A tweet promoting a new ABC show about an immigrant family in America drew fire from fans after including images of sombreros, turbans and bamboo hats - and was swiftly yanked from social media.
Expectations were already high for the show, "Fresh Off the Boat" - the first Asian-American family sitcom on network television in over twenty years - before a single episode has even aired. Based on the bold and bawdy memoir by chef Eddie Huang and set in the 1990's, the show takes a comedic look at Eddie's early life in a Taiwanese-American family living in Orlando, Florida.
Jeff Yang, whose son Hudson stars as young Eddie, expressed frustration with the promotional tweet, calling it part of a "two steps forward, one step back" process.
"This is where the problem is, with the show being such an exceptionally unique thing, and it really plays to being both an asset and a liability," Yang told NBC News. "Inside the establishment, that's only cracking the door to let us through, you still see these kinds of things happening on an all-too-regular basis. Not out of malice, but out of not having the right people in the mix, quite frankly."
In a recent piece called "Bamboo-Ceiling TV," written for Vulture, Huang wrote about his passion for remaining true to his original story as he worked with a national network to develop the show.
"We couldn’t represent everyone who lived this life," he wrote, "but for the individuals we did represent, I felt a duty to be accurate."
In response to ABC's promotional tweet, Huang echoed Yang's disappointment.
Yang cited a recent incident during a promotional event for the show, when the first question asked by a reporter raised eyebrows.
“I love the Asian culture. And I was just talking about the chopsticks, and I just love all that," the reporter asked. "Will I get to see that, or will it be more Americanized?”
"The good news," said Yang, "is that the network and studio were really responsive this time."
"As long as Asian Americans are both supportive and vigilant - pushing for the show and pushing for it to be better, it will be what it should be."