Every May, we recognize the contributions and influence of the AAPI community by celebrating shows that showcase the Asian-American experience. Here are five titles that are worth checking out.
This comedy series is based on the 2006 graphic novel of the same name and stars the incomparable Michelle Yeoh. She plays the mother of a struggling boy who meets an exchange student and becomes involved in a battle of Chinese mythological gods. With directors like Lucy Liu and Destin Daniel Cretton behind the camera, this Disney+ show is a Certified Fresh hit with critics.
Where to Watch: Disney+
The Apple TV+ series Pachinko is based on a New York Times bestseller and follows a Korean immigrant family across four generations as they leave their homeland to chase their dreams. The Certified Fresh first season has been a hit with critics, who call it “a sweeping epic that captures the arc of history as well as the enduring bonds of family.” The show has already picked up BAFTA and Emmy noms, and also won the Critics Choice Award for Best Foreign Language Series, and has already been picked up for a second season.
Where to Watch: Apple TV+
(Photo by © Buena Vista/courtesy Everett Collection)
Our throwback pick is The Joy Luck Club, directed by Wayne Wang — a pioneer of Asian-American cinema — and based on the 1989 novel of the same name by Amy Tan, who also co-wrote the screenplay. This Certified Fresh film explores the relationships between Chinese-American women and their immigrant mothers while exploring their lives through the lens of a specific cultural experience.
This NBC comedy shows three periods of Dwayne Johnson’s life: as a 10-year-old in Hawaii, a high schooler in Pennsylvania, and a college football player in Miami. Young Rock has been rolling for three seasons, anchored by a Certified Fresh first season that critics call “an endearing peek behind the curtain of both Johnson’s childhood and the wild world of wrestling.”
The Netflix series Never Have I Ever is a coming-of-age comedy co-created by Mindy Kaling and is loosely based on her childhood, following a modern-day first generation Indian-American teenage girl. It has three Certified Fresh seasons, with the fourth and final season premiering this June.
Where to Watch: by subscription on Netflix