First there was Omar Shamsoon – now, The Simpsons have an episode that introduces a muslim family from Jordan – you can watch it for free online:
I confess to being a bit disappointed, though. The satire felt forced; it would have been much more effective in the earlier seasons when they were able to skewer things with a deft touch and not getting all preachy. The portrayal of Islamophobia was literally cartoonish and probably didn’t contribute meaningfully to the debate on prejudice and faith, but it was good for a few laughs. Even the Aladdin-carpet dream sequence was woefully short – and also a hugely wasted opportunity, given that Dan Castellaneta (the voice of Homer, among others) actually voiced the Genie in Robin Williams’ absence for the (mediocre) Aladdin sequel The Return of Jafar.
The subplot with Lisa’s “myPod” was funny in some ways (especially the unboxing of the myBill) but still largely a distraction. Maybe they were running a bit dry, creatively speaking, and decided to combine these two concepts into one, but they both would have benefited much more from having dedicated episodes to each.
A pleasant half hour of the Simpsons, but nothing memorable.
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City of Brass by Aziz Poonawalla approaches issues from the perspective of a Muslim of the West. Aziz, a member of the Dawoodi Bohra Muslim community, has been blogging since early 2003 and co-founded the Brass Crescent Awards for the muslim blogsphere.