Hidden Gem: Fresh Off the Boat

We are all in a state of mourning over DramaFever so I thought I’d give you a bit of hope to get you through your day. Many of you have shows that have been ripped from your dramawatching hands and you need something to console you. Look no further than something you may have abandoned ages ago. American TV. Wait! Don’t run. I know many of you have an aversion to the shows that litter your local channels. I’m actually not one that has abandoned my homeland’s entertainment and find lots of reasons to keep my Hulu and Netflix subscriptions. I’m glad I did because after watching Crazy Rich Asians I decided I need to check out the lead actresses’ full time job playing the adorable wife and mother on Fresh Off The Boat.

Here are five reasons you might want to check this show out.

Constance Wu

She played the naïve billionaire’s girlfriend Rachel Chu in Crazy Rich Asians and it is so fun seeing per play such a different character in this show. The movie did not highlight how amazing she is at comedic scenes. She’s the heart and center of the show, even though her son Eddie narrates. Constance starts out feeling a bit stereotypical, but with each episode I’ve watched, they’ve built in a new layer to make her feel very real.

Eddie Huang

The show is from Eddie’s perspective. A tween Asian boy in the mid 90’s just trying to survive. In no way can I understand how this character feels, yet I totally find myself relating to him. He’s into rap music, is not what his parents expect him to be, and has two siblings who seem perfect.

Family

What I’ve seen over and over with people who gravitate toward Asian dramas is they enjoy how important family is in most stories. FotB is also centered around the family. It’s not just Eddie trying to survive, all of them flounder in their new home. And all of them have amazing relationships that keep bringing me all the feels.

The Writing

The show is hilarious. All the characters are a bit out there, yet still extremely easy to connect with. Each episode is packed full of smart writing and down to earth funniness. I died laughing when Constance’s mom comes to visit and they all get confidence perms. And the dad’s restaurant shenanigans are a hoot.

Supporting good Asian representation

Representation matters. Just supporting foreign dramas with Asian characters is not going to change the landscape of American TV. By watching shows like FotB we are telling Hollywood that we will show up if they spend time to develop realistic and great characters that are diverse and from all walks of life. Crazy Rich Asians has gone down as one of the highest earning rom-coms in the last few decades. We can do the same with networks shows.

Bonus: Ming-Na Wen is joining the show for the next season. She plays Melinda May on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D and is one of my favorite actresses (she also voiced Mulan, if you don’t watch Shield). I have a lot of binge watching to do so I can watch the newest season. But, with one of my go to shows disappearing into oblivion, I have the time.

Until next time, I remain-

Drama Geek

Dramas With a Side of Kimchi

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