Wednesday, April 18, 2012
Iron Man 3 To Be Co-Produced With Partner From Zhong Guo
Recent news out of Hollywood is that Iron Man 3 is going to be co-produced with an Zhong Guo partner firm, DMG. This could be both good and bad news. As an long time Iron man fan, I always had some problems with the origin and the main nemesis, Mandarin. Whether its the comic books or the cartoons, the Mandarin is presented in a "yellow peril" fashion. The US entertainment routinely plays off this even to today a la 2 Broke Girls. Although American Asians have made strides in the US, in the eyes of most US people who are not Asian, they will still be regarded as foreigners. You can see that recently with some of the attitudes toward Jeremy Lin.
What does this mean for Iron Man 3? It may mean that the Mandarin isn't Chinese. Yay! No stupid "ching chong" stereotypes that make me cringe. However, if you ask people in Zhong Guo, Hong Kong, and Taiwan, they have no idea what Yellow Peril is. Because they do that to "foreigners" in their own country with not even a second thought. Yellow Peril is offensive to Asians who grew up in the US and demand "fair" treatment. In Asian, its just how things are. Which makes me think that when that Ting Tong Mandarin character is floated to the DMG guys, they'll have no problems with it. Never mind that its offensive to American Asians.
I have hopes that they'll stay off the beaten path and float a sensible villain that is based on "evil" vs. race. That's what movies have a problem with. But that's also the beauty and horror of movies, you've got limited time to present your material. Stereotypes go a long way to move the story along. Stay classy Disney, Marvel, and DMG.