Everyone's a Little Bit Racist

August 23, 2007

The message of the song, like the theme of the show overall, says, "Hey, we're all a little bit racist. Let's just acknowledge that fault in ourselves and try to make the best of it." And the song is woven into a larger theme that becomes a lesson for the characters and a message of acceptance.

The production's brand of brutally honest comedy is also unerringly human (even for its furry characters). And the musical's assessment of this particular human error, racism (or monsterism, as it were), infuses a strain of realism into the technicolor puppeteering.

Overall, I think the show handled the idea of racism well. But I still cringed when Christmas Eve did, or tried to say, a few things ("sukka-sukka-sukka..."). It wasn't just because she was the Asian American character; it was because her character, while multi-dimensional, also carried the most developed stereotype-- she remained even more 'foreign' than the "monsters".

Have you seen the show or heard the song? What do you think?




Sorry, but that's complete bullshit. Jokes are not always based on truth. Case in point - Asians are short, Asians are bad drivers, Asians have small sexual organs, Asians are this, or that... I'll debunk that myth right now.. they're all based on nutrition or poverty. Environment factors. Nothing to do with race.As for "everyone is racist" - sure, all races get poked fun at from time to time, but not in the same equal portion, and the positive representation is severely disproportional.Take your politically correct views and flush them down the toilet.
I have not seen the show but from what I know about it and have heard from friends about it, I think the biggest issue I would have with the song is the perspective from which it was composed. It seems to me that the people that created the show must be coming from an entitled white point of view. This is often the most bothersome kind of discourse on race because it masks a true critique and full examination on the issues. While bringing up racism as a central theme, the song makes it okay to make the same tired ching-chong accent jokes that we have had to suffer through since they invented the pee-pee in coke.As well, this type of incomplete examination on race further falsely validates that the white perspective is the correct one. I know many people like the show because it is entertaining purely on a kitsch level. To me, this blend of highly entertaining spectacle combined with subversive racism is 100's of times more dangerous than the obvious crap like Rob Schneider in I Now Pronounce You Chuck And Larry.It seems like the praise of this show is similar to the reasons why the movie Crash was praised by the mainstream as a landmark achievement in racial discourse. (I vehemently despised that movie.)Just my two cents. I know I am talking out of school since I haven't seen the show, but you asked.Related links:http://www.xanga.com/Mike2Cents/96547690/item.htmlhttp://www.xanga.com/item.aspx?user=Mike2Cents&tab=weblogs&uid=260477534
Actually, John, if anyone's views are classically "politically correct" here, it's yours: "Stereotypes have no basis in reality! It's never okay to admit racism, even your own!" They're politically "correct" stances because they stridently deny anything ugly or risky. I'll be politically INcorrect in saying that, in my observations as an Asian American woman, experience has born out the politically inexpedient: on the average, we're shorter; along w/ old people, Asian women do comprise a disproportionate number of crappy drivers; and on the average, sorry guy: I've seen a lot of men with their pants off. Gotta credit that one, too. It's also true (to stereotype) that we're disproportionately represented in the ranks of engineers and medical doctors.We get nowhere by flatly denying inconvenient truths. We get somewhere by understanding the formative contexts of those truths, the ideologically biased world in which they live, as well as their exceptions, their implications, and if they need to be changed--how.
I've had problems with the song ever since I heard it on the soundtrack. I don't mind the assertion that everyone's a little bit racist, but the message that I got from the song was the because everyone's a little bit racist, it's ok to be racist, which I don't agree with.Also, I had some pretty big problems with the portrayal of Christmas Eve from the start. I do like that she comments on things like working at a Korean place even though she is Japanese, but I felt the show more often made jokes at her expense (the wedding scene in particular). I saw the show this July in NY, and I was even more disturbed by the fact that the current actress playing Christmas Eve is white. There's a Japanese woman on the stage, but when I saw it, she was a puppeteer and I think only played voices of things like the moving boxes or the Bad Idea Bears, and I was very disturbed by the juxtaposition of a white woman playing a very stereotyped Japanese character with a silent Japanese woman there on the stage.
Diane is full of crap and possibly a white male dissenter from Stormfront.
The current Christmas Eve on Broadway, Ann Sanders, is hapa, Oyce.http://www.broadway.com/gen/Buzz_Story.aspx?ci=504246