New Comedy ‘Ramy’ With Muslim POV Called Some of This Decade’s Best TV
Early reviews have commented on its prevalent humor and universal themes, such as Ramy’s struggles to win the approval of his religious parents, whom he still lives with in his twenties.
“Ramy” is a new sitcom that is breaking new ground, centering on a young Arab Muslim American character.
The new comedy series is co-created by and starring comedian Ramy Youssef, and executive produced by Jerrod Carmichael (“The Carmichael Show”) and Bridget Bedard (“Transparent”).
Based on Youssef’s real-life experiences, the series centers on the contemporary life of a first-generation American Muslim man living in a politically divided neighborhood in New Jersey. It “explores the challenges of what it’s like being caught between an Egyptian community that thinks life is a moral test, and a Millennial generation that thinks life has no consequences.”
Early reviews have commented on its prevalent humor and universal themes, such as Ramy’s struggles to win the approval of his religious parents, whom he still lives with in his twenties. Another major theme includes Ramy’s attempts to navigate dating life for the first time with a desire to date a Muslim woman. Ramy also struggles for job security, working at a tech startup with all of its typically dubious ramifications.
The series features scenes where characters, such as Ramy’s traditional parents, speak in Arabic (with English subtitles), highlighting the culture clash of many first-generation Americans, although it’s noted that Ramy embraces his roots overall.
Critics have lauded the show’s positive and accepting perspective on Muslim religion, as well its portrayal of the racism that Ramy and his family face every day, nonetheless. There’s a flashback episode included, where a teenaged Ramy reacts to the devastating aftermath of 9/11.
“I don’t know what I’m doing, man,” Ramy confesses in one scene. “I look at my parents and how strong they are, and how they just know everything’s going to be okay because they have God.”
The show also explores gender roles in Muslim culture, highlighting the plight of Ramy’s mother and sister, for instance.
Entertainment Weekly declared that the new comedy “resembles some of this decade’s best TV” and that it “is essential viewing, a family TV show about a family that TV’s never fully shown, until now.”
“Ramy” will premiere on Hulu on April 19, and have its world premiere during the 2019 South by Southwest film festival in Austin, Texas.