On Queer Men of Color and Racial Preferences: “You bitch about other people not being attracted to Asians, but you’re not attracted to Asians yourself!”

Kevin (Ty Chen) (left) and Gino (Dale Song) (right) from episode two titled “Koreatown” of “Falling For Angels” on Here TV.

The above quote comes from a hard-hitting exchange between the two protagonists of the second episode of Falling For Angels titled “Koreatown,” from Here TV, a website where you can watch hours upon hours of LGBT content from TV shows to documentaries.

The episode centers around Kevin and Gino. They meet for a hookup, but things go left after they discover the condom broke inside of Kevin after Gino cums. They end up meeting again after Gino discovers that Kevin left his keys in Gino’s hotel room.

There are a lot of themes that this episode touches on — from accepting one’s culture to finding one’s birth parents — but the one I want to focus on is intraracial racism, in this case queer Asian men who don’t hookup/date other Asian men and/or don’t find other Asian men attractive. Not much is often talked about on the subject of intraracial Asian racism, especially within the queer community. So it’s especially refreshing to see something in the media about it, even if only for a little over twenty-five minutes.

I won’t spoil the episode and say how they even got to that conversation; however, I will say that episode brings up an example of how being socialized to think your race is ugly/uninteresting/”too foreign” affects a person’s attraction to their own race/other races. It’s an important point to be made because of how white supremacy operates in societies, and it helps to validate the point that attraction doesn’t exist in a vacuum; that “racial preferences” don’t develop out of nowhere.

The episode also touches on how queer people of color have to navigate the hookup landscape in vastly different ways than queer white people do. Queer white people don’t really have to worry about people not wanting to hookup with/date them because they’re white — but it’s an every day reality for queer people of color . We have to wonder if an ignored message means “I’m not into your race.” We have to wonder from the beginning if the person is even interested in us even though we are of x race. It’s a fucked up logic that many people choose to ignore and/or perpetuate because white supremacy and racism demands it to be this way.

All of this to say that this is an important episode to watch, especially because it centers around two queer Asian men who speak so openly and honestly about racism.