Militant Islam Monitor > Satire > The 9/11 report as satire? Canadian Muslim 'comedy' has Imam detained as airport terrorist suspect in "Little Mosque on the Prairie"
The 9/11 report as satire? Canadian Muslim 'comedy' has Imam detained as airport terrorist suspect in "Little Mosque on the Prairie"
January 11, 2007
MIM: Rave reviews by Muslims who see terrorism as an opportunity to knock the non Muslim audience dead with Islamist attempts at "post 9/11" comedy.
Will a beheading episode be next or maybe a Canadian Muslim fashion designer who markets down filled bomb vests with handy pockets for cell phones with optional explosive and Koran pouches for Muslims?
According to one report headlined "Hijabbing fun with Little Mosque on the Prairie"
"A young lawyer, who gives up a promising career in Toronto to become the new imam in Mercy, is pulled aside at the airport after he is overheard talking on a cell phone about career suicide and the new job that is "Allah's plan for me."
"You're not going to paradise today," says a security guard, dragging the man out of the line.
Diving into deep water: Little Mosque on the Prairie, created by Canadian Muslim Zarqa Nawaz, aims to show the funny side of Muslim life in post-9/11 North America.
Fundamentalist fun as Muslims use 9/11 and terrorism as satirical topics January 11, 2007
MIM: The 9/11 Report as stuff for satire? Yes - according to Islander Kennedy,the director of the new 'comedy' series "Little Mosque on the Prairie" who says he "finds it funny every day he works on it" (no doubt laughing all the way ot the bank).
The roundly panned comedy pits bufoonish 'white people' against noble and downtrodden Muslims who are just looking for love and acceptance from their neighbors in a small town in Canada -while showing contempt and intolerance for them and their 'kuffar' ways.
Director Islander Kennedy stated that :
I find it funny every day I work on it," he said of Little Mosque on the Prairie. "I think it is a great idea at a perfect time. We need a comedy that deals with Muslims and in a larger way, deals with our fear of anything that is different from us.
"Now is a good time for that kind of comedy, just as the '60s and '70s was a good time for All in the Family," said Kennedy.
"All in the Family was a very funny, entertaining show and Archie Bunker was a bigot. He (showed) prejudice against black people and we saw how silly his prejudice was and that helped fight prejudice against blacks in the United States.
He said fun is made of Muslims, non-Muslims, Christians and anybody else.
MIM: The only ones sharing the laughter besides Kennedy is the writer of the show who bellicosely stated that the people who didnt laugh when when viewing Muslims joking about terrorism are "extremely right wing...who have no sense of humor".
The only people who will be offended are the people who are extremely right wing, on both sides of the spectrum, Muslims and non-Muslims who have no sense of humour," said Nawaz. "There's nothing you can do about that. I'm not worried about that.
"I know the heart of the show is in the right place, the intention is to be a comedy, to make people laugh and entertain people. It's coming from a very funny place and I think it will be very successful, God willing."
"I think it's going to be a huge hit, God willing," she said with a laugh
Because growing up Muslim you're taught you can never attribute anything unless you give God his due."
MIM: Which explains why the story was headlined:
"Laughs, not religion, at heart of Little Mosque on the Prairie, says creator of new CBC series"
Little Mosque on the Prairie creator Zarqa Nawaz, left, actor Manoj Sood and actor Boyd Banks, right, ham it up with camels during a promotion for the new CBC television show in downtown Toronto. (CP).
MIM: The only ones not sharing in the director and writer's laughter appears to be the audience. One blogger ended his commentary with"less stupid white people and bring on the funny Muslims!
The best word to describe the pilot episode of Little Mosque on the Prairie is "clunky." It's not unfunny, but this is definitely a show finding its footing.
The show's biggest letdown is that it treats the obvious ethnic conflict between "average white Canadians" and Muslim-Canadians so very, very badly. It's played for laughs - which is good because it's a comedy - but the jokes aren't funny because the Dumb White Folks are so clownish and buffoonish you feel like you're being told to laugh, or worse, lectured on tolerance and diversity. (It doesn't help that Neil Crone's boring Rush Limbaugh parody and Sitara Hewitt's gratingly self-righteous young Muslim woman make one want to put on a blindfold and earmuffs until they go off the screen.)
On the bright side, however, the show picks up very nicely on another conflict - the fact that Torontonians and Albertans hate each other. (Torontoist is biased, as we are located in the greatest city in the world and not in a province full of tar-sand-loving rednecks.) There's a lot of promise here as an additional theme, not least because Zaib Shaikh plays Amaar, the new imam from Toronto, as a total city boy who knows what's best in life - like low-fat cappucinos.
And the cast is talented. They're all still playing stock characters at the moment (Carlo Rota is playing the Slightly Sleazy But Good-Hearted Businessman, Manoj Sood is playing the Old Stick In The Mud Who Thinks He Knows Best Even Though He's An Idiot, Arlene Duncan is playing the Tough Lady Who Doesn't Take Any Crap From You, and so forth), but most of the stock characters are funny enough and there's room for growth. Corner Gas started off with much the same array of cliches and just gradually stepped back and let them grow into full-fledged comic entities (and so did Friends, for that matter), so this is as good a starting place as any.
Ultimately, though, the show is hit-and-miss at the moment. For every excellent joke (and there are quite a few) and spirited bit of interplay between the various Muslim characters (there's a brilliant gag about Saudi Arabia halfway through that will make you spit up whatever you're drinking), there's a Stupid White Folks joke that just sits there like a big stinking turd, demanding your approval or at least your respectful tolerance.
So, to sum up: less stupid white people, and bring on the funny Muslims!
"The New York Times and the Associated Press have produced stories on the series, which is attempting to portray the humourous side of being Muslim while adjusting to life after the 9/11 tragedy."
MIM: As the writer explained :
I know the heart of the show is in the right place, the intention is to be a comedy, to make people laugh and entertain people. It's coming from a very funny place and I think it will be very successful, God willing."
"Laughter is a universal language," said Zarqa Nawaz, the hijab-wearing creator of the show whose previous films include "BBQ Muslims" and "Real Terrorists Don't Belly Dance."
2 Million Watch Debut of ŽLittle Mosque On The PrairieŽ on Canadian TV Jan 11, '07
(IsraelNN.com) More than 2 million Canadians tuned in Tuesday to a new sitcom about Muslims trying to assimilate into a small Canadian town which debuted on Canada's national TV station the CBC.
'Little Mosque On The Prairie', confront issues such as prejudice and post-9/11 fear.
In the opening episode of the satirical comedy, an imam is detained in an airport over suspicions that he is a terrorist.
Zaib Shaikh, the star of CBC's Little Mosque on the Prairie, couldn't contain his glee Wednesday after learning the internationally hyped sitcom pulled in 2.1 million viewers for its premiere.
"It's fantastic for Canadian culture, it's fantastic for Muslims and non-Muslims and their perceptions about one another, it's fantastic for the CBC, it's fantastic for Canadian television," said the Toronto-born Shaikh, who plays the progressive young imam on Little Mosque.
MIM: In an article headlined "Allah be praised" the writer joked that the Muslims had taken over an old church scaring the "bejeezus(the beallah?) out of many of their neighbors".
Little Mosque on the Prairie shows promise by sticking to sitcom fundamentals
The pilot had some primo one-liners, most of the characters are promising and the premise is exceptional: A group of Islamo-Saskatchewanians in the town of Mercy (population: 13,293) sets up a mosque in the Anglican church's parish hall, scaring the bejeezus (the beallah?) out of many of their neighbours.
Little Mosque has one weakness, it's that several of the non-Muslim characters have the depth of cardboard. The antagonistic townspeople come across as a bunch of inbred, bug-eyed sister-kissers. Mercy may be small, but it has a radio station with a shock jock who loves to fearmonger, and a populace happy to be monged. And when Amaar, the town's metrosexual new imam, is en route to Mercy from Toronto, the cops who detain him at the airport are even more imbecilic than the two Mounties on Corner Gas. Amaar says that if his story doesn't check out, "you can deport me to Syria," to which one of the policemen huffs, "Hey, you do not get to choose which country we deport you to."