Home / Industry / Media /  Netflix announces second season of ‘Never Have I Ever’

NEW DELHI : New Delhi: American streaming service Netflix has released the first look of the second season of its much-anticipated comedy drama Never Have I Ever. The show created by Mindy Kaling stars Maitreyi Ramakrishnan, a Canadian actor of Sri Lankan Tamil origin, as an Indian-origin teenager growing up in the US. In a July earnings review, Netflix had said that the first season of the show had been watched by 40 million households in its first four weeks. In a blog published a few months ago, Monika Shergill, vice-president, content, Netflix India had named the series as one of the service’s most popular titles in India in 2020.

To be sure, the series, also featuring Indian actors Sendhil Ramamurthy and Poorna Jagannathan, had drawn much flak for its tone-deaf, stereotypical depiction of the south Asian community when released in May.

“While the show undoubtedly deserves praise for its groundbreaking role in illuminating South Asian American teenage experiences, Never Have I Ever hinges on banal stereotypes and reaffirms the model minority myth. For a series that prides itself on diversity and inclusion, the cringeworthy jokes about Hindu-Muslim marriages and Nazism, blatant displays of ableism, and unchallenged instances of Islamophobia and anti-Semitism are astounding," the Harvard Political Review had said.

“(This) rigid portrayal of South Asian Americans only reaffirms the meritocratic stereotype that the community is high-achieving by virtue of hard work and traditional family values: a trope that has long been used to justify the marginalization of other minority groups in America," it had added.

In an interview with The Huffington Post, series director Kabir Akhtar had emphasized that it is unfair to place the burden of a collective identity (such as a community) on one show that can’t be fully identifiable for everyone.

At the same time, several content experts were quick to point outhat what may seem like complete absurdity to some of us living in India, is a reality, especially for Indians settled abroad who wage a constant battle to hold on to their identity.

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