06 January 2017 - BBC 'Real Housewives of ISIS' Sketch Sparks Controversy
Sarah Rieger (The Huffington Post Canada, 05/01/2017)
A BBC skit titled "The Real Housewives of ISIS" is being criticized for being unfunny and inappropriate given the real issue of women being enslaved by the Islamic State.
The sketch by "Revolting" parodies the reality show "Real Housewives" and the disturbing way the terrorist organization ISIS grooms young, female recruits online.
"Hashtag OMG. Hashtag Jihadi Jane. Hashtag death to the west, ISIS emojis," reads one character as she texts her reaction to a female friend's new suicide vest.
Comedy show 'Revolting'
Jon Blistein (Rolling Stone, 05/01/2017)
Why did three American kids from the suburbs of Chicago try to run away to the Islamic state, and should the Feds treat them as terrorists?
The crux of the sketch is an awkward scene in which Zaynab (Anjli Mohindra) models a new suicide vest for her friends, who offer compliments to her face and harsh barbs behind her back . "She looked massive," cracks Mel (Sophie McCartney) in a talking head interview. "You're gonna need a lot of Semtex to kill that one." Things get even worse for Zaynab when Hadyia (Nimisha Odedra) walks in wearing the same vest.
Limits of satire
Dan Bilfesky (The New York Times, 05/01/2017)
The comedy sketch opens with a hijab-wearing British woman named Afsana fretting over how to impress the Islamic State militants who recruited her. “It’s only three days to the beheading, and I’ve got no idea what I’m going to wear!” she laments.
Another woman models her new suicide vest for her fellow jihadist wives. “What do you think?” she asks. “Ahmed surprised me with it yesterday.”
A third woman reacts admiringly, typing into her phone and saying: “Hashtag OMG. Hashtag Jihadi Jane. Hashtag death to the West, ISIS emojis.”
Poking fun at terrorists
Sunny Hundal (The Independent, 05/01/2017)
If there is one thing I can say with certainty, it is that British Asians of all religious persuasions feel more uncomfortable than others at satire regarding their faith.
A short clip from a new BBC2 show called Revolting has gone viral online and sparked controversy, not only for its title (The Real Housewives of Isis), but because it depicts their members alongside the kind of biting satire we rarely see.
One clip shows two women trading nasty looks because they’re both wearing identical-looking suicide vests on a day out. Another one has difficulty keeping track of how many dead husbands she has been through.
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"06 January 2017 - BBC 'Real Housewives of ISIS' Sketch Sparks Controversy", La Clé des Langues [en ligne], Lyon, ENS de LYON/DGESCO (ISSN 2107-7029), mai 2017. Consulté le 01/12/2023. URL: https://cle.ens-lyon.fr/anglais/key-story/archives-revue-de-presse-2017/06-january-2017-bbc-real-housewives-of-isis-sketch-sparks-controversy