Margaret Cho started doing stand-up comedy in San Francisco when she was 16. After winning a contest, which meant opening for Jerry Seinfeld, Cho quickly became a college circuit favorite. Defining her own brand of highly personal and hilarious in-your-face delivery, she went on to produce a critically acclaimed off-Broadway show in 1999 called
I’m the One that I Want
She starred in
All American Girl
, the first TV sitcom featuring an Asian-American family. It was a show wrought with difficulties, including Cho’s well-publicized battles with the network’s idea of marketable ethnicity. Consequently, the show didn’t last long.
“It’s hard to pin down what ‘ethnic’ is without appearing to be racist,” said Cho on her website. “And then, for fear of being too ‘ethnic,’ it got so watered down for television that by the end, it was completely lacking in the essence of what I am and what I do. I learned a lot, though. It was a good experience as far as finding myself, knowing who I was and what direction I wanted to take with my comedy.”