Actresses corner: Sandra Oh

Cayla Viner praises Sandra Oh, one of the first Asian actresses to win two Golden Globes

Cayla Viner
16th February 2020
Credit: IMDb, Danny Feld - 2014 American Broadcasting Companies
Now, I am a die-hard Grey’s Anatomy fan – being one of the loyal fans to have watched from the start to its current season – but one of the biggest losses the show saw (and there have been a lot of losses) was the departure of Cristina Yang aka Sandra Oh.

Every scene she was in put her in the spotlight; her ‘go-getting’ attitude led to some amazingly sarcastic one liners where she refused to let any social situation or person filter her ability to do and say exactly what she feels. Beyond her almost robotic work ethic, we see her beautifully strong friendship with Meredith Grey and the few times she lets her guard down is enough for audiences to completely fall in love. 

Her character was a truly special part of the enormous Grey’s cast – ultimately earning the Korean-Canadian actress five Emmy nominations – so when she left the series in 2014, I was just hoping Oh would one day make a comeback. What I did not expect was for her return to be on none other than the BBC, alongside Jodie Comer, in the thrilling and ironically addictive series, Killing Eve.

Sandra Oh as Eve Polastri & co-star Jodie Comer as Villanelle on Killing Eve. Credit: IMDb

Her new character, Eve Polastri portrays a bored MI5 operative who soon becomes obsessed with tracking down a rather quirky international assassin (Comer). The two character bounce off each other in the most extraordinary way as both want the other dead yet through their infatuation towards one another, they seem to form a strange ‘would-be-lovers’ connection that cannot quite be explained. I do not think that audiences would be so invested if it wasn’t for the tremendous acting of Oh who carries her half of the cat-and-mouse duo with endless emotion and intrigue. 

Sandra Oh became the first actress of Asian descent to win two Golden Globes

Killing Eve diverts away from the unconscious assumption that men must be at the centre, as the focus is on two very powerful leads. It is refreshing to see a female character show both immense intelligence and grit without the need for a male character to save the day. Furthermore Sandra Oh became the first actress of Asian descent to win two Golden Globes; this will hopefully be a positive step towards more diversity in television. Oh epitomises the constant progression of female actresses who are making big names across our screens with their unforgettable performances and I am rooting for Oh and anyone who follows all the way. 

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