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Top Ramadan TV show satirizes, irks Saudi hardliners FEATURE 08/27/2010

Friday, August 27, 2010

Top Ramadan TV show satirizes, irks Saudi hardliners



FEATURE

08/27/2010
JEDDAH — There’s little sacrosanct — including the tradition of polygamy cherished by many Muslim men — in the most popular Saudi TV series during the holy fasting month of Ramadan.

Turning the tables on conservative Islamic beliefs, Tash ma Tash has again sparked huge laughs and huge controversy this month by depicting a Muslim woman not just married to four husbands, but also wanting to divorce one of them in order to marry someone else.

The episode brought cheers from Saudi women, but was met with rage by religious scholars, with one calling for the arrest of the show’s producers.

“I appeal to the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques (Saudi King Abdullah) to bring those (producers) and the channel that broadcasts this series to trial,” Sheikh Saad al-Buraik said on the Saudi religious channel, Daleel, hours after the episode was broadcast.

Plunging into the forbidden and courting the ire of Saudi Arabia’s powerful, arch-conservative clerics is nothing new for Tash ma Tash — named after a Saudi game similar to the coin-tossing “heads or tails.”

Shown annually during the peak TV viewing period of Ramadan by the Dubai-based, Saudi-owned satellite broadcaster MBC, progressives and conservatives await eagerly to see what the show’s writers come up with.

This year it tackles everything from relations between Islam and Christianity to the tradition of Muslim men taking up to four wives.

“We wanted to present an inverted image to reveal the injustice and suffering of a woman whose husband marries multiple wives without a need for it,” Tash actor Abdullah al-Sadhan told the local daily Okaz.... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20100827com6.html


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