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Are The 2 Broke Girls Racist?

| Filed under: TV News


Perhaps, but as one puppet sings 8 times a week in Manhattan, "Everyone's a little bit racist!"

The new CBS comedy 2 Broke Girls is coming under fire from critics who question the approach to the character of Bryce Han Lee, a Korean immigrant who owns the diner the girls have been working in. The problem for many reviewers is that Han's chartacter feeds into many of the sterotypes associated with Asian-Americans: broken English, problems with pronunciation and lack of understand to America customs.

But when cornered on the issue, show creators Michael Patrick King and Whitney Cummings feel like people are seeing the situation all wrong. As Michael puts it:

"There's a comic sweetness to him that's an innocence, and the fact he's an immigrant from Korea is part of his character."

While Michael insists the character will get "rounded out" as time goes on, Whitney ventured to add further that this starting point makes sense for Han. She explains:

“The character is not dumb. He just moved to the country six months ago. He literally doesn't know the language. That doesn't mean he's dumb. In the subsequent episodes, we're going to see how smart he truly is.”

Huh. We didn't know he just moved her six months ago. Was that made clear in the pilot? We knew he had just purchased the diner not too long ago, but we didn't know he was that fresh to the country. Maybe it that was better established, people wouldn't be so quick to yell, "racist."

Are U watching the show? Do U have any issues with Han's character?

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35 comments to “Are The 2 Broke Girls Racist?”

  1. 1

    Didnt see it and never will but I think all these critics who see thing that are unintentional or aren't there are the racists

  2. 2

    O gosh…. the show is funny.

  3. 3

    Oh and Mario of course

  4. 4

    People really will find the most inane things to bitch about now a days. The show is a cute comedy with no racial undercurrents. Folks just need to learn to sit back, relax, and laugh a little without nitpicking everything to death. Sheesh.

  5. 5

    People take things like this too seriously. The show isn't racist and they're not intentionally making him out to be a dumb foreigner. He plays a recent immigrant who is trying to fit in - he works at a "hipster" diner and wants to be a part of that crowd. He's a cute character. What's the issue?

  6. buck says – reply to this


    in other words its an accurate portrail.

  7. 7

    I would have agreed with u three months ago until my recent trip to LV. 70 percent of the SA's at the stores were oriental, couldn't speak English worth a darn and dropped this Euro white trash (first generation) the moment a fellow country woman entered the store.

  8. 8

    I watch it and while they definitely play on some Asian American stereotypes I wouldn't say it's racist jokes. Some off colour but that's the whole show. Han seems really nice and not dumb at all, just adjusting to a new country.

  9. 9

    On the contrary. Banning people with foriegn accents from tv would be racist.

  10. 10

    First of all, the stereotype is very accurate for first generation Korean Americans. They typically do not adopt American culture, they stick to their own, and secondly- Koreans are the most racist people I've ever met so what is the big deal. I don't care that they are crying about it.

  11. 11

    It is definitely racially insensitive to have an Asian character who speaks like is it is still 1961. If Asians were better represented throughout television, maybe it wouldn't be as obvious. But to have a character on tv confusing his L's and R's in 2011 is "lidicurous." But then again, the entire show is full of stereotypes! The question should be: Is Two Broke Girls Funny? The resounding answer would be: NO!

  12. fid says – reply to this


    People really love getting upset over the most idiotic things. I'm Asian and I don't find this racist at all, it's not like it's Breakfast at Tiffany's where a white actor is doing an extremely racist caricature. I find Han to be quite endearing and funny. I actually am surprised that I find this show so funny.

  13. 7tizz says – reply to this


    In most restaurants in metropolitan areas there is one or two of these individuals employed in this industry due to the enrty level hiring they do. It is not racist but a fact of life.

  14. 14

    please.. it's comedy…. only a bonehead would be offended.
    Fat Tony on the Simpsons could be offensive…. until you realize it's supposed to be a parody of a character.
    People have very thin skins… Susan Sarandon comments, on the other hand, are offensive.

  15. 15

    If that's racist then so is the character of gloria in modern family?

    Baby cheeses / baby jesus?

  16. 16

    I think Michael Patrick King is racist. Look how he portrayed Muslims in Sex and the City 2. He played on every stereotype for the views. This is why we're always going to be fighting, because we're told it's funny, we laugh, they make more.

  17. 7tizz says – reply to this


    Re: Wawa What – While I agree that the show is not very funny (it's basically an introduction to sitcoms for people who've never seen one), I also don't get your 1961 argument at all. There are thousands of new immigrants coming into the country every day and working these types of jobs.

  18. 18

    Well someone should tell the Korean cabbie I had in New York last time I was there he was a racist stereotype and to stop it because he might offend America.

  19. 19

    Re: Wawa What – What's funny is that you seem to think that 'Engrish' jokes are inherently racist, and based on stereotypes rather than fact. While it's true that not all east-Asian immigrants speak the way Han does, many do. I've had the pleasure of hosting several Japanese exchange students, and they all had great difficulty pronouncing the letter 'L', because that sound doesn't exist in their language. When translating English words into the Romanji alphabet, the 'L' is replaced with an 'R', and is often pronounced that way as well. Given, Han is meant to be Korean and not Japanese, but I believe some of the same language rules apply. I have many second-generation Asian friends that make fun of their own parents for their 'Engrish' skills. Han's accent isn't any more mocking or offensive than the Russian cook's, it's just a part of his character. Nobody is implying that there's anything wrong with him because he doesn't speak perfect English and, in fact, he's a very well-liked character on the show.

  20. 20

    "broken English, problems with pronunciation and lack of understand to America customs"
    um - was "lack of understand to America customs" trying to be funny or just the usual crappy lack of editing
    *lack of understanding of American customs

  21. 21

    i dont think is racist, i loooveee the show and im watching

  22. 22

    This show isn't even funny. Who cares?

  23. 23

    Should we all be offended that the two white main co-stars are trashy and snobby? Should we also be offended that the african american man that is at the front of the diner is a jazz player? Come on, now. Its a show that is very corny and exagerates LOTS of things.

  24. 24

    What isn't racist these days? Can't even take a shit without being called racist… everyone is wayyyyyyy to sensitive.

  25. 25

    My asian friends are ALL like that character… but smart in general. They just have a rough time with english.. and I have to constantly explain things to them even though they've been in this country for 15 + years. It's not a big deal. They would laugh.

  26. Wrenn says – reply to this


    I wish these groups would shut the hell up and get a life!!!!

  27. 27

    we live in a new world..perez is a leader of it…where youre not allowed to be offended or your livelihood should be taken away and you should be put in homophobe or racist jail…and thats for stating facts!!!!

  28. 28

    The show is a stupid piece of shit anyway. Anyone who watches/likes it is a stupid cun*t.

  29. 29

    its a stereo type for a reason….COZ ITS EFFIN TRUE. what the hell is wrong with this coutry that we have to pretend things arnt the way that they really are in case we offend anyone. btw the majority of the ppl who get affected are usually bald, white, fat politicians lookin to score cheap minority points

  30. 30

    Nope no problems here, love this show!

  31. 31

    "lack of understand to America customs" - way to ironically perpetuate the stereotype of broken English. I've said it once, and I'll keep saying it - Perez, learn to proofread before you post!

  32. 32

    I am asian. I find Han's character to be racist. However I am not offended. It's a show with cheap jokes and no one really watches it for smart comedy. I really doubt the show creators and showrunners are making a racist political statement. But to tell you the truth, Han's character is dull and adds nothing to the storyline as of yet.

  33. Laura says – reply to this


    this is why we need for racial minority writers, than someone would have caught this.

  34. 34

    People once again proving their stupidity..2012 please hurry up

  35. 35

    First of all…..this is one of my favourite shows it´s clever and funny and stupid :D And I really don´t see anything wrong with it. ANYTHING!!! It has perfect amount of humor and I hope it will have many many seasons :D I looooove Kat, she is awesome :D and the bartender/street artist/pimp is amazing and hot :D And rich girl is hilarious :D KEEP UP THE GOOD WORK :P