The hit SBS drama had dropped new stills ahead of its second episode, the new episode features a new character that is Logan Lee [played by Park Eun Seok] brother.
The new character name is Alex and he makes an appearance on the second episode, he confronts Shim Su Ryeong’s character and accuses her of killing his brother for what they did to her daughter.
The newly released stills of Alex’s character shows actor Park Eun Seok with dreadlocks and tattoos.
Fans found an issue with the character’s dreadlocks and many labeled it cultural appropriation. Some fans also noted the character spoke in an accent that imitates black people. Fans are raising an issue with this and are asking SBS to take down the photos they’ve posted and issue an apology.
On June 12, Park Eun Seok posted the following apology on his TikTok account:
Regarding the drama “The Penthouse” character Alex, I’d like to let everyone know that none of the appearances that were driven by the character were falsely intentional to harm, mock, disrespect, or discourage the African-American community. I’d like to apologize to the people who took offense by the character’s appearance. It was more admiration of the culture than mockery, but now I’m aware that the approach was more CA [cultural appropriation]. It was a wrong attempt for character development.
Again, I’d like to apologize to those who took offense; I as a minority myself should’ve known better. Thank you for giving me the opportunity to grow in awareness.
I hope you have the sincerity in your hearts to give the benefit of the doubt, that Alex’s appearance was rather a character approach who admired the culture and wanted to “be” like, not intentionally portraying mockery.
You can watch the problematic clip below!
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