Prince Gomolvilas

Whitewashing 'Akira' (Now with Liquid Bleach to Keep Your Whites Even Whiter!)

Filed By Prince Gomolvilas | March 27, 2011 4:00 PM | comments

Filed in: Entertainment
Tags: Akira, anime, Japan, manga, whitewashing

Since I've been known to blog at least three other places, I usually save my gayest posts for The Bilerico Project. However, there hasn't been any High School Musical news in months, so I've had absolutely nothing to say to you - which doesn't mean I have nothing to say. Can we talk about Hollywood and race for a moment? Please? If you haven't yet heard about the proposed "whitewashed" version of the quintessentially Japanese manga/anime, Akira, instantly increase your sociopolitical sophistication by watching my video monologue now:

You can keep posted about this developing story on my blog or my Facebook page or my Twitter feed or my YouTube Channel. (Yes, I'm a social media whore - but a high-class one.)

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You have this milk-drinking white person convinced, Prince! I will be spreading the word.

Thanks, Jake! I'll drink a glass of milk in your honor!

As a Caucasian hardcore anime fan I am beyond offended by this whole concept. This isn't just a racist white-guy remake of a popular anime/manga. This is Akira! A pivotal and defining moment in the history of the art form. Akira's widespread international popularity was critical to the boom in export of anime to the West, and for an entire generation of fans it holds a special significance.

Whitewashing an artform with such deep Asian cultural roots in the first place is racist and degrading to the art and its fans. But doing so with a something of the significance and import of Akira is akin to a remake of Fiddler on the Roof with all reference to the characters' Judaism removed.

While I have no doubt that Hollywood will make money on this project, I am certain that a huge percentage of fans (surely a target demo) will abstain in protest.

Thanks for the commentary and support!

I wonder if the remake will be as incomprehensible as the cartoon.