Why Kim’s Convenience Is A Must-Watch

Picture an Asian man with his friends talking about his wife’s potential jealousy; enter the wife. The next dialogue is “The weather! My god! It’s… everywhere.” Hooked yet?

 

Kim’s Convenience follows the story of a Korean-Canadian family - the parents own a convenience store, the son works in a car rental, and the daughter studies photography. The writers and producers take everyday occurrences, generational and cultural differences of growing up in different countries, and family dysfunctionality to create a hilarious sitcom. The added bonus? Other than elements of harmless drama, romance, comedy, and a lot of chaos and confusion, weaved into the plot are teachable moments! What constitutes homophobia? How have gender roles changed over time? How do you use the proper pronouns to address someone?

 

The quarantine has led a lot of us into the bosom and open arms of Netflix. From the many shows I have seen while obtaining my Ph.D. in Netflix, Kim’s Convenience ranks number 1. In my opinion, it is one of the most underrated comedy shows. If I were to be completely honest, the trailer didn’t really appeal to me. However, my sister’s constant jabbering about the show resulted in me finishing 4 seasons and 52 episodes in a grand total of 3 days! I have no qualms in admitting that sometimes jabbering leads one straight to gems. 

 

If the comedy alone isn’t enough, here are some reasons you should watch Kim’s Convenience. 

  1. 1. Representation & Equality:

    Asians are a grossly underrepresented minority in Hollywood. They are usually given very little screen time and are often pushed into the background or used as tropes. Asians have deserved authentic representation for a long time now. Even in today’s time and age, there are very few shows that are centered around Asians. This show, put simply, describes how an actual society is; Canada isn’t filled with Asians in the background, they are an integral part of the society. The show doesn’t just have racial representation, but also appropriately represents the LGBTQIA+ community.                                       

    Kim’s Convenience also questions a lot of implicit biases against women - attitudes developed around patriarchal interpretations of an ideal woman that define and shape the social and cultural contexts of women across the world. In short, the show constantly tries to analyze what results in a group’s second class status in society and works towards changing it by asking the right questions. This brings me to my next point.

  2. 2. Educating the audience without sounding too preachy:

    Be it about the LQBTQIA+ community or Asians, Kim’s Convenience leaves no stone unturned in educating people without being overbearing. Given the nature of the world we live in, creating awareness  about different communities and their lives is very important. Who decides what is normal and what is abnormal? Kim’s Convenience shows that the world we live in can be good, without creating a fantasy, utopian land. We learn to unlearn so that we can create a supportive environment for young people from different communities.

  3. 3. Family relations:

    No family is perfect, and neither are the Kims. Certain main characters have complicated relationships with each other. This is exactly what makes the show so appealing - it showcases a family in its most authentic form. The family knows they are not perfect, but they choose to embrace these flaws and accept them rather than hiding behind a facade. Their fear, their sadness, their anger (occasionally) towards one another invites us to introspect, analyze and examine our own feelings.

  4. 4. The plotline and a brilliant cast:

    The plotline is charming, empathetic, wholesome, and heartwarming. The elements of the show make it easy to relate to. For instance, the characters are not dressed in bling-y clothes, rather, they are ordinary middle-class people with a half-decent wardrobe. The honesty with which actors Paul Sun-Hyung Lee, Simu Liu, Andrea Bang, Jean Yoon, and various other cast members perform their roles makes this show a treasure that one will cherish forever. 

While Kim’s Convenience store sells a lot of things you need on an everyday basis, the show sells happiness. This heartfelt and honest tale will always fill you with joy, and leave your heart wanting for more. 

So the next time you find yourself looking for a show, give Kim’s Convenience a try. It will be anything but inconvenient!