I read Big Little Man: In Search of My Asian Self, a memoir/series of linked essays by Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Alex Tizon about being a Filipino man in the U.S. (Goodreads link here.) One of the statements Tizon makes in his book is that U.S. men and women alike consistently rate men of Asian and Pacific Islander descent as less physically attractive than white, black, and Latino men.
I didn't even realize I was doing any kind of stereotyping of Asian men. But then I looked at my Human Beauty boards on Pinterest, and I realized I saw very few Asian male faces. Taiwanese actor Vic Zhou, Canada skater Patrick Chan, South Korean actor Lee Byung Hun, and a guy from a Chinese underwear ad are pretty much it, unless we count some Indian actors.
But that can't be right, can it? I mean, the world is full of beautiful males of East Asian descent. So let's broaden my beauty horizons and appreciate some of them today.
Daniel Dae Kim, the American actor born in South Korea, star of Lost and Hawaii Five-0. Hot to begin with, but also totally bilingual. Fact: everyone gets hotter when they can speak more than one language. The icing on the cake is he's certified sexy: one of People magazine's Most Beautiful People.
Nor was Kim the only Asian beauty on Lost. Let us not neglect Ken Leung, who also does us the fan service of showing up as a repeat guest star on Person of Interest as Leon Tao. Leung is a native New Yorker of Chinese descent.
Chow Yun-Fat, the amazing actor from Hong Kong. A little older than me, sure, but still so smokin' hot.
Ken Watanabe, the Japanese actor. So maybe I fell asleep during Inception and never saw the end. At least we'll always have Batman Begins.
Victor Kim, American musician of Korean descent, and complete hottie.
Born in Seoul and then transplanted to the U.S. from Canada, The Walking Dead's Steven Yeun is a babe. I left off with the show somewhere in Season 2, but I'm taken to understand that so far, his character Glenn Rhee is still among the survivors as of the most recent season. I hope he has a love interest, because the TV trope that "the Asian guy never gets the girl" must die.
Speaking of Korean imports, Seoul-born, L.A.-raised Star Trek babe John Cho could not possibly be absent from this list. His glorious black hair should be on the list all by itself, styled as it is in a manner befitting a teenage vampire.
And if you've ever seen pictures of Cho with his son, then you know he is a DILF.
And then there's Tony Leung, who is also from Hong Kong. This guy just exudes sexy.
Reggie Lee: the Filipino actor plays Sgt. Wu on Grimm. He also plays a small role in The Dark Knight Rises, a terribly-written movie with more than its fair share of hot people. I would not be sad if he were cast to play George Wu in Allegiant Pt. 1. With Maggie Q playing Tori, the Wus are a very sexy family.
No list of lovely Filipinos would be complete without Arnel Pineda, the lead singer of Journey. Sure, his amazing voice is easy on the ears, but he's also easy on the eyes. And when he first started singing, he didn't even understand English! I actually prefer his look with short hair, but this is a great pic.
Alex Tizon, you're not so bad yourself! In his book, Tizon admits to having been self-conscious about his full lips and relatively broad nose, but to many, many women who are attracted to men, these features are a plus. If they weren't, I wouldn't have butterflies in my tummy every time I looked at a picture of Idris Elba.
But seriously, you should read Big Little Man because it's warm-hearted, insightful, and enlightening. I received a free copy in exchange for a review through the Amazon Vine program. I'm glad I picked it, because as a Caucasian woman, I was completely ignorant of some of the struggles faced by Asian Americans, and Asian American men in particular, in Western-dominated cultures. Now I have a little bit more understanding.
I should probably mention I have a first cousin who's half Filipino, although I've never met him. My uncle once tried to marry the daughter of the Philippines ambassador to the United States. Her parents nixed the union, but not before the baby was on his way. Although I am a white Jewish girl, my whole family tree is white, black, Mexican (La Raza: indigenous American and Spanish multiracial), and Filipino.