The Bechdel, Russo, and Race Test: Liar Game (Korean), “The President Game II” – Season 1, Episode 8

On Liar Game, “The President Game II,” Woo-Jin was constantly one step behind Do-Young, and Woo-Jin ended up losing round 4 to Do-Young. In “The President Game II,” Woo-Jin also made some startlingly discoveries – that Do-Young could control his microexpressions and that Do-Young had been part of a fabled psychology experiment as a child.

The Bechdel, Russo, and Race Test

“The President Game II” passed the race test but did not pass the Bechdel or Russo test.

All of the characters in “The President Game II” were Asian and a White person was only mentioned once by a character (e.g. B.F. Skinner was mentioned by Woo-Jin), so because all of the conversations that occurred occurred between non-White characters and White people were hardly mentioned, the episode passed the race test. “The President Game II” did not, however, pass the Bechdel or Russo test as women (whether named or unnamed) never talked to each other and because there were no LGBTI characters in the episode.

*The Bechdel test entails three requirements:
1. It has to have at least two (named) women in it
2. Who talk to each other
3. About something besides a man

**The Vito Russo test entails three requirements:
1. The show contains a character that is identifiably lesbian, gay, bisexual, intersex and/or transgender
2. The character must not be solely or predominately defined by her sexual orientation, gender identity and/or as being intersex
3.The character must be tied into the plot in such a way that her removal would have a significant effect

***The race or people of color (POC) test has three requirements:
1. It has two people of color in it
2. Who talk to each other
3. About something other than a White person

****Just because a show passes the Bechdel, Russo and race test does not mean that it is not sexist, heterosexist, racist and/or cissexist, etc. The Bechdel, Russo and race test is only a bare minimum qualifier for the representation of LGBTI individuals, women and people of color in television. The failure to pass these tests also does not identify whether the central character was a woman, a person of color or a LGBTQI individual and it does not dictate the quality of the show.

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