Fox Asked to Re-shoot ‘Racist’ Scenes in ‘Dads’ Sitcom by Asian American Org


Group calls on executives to erase racial jokes, stereotypes

MANAA, the Media Action Network for Asian American, fired off a letter to Fox on Thursday demanding network executives re-shoot “racist” scenes from Seth MacFarlane’s upcoming sitcomDads.”

The group was referring to the pilot episode of “Dads,” which screened at Fox’s Television Critics Association panel earlier this month and featured one character (Martin Mull) calling Asians “Orientals” before telling his son he didn’t trust the Chinese, that “there’s a reason Shanghai’s a verb.”

“Our community can’t continue to be the target of racially insensitive jokes,” MANAA wrote in the letter. “Considering the consistent feedback from our community and television critics in general–and the creators saying they hadn’t properly defined their characters nor gotten used to their actors when they shot that first episode–this sounds like a no-brainer.”

Fox chairman Kevin Reilly acknowledged during his exec session the derogatory nature of the “Dads” pilot, and how the show will need retooling and recalibrating in order to find an appropriate comedic balance.

But exec producers Mike Scully and Wellesley Wild were on the defensive when it came to questions about the racist and sexist jokes used in the show.

“We don’t want this to be the racial, insult comedy show,” Scully remarked. “It’s a show about fathers and sons.”

“This is an opportunity for characters to have that discussion in the way most people can’t,” star Seth Green added.

The Asian org singled out exec producer Alec Sulkin in the letter, mentioning a 2011 tweet that followed the Tsunami in Japan when thousands of people were killed.

“If you wanna feel better about this earthquake in Japan, google ‘Pearl Harbor death toll’,” he tweeted.

The org responded: “Given the level of hostility we felt in the “Dads” pilot, perhaps it should come as no surprise that Sulkin’s involved.”

“Dads,” starring Seth Green and Giovani Ribisi, debuts this fall on Fox.

Filed Under:

Want to read more articles like this one? SUBSCRIBE TO VARIETY TODAY.
Post A Comment 14

Leave a Reply


Comments are moderated. They may be edited for clarity and reprinting in whole or in part in Variety publications.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

  1. Louis Gridley Wu says:

    I found the phone number for the production office of Dads:


  2. boycottdads says:

    I’ve started another website to boycott Dads:

  3. Louis Gridley Wu says:

    I’ve started a movement to boycott Dads:

  4. Louis Gridley Wu says:

    If someone had made a show that was racist against black people, it would be all over the news. But since they discriminated against Asians, it’s considered to be freedom of speech. This is bullshit. The double standard in America disgusts me.

    We Asians need to do something. I suggest we call the Dads production office and organize boycotts and protests. This unfairness needs to stop NOW.

  5. HD says:

    Oriental IS politically correct, around the world anyways. “ASIAN” can mean anything from Afghan, Pakistian, Indian, Azerbaijan, Chinese, etc. Its only in North America that for some reason we only refer to those from the “Orient” as ASIAN. Only Confusing ourselves and others.

  6. Avid Reader says:

    Archie Bunker was bigoted, but never meanspirited and he was hilarious. His foils, in Edith, Gloria and Mike ensured that his patently narrow minded views made for good television. It’s not the joke that’s necessarily offensive, it’s the spirit in which it’s made. Is it there to elucidate the foibles of a changing society or is it merely a cheap shot made to satisfy the spiteful minds of writers pandering for laughs?

  7. carlb says:

    it’s called comedy and means no racist truth. wake up people we are going to wake up one day to a country controlled by pc watch dogs. at point point we become a orwellian society and we all become drones walking around with pc tattooed on our forheads!

    • jay mckim says:

      it’ called racism over comedy. Fox has used same old anti-Asian word again. Nothing is funny there.
      Fox would not refer black as “N******” in theshow cus Black elites will protest but Fox can do that do asian cus Asians do not protest like black people. So naturally Fox still goes after Asian and promoting same old Asian racial and sexual stereotype.

  8. Virgil says:

    Suck it up buttercup. theses complainers must have been raised in the era of everyone gets a trophy. we applaud diversity but can’t talk of it. what is this country coming to when you can’t say anything even jokingly about something or someone else.

    • jay mckim says:

      You can’t say racial comment/slur in the public. Fox sitcom is the public media they can’t say “oriental” or “small asian penis” thing in the media while everybody is watching it. But you can say
      that in your private conversation with your family or with your friend or to yourself. We Asian do not want to hear your anti-asian comment in the public. Take into your privacy and that’s is your freedom.

    • SP says:

      Yeah, but Asians are always the butt of jokes and it’s considered OK to make fun of them… just count how many times an Asian male actor had a serious lead role versus when he was a nerdy goofball that was made fun of?

  9. Seth MacFarlane is forever “Ted” and his brand of humor showed the anticipated “comedic balance”. Fox executive being ingenuous to criticize the pilot episode of DADS while knowing exactly what they would be getting from MacFarlane…and quite satisfied with it…until it threatened the bottom line.

More TV News from Variety