I wanted to spread some love out to some Asian-American actors and I was introduced to Lewis Tan by a friend who read an article on Marvel screening him for the lead role in Iron Fist. I was like, “Hmm, that’s interesting.” I didn’t know that and I’m sure plenty of people didn’t know. But I wonder if it was because he was skilled in martial arts and was good in acting or was it because that Marvel actually considered the impact of having an Asian-American on the show? Lets cover some of the facts right now. We know that Asian-Americans are underrepresented in Hollywood and are usually typecast into martial artists, nerds, gangster and villains of sorts. Iron Fist was created in the early 1970’s and was published presumably because of the Kung Fu boom that occurred. Other characters like Shang Chi who is another Kung Fu hero for Marvel was introduced around the same time. During those times, we didn’t have any players in the comic business and damn sure didn’t have any in Hollywood. Everything was really new for Asian-Americans making a break into the culture. To this day, Bruce Lee has held the golden standard of what some Asian-American actors aspire to be. Not to say that Asian-Americans aspire to be martial arts but it is a big part of our culture. And nowadays, people aren’t aware of Asian-Americans being out of touch with their culture. Quite interestingly, you have many non-Asian ethnicities involved into learning and immersing themselves into Asian culture than many other Asian-Americans nowadays. I can speak this because I’ve experienced it all of my life.
Meet Lewis Tan, an Asian-American actor with looks, martial arts skills and some acting talent. When watching Iron Fist, episode 8 had stood out with Tan facing off against Finn Jones because of the fight choreography with drunken boxing. Tan plays the villain, Zhou Cheng and he did a great job for the little screen time he had. Many say he stole the show that episode and I’d have to agree. What is quite ironic is the line that Tan says, “I thought the Iron Fist was a great warrior. You fight a like child throwing a tantrum.” That pretty much sums Iron Fist season 1. In discussing the series with friends, one of them had mentioned that Danny Rand was meant to lack maturity, worldliness and people skills. This is no wonder why I didn’t like his character because I don’t like these type of people. Instead if they went another route with what’s mentioned in the interview with Lewis Tan and Vulture on Iron Fist, it’d make the story much more refreshing.