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'I Don't Care': Eddie Huang On Success of 'Fresh Off the Boat'

Eddie Huang appears on HBO's "Real Time with Bill Maher," on April 24, 2015.
Eddie Huang appears on HBO's "Real Time with Bill Maher," on April 24, 2015. HBO/Real Time with Bill Maher
/ Source: NBC News

Chef, author and host of Vice's "Huang's World," Eddie Huang doubled down on his ambivalence towards the network show based on his memoir this weekend during an appearance on HBO's "Real Time with Bill Maher."

Huang, whose book, "Fresh Off the Boat," was the inspiration for the ABC sitcom by the same name - which Huang narrates - has long been critical of the way he felt his story was treated once acquired by a major network. He reiterated those concerns to Maher.

"The success of the show doesn't make me happy or unhappy - I don't care," said Huang. "I don't care if people watch it or not watch it."

Huang opened up about his family, his career, and his growing disenchantment with mainstream entertainment, which he argues, wants "to tell universal White stories with Yellow faces, Black faces, Brown faces, but they tell the same universal story."

"You go watch how these sitcoms are made, in writer's rooms? They're like labs, dude," Huang told Maher. "It's like GMO food they're making."

Many Asian audiences, he argued, feel the same way, but have become hesitant to criticize the show for fear they'll jeopardize its future, after waiting 20 years since the last network show starring an Asian-American family - 1994's "All-American Girl," starring Margaret Cho.

Over the course of the interview, Maher peppered the plain-speaking Huang with a series of general questions about Asian culture, history, and practices. Towards the end of the conversation, Maher tried again.

"One more Asian question, I'm sorry," he began.

"Yeah sure," Huang quipped. "I love representing an entire continent of people."