Power and Politics - I am Not the Yellow Peril

The life and times of an Asian American activist who tells all the truth (and dishes news and analysis) but with a leftwards slant.

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Masi Oka on the View, suffers the idiots

The View is a pretty stupid show. Well, as you might know, I am slightly obsessed with Heroes because it's got some of the best writing on TV and 3 Asian American male actors. So Masi Oka, who plays Hiro Nakamura, goes on the View to promote Monday's episode, and of course Rosie can't hold her tongue, and Elizabeth (the Republican blonde) can't get over how smart Masi is.

I think he reacts really gracefully to their repeated, shrill inquiries. They are repeatedly trying to put him in one box or another - actor or "scientist". Then Rosie keeps insisting on how smart Masi is and why he has to continue working for Lucasfilms: "But tell them why you have to consult - because no one else is smart enough to figure out his programs, so he has to keep going back to train the people because he's so smart!"

Elizabeth (vapid Repub blonde): "You were actually on the cover of Time magazine one time -- those whiz ki- [pause. . .pause, can't remember]. Those Asian American whiz kids was the title, right?"

Whole time, Masi is trying to deflect questions about smartness: "I was on the cover, but I wasn't in the article itself. The people actually in the article, they're the smart ones. I only look smart."

Then the red-headed comedian jumps in: "You know, it IS a positive stereotype that Asian kids are very smart. Well, how do you respond to that?

Masi [looks surprised, remains composed]: "Uhhhh..."

Female voice: "It's a good thing really. You're brill-yee-ant!"

Masi looks surprised, remains composed: "It's a great thing. I mean, not just Asians, but hopefully it'll inspire everyone else, that you can be an artist and still be smart as well."

Elizabeth [cooing]: You're soooo talented.

Later, Rosie sings the only Japanese she knows, from SESAME STREET: "One two three is ichi ni san."

Gag me. I feel bad for Masi that he has to go on the View and Today and be subjected to vacuous idiots who don't remember the term whiz kids and Al Roker who tries to talking to Masi by saying "wasabi." Plus Rosie keeps calling him "MASS-ey" Oka like "Mazzy Star" and butchering his name, which should be said "Mah-see."

Well, the cool thing is that Masi gets to do the talk show circuit all by himself, which increases his visibility and stardom! Plus he remains very humble and grounded. Apparently his character wasn't going to last the whole season, but the fans really took to him. And thank goodness, cos he's so kawai! plus he says to Conan, "I just, ugh, I just can't be a gigolo! The problem is, I'm very short, so I need a tall wingman like yourself." Soooooo adorable!

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