I was so thrilled to find out one of my new favorite shows, “Into the Badlands” is premiering its season two on AMC on March 19th! I think it’s one of the best fight choreography done on television but don’t expect Emmy winning acting performances which is okay to me. Earlier today, a friend had shared this article from VICE about Daniel Wu, taking on the lead role in the show and discussing Asian stereotypes and breaking down barriers for Asian-American actors in Hollywood.
The title reads that “The Martial Arts Show That Is Destroying Asian Stereotypes on Screen”. Now, the title is heavy with the “destroying” part and I do think it’s slightly misleading but it isn’t too far from the truth. Now, most Americans will think, “Well, the show is a Kung Fu show, how is it destroying stereotypes?”. Though, you are completely right, only Asian-Americans who have been through the struggle of racism or those people that have researched the issue or aware through friends about Asian stereotypes and emasculation will know what this article is talking about. But even then, if you know how to read and have the ability to read between the lines, you should figure it out.
This show is breaking down barriers in Hollywood by casting an Asian-American as the lead role because there’s really not many at all on television in the U.S. Now, if you mention shows like “Fresh Off The Boat”, I’m going to have a talk with you, because you totally miss the point. The show, “Into the Badlands” introduces interracial dating on-screen between an Asian male and Black female which hasn’t been popularized on TV before. I think Dustin Nguyen did get some short screen time with a girl on 21 Jump Street back in the late 80’s. Not only this, Daniel Wu is not a one-dimension character without depth as he plays an anti-hero who was an assassin looking for redemption and the path to enlightenment. This is great progress for Asian-American actors! I am looking forward to watching ten episodes this time and not having to be stuck with six episodes last season! Hopefully, they exceed my expectations and blow the audiences away with some cool fight scenes and in learning more about the post-apocalyptic universe.