‘Fresh off the Boat’ Episode Review: “The Flush”

Fresh Off the Boat, Season 3, Episode 17: “The Flush”
Original airdate March 15, 2017.

Microsynopsis:  Jessica takes Honey, Emery, and Evan on a road trip to Georgia in order to save the handling charge on a new recliner for Grandma.  At first it seems everyone is having a great time, but the boys are secretly catering to their mother in order to keep her from becoming a Road Grump.

Louis, learning only now that Eddie has kissed Alison, decides he hasn’t been spending enough time with his eldest, so he takes the opportunity to plan a Guys’ Weekend.  Eddie invites his friends when he learns that their weekend plans sound awful, and Trent brings a bottle of beer he bought from his sister.  Eddie take the first sip and, to his horror, learns about the Asian Flush.

Good:  If the Asian Flush has ever been mentioned on a prime time fictional program, I haven’t heard about it.  I love that in the show’s fifty-fourth episode, it’s still introducing new Asian-ness to prime time television.  I’m only noticing now that the boys in Eddie’s crew are developing a few decent acting skills.  Trevor Larcom (Trent) was already the best of them, but the others aren’t far behind.  The flashback scene (with Sheng Wang, Ali Wong, Jeremy Lin, and Ming-Na Wen) is cute.  Also: Hellllloooooo Ming-Na Wen.

Bad:  The road trip story is ridiculous, uninteresting, and kind of tired.  While it’s consistent with Jessica’s character (not to mention Evan’s and Emery’s), it really doesn’t develop any of the characters further than we were with them a year ago.  It feels like we’ve seen variations on this story at least five times.

FOB moment:  When Jessica enters the final stage of Road Grumpiness, she speaks only in Mandarin.

Soundtrack flashback:  “Gonna Make You Sweat (Everybody Dance Now)” by C+C Music Factory (1990, sung terribly with the wrong words by Louis).  “Ice Cream” by Sarah McLachlan (1993).

Final grade, this episode:  Huge props for introducing a new (funny!) topic to TV, but cut the Jessica story down, and there could have been some funny moments with Eddie and his friends when the flush first breaks out.  Huge missed opportunity, especially since the road trip bit is draggy as heck.

The Golden Girls TV Guide is from January 31, 1987.  Has Brian been carrying that thing around since he was three? B-minus.

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About Mitchell K. Dwyer

@scrivener likes movies.
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