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Black Kung Fu Chick is a dramedy webseries inspired by my love for martial arts movies of the 70's and 80's and a passion for female superheroes like Chinese martial artists Hsu Feng, Angela Mao Ying, and Pei Pei Cheng.
I've always been fascinated by movement and dance--perhaps that's where my first love for martial arts sparked--absorbing the rhythms with which they execute their steps like a choreographed opera. So rewatching the Netflix new releases and falling in love with kung fu again was a no-brainer.
But the South Los Angeles part comes from a time I worked there and discovered the beauty and tension of a city I didn't know-- with its electric public art, lush communal gardens, jazzy train and bus station plazas juxtaposed against torn wire fences, abandoned trash and trees that struggle to offer shade, there's a uniquely eloquent and tense vibe that exists there. Black Kung Fu Chick is here to tell that story.
When Tasha, a middle child of a single parent, fails one of her premedical classes the month before she is supposed to graduate from high school, she ends up taking morning summer school classes with her old math and science teacher, Mr. Jian. After she comes across a grieving Mr. Jian one day planting seedlings in a community garden, she stops to help him. The next time he sees her with a new shiner from another fight defending someone, he decides to help her by teaching her kung fu.
In this garden, Tasha and Mr. Jian discover the "yin and yang" of challenges they each face: for Tasha its figuring out how to take care of those close to her while she struggles to find a way to achieve her own dreams of becoming a doctor; for Mr. Jian it’s searching for new meaning in his life after the untimely death of his wife. They both find answers in the study and teaching of white crane kung fu, tai chi and qigong as they apply these principles to not only Tasha's pursuit of medicine but a better life.
Like many of the female martial arts fighters of past and present, Tasha is a born fighter and protector, and she will discover that learning kung fu is about more than the Hollywood martial arts she watched with her brother, and that these healing principles are what will carry her on a long and challenging journey to becoming a medical doctor, saving lives and saving her community.