Why is a musical that perpetuates a Western fantasy of Asians as small, weak and effeminate people still so popular?
“Miss Saigon” is revived and on tour again, playing in a theater near me. This is exciting news for some fans of Broadway musicals, and for Asian and Asian-American actors with the chance for important roles. For others, to whom “Miss Saigon” perpetuates deeply held notions of Asian inferiority, this is bad news.
The playwright David Henry Hwang saw the absurdity of this story. His still-relevant play “M. Butterfly” precedes “Miss Saigon" but might as well be satirizing it, too.