Image Courtesy of Sachi’s blog When I heard about the newest show to premiere on NHK, “Massan,” was all about the trials and hardships of a marriage between a white woman and a Japanese male, I was a bit skeptical.
I was afraid the show would be another ridiculous showcase of stereotypes about foreigners.
Since he was too poor to afford rent, he rented out a room in the Cowan household and taught the family Judo.
I guess he woo’d Rita with all of his martial arts moves, because he was able to convince her to get on a boat and leave Scotland forever and move to Japan in 1920.
While picking a fluent ex-pat seems like the better decision, I think the choice in picking a complete ‘newb’ was the right one. In Ellie, I see a woman charging blindly forward into a foreign country in order to better understand the man she loves. I see her walking on eggshells and treading dangerous waters in order to be accepted, yet is rejected time and again.
I see her raw and honest passion to support her husband and his dream, and he also reciprocating that love. The acting isn’t the greatest, the stereotypes run rampant, and sometimes I just can’t understand Ellie’s Japanese— But Massan is a rare, and most importantly true story about how love can really overcome cultural boundaries and flourish.
Portuguese also uses miscigenação, derived from the same Latin root as the English word.