Charles Francis Chan Jr.'s Exotic Oriental Murder Mystery
THE STORY: Frank (born Charles Francis Chan) is a Berkeley student during the height of the Vietnam War, an aspiring playwright, and a proud Asian-American. The son of a famous minstrel performer, Frank has a revolutionary plan to reclaim his identity from decades of “Oriental” humor and build a new cultural tradition: He’s going to write a play. Not just any play, but a murder mystery featuring the fictional Hawai’ian detective Charlie Chan. The victim at the center of Frank’s murder mystery is Earl Biggers, the early 20th-century novelist who created the stereotypically inscrutable Detective Chan. CHARLES FRANCIS CHAN JR.’S EXOTIC ORIENTAL MURDER MYSTERY shifts between the worlds of enigmatic fortune-cookie aphorisms and desperate draft dodgers as one man tries to single-handedly overturn generations of Asian-American alienation.
“…a metatheatrical polemic about the way Asian-Americans have been characterized and caricatured in popular culture.” —NY Times. “[Suh]…achieves the ambitious goal of presenting heavy political issues in an altogether delightful and personal manner. Its hard-hitting political incorrectness seems the completely correct course for political theater to take…” —Theasy.com.