In this weeks blog I’ll be focusing on last weeks episode of Fresh Off the Boat, Good Morning Orlando. At the start of the episode, it instantly began by undermining the conventional type of male Asian characters we are used to seeing on screen. Eddie, given the chance to be in a relationship with another and especially a white women, who took the initiative to start the romance (already being labeled as his girlfriend), instantly subverts the notion of an emasculate and feminine Asian American man. Typically, we usually see Asian Men such as Jackie Chan and Jet Li, big name Asian actors who lack the opportunity to have romance in American films, but are given many romantic scenes in China. However, now we have little boy Eddie Huang in Fresh Off the Boat, being initiated on by the girl instead the other way around–which I find to be very interesting and awesome! Later in the show we see the boys confused as to who they were dating. Eventually this led the boys to make a chart to unscramble the situation. During the scene with the chart, Trent, pointed out that, it was obvious who Walter was dating, Edith. This brings up an interesting point. It shows that in our society, prejudice is still prevalent among every race, and although the assumption that a black man is dating a black women can be correct, it is incorrect and demeaning to blatantly state it–it would be more appropriate to question instead of declare that what you said is true.
Moving on to another topic presented in the episode, we see Louis airing on Good Morning Orlando, in which he initially embarrassed himself and created a bad image that later evoked the horrible experiences that he had to experience due to Long Duk Dong. During his time on Good Morning Orlando, the reporters seemed to be very accepting of his behavior as if it was the norm for Asians to behave like a clown. Furthermore, later on, Louis goes back to Good Morning Orlando, but instead of bringing his humorous impressions, he brought a humorless and somber demeanor. Ostensibly, the reporters were quite shocked, unaware on how to approach Louis. This eventually led one of the reporters to say “potstickers” in response to Louis’s, “let’s talk about race” . This specific moment underscores the naivete of Americans on Asian culture, and with Louis’s response to potstickers, shows how frustrating it is to see our fellow citizens, in which we share a nation with, display their lack of knowledge.
Overall, this episode was a great way to break the ice for Americans to see how wrongly Asians are portrayed and it’s due to the stereotypes formed by films produced in America. Additionally, this episode gave an insight on how Asian culture is not bounded by just their food and utensils (chopsticks) but rather it is much more vast and has much more depth than what certain Americans believe.