A parent’s biggest worry is perhaps the future of his/her children. In Season 2, Episode 14 of Fresh Off the Boat, Michael Chang Fever, Emery and Evan came home with their results for prospective careers based on their personalities. Much to Jessica’s surprise, while Evan scored surgeon general, Emery was suggested to become a flight attendant. Jessica explains to Emery that flight attendants are essentially the “homeless of the sky” and encouraged him to learn tennis after hearing that professional tennis players can earn up to 15 million dollars. Emery demonstrated natural talents and quickly rose through the rankings of a tennis tournament; however, he ended up firing his parents as his coach and began training with Billie Jean King. Jessica and Louis understood that their son only made this choice to become a better tennis player, and supported Emery’s decision. After winning the tournament, Emery explained to Jessica and Louis he didn’t want to devote his life to tennis at the moment and wishes to stop playing the sport. The only thing the parents said was: “whatever you want to do, we support you.”
This episode revolves around the main question of who should decide the child’s future. Should parents encourage their kids to follow their heart or guide them in directions that the parents believe are good? Jessica refused to let Emery follow the path of becoming a flight attendant, but she realized that Emery’s opinion is very important in making this decision as it is Emery’s life and Emery’s future. In the end, the Huangs decided to embrace their child’s choice, but guide Emery in a slightly different direction: becoming an astronaut. Making a compromise is perhaps the best outcome of the situation, Jessica wants the best for Emery while allowing him to do what he wants with his life.
This episode focuses on a very simple and prevalent issue with parenting and shows how the Huang family guided Emery in career choices. The comedic elements played very well alongside the main story, consistent with the show’s way of portraying the family and the obstacles they overcome.