The sugary romance between the excessively noble characters played by Parminder Nagra and Shafiq Atkins on features Sandra Oh in an up-and -down relationship with Isaiah Washington. It’s as though these couples have been pouring out of medical schools and producers decided to capture the trend.
None of the couples I heard from or about while reporting this story had any military background whatsoever, and all had faced or expected strong resistance from the Asian partner’s family.
Performer Kate Rigg wrote a song for one of her Asian dancers: Mutual Attraction Two things have been changing since my family immigrated in 1972.
The women exhibit some level of conflict with their cultures and are slightly neurotic: Ming Na dreaded telling her immigrant parents that she was having a baby out of wedlock; Nagra quit her job in a bout of rebellion against family expectation to work as a convenience store clerk. Phifer grew up without a father and has a temper; Gallant went off to serve in Iraq.
I did laugh at the effort to bridge cultures, though, when Nagra’s character got married wearing a white sari. The hype about interracial television couples is that Americans have moved so far past race they don’t even notice.
Marrying outside your culture gives you the chance to leave the latter behind, and replace it with something better.