There’s a new trailer for Shang-Chi out and I can’t wait for the movie. I like a good martial arts flick in general, but there’s the added fun of it being a Marvel superhero movie finally with a main character that looks like me. It’s a big deal.
It’s important too, because representation in media is a big deal, especially positive portrayals of underrepresented communities (so… anyone who’s not a white guy). One day I’ll have a longer write up on this, but for now, here are a couple of older posts about Asian representation in media.
There aren’t a lot of Asian characters in Marvel’s comics, let alone the films. But it’s been getting better.
On that note, when Agents of Atlas became a thing, it was a thing about Asian heroes in the Marvel world. A lot where created newly for it, but the book as a whole has been spotlighting these characters in a really authentic way. Like taking your shoes off before you go inside a house. Details like that make these stories feel real.
No, Raya and The Last Dragon is not a superhero story. But it is a story that doesn’t just feature a fantasy world that draws on East-Asian cultures, but one that does so authentically. Like taking your shoes off inside in Agents of Atlas, the role of food and congee in Raya makes everything ring true to someone like me from that culture.
We’ll see come September if Shang-Chi can knock it out of the park. There’s a lot riding on it, a lot more than any movie should, but I have my hopes.