Coming Distractions: Hari Kondabolu explains The Problem With Apu

The SimpsonsApu Nahasapeemapetilon is one of the most beloved Indian-American characters in all of American pop culture, standing as he does at the center of some of the most celebrated episodes of what’s widely considered to be one the greatest comedy series of all time. He’s also—as pointed out with varying levels of comedy, eye-rolling, and indignity by comedian Hari Kondabolu in his new TruTV documentary The Problem With Apu—a walking racial stereotype, voiced by a white guy doing the goofiest possible iteration of an Indian accent.

Kondabolu investigates that dichotomy in the trailer above, talking to members of the show’s creative team (who’ve wrestled with this aspect of the character before) about his implausible endurance, showing clips of Hank Azaria doing the character’s voice during public appearances, and asking minority performers what it’s like to walk into an entertainment industry …

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