Meet the Wongs
Eddie Wong didn’t buy his copy of Biggie’s Ready to Die, he stole it. And dropping this fact in the canteen on his first day at a new school earns him a seat at the popular white kids’ table.
The smell of the homemade Chinese noodles his mum packed him for lunch gets him kicked straight off it.
It’s 1995 and Eddie’s Taiwanese-immigrant parents have uprooted their family from Washington DC and moved to Orlando, Florida. They have no friends, no family, and no Chinatown. But they have the American dream and a ranch-style steakhouse.
The Asian American dream
A hit new comedy about families, immigration, and growing up, it’s based on chef and television personality Eddie Huang’s memoir of the same name.
Starring Randall Park, Constance Wu, and Hudson Yang, it’s the first time in 20 years American prime-time television has an all-Asian lead cast.
And by exploring the Asian experience within white-American culture, it ends up being a riotously funny look at the two.
No stranger to controversy
Accusations of racism have been thrown at Fresh Off The Boat's title, supposed stereotypes, and the accents of Randall Park and Constance Wu – who play Eddie’s immigrant parents, Louis and Jessica Wong
In an interview with Time Magazine, Wu issued a smack-down:
“There will always be people who are laughing at the wrong thing. Some people are like, 'Oh, stereotypical accent!' An accent is an accent… It’s just a fact of life: immigrants have accents…The people who are going to laugh at the alleged stereotypes are the same people who are going to laugh at their Chinese waiter in the restaurant...”
Wu and Park spent time with the real Jessica and Louis, studying their accents.
On the topic of material being offensive to Asian people, Eddie Huang was even more succinct.
You've seen him somewhere before
Playing Eddie’s father, Louis Wong, is Randall Park. People will recognise him from his role as the ambitious Minnesota Governor, Danny Chung, on hit political comedy Veep. And as North Korean leader and son of Kim Jong-il, Kim Jong-un, in the Seth Rogan and Evan Goldberg comedy The Interview.
Worth watching alone for...
Constance Wu’s portrayal of Jessica Wong. Constance is the break-out star of the show and she gives a commanding performance.
Jessica is a proud Chinese woman struggling to fit in to a world she doesn’t so much fail to understand, but often finds inferior to the 5000 year-old culture she hails from.
She’s confident, ambitious, fierce, dismissive of things and people she deems idiotic, and protective of her family while demanding the very best from each of them.
She’s also the funniest character on the show.
Will make you laugh every time
Eddie Wong’s pimp walk. Usually the precursor to a big announcement, and introduced by his grandmother who acts as his hype man.