For Suzy Naka­mura, ‘Dr. Ken’ means diver­sity, ‘gwishins’

Daily Local News (West Chester, PA) - - FEATURES - By Lynn El­ber

BEV­ERLY HILLS » As a child, Suzy Naka­mura re­calls, she was con­tent to qui­etly ob­serve and leave the talk­ing to oth­ers. These days, the ac­tress and co­me­dian is mak­ing noise as a smart, self-pos­sessed sit­com wife on ABC’s “Dr. Ken.”

It’s a ca­reer mile­stone for Naka­mura, co-star­ring on a suc­cess­ful se­ries af­ter be­ing part of some 20 pi­lots and a few short-lived se­ries — which, she says cheer­fully, brought va­ri­ety as well as pay­checks to her life.

“I haven’t got­ten bored,” she said. “And I’m very proud of that (the tally). It’s dif­fi­cult to get a pi­lot ev­ery year.”

If she’s fi­nally in a durable show, she’s glad it’s “Dr. Ken.” The com­edy about an Asian-Amer­i­can fam­ily does more than use eth­nic­ity as win­dow-dress­ing, Naka­mura said, which she’s found to be the norm. Char­ac­ters she played of­ten were “my face with some white per­son’s story,” Naka­mura said. “What we need is to have the sto­ries be more di­verse.”

This Fri­day’s Hal­loween-themed episode ex­em­pli­fies just that, she said. “Dr. Ken,” star­ring and pro­duced by physi­cian-turned-ac­tor Ken Jeong (“The Hang­over,” “Knocked Up”), airs at 8:30 p.m. EDT.

“We’re do­ing a Korean ghost story and (the pro­duc­ers) re­searched the crap out of it” to make it au­then­tic, she said, down to the look and con­tents of a Korean peas­ant hut. “It’s not the money or the time given. It’s the re­spect to some­one else’s story.”

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