Daredevil actor says Marvel exec cut his storyline because 'nobody gives a s—' about Asian people
Daredevil actor Peter Shinkoda is alleging that a Marvel executive cut his and another actor's storylines on the show because "nobody gives a s—" about Asian people.
The actor made the allegations at a roundtable discussion during the virtual #SaveDaredevil Con this weekend. Shinkoda said former Marvel Television head Jeph Loeb, who was an executive producer on the canceled Netflix series, told the writers' room to scrap backstories for Shinkoda's Nobu and Wai Ching Ho's Madame Gao. Shinkoda is of Japanese descent while Ho hails from Hong Kong.
"I'm kind of reluctant to say this, but...I'm going to take this moment, but I have to because — because I just have to. I'm not into really protecting certain things anymore," Shinkoda said during the Zoom livestream. "Jeph Loeb told the writers' room not to write for Nobu and Gao — and this was reiterated many times by many of the writers and showrunners — that nobody cares about Chinese people and Asian people. There were three previous Marvel movies, a trilogy called Blade that was made where Wesley Snipes kills 200 Asians each movie. Nobody gives a s---, so don't write about Nobu and Gao, so they were forced to put their storyline down and drop it."
For example, Shinkoda said the writers dropped plans to explore Nobu's journey to America under the guise of a medical procedure so he could help Gao and the Hand carry out their Black Sky plans. The character appeared in Daredevil's first two seasons as a member of the Hand, a super-villain organization.
"All that backstory was dropped," the Canadian actor said. "The writers told me they regret it and they were reluctant to do it because they were stoked about including that in the storyline but they were prevented so I had to concoct this other storyline and rock that material I was given."
This is not the first time Loeb and Iron Fist have come under fire for their representation of Asians and Asian characters. Amid criticism that the show furthers the "white savior" trope — the series stars a white guy who masters martial arts in a secret Asian city, learns mystical Asian magical, and goes off to fight crime — Loeb decided to appear at San Diego Comic-Con in a karate outfit.
“I asked Jeph Loeb why Marvel in the 21st century was still doing ‘white guy becomes master of magic in Asia’ stories, and he looked me right in the eye and said it was because Danny Rand had to be an outsider," Katharine Trendacosta, Electronic Frontier Foundation policy analyst, tweeted at the time.
Loeb has also served as EP on numerous Marvel shows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., Legion, Jessica Jones, Runaways, and more.
EW has reached out to representatives for Shinkoda and Marvel for further comment.