan days. :rolleyes:
     
  5. Forbin

    Forbin Admiral Admiral

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    I've wondered since Kung Fu was on the air, if Asian actors of one nationality or another were offended by playing another nationality (or just happy to have work), and if Asian viewers of one nationality or another were offended that actors of a different nationality played their nationality (I think I said that right :cardie: ). I'm vaguely aware of ill feelings between many nations going back into history that might give rise to such ill feelings today (i.e. China not entirely forgiving Japan for WWII atrocities).

    Or, it's just all in my head and nobody really cares. :vulcan:
     
  6. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Two words: Cloud Atlas.
     
  7. Avon

    Avon Commodore Commodore

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    at least trek ethnoshiftery never got as bad as john wayne as genghis khan
     
  8. Forbin

    Forbin Admiral Admiral

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    Watch some early episodes of Hawaii 5-0 from the 60s. They constantly had Asian characters played by non-Asian Hollywood actors. Both Montalban and Mark Lenard played Japanese with fake eyelids.
     
  9. B.J.

    B.J. Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I agree that it's an issue with Hollywood in general about confusing their Asian characters as well as other races/ethnicities.

    However, I don't think it should be an issue in Trek. Sure, a character may be from China and have a Chinese name, but a majority of their ancestry may actually be something else. I'd like to think that the open borders and ease of travel depicted in Trek would contribute a lot to having the heritage of many characters be quite a varied mix. For my own children, their ancestry includes Slovak, German, English, Irish, Scottish, French, and Cherokee, and their varied features reflect some of that. But as I like to say, we're all-American mutts! :D
     
  10. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    On the other hand, I gather that since the show was actually shot in Hawaii, they did feature a fair number of actual Asian or Pacific Islander actors, certainly more than most shows of the era.

    On Mission: Impossible, they only ever did one episode set in an Asian country, specifically Japan. On the plus side, all the Japanese guest characters were played by Asian (if not necessarily Japanese) actors. But on the minus side, the story expected us to believe that Leonard Nimoy wearing fake epicanthic folds could fool actual Japanese people into thinking he was Japanese. There were earlier episodes where Rollin Hand or Paris impersonated Asians with unconvincing makeup, but at least they were only trying to fool Westerners, which is slightly more plausible.
     
  11. marksound

    marksound Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    It might be an ok flick, but the ads make it look like Joe vs the Volcano meets The Butterfly Effect.
     
  12. Kirby

    Kirby Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Brent Spiner is a human and he played a android. What a dick, taking a role that they could have at least been given to a robot.
     
  13. sbk1234

    sbk1234 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I guess Calculon was busy.

    Seriously, unless I'm mistaken, many people are confused between the terms Nationality and ethnicity. Nationality refers to the Nation or country a person is from. I would ethnically be indestinguishable from someone from a nation like Canada, France, England, Russia, Australia, Poland, and many others. However, my nationality is none of these. Ethnicity refers to the physical traits one has that distinguish him as part of that ethnic group.
    For example, one can be Black as an ethnicity, but American, Canadian, French, British, and so on as a nationality.

    Also, ignorant question here. Please clarify for me. Is there a physical difference between people of different Oriental groups, such as Japanese, Chinese, Korean. In other words, without knowing one's cultural background, could someone physically see the difference between a Japanese person and a Chinese person?
     
  14. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Oh, definitely. In fact, there are multiple different ethnic groups within both Japan and China. The dominant ethnic group in Japan is called the Yamato people, while the dominant Chinese ethnic group is the Han, but there are minority ethnic groups in both countries -- especially in China, which has dozens of ethnic minorities, since it's so huge.

    There's a theory that the Japanese and Koreans have a common origin, but it's hotly disputed because ethnic and political tensions get in the way of the science.
     
  15. Nerys Myk

    Nerys Myk Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Even in Europe there are various ethnic characteristics found in certain regions.
     
  16. Temis the Vorta

    Temis the Vorta Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Anyone who wants to see if a) there are systemic differences in how Chinese, Japanese and Koreans look and b) if you can tell what they are, take the infamous alllooksame test.

    Last time I look it, I did better than random chance in tellng them apart, which does indicate that there's some difference I'm seeing. It wasn't too much above random, so either the difference is slight or I'm culturally insensitive. ;)
     
  17. magarity

    magarity Lieutenant Junior Grade Red Shirt

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    I only missed one on the all look same quiz when I first saw it (been a while). Perhaps because I lived in SE Asia a couple of years. I watched a Voyager episode and happened to think of this topic as the credits rolled Garret Wang's name.

    The comments about the Canadian actors were particularly funny; I knew Native Americans have some variety of ethnicities but never heard of the Canadian ethnic group.
     
  18. Nerys Myk

    Nerys Myk Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    I suppose from an ethnic stand point Doohan would be Irish and Shatner Jewish. Which doesn't quite match us with Scotty be a Scot and Kirk being a WASP. Kirk is a Scottish name, so one could assume Kirk's ancestors were Scots.
     
    Last edited: Nov 6, 2012
  19. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    "Some variety" is a heck of an understatement, considering that they had at least 14,000 years to disseminate across two entire continents and branch out into hundreds of distinct populations. There are numerous indigenous Canadian ethnic groups, collectively called First Nations. (Actor Tahmoh Penikett's mother is from the White River First Nation; his first name comes from their language.)
     
  20. Cyke101

    Cyke101 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Just an FYI: in the US and Canada, using the term "Oriental" to describe people is considered antiquated, negative, and ultimately offensive. This movement started in the 60s and 70s when Asian Americans identified the term with American politicians trying to paint all Asians as "others," considering things like the Vietnam War and tensions with China, and echoes of America historically trying to paint the Chinese and Japanese Yellow Peril (WWII propaganda being among the most famous examples).

    Using the term Asian and/or Pacific Islander, depending on ethnicity, as descriptor is preferable. For many Asians, the term "oriental" is synonymous with the N-word.
     

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