Internet adore le père de Mei dans "Turning Red"

The Internet Loves Mei’s Dad In “Turning Red”

An outstanding Pixar dad.

Pixar’s Turning Red is above all an ode to youth. Director Domee Shi’s coming-of-age animated film incorporates this into the narrative itself, the intricate bonds between women of different age groups, and the touching depiction of strength and female perseverance. While our 13-year-old Chinese-Canadian hero Meilin “Mei” Lee struggles with growing pains that turn her into a giant, fluffy red panda, she constantly has women by her side: her anxious mother Ming, her girl gang and her many out-of-town (and mostly well-meaning) relatives.

Alongside the powerful and nuanced women in the film is Jin Lee, Mei’s father. A secondary character, Jin is calm but assertive even at first glance. He’s also the apple of the eye of the internet, where he’s still championed online as a standout Pixar dad and fan-favorite of Turning Red (with no disrespect, Robaire(opens in a new tab)).

The internet has long declared its adoration for Jin since the release of Turning Red in March 2022, creating a growing fandom for someone who isn’t a main character in every way. On TikTok, YouTube and Twitter, fans are still praising and celebrating Jin for the father, husband and 4*Town fan that he is.

Cooking is a big part of Jin’s online fandom. When we are first introduced to Jin(opens in a new tab), he cooks an appetizing dinner for his family. His glasses are fogged up, giving us a split-second impression of a creepy figure. But that image quickly fades: he wipes his glasses, stops cooking, and smiles softly as his family watches a Chinese soap opera.

First impressions secure, the food scene itself caused a major fan frenzy from the start, with dozens of TikTok and YouTube edits. A TikTok, which has garnered over 2.5 million views, sees chef @albert_cancook recreate Jin’s meal(opens in a new tab), fog glasses included. But the character’s cooking skills are just the beginning of the Jin-centric fandom.

Videos haunt Jin’s bewilderment(opens in a new tab) and scary expressions, her secret to eating dumplings(opens in a new tab), and his gentle and paternal advice. Fan edits(opens in a new tab) (that exist(opens in a new tab) plenty(opens in a new tab) of(opens in a new tab)) feature comments like “I’m in love with this clumsy little man” and “he’s my favorite character ngl”. Countless tweets praise her parenting skills and emotionally sensitive presence. A generic scene(opens in a new tab)seen on the Blu-Ray and digital release of Turning Red in May, featured Jin dancing to 4*Town in their basement, also quickly becoming a TikTok craze(opens in a new tab).

On a red bend(opens in a new tab) fandom page(opens in a new tab), Jin’s character profile sees several people proclaiming him “best Pixar dad.” The Pixar dad always had a moment. Once upon a time Mr. Incredible was oddly applauded(opens in a new tab) even though he keeps his family from his work a secret; the overprotective Marlin garnering praise for finally letting his son grow up in Finding Nemo; or the comforting dad in Inside Out who commands attention.

But Jin’s abilities as the father of a girl — especially a massive transformation — and his overall sweetness put him in good stead.

So why has the internet fallen so hard for Jin?

Orion Lee, who voices Jin in the film, tells Indigo Buzz it comes down to the character’s dedication to his family.

“He is a kind and supportive father and husband. All of his weaknesses and expressions are very endearing and, really, he just wants his wife and child to be happy, even if he doesn’t necessarily know exactly how to do that sometimes. ” he tells me.

Lee explains that Jin’s character is based on the principle of acceptance and embracing all aspects of being human. His “philosophical, accepting” nature complements the contrary characteristics of his wife. Ming (voiced by Sandra Oh) expresses love, Lee says, through “discipline, trust, rules, certainty”. Through this understanding, Lee says he was able to establish a “deeper connection with (Jin’s) humanity”, and playing him quickly became a dream come true for the actor.

“For me there is a story of a guy who was shy when he was younger. He loved to cook and found it to be his way of expressing his artistic self. »

“For me there is a story of a guy who was shy when he was younger. He loved to cook and found it to be his way of expressing himself artistically. When he found Ming, he found his opposite, it seems, but really he found his soul mate. Ming and Jin have big hearts and care a lot,” he told me.

Jin stands in front of a door with a soft expression on his face.

As a husband and father, Jin indeed offers unparalleled support, at a time when the two women in his life are grappling with a wave of change. At the Lee Family Temple, he holds the hairy paw of his daughter Mei (voiced by Rosalie Chiang) as she discovers the panda inside her; he holds Ming’s hand whenever his eyebrows frown (which they often do). He shows faith in Mei: “Maybe we should trust him,” he tells Ming as Mei begs to see his beloved band 4*Town(opens in a new tab) perform. Jin also stands by his wife after Mei runs away from the ritual on the night of the red moon.

Most of these moments are subtle, glimpses of his fatherhood and personality, but prove more powerful than spelling it out with a monologue. Jin’s heart, which undeniably belongs to Ming and Mei in its entirety, stands out in a film where there was so much to love.

Turning Red, if I had to sum it up in one sentence, is a movie that should be watched by everyone. (Disclaimer: I’ve watched it five times.) The film is made not only for teenage girls grappling with the wonders and trials of emerging adulthood, but also for families, new parents, friends, music lovers and all those who yearn for distinctiveness. aesthetic of the 2000s. For the most part, critics and audiences largely agreed that the Pixar film skillfully, colorfully and lovingly dealt with universal themes, playing in a shiny playground of nostalgia and fandom, and s leaning on its greatest asset: imperfect, serious and really related characters.

Jin may be one of the supporting characters in Turning Red, but he speaks to the film’s universality and thoughtfulness. He shines brightest, I believe, when he talks to Mei on the night of the ritual. Within moments, we see Jin praising his wife’s strength and explaining to his daughter, in her soft voice, that people are complicated.

“People have all kinds of sides, Mei. And some sides are messy. The point isn’t to push the bad stuff away, it’s to make room for them. Live with it. »

With this, he grants the power of acceptance to his daughter, paving the way for Ming to do the same for herself and her mother. Jin’s approach to parenting and personality (besides cooking!) is one of observation, and perhaps even reproduction. Social media certainly think so.

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