Sunday, October 24, 2010

TV Dramas Fictional, Complains ROK Lawmaker

Images of South Korea seen on such US TV dramas as Lost, CSI and 24 are "distorted" and erroneous, according to professional whiner, Rep. Hong Jung-wook of the GNP. This during an audit of the Foreign Ministry:
“The Foreign Ministry ... needs to make substantial efforts to leave a good national image in the minds of the world’s people.”
Among the distortions:
  • the Han River depicted as a stream running through a small village (Lost)
  • a Korean villager wearing a hat of the traditional Vietnamese style (Lost)
  • "a scene where a person suffers harsh torture in Seoul" (24)
  • a scene suggesting a Korean community in the US is allied with North Korea (CSI)
  • also, someone drinks soju out of the wrong kind of glass (Lost)

Somehow, Hong thinks the Foreign Ministry is not doing enough to prevent these horrid false stereotypes from being shown abroad to "hundreds of millions of people, including Koreans." Presumably, a quick note to Hollywood producers would be just the ticket, something like:
Dear Sir or Madame (as the case may be):
We would wish for you to take a rest from your unflattering portrayals of fine Korean country. It is okay for you to show American city as den of drugs and raping and homicide, because we can see clearly from TV drama that this is so. However, Korea is not a backward country with small bridge over Han River, but it makes nuclear reactors for Arab countries, good handupon and is host of G-20 (next time, we can hosting G-40, since it is bigger!)
Also, did you know Korea has four distinct seasons? Perhaps you can put that in next episode Lost, okay?
Thank you,
Korean Foreign Ministry

Fortunately, the superior journalism of the Korean media never presents or suggests erroneous or distorted ideas about Westerners in Korea like, say, these:
  • foreigners are in Korea to have sex with or rape Korean women
  • many Westerners, 80% of whom are HIV-positive, are here to spread AIDS
  • the average foreigner lied about his qualifications to get a job
  • more than one-third of foreign teachers break their contracts and leave Korea early
  • US beef is infected with deadly "crazy cow" disease

To Rep. Hong, I can only say, Take heart! To the vast majority of Americans, Korea's image is represented by mostly three things: Samsung, Hyundai and the TV series M*A*S*H--which is set in the time when the Hangang was a stream running through a small village.


Adeel said...

Many people (sadly) have trouble distinguishing between North and South Korea. That might be a simpler place to start.

Charles Montgomery said...

Wait... what?

There is a "wrong" glass from which to drink soju?

LOL - I've been doing it wrong!