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 Mismatched is a Indian dramatic comedy that features lots of edgy content. Marriage (including arranged marriages) is a theme, as is family, friendship, and career competition. There’s lots of strong curse words, like "bitch," "ass," "d--k," "s--t", and "f--k." Crude gestures are also visible, and there are references to online porn and masturbation. Cigarette smoking is frequently visible, and drinking and pot smoking is occasionally shown. There are lots of references to dating apps like Bumble, Tinder, and OK Cupid.
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What's the story?
Based on the young adult book by Indian-American author Sandhya Menon, MISMATCHED is a Netflix original series about a young woman who wants more than an arranged marriage, and a young man who dreams of finding the perfect wife. Seventeen-year-old Dimple Ahuja (played by social media star Prajakta Koli) wants to go to university, earn a Ph.D., create apps, and build a startup worth millions of dollars like her idol, Nandini Nahata. But her mother insists that she focus more on her looks and meeting suitable young men that she can marry in a few years. Meanwhile, the romantic 18-year-old Rishi Singh (Rohit Saraf) is letting his grandmother -- with the encouragement of his best friend Namrata (Devyani Shorey) -- use dating apps to meet a suitable girl that he can get to know, eventually marry, and live happily ever after with. After seeing Dimple’s picture, Rishi enrolls in the same computer course she is taking in Jaipur to try to get to know her. Things don’t work out as planned, but he soon finds himself becoming part of an eclectic summer cohort, including the edgy Celina (Muskkaan Jeferi), American-Indian Harsh (Vihaan Samat), and Zeenath Karim (Vidya Malvade), the oldest member of the class. While everyone else is competing to produce the best app in the class and land a coveted internship, both Dimple and Rishi are learning a lot about themselves, and each other.
Is it any good?
This dramatic comedy series offers some edgy, chuckle-worthy moments along with sweet and humorous family dynamics and romantic drama. Dimple and Rishi behave like the teenagers they are, along with most of the members of their summer class. While Dimple rejects her mother’s relentless pressure to find a suitable marriage prospect, Rishi is pressuring himself to find the stable and loving relationship that his womanizing father never seemed to have. On the surface, it looks like an unlikely pairing, but it is both teens’ desire to reject their parents’ influence and build a different life for themselves that unknowingly pulls them together.
It’s a fun, culturally relevant storyline, but there are nuances that non-Indian (or non-Indian-American) audiences will not immediately pick up on. However, the show’s universal themes allow international audiences to appreciate how Dimple and Rishi’s relationship evolves throughout the show. But Mismatched is also about a generation of young Indian men and women who find themselves negotiating the social expectations to follow long-standing traditions, while at the same time embracing a very modern world. If you find coming-of-age stories entertaining, this one will fit the bill.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about the accuracy of how media portrays marriage and marital traditions in different cultures. Many cultures view marriage as something other than a romantic pairing. How does Western media present this concept?
The title Mismatched refers to the incompatibility between Dimple and Rishi. But what else does it represent? Do some of these mismatches become good matches in the end?
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