“Outsourced”: Hot or Not?

Lizzie sent us a link to some trailers for NBC’s forthcoming comedy, “Outsourced,” with the comment: “Looks super-[crappy].” Here is a clip:

I’m leaning towards “not,” though I could still be persuaded, if they get past the “Man-meat” jokes… I think their idea is to make fun of kitschy Americana and get traction on the culture-clash (which means a certain amount of stereotype humor). What do readers think?

58 thoughts on ““Outsourced”: Hot or Not?

  1. Quote: The thing is, at the end of the day, desis are a minority in the West. Therefore, our portrayal in the media is always going to be somewhat stereotypical. Also, our say in that portrayal will always be limited, unless alot more desis go into the media and influence it that way.

    I agree. It is why, as far as movies and media go, I prefer we remain unseen. Any attention can only hurt, not help. We should be the producers, screenwriters and directors of movies, not the characters.

    I do not understand the hunger so many of you have to see desi characters on TV. Are you all really that desperate for attention? Remember that the majority has no goodwill towards the desi population in general—the goodwill you see will only be through old fashioned friendships and regular relationships. Never through the media or the tinsel screen—in the media or movies we can only play the role of demons or idiots. It is ridiculous to hope it will ever be otherwise.

  2. Whoa, some of you need to take relax and back off a bit before you start leaping to accusations about this show being racist – to me the trailer looked pretty innocent, but kind of cliched and played out.

    “A show about call centers? A character who is a shy, meek Indian woman? The accents? The attire? Etc. None of this even borders on stereotype?”

    Oh no Indians with Indian accents – what a horrible stereotype!!!! I think they did a decent job with variety – shalwars, saris, Western-style suits, a Muslim woman in a hijab, a Sikh in a turban, etc. Interesting how you chose to focus on the meek woman instead of the other ones, including the more outspoken one.

    Anyway I don’t think I’ll be tuning in – to me this looks nowhere as good as The Office or 3rd Rock to be honest. Manmeet looks kinda cute though ;)

  3. I don’t think the solution is that desis just don’t get involved in the media. There is nothing wrong with being a desi actor. Again, the more there are and the more power they get, hopefully the more they can try and change the typical perceptions and stereotypes that are portrayed. I think it’s tough for desi actors – they are caught between needing to work and having to take jobs that clearly just propagate stereotypes. I don’t begrudge them for that, they have to live too.

    There is a subtler level of stereotyping going on in this show. The boss and the guys with all the power are, of course, Americans. The people following orders and being converted to the American way are, of course, Indian. There is a US flag there, why is there no Indian flag there? Also, by making fun of Manmeet’s name the Indian man gets belittled.

    It also looks like they are going to have a storyline where one of the Indian girls falls for the American guy while he likes the American girl – so again the typical storyline. If they really want to change it up, they should get Manmeet to hook up with the American girl, become the boss and send the American guy home. Now that would be something I would watch!

  4. I, for one, is looking forward to watch this series. I really do hope it makes it.

    Now, come on, where in the world don’t you find people being stereotyped. Go back to India to see how Americans are stereotyped. My mom in India truly believes all Americans are hippies, crazed bitches, roaming on the streets half naked. Now, is that true? No. So, give Americans a break, will you?

    When you don’t live in that country and assimilate with the main stream culture, TV media is like a cultural guide-book. You tend to believe what you see on TV. So, people in India get to watch a lot of Paris Hilton on their television sets, and equate American women to her. As simple as that.

    When Americans see Bollywood movies and songs, they think that’s what Indians do. Just sing and dance at the drop of a hat. And, for those who have been fortunate to have interacted with desis in America(the H1-B category types), the show seems just right. There’s nothing like stereotyping indians. Most Indians are just like that. Like Russell Peters says, ” Indians are the cheapest people, closely followed by chinese and jews”, which is true to a large extent.

    I understand that this website largely caters to second, and third generation Indian-Americans. Maybe, you guys seem to take it as an offense when Indians are stereotyped because that it doesn’t fit your “types”, but Indians from india are just ok being stereotyped, i guess. That’s because we really do seem to fit that stereotype mold well. Do you know what i mean?

  5. “Like Russell Peters says, ” Indians are the cheapest people, closely followed by chinese and jews”, which is true to a large extent”.

    Though Peters is a comedian, this kind of remark is crude and uncalled for. There are too many Russel Peters moments which fit into what another poster said about laughing at us, rather than with us. Meaning Indians or ethnic Indians. Really awful that a person of Indian background would facilitate this deplorable behaviour. There is humour which can be appreciated by everyone, where a community can laugh at some of its traits, foibles etc. But humour at the expense of a group is not acceptable.

    Indians ‘sing and dance at the drop of a hat’? Which circles do you move in? And which Americans really feel this way? Most sensible people know that Bollywood is escapist fantasy, don’t they?

  6. I’m Indian American but I’m not offended by this show because it makes fun of my race. I’m offended because it’s not funny. Apparently NBC spends its millions upon millions of dollars developing unintelligent banter that caters to the lowest common denominator. It’s poorly written and reveals just how out of touch NBC executives are when it comes to what Americans think is funny. Also, there are WAY better things about Indian people to make fun of more than their accents (like being 28 years old and still asked to be home before sunset when I visit my parents).

    On a side note – NBC has pretty bad timing. When we just got through several weeks of a pastor threatening to burn Korans and a Muslim taxi cab driver was stabbed in the neck in NYC by some fat white kid – it might not be the best time to reinforce stereotypes. Neither one of those incidents may have involved members of the south Asian community, but I wouldn’t put it past some less educated Americans to allow this show to fuel their irrational xenophobia. I can take a joke and understand the difference between making fun of someone on network television and provoking someone on the street with insults about their race. I don’t know if some Americans can make that distinction.

    NBC hasn’t developed a single smart and funny show since Seinfeld. I can’t wait until they air their “Black people eating fried chicken and watermelon” variety hour or the “Mexican with more kids than he can support” miniseries. I’m just asking for NBC to put something on TV that’s intelligent and witty. The UK has done it a million times over with the “IT Crowd”, “Peep Show”, “Black Books”, “Spaced”, etc. etc.

  7. NBC hasn’t developed a single smart and funny show since Seinfeld.

    Incorrect. NBC currently airs 30 Rock, Community, and The Office which are three of the funniest shows on television. Aside from Big Bang Theory and How I Met Your Mother it’s basically the only non-Discovery Channel/Travel Channel/Food Network TV worth watching now that Lost is gone.

    And then, depending on your tastes, Chuck can be good. Not my cup of tea personally, but a well loved show with its own cult following. My Name is Earl gets reviewed well too, but I’ve never seen it. NBC also aired Scrubs which, though it jumped the shark now, was a damn fine show in is time.