In Honor of Kelly Marie Tran in ‘The Last Jedi,’ a Look at All the Asians Who Came Before Her!

With The Last Jedi almost upon us, it’s time to finally get ready to celebrate an exciting new addition to the Star Wars Universe!

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NO I’M NOT TALKING ABOUT PORGS IT’S NEVER ABOUT PORGS. GO AWAY PORGS PLEASE AND THANK YOU.

I’m talking about Asians! Specifically, Kelly Marie Tran’s new character, Rose. As of right now, there’s no real way to know what her impact will be, but hey, she has scenes with John Boyega, so she must have at least a modest level of importance, right?

In honor of this mysterious new character, I wanted to take a look back at the long, illustrious history of Asians in the Star Wars Universe*.

*For the purposes of this piece, I’m focusing only on speaking roles in the movies, since this is primarily an exploration of on-screen representation, which is certainly more striking in live-action film rather than, say, animation, and anyway, I haven’t seen either The Clone Wars series or movie, or Star Wars: Rebels, and yes I am aware that there is a Commander Sato in Rebels and he’s even voiced by an Asian-American actor (Keone Young), which is great, but I’m pretty sure once I start I’m gonna get derailed and just keep watching instead of trying to work through this piece and look at how far off track I’ve already gone so can we just, okay? Thanks!

Star Wars (A New Hope)

There are no Asians in this movie.

The Empire Strikes Back

There are no Asians in this movie.

(I am starting to notice a pattern.)

Return of the Jedi

There are no WAITASEC

We got one! This is Lieutenant Telsij, played by Eiji Kusuhara. How exciting! Finally, our first scrap of evidence that Asians exist in the galaxy, and our first moment of on-screen representation!

No joke, my friend Anthony (who also grew up in love with Star Wars) and I literally celebrated Telsij as our own, his infamous, auspicious words of warning forever burned into our memory. We may or may not have worked on our Telsij impressions as children.

Of course, we never see him again after this point in the movie, so we have no idea what happened to him. There are some who believe that we actually see him get shot down later, but that’s a completely different pilot, and the people who think that are clearly insensitive jerks who think all Y-Wing pilots look the same.

Regardless, we owe the Lieutenant a debt of gratitude, for breaking the color barrier, as our first known Asian! Though his time on screen may have been brief, and his fate unknown, we salute him for taking that first, small step.

The Phantom Menace

There are no Asians in this movie.

For the record:

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I mean, I’m not thrilled about the portrayal here, which is problematic at best. But they’re aliens.

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He’s a skilled martial artist, and his name’s even Ray Park! But still, not Asian, which is too bad, because we Asians would have owned the shit out of Darth Maul.

Attack of the Clones

There are no Asians in this movie. Are we really doing this again?

Revenge of the Sith

There are no Asians in this movie.

Oh wait. I guess there’s this guy?

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Hmm, played by Kee Chan. Definitely Asian, but does he have any speaking lines? Remember, he has to at least say something.

Ugh. Do I really have to watch this movie?

Excuse me. I’ll be right back.

WHAT THE HELL, REVENGE OF THE SITH? I JUST WENT THROUGH THAT ENTIRE MOVIE, YOU KNOW WHERE THIS DUDE SHOWS UP?

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ONE SCENE NO CLOSEUPS NO LINES?

I’M CALLING IT: THIS MOVIE OFFICIALLY HAS NO ASIANS.

The Force Awakens

Alright, now we’re talking! Look at all the Asians we have in this one:

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Okay, so the first group of Asians and they’re… gangsters. And their gang is called Kanjiklub, because, kanji is a Japanese word, so, you know, it totally makes sense!

But as far as representation in the Star Wars Universe goes, we take what we can get. So, at least for now, it’s okay that some of them are thrown back into a long-standing stereotypical societal role.

Plus, we have some Asians doing other jobs, too:

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Asians. They’re just like us! Sure, we don’t really get to know them all that much, but they’re there. They exist.

Plus, we get an admiral and a pilot? That’s like the doctor and lawyer of the Star Wars Universe. You KNOW their parents are super proud, passive-aggressively bragging to their neighbors about how they have such big, important jobs with The Resistance.

Oh, and before we move on, there’s one other possible Asian that I was alerted to. It’s this guy:

So apparently the man in the suit is a stunt performer named Liang Yang. But his voice is provided by an actor named David Acord.

So. Asian guy doing martial arts, dubbed by a white guy?

Congratulations, FN-2199! You have earned the official designation of achieving MOST ASIAN status for being used for your physical gifts, while also being stripped of your voice, like a true, old-school martial artist.

Rogue One

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Whoa, three Asians in the main cast?

And they all play at least reasonably important roles within the main narrative?

AND only one of them is playing a semi-stereotypical-ish mysterious monk-esque role, but also is so badass that I kind of don’t mind that he’s not only a semi-stereotypical blind monk, but he’s ALSO a semi-stereotypical blind martial arts master?

On top of this embarrassment of representational riches, there’s even one more Asian pilot:

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And for good measure, she, like our friend FN-2199, was also dubbed over, which means we’ve got one more entry in the MOST ASIAN category!

For better or worse, this still represents real progress. And it’s all (well, mostly) thanks to the growing financial importance of the international film market, specifically, China.

So thanks, China, for being excited to spend money watching our movies!

The Last Jedi

This brings us back to Rose, played by Kelly Marie Tran, who joins a long line smattering of Asians existing within the Star Wars Universe.

We’ll have to see what kind of role she plays (along with her sister, Paige, played by Veronica Ngo), but it seems like Rose will be, at a minimum, the most important Asian woman in the series to date.

So, you know, no pressure, Kelly!

But we’re all counting on you.

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6 Men Serena Williams Was Linked to Before Settling Down With Alexis Ohanian

Serena Williams recently tied the knot with Alexis Ohanian, but she had her fair share of star-studded romances before settling down with the Reddit founder. Before meeting the love of her life, the tennis player dated a few rappers and was even linked to one of her coaches. Get all the details of her dating history ahead.

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Why Margot Robbie Didn’t Want to Spend Much Time With Tonya Harding Before Playing Her

In taking on the lead role in I, Tonya, Margot Robbie had the tough task of portraying not only an Olympic figure skater but also a public figure involved in a scandal that many people remember very well. Both she and Sebastian Stan, who plays Tonya Harding’s ex-husband Jeff Gillooly, were able to study their real-life counterparts via online footage, but they also met Harding and Gillooly face to face. For Stan, this really helped him get into character, but Robbie was a little hesitant to spend too much time with the former figure skater. Here’s what Robbie and Stan had to say at a Q&A at the Toronto Film Festival when asked if meeting Harding and Gillooly made them sympathize with them more:

Margot Robbie: «It did, which is why I didn’t want to spend too much time with Tonya before we started shooting. I didn’t want to pull back anything in the performance and in the story. Craig [Gillespie, who directed the movie] and I flew up to Portland and met with Tonya and we only spent a couple of hours with her, and I think it was better to keep it that way. I think otherwise I would’ve probably had too much empathy for her.»

Sebastian Stan: «I sought him out. It took me a while, he wasn’t returning my calls right away. But finally I tracked him down. No matter what the situation, you’re always feeling some kind of responsibility for the person because they’re a real person and we have a script to honor, and that was always going to be my main task, no matter what, without judgment of what any character was doing. And with him, it was just to learn as much about him as possible and try to figure out why people do what they do.»

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If This Theory About This Is Us Is True, Beth Got to Meet Jack Before He Died

This Is Us wrapped up its trilogy about the Big Three on Tuesday night, and it was nothing short of emotional. During the Randall-centric episode, we learn more about No. 3’s teens years leading up to his father’s death. While Jack really wants his son to go to Harvard, Randall takes a liking to Howard, a historically black university in Washington, D.C. Even though it’s not entirely clear which school he ends up choosing, fans have a pretty good guess based on the season two Fall finale.

After the father-son duo make a road trip to the college, Randall winds up leaving his father behind to meet up with an old friend on campus. As Randall walks off with a group of students to check out the dorms, Jack continues with their previously scheduled tour solo. While this doesn’t seem like a big deal at first, if we know anything about This Is Us, it’s that no detail is too small. As one Reddit user points out, there’s a good chance Beth, aka Randall’s future wife, is in the group of students touring the school.

Not only would this be a great plot twist, but it would also mean Beth got to meet Randall’s dad before he dies. As previously revealed, Jack dies right before the Big Three’s high school graduation. Since we know that Randall and Beth meet in college, it wouldn’t be too far fetched for the show to bring everything full circle. Perhaps when they do start dating, Randall shows her a picture of Jack and everything clicks.

If you needed more convincing, in the crowd of students touring the school, there is a girl with long braids talking with two other girls. While we know that Beth actually has dreadlocks when she first meets Randall, the girl’s hairstyle is similar to the one Beth is doing in Deja’s hair earlier this season to cover up her alopecia. Remember when she says that one of her sisters also suffers from alopecia? What if the two girls the student with long braids is talking to are actually Beth’s sisters? So not only would Jack have met Randall’s future wife, but also his in-laws.

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NEW FOOTAGE! Steelers Fans Have Verbal War Before Throwing Fists

We’re now learning new details from Sunday’s fight between Steelers fans at the Big Ketchup Bottle that had Twitter triggered on Monday. Those of you who were over on Twitter know that Steelers fans want you to know this happens everywhere. Of course I asked them to show me proof of Packers fans fighting Packers fans at Lambeau and they couldn’t.

A real quick recap of what went down, according to the eyewitnesses who sent us the videos:

• Steelers fan was standing near the end of the game

• Steelers fan told him to sit down

• Standing Steelers fan told him to fucc off

• One thing led to another and they were fighting

Now, thanks to the videos, you can hear Standing Steelers Fan say “bathroom” (guess that’s where fans throw down away from kids at the Big Ketchup Bottle) and then adds in the ultimate insult by calling his fellow combatant a “pussy.”

Total dirtbag behavior from all involved. Typical Steelers fans. Week after week we post a different variation of this.


Sports Gossip, Sexy WAGs, NFL and Hot Cheerleaders: BustedCoverage

Open Post: Hosted By Shania Twain Canada-Ing Harder Than Any Canadian Before Her

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My floor is now flooded with poutine, maple syrup and the happy tears of meese (that’s plural for moose, duh), because that’s what poured out of all of my orifices while watching this clip of Shania Twain come from Celine Dion’s Queen of Canada crown by riding into a football game during a snowstorm on a dog sled. And she was greeted by a Mountie! The only way that scene would’ve been more Canadian is if it was a hockey game, she was wearing a parka made from Cadbury Crispy Crunch wrappers, she was doing shots of Tim Horton’s coffee off of a BeaverTail and was profusely apologizing to the dogs pulling her.

The final game for the Grey Cup went down at the TD Place Stadium in Ottawa last night, and Shania Twain, who was the halftime performer, made a grand Canadian entrance before busting out some of her hits in the snow! The next time I’m in Canada and order an Uber, a dog sled playing a Shania Twain song through its speakers better pull up.

That Dep gel-encrusted spiral curl mop isn’t an homage to Taylor Dane or your cousin at prom circa 1991. It’s a subtle homage to one of Canada’s most popular sports Curling! If videos could be official country flags, that video would be Canada’s.

Pic: YouTube

Dlisted

Yes, You’ve Seen Carol From The Walking Dead on Screen Before

Image Source: AMC

Rick Grimes, King Ezekiel, and Maggie Greene might technically run things with the allied squads on The Walking Dead, but it’s Carol Peletier who seems to come in on the clutch most often throughout the series. Remember how she handles the terrible business of dealing with the prison’s ill population, then takes care of Lizzie, and manages to save everyone from the Terminus cannibal crew, even after being exiled and ostracized by them? That’s boss behavior right there.

Carol always seems to take her leave from the group just in time to position herself as an outside asset when she’s most needed. She has a foresight that’s increasingly rare in this generation of act-first-think-later strategists (lookin’ at you, Sheriff). Ezekiel and Jerry would certainly be hobbling around looking for brains to munch on if not for her quick thinking this week, and pretty much everyone else can credit their lives to her in some way or another, too. So, yeah, Carol’s the low-key mastermind of this whole operation, when you think about it.

The actress who portrays her, Melissa McBride, is no slouch herself. While she hasn’t always gotten to play such a force on screen in the past, she’s still something of a can-do queen in real life, too.

McBride got her start on the small screen in the ’90s, with one-off roles in shows like Matlock, In the Heat of the Night, and Walker, Texas Ranger. She eventually made her way into the mainstream by nabbing a brief but recurring role as Nina, the title character’s mature love interest in the teen soap Dawson’s Creek.

Image Source: Warner Bros.

However, she decided to «try something different» and become a casting director in addition to pursuing her acting career in Atlanta.

Her next major role would be the one that eventually aligned the stars for her to earn her Walking Dead post, as she appeared in Frank Darabont’s adaptation of Stephen King’s The Mist as the desperate mother of two who decides to brave the monster-filled fog to make her way to her children, despite everyone else’s sheepish refusal to accompany her.

Image Source: The Weinstein Company

(Carol would probably approve of her Mist counterpart’s willingness to run into danger for the sake of others.)

And while McBride’s part in the picture was small, she made an impression on the director. Once he became the creative showrunner for The Walking Dead, she and fellow The Mist alums Laurie Holden and Jeffrey DeMunn were all chosen to join the show in its first season.

She’s since admitted that she initially didn’t expect Carol to live as long as she has. But with the character consistently outsmarting enemies, arriving as a secret hero for abuse survivors everywhere, and maintaining her status as the secret MVP of the whole survivor shebang, chances are she won’t be going anywhere anytime soon — even if we’ve had our doubts.

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How Dr. Bailey Dramatically Changed Just Before Grey’s Anatomy’s Pilot

Sure, Grey’s Anatomy might technically be the Meredith Grey show (her name is in the title, after all), but she’s got some serious competition from Miranda Bailey.

It didn’t take long for the tough-talking surgeon to become a fan-favorite on the long-running medical drama, thanks in large part to actress Chandra Wilson’s spirited performance. Bailey might be small, but her no-nonsense attitude and brutal one-liners continue to help Wilson steal scene after scene. For the aforementioned reasons, she’s easily become one of the most iconic characters on Grey’s, but showrunner Shonda Rhimes originally had very different plans for the role.

During an interview with Oprah all the way back in 2006, Rhimes revealed that the first idea she had for the eventual Chief of Surgery at Grey Sloan Memorial Hospital was to make her «a tiny blonde with curls.» Say what?

«The script was written with no character descriptions, no clue as to what anyone should look like — except for Miranda Bailey,» Rhimes explained. «I pictured her as a tiny blonde with curls. I thought it would be unexpected to have this sweet-looking person open her mouth and say tough things. But then Chandra Wilson [an African-American actress] auditioned, and she opened her mouth and said those same things. I thought, ‘That’s exactly who Miranda is.'»

Rhimes went on to note that the physical descriptions for all of the other characters were also pretty loose, since they read actors of multiple races for each part. «My goal was simply to cast the best actors. I was lucky because the network said, ‘Go for it,'» she said. «If they had hesitated, I don’t know if I would have wanted to do the show. But it was difficult to write the pilot because it’s easier to imagine people in terms of color.»

Fortunately for all of us, Wilson nabbed the part of Bailey and cemented some truly iconic lines — «Stop looking at my va-jay-jay» comes to mind — into our memories forever.

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6 Postapocalyptic Books to Read Before the Movie (or TV Show)

Even if the apocalypse isn’t in our near (nearish?) future, these movie adaptations are! So make sure to check out the postapocalyptic books that inspired them. Because there’s nothing better than buying that ticket to the big-screen version of one of your favorite novels!

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