Halal in the Family: Muslim Comedy Made by Muslims

My 19 year old daughter and I had a fun chat driving home today. We batted around a number of current issues, including immigration and kneeling NFL players. We pulled into the driveway before we got to 2nd amendment rights! She tends to be more conservative on these issues than I am, while I tend to be, hmmm, balanced, I think you call it!

We both agree that it’s good, but challenging, to hear the ideas and opinions of people who are different from you, who think differently from you. Since it’s human nature to find comfort in having our thoughts and perceptions reinforced, rather than challenged, humor can sometimes serve as a good container for alternative perspectives.

With that in mind, I want to cautiously invite you to check out a very short, made-for-the-web TV series called Halal in the Family. Its four episodes of campy parody aim, “to combat bias and challenge misconceptions about Muslims and communities associated with Muslims.” (Tweet this.)

Halal in the Family sheds light on issues of, “surveillance and spying in Muslim communities; online bullying and hate networks; media bias; and the use of anti-Muslim prejudice for political gain.”

You might find the shows funny, but also a little painful. It hurts that people must deal with suspicion, misrepresentation and abuse. Honestly, it’s a little hurtful to find those things in my own heart.

There is some course language in the out takes that follow the show’s credits and a slight bit of off-color humor. That said, I think Halal in the Family merits watching. It’s good for us to see things about Muslims by Muslims.

Before I go showing these at church or something, I’d love to hear your thoughts. In the comments, please tell us what you think and where you might show Halal in the Family.

6 Comments

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6 responses to “Halal in the Family: Muslim Comedy Made by Muslims

  1. Bill Hayes

    Good morning Shane,

    The videos are hilarious. I think showing them in a Perspective class would be very appropriate. Some church goers, however, might find them offensive. Not so much because of the language,but simply because many church goers still don’t understand Muslims. I fully agree with your comment, “It hurts that people must deal with suspicion, misrepresentation and abuse. Honestly, it’s a little hurtful to find those things in my own heart.” Unfortunately, some are just a little further down that road than others.

    Keep up the good work. I love your emails.posts.

  2. I haven’t watched this yet but I’m excited too. We really enjoyed “Little Mosque on the Prairie”, a CTV series about a Muslim community that meets in a church. I recommend that one!

  3. Tim

    Hi Shane. I appreciate the Hope of backing down the fear level among Christians but I didn’t think this one was terribly effective. I didn’t find them to be very funny at all. The main character seemed flat and intentionally stupid. The only one that I thought would be somewhat useful was the one where the girl was called names by another school mate. While the resolution was superquick the point was well-made.

    • Hey Tim, Thank you for reading Muslim Connect and sharing your thoughts. I think you’re right about the main character being “flat and intentionally stupid.” He’s actually the guy behind the series! Of course, what’s funny to one is not necessarily to another. Thanks for continuing to read.

  4. Justin Jose

    Shane thanks for posting and sharing these! I really appreciated watching these and the facts that are listed below. I believe the comical satire of the film is helpful in breaking down stereotypes and promoting conversation. I especially appreciated the B’ully and Amazing Race episodes as they do a good job of addressing the fears and issues head on. I am taking some students on an upcoming trip to the Arab American National museum and a local mosque as an educational and learning opportunity. I will be pointing students toward your blog and the short films as additional resources to utilize for conversation leading up to the visit. Thanks for your work!

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