“Fresh Off the Boat” Tries to Stay Afloat
By NIKKI BERRIN
“Fresh Off the Boat,” an ABC comedy series inspired by the life of Eddie Huang and his book “Fresh Off the Boat: A Memoir,” debuted in February. The show is set in the ’90s and follows the move of Eddie’s family from Washington, D.C. to suburban Orlando. Throughout the season the audience watches Eddie and his family embark on a journey together as they attempt to assimilate in their new hometown.
The show centers around hip-hop-loving 11-year-old Eddie, played by Hudson Yang, who is raised by immigrant parents. His father Louis (Randall Park) owns and operates an American steakhouse, and the family tries to live like Americans while still maintaining their Taiwanese identity. Similarly, Eddie, who is obsessed with hip-hop culture, struggles to fit in at school among his mostly white classmates. During each episode, the members of the Huang family encounter different experiences relating to fitting in among their new neighbors. The humor of the show helps demonstrate the struggles each character faces, making the show relevant yet entertaining. Jericho High School senior Sony Dalapati said, “The show is really funny. It’s very relatable for teenagers because it shows Eddie’s problems with his peers and his experiences in school.”
There has been much controversy regarding Eddie Huang’s social media posts since the series aired. Huang disapproves of the show because it doesn’t portray his life accurately. He claimed he doesn’t watch the show and voiced his opinion with tweets like, “I had to say something because I stood by the pilot. After that, it got so far from the truth that I don’t recognize my own life” and “My only goal was to represent my Taiwanese-Chinese-American experience & I did that. We also proved viewers want diverse content, so make it!”
Viewers will have to form their own opinions when “Fresh Off the Boat” airs next year with its second season.