Bowen Yang is a comedian, but he’s also so, so much more. He’s a lip-syncing legend, a man who has woven himself into the very thread of American pop culture by filming himself mouthing iconic pop moments. It’s easier shown than explained. Here’s Yang doing Miranda Priestly—Meryl Streep’s alpha female role in The Devil Wears Prada:
when u Miranda Priestly. pic.twitter.com/IvQ75lVesJ
— Bowen Yang 杨伯文 (@bowenyang) August 23, 2018
The 27-year-old discovered his penchant and talent for lip-synching during a performance at a comedy show in Brooklyn, NY, several years ago, reports BuzzFeed. His first live lip sync was, thankfully, a recreation of Tyra Bank’s generation-defining America’s Next Top Model inspirational-speech-meets-reprimand.
when u gay pic.twitter.com/3q5yJHxIGP
— Bowen Yang 杨伯文 (@bowenyang) May 5, 2018
He elaborated to BuzzFeed:
“A few years ago I was participating in a comedic ‘Inner Beauty Pageant’ and I had to figure out a talent very last-minute. I always loved Tyra Banks’s ‘We were all rooting for you!’ moment, and so I decided to lip-sync live to the six-minute entirety of it as my talent. Then a few years later (a couple months ago) I was bored one night and decided to film it and put it on social media.”
According to the publication, Bowen is pleasantly surprised by all the positive feedback his viral tweets have received.
— Bowen Yang 杨伯文 (@bowenyang) July 13, 2018
It’s been so overwhelmingly nice! I’m still aware of this notion that people online will only remark on something if they emphatically, frothily hate it, but everyone just has very sweet things to say about each clip I put up. It all came to this emotional hilt for me when I did Sandra Oh’s monologue to Kevin McKidd on Grey’s Anatomy, just because I felt connected to this earthy, gorgeous method she uses in her acting, and also representation blah, blah, blah. She’s my favorite actress.
Indeed, the love has been immense, with celebs the likes of Twitter-sweetheart Chrissy Teigen and Padma Lakshmi lauding Bowen’s performances.
Bowen feels as though it is both fun and conversational to screen pop culture moments and references through individual (and maybe underrepresented) lenses.
when u Erin Brockovich. pic.twitter.com/GfWJL02h3D
— Bowen Yang 杨伯文 (@bowenyang) May 9, 2018
“Maybe it just shows that you can have fun with interpreting or re-interpreting things that have meaningfully shaped you, that anyone can pay tribute to whatever morsels of culture they connect with,” he told BuzzFeed. “There’s a very queer bent to what I’ve catalogued so far, and it feels neat that way.”
Check out Bowen’s pop-culture podcast Las Culturistas for more comedy and radical queerness.✊?️?