Tuesday 23rd January 2018,

Indian American/ South Asian American

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Simpsons Looking to Change Racist Apu

posted by Randall

Nahasapeemapetilon, Apu SimpsonsThe harsh spotlight Indian American comedian Hari Kondabolu aimed at the offensive and racist Simpson character Apu Nahasapeemapetilon may have had an impact.

Less than two months after Kondabolu’s film The Problem with Apu aired on national TV, Hank Azaria, the voice behind the character, told TV Guide the long running show is looking at making changes.


RELATED: Indian Americans in Hollywood Call Out Simpson’s Apu for Being Racist

For the film, Kondabolu interviewed a number of prominent Indian Americans in Hollywood who uniformly condemned the character. Many talked about how Apu lead to them being ridiculed by their peers.

“The idea that anybody, young or old, past or present, was bullied or teased — or worse — based on the character of Apu on The Simpsons, or the voice or any other tropes of the character is distressing, especially in post-9/11 America,”said Azaria. “The idea that anybody was marginalized based on it or had a time was very upsetting to me personally and professionally.”

Azaria made his comments at the Television Critics Association winter press tour in Pasadena Friday.

“As far as what is going to happen with the character going forward, it’s really not just up to me,” saying the show’s producers have also “given it a lot of thought.” “They will definitely address — maybe publicly, but certainly within the context of the show — what they want to do, if anything, with the character,” he added according to Indian Express.

The Simpsons has long prided itself on being non-apologetic. It’s known for being an unflinching equal opportunity offender. What it could possibly do to make Apu more palatable is questionable. Short of eliminating the character altogether, one has to wonder how much the character will be changed, if at all.
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