TV Club: Fresh Off The Boat makes the most of Taiwan, but falls victim to American sitcom tropes

Even though the season-two finale of Fresh Off The Boat made it almost certain that the Huangs would be traveling to their native Taiwan, the journey still feels like a big deal. For one, the season-three premiere marks the first time that any American network television show—sitcom or otherwise—has been filmed in the capital city of Taipei. And even if one were to ignore this geographical distinction (which, with a show like Fresh Off The Boat where the characters’ backgrounds are so important, you really can’t), there’s the pure visual thrill of a trip overseas. It’s rare that any family sitcom gets to travel somewhere so far and so different from its regular location, especially when so many of them are shot on sound stages.

Likely aware of how fortunate their production team is, Nahnatchka Kahn and co. don’t squander the opportunity, at least …

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