To Woke, or not to Woke. Mr. Apu on the Simpsons.

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cyberdad
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13 Aug 2022, 7:51 pm

Joe90 wrote:
Well I grew up watching the Simpsons and it has never taught me any stereotypes about Indian people. I just saw Apu as the Indian convenient store owner and a very good character.


To be fair that's how everyone saw Apu in the 1990s and early 2000s.



cyberdad
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13 Aug 2022, 7:58 pm

Dox47 wrote:
As to why I'm pivoting to the broad left from a handful of aggrieved Indian Americans, that's because it's the left who has created this very fertile environment for that sort of complaint to be taken seriously, where as previously it could be safely ignored as a handful of grievance seekers and the overly sensitive. .


You are giving this more weight than the issue actually has. Hari Kondabalu was the only person who made an issue. He dragged his Indian friends in the entertainment industry to make a documentary because he was trying to turn a personal issue into a campaign.

Why? because Kondabalu was a mediocre comedian looking for gigs in acting (he even says this in one of his podcasts). He's not a Russell Peters, Hasan Minhaj, Mindy Kaling or Aziz Ansari who are household names. He was angry why a non-Indian got to play the iconic role of Apu. That was where all this was stemming from.

I'm not saying racists would use the caricature of Apu to belittle/bully Indian people (especially in school). They were. But, here's the thing, racists in school were always going to be little s**ts regardless of whether Apu existed or not. Did his character contribute toward racism. Probably not, the people who use Apu as a racial trope would have just picked something else to do inflict pain (that's what s**ts do).



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13 Aug 2022, 9:47 pm

cyberdad wrote:
You are giving this more weight than the issue actually has. Hari Kondabalu was the only person who made an issue. He dragged his Indian friends in the entertainment industry to make a documentary because he was trying to turn a personal issue into a campaign.


Eh, my interest is in the pushing back, this campaign was successful in pressuring Azaria out of the role (regardless of any claims to it being "voluntary") and generating controversy over a multi year period, and I want similar campaigns to fail in the future.


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naturalplastic
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13 Aug 2022, 10:02 pm

And now for a second helping.



cyberdad
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13 Aug 2022, 10:44 pm

Dox47 wrote:
cyberdad wrote:
You are giving this more weight than the issue actually has. Hari Kondabalu was the only person who made an issue. He dragged his Indian friends in the entertainment industry to make a documentary because he was trying to turn a personal issue into a campaign.


Eh, my interest is in the pushing back, this campaign was successful in pressuring Azaria out of the role (regardless of any claims to it being "voluntary") and generating controversy over a multi year period, and I want similar campaigns to fail in the future.


True it worked. But it's a small victory. Azaria will forever be associated with the voice of Apu. The irony is the campaign also elevated Hank Azaria's name in the public eye as a versatile voice actor. He's done voice acting on 35 movies and TV series.

Kondabalu will remain a obscure comedian on the periphery who managed to get a documentary to put on his resume.



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14 Aug 2022, 7:57 pm

I don't see what's so offensive about Apu. So an Indian immigrant in the US decides to run a convenience store. Because as we know in real life, YOU NEVER SEE THAT.



cyberdad
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14 Aug 2022, 8:38 pm

ironpony wrote:
I don't see what's so offensive about Apu. So an Indian immigrant in the US decides to run a convenience store. Because as we know in real life, YOU NEVER SEE THAT.


The issue is not the character but the stereotypes. In 2022 there are Indians running convenience stores but there 10 x more who live in the suburbs who work as doctors, lawyers and engineers.

In this sense the Simpson's world of 1990 is about 30 years out of date.



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14 Aug 2022, 8:40 pm

cyberdad wrote:
ironpony wrote:
I don't see what's so offensive about Apu. So an Indian immigrant in the US decides to run a convenience store. Because as we know in real life, YOU NEVER SEE THAT.


The issue is not the character but the stereotypes. In 2022 there are Indians running convenience stores but there 10 x more who live in the suburbs who work as doctors, lawyers and engineers.

In this sense the Simpson's world of 1990 is about 30 years out of date.


But convenience stores are STILL almost always run by South Asians even today, except for the 25 percent that are run by Somalis.



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14 Aug 2022, 8:42 pm

Oh okay I live in Saskatchewan, Canada where I would say about 20 or more percent of convenience store workers are of South Asian area looking decent. So I guess I was going by my area more so. But if this is a stereotype then why are about 20 percent of convenience store workers, choosing to be a stereotype then, if it's a stereotype?



cyberdad
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14 Aug 2022, 8:46 pm

naturalplastic wrote:
But convenience stores are STILL almost always run by South Asians even today, except for the 25 percent that are run by Somalis.


They are and I suppose it's not entirely inaccurate. But the fact you have a suburb where the only Indian is one running a convenience store is not representative of 2022 suburbs like Springfield.

for example it's statistically more likely that Dr Nick Rivera, Dr Ealanor Abernathy, Dr Julius Hibbert and Dr Marvin Monroe and Dr Stacy Swanson would have been played by at least one Asian or Indian doctor.



cyberdad
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14 Aug 2022, 8:48 pm

ironpony wrote:
Oh okay I live in Saskatchewan, Canada where I would say about 20 or more percent of convenience store workers are of South Asian area looking decent. So I guess I was going by my area more so. But if this is a stereotype then why are about 20 percent of convenience store workers, choosing to be a stereotype then, if it's a stereotype?


Me personally I am not so invested in the Apu character and don't care either way. But as I pointed out, the issue isn't about wokeness so much as Hank Azaria playing a Indian character



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14 Aug 2022, 10:00 pm

cyberdad wrote:
ironpony wrote:
Oh okay I live in Saskatchewan, Canada where I would say about 20 or more percent of convenience store workers are of South Asian area looking decent. So I guess I was going by my area more so. But if this is a stereotype then why are about 20 percent of convenience store workers, choosing to be a stereotype then, if it's a stereotype?


Me personally I am not so invested in the Apu character and don't care either way. But as I pointed out, the issue isn't about wokeness so much as Hank Azaria playing a Indian character


Oh I see. But in terms of being politically accurate, how come it's considered politically inaccurate for Apu to be voiced by a non-Indian actor, but Bart Simpson, who is male, is voiced by a female, but yet that is totally acceptable?



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14 Aug 2022, 10:53 pm

ironpony wrote:
cyberdad wrote:
ironpony wrote:
Oh okay I live in Saskatchewan, Canada where I would say about 20 or more percent of convenience store workers are of South Asian area looking decent. So I guess I was going by my area more so. But if this is a stereotype then why are about 20 percent of convenience store workers, choosing to be a stereotype then, if it's a stereotype?


Me personally I am not so invested in the Apu character and don't care either way. But as I pointed out, the issue isn't about wokeness so much as Hank Azaria playing a Indian character


Oh I see. But in terms of being politically accurate, how come it's considered politically inaccurate for Apu to be voiced by a non-Indian actor, but Bart Simpson, who is male, is voiced by a female, but yet that is totally acceptable?


Yeah this was asked before. The answer is that an opportunity has been provided to female voice actor over a male which is less of an issue since males get more acting jobs.



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14 Aug 2022, 10:55 pm

cyberdad wrote:
ironpony wrote:
cyberdad wrote:
ironpony wrote:
Oh okay I live in Saskatchewan, Canada where I would say about 20 or more percent of convenience store workers are of South Asian area looking decent. So I guess I was going by my area more so. But if this is a stereotype then why are about 20 percent of convenience store workers, choosing to be a stereotype then, if it's a stereotype?


Me personally I am not so invested in the Apu character and don't care either way. But as I pointed out, the issue isn't about wokeness so much as Hank Azaria playing a Indian character


Oh I see. But in terms of being politically accurate, how come it's considered politically inaccurate for Apu to be voiced by a non-Indian actor, but Bart Simpson, who is male, is voiced by a female, but yet that is totally acceptable?


Well it sounds like a double standard, and as if they want to have their cake and eat it too. It's okay if a female is voicing a male, but not okay if a non-Indian is voicing an Indian. Can't have it both ways it seems to me.

Yeah this was asked before. The answer is that an opportunity has been provided to female voice actor over a male which is less of an issue since males get more acting jobs.



cyberdad
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14 Aug 2022, 11:05 pm

I think its more of a sliding scale than a double standard.



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14 Aug 2022, 11:14 pm

But it's still a case of people wanting to have it both ways and you can't have it both ways.