Little Mosque is a vibrant and entertaining show that is clearly doing well as it enters its fourth season this fall (September 28, 2009).
The series focuses on the Muslim community in the fictional prairie town of Mercy, Saskatchewan. There is the local mosque, presided over by Imam Amaar Rashid and located in the rented parish hall of the town's Anglican Church, and Fatima's Café, a downtown diner run by Fatima Dinssa. You've also got Yasir Hamoudi, a construction contractor who fronted the money to establish the mosque by pretending that he was renting office space for his business. Yasir's 25-year-old daughter (with wife and convert Sarah) is a doctor and Islamic feminist, and she provides the "modern" and "moderate" female voice on the show.
Reviews of the show have been mixed, however, with many observing that Little Mosque is corny, more than anything else. Some feel that it makes non-Muslims seem like idiots, some think it's funny, and at least one commenter thinks the Muslim adviser to the show has made some mistakes.
The show does focus mainly on Islamic values; however, there are the typical ups and downs that are seen in other shows as well. There are the heartbreaks (can’t say between who, you’ll have to watch to find out!), the family fights, and the personal growth of certain characters. At times it can be witty, but as aforementioned, it is certainly corny. Little Mosque is a good pastime; one of those put-your-feet-up and relax shows, and it is definitely worth watching. The show touches on some Islamic issues that are very well explained and have intelligent, thought out answers. The show is not what I would consider to be controversial, although I have spoken to a few people in regards to the sitcom and they find that the show downplays a lot of religious issues, and frankly, they believe it doesn’t stress the importance of Islam.
In my opinion, I think they are doing the best they can. I mean, in the post 9/11 era, you can’t expect television producers to throw out some Islamic values at society and expect them to accept it wholeheartedly. There will be questions and demands—a whole lot of issues that need to be dealt with first. So far, they’ve done a good job at explaining the Islamic way to do things, and though I’d also like to see more emphasis on the importance of Islam, I think for now, it’s going at a good pace. It’s humorous and contains a good storyline—what more could an audience want?
You can watch it at Monday’s at 8:30pm on CBC television.