2018 has been a rollercoaster of a year. We’ve seen several new milestones for Asians across the globe but it’s fair to say, we’ve also had our fair share of pure nonsense. If we are to have a non-toxic, stress-free 2019, we all need to officially call time on these trends and celebs who have made 2018 even worse than it already was.
White-washed Asian food
The internet is always looking for new and inventive ways to serve ethnic food in a way that’s as Instagrammable as possible. But please. In 2019, leave traditional Asian dishes out of it. No real Asian person would ever want to go near a pho pot pie, kimchi on toast or a sushi croissant. Putting a western twist on Asian food can work but there is a fine line where it goes from alright to downright disgraceful. So unless you’re absolutely sure you’ve mastered the art of Asian cuisine, don’t even think about it.
Logan Paul canceled himself on the first day of 2018 by releasing a video of him and his friends disrespecting the Japanese people and their culture on their trip to Tokyo. To make matters even worse, he actually filmed a Japanese suicide victim’s body in a vlog. Shortly after the video went up, over 80,000 people signed a petition to delete his YouTube channel and his weak apology did little to stop the criticisms. Need I say more?
Dolce & Gabbana
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#DGlovesChina ? More like #DGdesperateforthatChineseRMB lol. In a bid to further appeal to luxury’s covetable Chinese consumers, @dolcegabbana released some hella offensive “instructional” videos on the usage of chopsticks. Pandering at it’s finest, but taken up a notch by painting their target demographic as a tired and false stereotype of a people lacking refinement/culture to understand how to eat foreign foods and an over-the-top embellishment of cliché ambient music, comical pronunciations of foreign names/words, and Chinese subtitles (English added by us), which begs the question—who is this video actually for? It attempts to target China, but instead mocks them with a parodied vision of what modern China is not…a gag for amusement. Dolce & Gabbana have already removed the videos from their Chinese social media channels, but not Instagram. Stefano Gabbana has been on a much-needed social media cleanse (up until November 2nd), so maybe he kept himself busy by meddling with the marketing department for this series. Who wants to bet the XL cannoli “size” innuendos were his idea? Lmao. • #dolceandgabbana #altamoda #rtw #dgmillennials #stefanogabbana #shanghai #chinese #italian #cannoli #meme #wtf #dumb #lame #chopsticks #foodie #tutorial #cuisine #italianfood #asianmodel #asian #chinesefood #dietprada
Chinese netizens threw their Dolce & Gabbana products in the trash after a racist advert went viral. Even worse, after being called out on the problematic nature of the video, co-founder Stefano Gabbana responded to the backlash by calling China “the country of shit” and accusing Chinese people of eating dogs in a series of private Instagram messages. But the story only gets better from here. After the second wave of backlash targeted at Gabbana’s response, D&G released this statement:
“Our Instagram account has been hacked. So as the account of Stefano Gabbana. Our legal office is urgently investigating.”
Disturbing viral fitness challenges
Viral fitness or body-related challenges we see on the internet rarely have to do with how strong or physically fit a person is but instead focuses on how small a woman can shrink herself. Previously, we’ve seen the A4 challenge, iPhone 6 challenge, the twisted lipstick challenge and the 100-yuan wrist challenge. Just when we thought things couldn’t get any worse, 2018 gave us the “fish into collarbone challenge.” This new viral trend once again aims to flaunt one’s slender physique by putting as many fish into your collarbone as possible to highlight how skinny you are. Please let 2019 be the year this nonsense stops.
Gwyneth Paltrow is known for making headlines regularly with her questionable health fads and product endorsements. Previously we’ve seen her encouraging women to get their vaginas steamed, endorsing a $15,000 dildo and pissing off a ton of Asian people for gentrifying yoga. This year, she outdid herself by going on Jimmy Kimmel and explaining that inserting a jade egg into your vagina was an ancient Chinese practice. But did she stop there? Of course not, it’s Gwyneth Paltrow. More recently she went viral for taking credit for popularizing yoga in an interview with the WSJ Magazine:
“Forgive me if this comes out wrong, but I went to do a yoga class in LA recently and the 22-year-old girl behind the counter was like, ‘Have you ever done yoga before?,’ and literally I turned to my friend, and I was like, ‘(She has) this job because I’ve done yoga before.'”
Shallow social media challenges
Social media, primarily Instagram, has always been a breeding ground for influencers shamelessly flaunting their own wealth. But in 2018, this trend took a bizarre turn with the “Falling Stars” challenge, where rich people pretend to fall from their luxury vehicles and drop lavish items of their choice. If you want to show off your riches, be my guest but why do it face-planting in the middle of the street?
I…I fucking can’t.
Andrew Zimmern’s entitlement makes me sick.
Then marketing his new Chinese restaurant chain with a reference to getting laid is just disgusting. “Plus we have a T-shirt that says ‘Get Lucky’ in Chinese on the back.” FUCK this guy. https://t.co/jOmiaXKQpw
— Jenny Yang 👲🏼👲🏼👲🏼 (@jennyyangtv) November 21, 2018
“Bizarre Foods” host Andrew Zimmern received backlash after saying, “I’m saving the souls of all the people from having to dine at all these horseshit restaurants masquerading as Chinese food that are in the Midwest,” while promoting his own restaurant, Lucky Cricket, in Minneapolis. Because a non-Asian man called Andrew would know more about Chinese cuisine than a Chinese immigrant. Needless to say, netizens were not pleased and accused Zimmern of being “condescending” and “colonizing” Asian cuisine.
Dangerous beauty trends
Asia has invented some interesting beauty products over the years like wax for temporary nose jobs or face tapes to create a slender, V-shaped jawline. While these products are definitely time-consuming and a tad bit extreme, at least they’re not invasive. But procedures such as the lip thinning surgeries to have “Caucasian”-looking lips, skin whitening or inserting pegs into nostrils for European-looking noses could have disastrous consequences. In 2018, we also saw a clinic in Thailand going viral for offering penis whitening procedures. Ladies and gents, you don’t need to have Caucasian features to look beautiful and you definitely don’t need a white penis to get laid so let’s leave this trend in 2018.