Monday, November 15, Sesame Street introduced their very first Asian-American character, Ji-Young. Meet Kathleen Kim, the puppeteer behind the muppet.
Along with the recent introduction of the character, we also saw an interview clip of Kathleen, the puppeteer set to play Ji-Young.
Who is Kathleen Kim?
In 2014, she was accepted in a âSesame Streetâ workshop. The opportunity then turned into mentorship and a year later, Kathleen became a full time member of the show’s team.
Being a puppeteer in the show that Kathleen watched her grow up was a dream come true.
Talking about the character in an interview said the puppeteer, “My only hope, of course, is that Ji-Young will help teach what racism is. Help the children be able to recognize it and then speak out against it.”
My other hope for Ji-Young is that she just normalizes seeing different-looking kids on TV.
Sesame Street presents Ji-Young’s muppet
From the look of a short teaser for the Thanksgiving episode, we see that Ji-Young on Sesame Street is as adorable as she is smart.
The clip shows the 7 year old smake your culture known as she stands next to our beloved Ernie. âSo in Korean traditionally the two syllables each mean something different and Ji means, for example, intelligent or wise. And Young means, like, brave or courageous and strong, âshe explains.
New Sesame Street the character makes history as the first Asian American muppet in the series. Ji-Young is a Korean American with two passions: rock his electric guitar and skateboard.
Besides Kathleen playing Ji-Young, other celebrities ready to make an appearance on the Thanksgiving special are Simu Liu, Padma Lakshmi and Naomi Osaka.
The episode can be viewed on HBO Max, PBS Kids and Cartoonito.
Fans react to first Asian American character in series
Sesame Street fans were thrilled to see the first Asian American muppet in the series. Here are some notable reactions on Twitter.
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