A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this TV show.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that Man Like Mobeen is an edgy British comedy series intended for mature viewers. It contains lots of profanity, including frequent use of "f--k." Drugs are a major theme -- the central character is a former drug dealer, and drug use is shown and often referred to. There's also a good bit of violence. Guns, ranging from pistols to automatic weapons are visible (and sometimes drawn), and protesters get rowdy and throw bottles. Islamophobia leads to threats and violent acts committed against cast members. Man Like Mobeen features a lot of social commentary about being Muslim in the United Kingdom and could spark important conversations with teens about racial injustice. Note that audiences unfamiliar with regional British accents may occasionally find it difficult to understand.
What's the story?
MAN LIKE MOBEEN is a British comedy series about a Pakistani man with a troubled past raising his teenage sister in England. Mobeen (Guz Khan) is a 28-year-old former drug dealer living Small Heath, Birmingham with his 15-year-old sister Aqsa (Duaa Karim). He is committed to keeping her safe and raising her right, sometimes with the help of his goofy friend Eight (Tez Ilyas) and the slightly more level-headed Nate (Tolu Ogunmefun). Single parenting is hard, but Mobeen is committed to helping Aqsa reach her full potential. Unfortunately, his criminal past, combined with the fact that he is a Pakistani Muslim, often complicates things.
Is it any good?
This edgy series offers a clever narrative about family, friendship, and contemporary social issues. Mobeen is far from perfect, and often looks to his criminal past to resolve problems, especially when it comes to helping his sister and his friends. As a result, they all find themselves embroiled in harebrained schemes, which create some wildly funny moments. But despite some of their questionable decisions, the overall cast is inherently likable, and it's impossible not to keep rooting for them.
As amusing as Man Like Mobeen is, it also offers strong social commentary about being a Muslim in the United Kingdom. It addresses issues like the increase in poverty and youth knife violence within these populations, as well as the country’s systemic problems that perpetuate these injustices. It also underscores the rise of Islamaphobia thanks to a growing wave of national conservatism. Overall, Man Like Mobeen is a well-written series that uses humor and appealing characters to highlight very important and serious issues.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about the social issues Man Like Mobeen is choosing to address. How does it connect the way Muslims are treated by police and other government agencies with the socioeconomic problems British-Pakistani communities face on a daily basis?
Talk about racial injustice in the United States. What does "systemic racism" mean? What are some things you and your community could do to make the world a more equitable place for everyone?
Does the series use stereotypes as a way of highlighting the way Muslims are profiled in the United Kingdom? Does it use generalizations to represent non-Muslim communities?
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