#AACC2017: #AAIronFist – Bringing an Asian American Hero to Life

Recorded live during the Asian American ComiCon Summit on Art, Action, and the Future.

Marvel’s Iron Fist has generally been seen as a major disappointment — and it could’ve been so much more, if only Marvel and Netflix had embraced a not-so-radical rethinking of their martial artist hero as an Asian American. Some Asian American filmmakers actually brought their reimagined concepts for an Asian American Iron Fist to life, and they’ll share their short videos as part of a conversation with the creator of the #AAIRONFIST hashtag.

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Representation Matters: Super Asian Americans

The superhero genre is slowly expanding its insular universe with Wonder Woman and the highly anticipated Black Panther. Though just a drop in the bucket compared to white male superheroes, such images can significantly impact audiences who have never seen themselves portrayed as (s)heroes. Recently at Comic-Con in San Diego, one Asian American girl, Ashley Keller, teared up when she met Gal Gadot (aka Wonder Woman) in a video that went viral, demonstrating the real-life impact of on-screen role models:

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#AACC2017: Warrior Women — Reimagining the Asian Female Hero

Recorded live during the Asian American ComiCon Summit on Art, Action, and the Future.

In the wake of Wonder Woman​, with Mulan on the horizon, what should we expect in a rich, textured, powerful and provocative Asian (or Asian American!) heroine? What’s worked, what hasn’t and why has it taken so damned long?

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#AACC2017: Envisioning Diverse Futures

Recorded live during the Asian American ComiCon Summit on Art, Action, and the Future.

We’ve seen so many different kinds of futures unfurl in pop culture, and many of them have people of color and LGBTQ individuals as backdrop and “local color.” What would a truly diverse, inclusive and intersectional future really look like?

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#AACC2017: Can Pop Culture Save the World?

Recorded live during the Asian American ComiCon Summit on Art, Action, and the Future.

Pop culture is literally the people’s culture. At a time when creative and diverse voices are both under attack, what can pop culture do to make social change?

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#AACC2017 and Failing to Get a Photo with Lewis Tan

To get to my failure, I should start with a childhood that took place in Los Angeles. Hawthorne, California is a small community situated in Southwest Los Angeles. With Inglewood to the north, Gardena to the east, Torrance to the south, and the glamorous beach communities to the west, it was basically the edge of working class/POC Los Angeles butting up against the elite.

What this meant is that I’d had some familiarity with celebrity. Not with myself, mind, but, like most Angelenos, I’d run into famous people while out and about. My most hilarious sighting being Los Angeles Laker Luke Walton at a local Target, while I was shopping for a few things with my mother. My mom was incredibly upset that I did not tell her that the tall and maddeningly handsome Walton had just waltzed right by her with the grace of a ballerina (Walton did have decent footwork) and the obviousness of a panzer tank.

Needless to say, my life here should have prepared me for meeting Lewis Tan. It, however, did not.

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The Asian American ComiCon Presents: A Summit on Art, Action & the Future

In 2009, the Asian American ComiCon was held in New York City, bringing together Asian indie and mainstream comics creators for a historic gathering to celebrate the unique and flourishing graphic storytelling of our community. Now, eight years later, AACC is hosting its second event: a Summit on Art, Action and the Future. In a time where diversity and creativity are both under attack, the Summit will feature diverse creators talking about where we’re going next.

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