From Exodus to Legacy: Unveiling the Inspiring Journey of the Kingdom of 109 in Mangoes and Large Potatoes Documentary



Since the first showing of Mangoes and Large Potatoes, a documentary about the history and origins of the Kingdom of 109, screenings of the film have become an annual event in Mr. Huang’s classroom.

The origin of this film is nestled far in the past: the spark started in 2011 when Mr. Huang and the Kingdom of 109 received news of their pending relocations during the renovations of Longfellow. 

“The news that we were gonna be forced out of 109 and we were probably not gonna return gave me the idea of immortalizing the history of what happened in the room and what existed in the room, like the murals, among other pieces of art,” Mr. Huang said. 

With the goal of preservation, Mr. Huang assembled a team of 109 alumni and began to fulfill his goal by creating a documentary. By compiling testimonies from hundreds of interviews conducted with students and alumni, filming and reenacting scenes, and splicing footage from Lancer Life, a former Longfellow production,  into the film, Mr. Huang created Mangoes and Large Potatoes as a way to not only preserve the history of Longfellow’s most prestigious kingdom, but also to bring the blood, sweat, and tears of past 109ers to their successive generations.


Mangoes and Large Potatoes is a documentary about the trials and tribulations of the Kingdom of 109, a monarchy headed by Mr. Huang dedicated to preserving traditional mathematics. The documentary captures everything from the founding of the kingdom to the destruction and eviction of K109 from its homeland by the PTB (Powers-That-Be, known to Longfellow as the administration). 

The documentary first introduces viewers to the nomadic origins of 109, the mystical Phoss, and Mr. Huang’s arrival upon Longfellow and its lands. Then, it dives further into the development of 109 into a sprawling and powerful state, as well as the early traditions that carry on to this very day. Later in the film, the footage of the First and Second Darknesses (evils that befall Longfellow and 109) is shown.

The end of Mangoes and Large Potatoes shares memories of the past of K109, talking about the relics that survived the exodus of 109, such as various ceiling and wall tiles with signed names of 109 citizens and murals. 

Film Review

Mangoes and Large Potatoes was the product of hard work and much motivation. As a result, the work of Mr. Huang is very articulate for its time. Despite its low resolution, Mangoes and Large Potatoes is a well-choreographed piece on 109’s history. The footage, even though it was filmed as many different parts and pieces, flowed particularly well when spliced together. When coupled with the narrator’s voice, it presents the history of K109 clearly and fluently, while the cuts and bits allow a nice little chunk of suspense before each section.

 In addition, there are countless moments when the film invigorates the audience, such as Mr. Huang’s speech before the great battle against the zombies of Tieland under then resource officer John Morris and former Longfellow English teacher Nick Calamito’s trance. These scenes bring life to the documentary, exemplifying the 109 spirit.

Finally, Mangoes and Large Potatoes accomplishes its original purpose and raises awareness about K109’s history, as well as leaving a memorable impact on the generations of 109ers that have resided in Mr. Huang’s classroom and other viewers regardless.

Impact of the Documentary

Mr. Huang shows this documentary every year with the purpose of inspiring 109 citizens.

”I’ve shown it to every generation of 109ers since 2011, and every generation was inspired by it to some degree,” said Huang. “When citizens watch it, they feel inspired and connected to the former generations and feel a sense of pride.”

The impact of the documentary stretches beyond the current students at Longfellow Middle School, to all of the 109 alumni.

“It was so inspiring! I loved watching the history of 109 and experiencing the amazing culture,”  said 109 citizen Lauren Z.

In addition, the documentary also raises awareness of the Kingdom’s far-reaching, complicated, and sometimes controversial history in a simple motion picture that captivates the hearts and minds of 109 citizens. Before watching the Mangoes and Large Potatoes documentary, citizens, such as Sophia G, a current Freshman at TJHSST, felt that they hadn’t been aware of the many hurdles and obstacles in 109’s history that led to a prosperous and diverse community of mathematicians that is 109. 

Part 2 in the Works: Rumor or Truth?

Many have speculated that a sequel to Mangoes and Large Potatoes is in the works: there is much more to the history of 109 that followed after the exodus from their original homeland. Part of it is true: Mr. Huang says he does, at times, consider making a post-2011 documentary. However, there are multiple problems with a sequel to Mangoes and Large Potatoes.

“First of all, we don’t have a lot of raw footage of things that happened post-2011. I also don’t have as much time now to work on it 4 hours a night; I wasn’t married to Queen Stephanie in 2011. I am now, and I have kids, so that’s a problem. So it’s possible, but it would be hard,” said Mr. Huang. 

With Mr. Huang’s soon-to-be farewell, many students, inspired by the original Mangoes and Large Potatoes, have a new-found fervor to make the dream of a sequel a reality. Currently, students from Mr. Huang’s Class of 2023 are attempting to create a sequel to the original, ever since the dissolution of the Kingdom of 109 was announced. The production has been going on for almost a month now, and setbacks have jeopardized the timely completion of the sequel. Ambitious plans are still laid out for the premier of the sequel to Mangoes and Large Potatoes, and only time will tell if this sequel will be as successful as the original.


With the dissolution of the Kingdom of 109 at the end of this school year, as Mr. Huang continues his teaching journey at some other school, there will be a farewell to Mr. Huang on June 15. This could be the perfect time to finally present the sequel to Mangoes and Large Potatoes, updating the Kingdom’s history and displaying the turtles that guided him to this island and the Kingdom.  Those turtles will also lead Mr. Huang away to continue his journey elsewhere.

But no matter where Mr. Huang goes, no matter what happens to the Kingdom of 109, 109 will always hold a special place in the hearts and minds of the students of Mr. Huang. As Mr. Huang said, “We will keep our name, we will keep our honor, we will continue the 109 way. The story will continue.”