Today’s must-read TV piece is by our good friend James Hibberd of Entertainment Weekly. The article is about “Fresh Off the Boat,” which Hibberd describes as “the first Asian-American sitcom on a major broadcast network in more than 20 years, and is part of a new wave of refreshingly racially diverse (and ratings boosting) programming in primetime that includes ABC’s ‘How to Get Away With Murder,’ ‘Black-ish,’ and ‘Fox’s ‘Empire.’”
Hibberd then explains “The sitcom is based on the memoir by chef and TV personality Eddie Huang about growing up as a first-generation Taiwanese-American. It’s almost surprising to see him here [at the TCA panel] because Huang just penned a blistering essay in New York Magazine about how ABC has turned his life into a ‘universal, ambiguous, cornstarch story about Asian-Americans resembling moo goo gai pan written by a Persian-American [showrunner Nahnatchka Khan] who cut her teeth on race relations writing for Seth MacFarlane.’ Huang eventually comes around to an uneasy acceptance of the show by the end of his article, noting, ‘It takes a lot of chutzpah to launch a network comedy with a pilot addressing the word chink, yet it works because it’s the safest bet the studio could have made.’”
Hibberd’s piece then goes on to describe the fireworks during the panel between another reporter, Huang, Khan, and later reaction to the panel by ABC entertainment president Paul Lee.
We urge you to click here to read Hibberd’s entire article.