Shira Lazar sits down with Natalie Tran at MipTV to talk about overcoming stereotypes to become a successful Asian woman in comedy.
“When I write content, and when I reference my family, I try never to poke fun of my culture,” Tran said at a recent Brown University lecture. “That doesn’t mean that I don’t talk about the funny things that they do or the funny things that they say. But I don’t make fun of their Asianness. Because I don’t find Asianness very funny.”
“Media is aspirational,” Tran told Shira at the MIP Digital Fronts last weekend. The idea being that putting out negative, or stereotypical, content reinforces those qualities in the public mind.
Tran tries not to get “too outrageous” with the videos on her YouTube channel. Luckily she has had plenty of time to refine her technique. Communitychannel has been putting out videos since 2006, when YouTube was a very different landscape.
“The way a lot of people interacted with each other was through video responses. So my first video was a video response,” Tran said.
And what about YouTube now in 2015? Tran is excited about the wealth of female comedic voices. “You see how many cool women there are out there, and for me that’s so refreshing that there’s so many strong female voices — comedic or not comedic.”
“There are other women out there who like comedy, so don’t worry.”