RAMY: SEASON 1 (TELEVISION REVIEW)

Please tell me you guys are watching this show. If not you Are truly missing out.

Ramy Is about a twenty something year old man who seems to be floating through life trying to still figure himself out. While still living at home with his parents and graduate student sister. His parents want him to grow up, get married and have kids. Like his friends and he is still looking for the right one. He and his family are muslim and it takes place mostly in that community in New Jersey. He also is mostly drug and alcohol free. But not celibate as mostly his partners tend to be whites women.

There isn’t really any overreaching story as each episode seems like Just that an episode or random chapter in the lives of these characters which as the series goes on we are introduced and learn more about them It reminds one of shows like ATLANTA, MASTER OF NONE. Where the star of the show Is the central voice. But leaves room For other characters to prosper.

I believe I compare it to ATLANTA is that the show is random and doesn’t always focus on the main character. It allows the audience to get to know supporting characters who’re sometimes the focus of episodes all on their own It also doesn’t paint the main character as a saint as while he might mean well and to be good but can also be the most messed up character through it all and might not make any sense to us Though it’s not as out there as ATLANTA can be.

Though the contributing factor is that they both focus on characters of color as well as community and offer up three dimensional roles for some characters who could or would be easily written off as one thing on other shows.

It’s also intelligent and knows the ground it’s Covering Though the show marches to it’s own rhythms. Which is actually like jazz as it goes from the. Lies, to improv to more comedic and then drama. Making sad dramatic points while making you laugh While ATLANTA comes off as a collective, as well as Donald Glover being the voice behind the show. The same goes here.

Though to a lesser degree as Donald Glover is infinitely more known and popular. Where as here most viewers are hearing Ramy Youseff maybe for the first time. Yes, caucasians are sometimes one dimensional here but then again we have seen a spectrum of them already which can’t necessarily be said of the culture and characters on the show.

I also probably compare the two because similarly Ramy has an episode called strawberries where we are thrust into the childhood of the characters and one particular incident that is both hilarious but also pack a certain punch. The fact that he is friends with someone disabled also shows he is compassionate but also treats the friendship as normal and not necessarily the only thing he is about and even lets the disabled character be a bit of a jerk himself but alas a true friend

This Show seems to be taken and charged by the star of the show and shows his views on life and host take on subjects that affect him and his family and community but never comes off as preachy

As with trying to show his family in particular are Egyptian Muslims but everyone lumps them in as just every muslim. As he is a practicing muslim and doesn’t drink or really dondrugs but has plenty of sex with random women usually not of his faith The kind of misogyny that exists in the community.

For instance in the way the parents never question their son when he goes out but for their daughter. she is under strict rules and how her and her friends want to find a muslim man and might even want to have sex but muslim men stay away from them unless it’s time to marry but have no problem having sex with non muslim women. This hits home in the first episode where he goes in a date with a muslim Woman and is shocked when he is not not sexually forward but also kind of kinky. She takes it as an insult that because she is interested in certain things like that. She is expected to act in a certain way even from a so called free minded muslim. Which kind of echoes in a later episode when his sister is interested in a guy and is about to get intimate and he treats her more as a fetish rather then just a willing female.

The strongest episode is STRAWBERRIES where the show mixes masturbation and the prejudice faced by him and his family after 9/11 including a dream about osama bin laden. Just as in one episode it focuses on his mother’s Loneliness and her attempt to meet people and make more friends. Which includes a flirtation with a French man.

The show has No real villains as especially in the character of his uncle who is a misogynist and anti-Semitic to a degree and a blowhard but in the end reveals a decent and maybe even admirable side of himself.

What is also enjoyable about the show is dealing with Situations some typical and some special situational from not just another point of view but also seen from a different culture but thankfully not making the show only about that. So you learn while you experiencing the show. All about second generation immigrants trying to make their way in the American Dream and just be seen as normal.

It’s a show that is worth checking out. It stays low level which only enhances it’s strength.

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