If you would’ve told me that an episode of Fresh Off the Boat about Eddie and his friends getting girlfriends and Louis appearing on the 4am local news would be one of the most thought provoking, I would’ve cocked my head to the side. Despite thinking this was just going to be a good time, this week the Huangs explored race in not only pop culture but in dating as well – and I loved every second.
According to the show only truck drivers and lady’s of the night – and apparently Emery – catch the news at the hour of 4am. Well those anchors wanted Louis on, but after he just joked around and did impressions the whole time – his wife was anything but pleased and likened him to Long Duk Dong from 16 Candles noting that it’s rare Asian people get to be on TV and he went and made a fool out of himself like that character from the John Hughes classic. She had a point. I mean look at our current television roster. This show, along with one character on Agents of Shield, Heroes and Hawaii Five-0 – that’s about all the Asians I can think of. It’s a huge step up from when Margaret Cho was the ONLY one that sadly didn’t last, but still. Being a minority in any sense is a lot of pressure because when you get an opportunity, you don’t want to blow it; much like Louis did in Jessica’s eyes and later his own.
Meanwhile Eddie has apparently been dating Alison since the school dance two weeks prior. Well, it seems as if all his friends were dating her friends as well. I will say their confusion later as to which one they were dating was hilarious but race also played a part in this story too. Everyone assumed Walter was obviously dating Edith because both of them were black – which it was easy to mistake and I’m sure a 13-year-old’s mind in the ‘90s would’ve went there, but I loved that in the end Edith actually wanted my favorite sickly looking child, Brian. It’s insane to think that even as recent as the ‘90s, interracial dating was still something sort of new – at least in pop culture. All we really had as kids to know that people from different races actually could date was Shawn and Angela on Boy Meets World, and even then…they never really made their relationship about color; it was always about love.
In the end Louis managed to showcase himself; an Asian man who has a business who is both savvy and funny, and Eddie learned that he and Alison were indeed together and survived their first fight. We can’t say the same for the others, but I was confused. Brian didn’t make anyone mad – why had Edith kicked him to the curb? The mind of a 7th grade girl is a weird one.