The last time an Asian-American family had their own American sitcom was in 1994. The show was Margaret Cho’s All-American Girl and while the Korean-American comedy was poised to be groundbreaking, it didn’t pull the ratings ABC wanted and was canceled after one season. Cho says executives found it to be either “too Asian” or “not Asian enough,” and the sitcom’s premise changed so many times that by the end of its run, it looked nothing like the culture clash family comedy it originally set out to be.
This fall, an Asian-American TV family will make television history by helming the first Asian-American-focused sitcom since Cho’s one-season show. Fresh Off The Boat, based on the memoir by chef and restaurateur Eddie Huang, takes place in 1990s Orlando and follows the lives of 12-year-old Huang’s Taiwainesse immigrant family, and the culture shock that ensues when they move from Washington D.C. to Florida. The show stars Randall Park (who Veep fans will recognize as Danny Chung) and is a long-overdue win for Asian-American representation in the primetime slot.