For my article, I’ll be discussing about issues in regards to POC representation in media and how it is either misrepresented or not included at all. I focused my examples on tv/movie adaptations of further existing material, like Mulan (2020), Death Note (2017), and Fate the Winx Saga (2021). One of the first sources I used is a written interview posted on IndieWire, Indiewire is a film industry and review website that focuses on independent films, shows, etc. I’ve seen articles that range from them tackling issues amongst the film industry, to fun recommendation articles of the top 10 movies to watch. They also discuss about new releases, post interviews, and videos in relation to new films. The article I chose from them is an interview that harshly criticizes the Netflix adaptation of Death Note which is notorious for whitewashing the whole story to “fit to western standards”. It talks about what this movie is guilty of and why is it wrong, one quote that stook out to me was when they said “being a native in an Asian country puts you in the majority, and therefore, representation of Asians is everywhere in those films. It’s Asian Americans who need better representation in their own country.” which is absolutely the point. This source explains why whitewashing is bad, especially when the story is very culture-rooted.
One of the secondary sources I used is a video posted on Youtube that goes over all of the things that were culturally done wrong in Mulan (2020), it was made by the user Xiran Jay Zhao who is a Chinese YouTuber who reviews and looks over Chinese coded movies. They critique these movies from historical and cultural facts of China, and that’s what they’ve done with Mulan (2020). One thing that stood out to me was their mentioning of Hollywood’s use of “Chi” as if it was Star Wars “Force”. Chi is actually a term that is used to describe air, breath, and lifeforce, as stated in the video it isn’t a superpower and it’s something everyone has. Despite this moving having actual POC representation in their cast, the writers and directors were not POC themselves and they didn’t bother to put further research to make this movie as culturally accurate as they advertised it to be.
These are great sources, and since it’s my field, I was really delighted to see them. That Mulan YouTube is terrific; nice piece to include. Good work on these.