Pornsak PichetshoteAug 12, 2021
The Good Asian, Volume 1
Edison Hark, the star of The Good Asian (Image Comics: 2021), the new comic series written by Pornsak Pichetshote and illustrated by Alexandre Tefenkgi, never signed up to investigate a murder in Chinatown. As the only Chinese-American law enforcement officer in the United States, he travels to San Francisco in 1936 to help find a Chinese maid who has run away from the household of the man who raised him. But he stumbles upon a crime scene that harkens back to an old crime legend: a hitman for the old Tongs, back for revenge.
But while The Good Asian tells a thrilling noir story of crime, detectives and investigations, it also tells the story of the Chinese community, who at the time were still under scrutiny under laws like the Chinese Exclusion Act. The comic grapples with ideas of racial prejudice, respectability politics, and identity.
In this interview, Pornsak and I talk about the setting and genre of The Good Asian, and what it means to star a Chinese-American lead in such a well-known genre.
Pornsak Pichetshote was a Thai-American rising star editor at DC’s Vertigo imprint where he worked on such comics perennials as The Sandman and Swamp Thing. He left Vertigo to become an executive in DC Entertainment’s media team, where he started and oversaw DC TV’s department. He is also the writer of Infidel, also for Image Comics, which was his first work as a writer. He can be followed on Twitter at @real_pornsak, and on Instagram at @real_psak.
Nicholas Gordon is an associate editor for a global magazine, and a reviewer for the Asian Review of Books. He can be found on Twitter at @nickrigordon.