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“How I Met Your Mother” Puts A Character In Yellowface

The reaction on Twitter: #HowIMetYourRacism. Update: “How I Met Your Mother” co-creator Carter Bays has responded to this criticism on Twitter.

Monday’s episode of “How I Met Your Mother” on CBS continued an ongoing joke about a slap bet between Marshall and Barney. In order to win the bet, and give the best slap to Barney, Marshall explains he learned the “Slap of a Million Exploding Suns” by seeking wisdom from three great masters.

It turned out these supposed wise ones were played by Marshall’s friends — Colbie Smulders, Josh Radnor and Alyson Hannigan — in yellowface. People went to Twitter with #HowIMetYourRacism to takedown the episode.

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Really, #HIMYM?? You couldn't even bring yourself to hire Asian actors for this? http://t.co/oUdTXneCe6 #HowIMetYourRacism @CBS

— šīrīn ✺ š▟īʿ (@shereenTshafi)
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@CBS #Yellowface doesn't get you better ratings, it just makes people want to boycott your network #HowIMetYourRacism

— JH Seouljaboy Park (@SeouljaboyPark)
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I'm not surprised about #howimetyourracism and #yellowface on @CBS. The network's name warned us that we'll see BS.

— Michael (@LookMaICanWrite)
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I remember the very first episode of HIMYM where Middle Eastern women (lebanese to be exact)were deemed as sexual objects #HowIMetYourRacism

— Despereaux (@AidaaOz)
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@humancity @suey_park #HowIMetYourRacism - when a show's cast has no People of Color - racism will surely make cameo appearances

— Khaled Bey (@legyptian)
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people are already claiming asian american's are overreacting. demanding to be treated w/ decency is never overreacting. #HowIMetYourRacism

— e. jae (@heyejae)
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How I Insulted & Alienated Asian Americans? How I Was A Complete Jerk? How I Cheaply Exploited Others? #HowIMetYourRacism @HIMYM_CBS @CBS

— middle finger emoji (@humancity)
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IF I SAW A WHITE GIRL LIKE THIS IRL I'D SPIT ON HER @CBS #HowIMetYourMother

— claudia c (@literalporn)
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I thought the transphobia in #HowIMetYourMother was bad enough. An entire episode of yellowface? Really? #HowIMetYourRacism

— JanuaryCait (@JanuaryCait)
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Disturbing takeaway is that it’s somehow acceptable—safe, even—to do racist Asian jokes. It’s not edgy cable, it’s CBS. #HowIMetYourRacism

— Michael Suen (@poetichentai)
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#HowIMetYourRacism our race and cultures are not convenient costumes, punch lines and terrible story writing for @CBS's #HIMYM

— Felix Hythlodaeus (@felixhythlo)
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Yeah, seriously, that episode of #HIMYM was so bad I turned it off. I couldn't stomach it. #HowIMetYourRacism

— Ms. Roopa Cheema (@CheemasClasses)
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Besides the gross orientalizing of the women, Ted wore a fucking Fu Manchu stach! Who thought this was ok? @HIMYM_CBS #HowIMetYourRacism

— Juliet Shen (@Juliet_Shen)
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If you're going to make fun of Asian people and kungfu, at least use Asian actors on your show instead of whitewashing it #HowIMetYourRacism

— ☮ K A R E N ☮ (@kaarenmeelon)
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"I cant think of any jokes to write tho thats my job. I found an ethnic costume in the cupboard." HIMYM writers meeting? #HowIMetYourRacism

— Yasmin (@ychilmeran)
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#HowIMetYourRacism-->"@brokeymcpoverty: uh oh.@literalporn WHAT HAPPENS WHEN YOUR WHOLE WRITING STAFF IS WHITE @CBS "

— 1Kellee (@1Kellee)
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I thought the transphobia in #HowIMetYourMother was bad enough. An entire episode of yellowface? Really? #HowIMetYourRacism

— JanuaryCait (@JanuaryCait)
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...outdated, overdone, not to mention UNFUNNY racial, ethnic, gender, sexual stereotypes. #HowIMetYourRacism #HowIMetYourMother

— Cutie & the Bae-fish (@brownivy)
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HIMYM better get it to together. Who the hell thinks it's ok to do racial caricatures for laughs in 2014?! #cbs #HowIMetYourMother

— ephphathinker (@ephphathinker)
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Didn't we agree that Mickey Rooney's yellowface is an embarrassment that ruins Breakfast at Tiffany's? #HowIMetYourRacism

— Sister Farrah Moans (@SisterFarrah)
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Maybe @HIMYM_CBS was trying to appeal to Asian-Ams by "appreCiATINg our CULtuRE!" Congrats. You miserably failed. #HowIMetYourRacism

— yoonhee kim (@yoonheehees)
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#HIMYM has always strained too hard for cheap boring laffs, but these Asian stereotypes (see #HowIMetYourRacism) are just...yeesh.

— Steph Guthrie (@amirightfolks)
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This is what happens when there are no PoC in the writer's room. No cultural accountability. #HowIMetYourRacism

— Cutie & the Bae-fish (@brownivy)
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Watch @CBS pull an #SNL and hire one asian writer...for the remainder of a dying season. #HowIMetYourRacism

— Lisa FactoraBorchers (@LFB27)
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Let's put this in stone shall we? White people cannot be "Asian" to "honor" the culture ever again starting in 2k14. #HowIMetYourRacism

— Mae Lee (@ArtistMaeLee)
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IF ASIANS DID WHITEFACE THE WAY WHITE PPL DO YELLOWFACE, WE'D HAVE PPL IN POWDERED WIGS AND PANTALOONS WITH CALAMINE LOTION ON THEIR FACES

— claudia c (@literalporn)
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So disappointed in @HIMYM_CBS/@CBS. Way to mock a culture for cheap laughs. #HowIMetYourRacism #LazyAssWriting

— Kim (@kimnavoa)
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Yellowface and stereotypes about Asians happen a lot in media. But now the internet is blowing up and mobilizing against #HowIMetYourRacism

— Vi Bui (@haiitsvi)
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"We're are a culture, not a costume" @cbs #HowIMetYourRacism

— Africa is Home (@panafrikanist)

Update — Jan. 15, 6:45 p.m. ET: “How I Met Your Mother” co-creator Carter Bays has responded to this criticism on Twitter:

Hey guys, sorry this took so long. @himymcraig and I want to say a few words about #HowIMetYourRacism.

— Carter Bays (@CarterBays)

With Monday's episode, we set out to make a silly and unabashedly immature homage to Kung Fu movies, a genre we’ve always loved.

— Carter Bays (@CarterBays)

But along the way we offended people. We're deeply sorry, and we’re grateful to everyone who spoke up to make us aware of it.

— Carter Bays (@CarterBays)

We try to make a show that's universal, that anyone can watch and enjoy. We fell short of that this week, and feel terrible about it.

— Carter Bays (@CarterBays)

To everyone we offended, I hope we can regain your friendship, and end this series on a note of goodwill. Thanks. @CarterBays @HimymCraig

— Carter Bays (@CarterBays)

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