Kim’s Convenience Brings Much Needed Diversity to Canadian TV

CBC
CBC.ca

My first reaction to CBC’s new show Kim’s Convenience was a raised eyebrow. I wasn’t sure about the over-the-top accents and the seemingly stereotypical portrayal of the Korean-Canadian family at the centre of the show, which is based on a play by Ins Choi. Still, by the end of the first episode I found myself laughing at the quirky humour of the show and appreciating its colourful portrayal of Toronto life.

So if the idea of this new comedy, which premieres with back to back episodes on Tuesday, October 11 at 9 p.m. on CBC, still has you on the fence, here’s five reasons why I think you should give Kim’s Convenience a chance:

Mr. Kim Is Hilarious

Mr. Kim’s (Paul Sun-Hyung Lee) thick Korean accent isn’t where his comedic appeal lies. He’s quick on his feet and a shrewd business man, but when it comes to his family, Mr. Kim is a little clueless. He doesn’t know what to make of his daughter Janet’s (Andrea Bang) art school ambitions and his black sheep son Jung (Simu Liu), but you can tell he’s trying his best to be a good father and provider. Mr. Kim is both the heart and the humour of this show.

The Immigrant-Parent Struggle

As a foreign-born Canadian myself and the daughter of West Indian parents, I found myself relating to a lot of the immigrant-parent woes Jung and Janet face. The high academic expectations, the pressure to get married to a certain type of person–all that will be very familiar to many Canadians with a similar backgrounds.

The Diverse Cast

Not only is the cast led by a majority of Asian-Canadian actors, the supporting cast and guest stars are also very diverse. It just makes sense, seeing as the story is set in Toronto, one of the most diverse cities in the world! Also, the writer behind the original Kim’s Convenience play and now a writer on the CBC show, Ins Choi, is a Korean-born Canadian, so you can be assured of an authentically Korean-Canadian perspective.

It’s More Than A Comedy

Personally, I enjoy comedies that have a bit of depth to them, and Kim’s Convenience definitely checks that box. When you’re not laughing at the antics of Mr. and Mrs. Kim, and their sometimes awkward but loving relationship with their adult children, you’ll be drawn into the emotional side of their story. You’ll soon be rooting for a big, dramatic reconciliation scene between Mr. Kim and Jung.

Not Afraid To Tackle Tough Topics

The first episode deals with homophobia and the Gay Pride Parade, and the third one brings up the subject of sexual harassment in the workplace. Both topics are handled with humour, but without making light of the underlying issues.

All in all I think Kim’s Convenience is a very funny and very touching Canadian show that you can enjoy with your whole family.

 

Will you be tuning in? Let us know in the comments!

Kim’s Convenience premieres Tuesday, October 11 at 9 p.m. ET on CBC.