To protest against the reported stereotypical portrayal of Asian families in an upcoming Children’s BBC (CBBC) sitcom, the people behind the viral hashtag #RealAsianGranny created a beautiful video celebrating real-life Asian grandmothers.
This brought a few tears to my eyes. My #RealAsianGranny helped bring us up even in her 80s. When I was 2 she fell while holding my hand, we were both left with the exact same scar on our legs: wee physical connection between us, and a reminder to this day of her love for me ❤️ https://t.co/xWoLkbWaVm
— Maggie Murphy (@MaggieMKMurphy) June 22, 2019
— Leisha Santorelli (@BBCLeisha) June 23, 2019
“Living with the Lams,” a new series from BBC’s own children’s television arm, angered the British Asian community earlier this year. Aimed at CBBC’s young audiences between 6-12 years old, the 10-part sitcom will reportedly revolve around a Chinese family and their restaurant in Manchester.
The show, which was created by a group of predominantly white writers, was found to be riddled with racist clichés and terms like “chongers.”
According to those who have read the original scripts, the pilot episode of “Living With The Lams” was supposed to introduce a father who plays in a band called Wok and Roll and a grandmother who spits and eats fortune cookies all day.
In response to this poor representation of Asians written by uninformed white writers, netizens shared how far more interesting their Asian families are in real life via the hashtag #RealAsianGranny.
A video presented by BBC stories reporter Elaine Chong took the hashtag a step further by having seven British East Asians share more stories about their Asian grandmothers, highlighting the fact that they are “the strongest women they know.”
“My grandma always used to make fish and sausages,” a member of the panel named Jay shared. “I think I associate those with my grandma, making those.”
Another participant, named Dadiow, said that her grandma had the perfect response when they would always ask to buy street food whenever they passed by the night market as kids.
“We were always like ‘Can I have this? Can I have that?’, and grandma would always say, ‘I make better food than they do. If you want those, why don’t we go back home and have some food that I made for you?'” she recalled.
Meanwhile, Alex shared a touching gift he received from his grandma as a kid. “One thing that she did for me was this thin waistcoat… She said ‘wear this and you’ll be warm. I wasn’t physically warm so as a kid, I didn’t really understand but as an adult now… I understand.”
Others shared similar fond memories they shared with their grandmas, with Daniel remembering listening to punk rock records with his granny and Jennifer spending most of her childhood with hers.
Chong, who also made a documentary about growing up in a British Chinese takeaway via BBC stories called “Takeaway Kids,” describes her latest video as a “wholesome way to protest” the CBBC sitcom.
Featured image via YouTube/BBC Stories