“Insecure” Actor Alexander Hodge Talks Groundbreaking Role As “Asian Bae” + How His Relationship w/ A Black Woman Helped Him w/ Role
Alexander Hodge made his Insecure debut in the infamous Coachella episode this season and left many viewers wondering what he’s all about. He remained on the show for the remainder of the season as Nathan’s roommate and a potential love interest for Molly, a role he considers to be “revolutionary” for Asian men.
I think it’s so important to see a confident, outspoken, man bun-sporting Asian man on screen saying, ‘I want what I want.’ We haven’t had that before.
It’s not often that Hollywood embraces Asian actors as desirable, much less in romantic roles on film and television. Hodge says that he had few Asian male role models growing up, to the point where he was ashamed of his Chinese heritage.
My perception of male Asian identity came from media representation. And obviously, in the 90s, that didn’t give me much to work with. I was ashamed of being Chinese as a kid, and would revel anytime I was confused for Polynesian, Hawaiian or Maori, because these other ethnicities had an exotic attraction and appeal that my [being] Chinese didn’t carry in a white society ? the irony being each of those ethnicities were at one time influenced by Chinese.
I think [Andrew’s] incredibly important for the culture. He’s important for my little cousins, so they believe they can be who they want to be. That they are strong, that their opinions matter, that they can get the girl. I hope they can find freedom in Andrew.
Not only is Hodge’s role groundbreaking for making the idea of Asian men “sexy”, it also highlights interracial relationships, something Hodge is familiar with as he is also in a relationship with a black woman.
I would say the biggest thing my real-life relationship allowed me to bring was a more grounded appreciation of black culture and the black community understanding that just listening to J. Cole doesn’t make you an expert on the black experience. My real-life relationship definitely allowed me to sink into the character of Andrew more truthfully and see Molly for who she is entirely, without caricature or presumption.
Are you one of the many ladies who is swooning over Asian Bae?