Comedian Ramy Youssef first made a splash appearing on The Late Show With Stephan Colbert when he performed 5 minutes of stand up that spoke about his Muslim identity in a witty way that had the crowd laughing 10 seconds in. It is no surprise that he is now executive producing and starring in his own Hulu show titled Ramy, which is set to premiere April 19th. Early reviews of the show have been overwhelmingly positive, making it a show that will be a necessary watch. The series of this magnitude is long overdue and for that reason alone, its arrival is important.
The show is also executive produced by Jerrod Carmichael, whose own series on NBC made waves as it tackled social issues ranging from race, gender, and even school shootings. In its three-season run, The Carmichael Show never shied away from uncomfortable topics, and from the Hulu trailer, Ramy seems to be following in its brave footsteps. The series has 10 episodes and each episode is rooted in Ramy’s real-life stand-up.
Much like his own life, Ramy follows a first-generation Arab-American Muslim living in New Jersey who is struggling to find himself. In the just-released trailer, you can see Ramy speaking with friends about being 30 years old and still grappling with the identity issues that arose from being caught between two cultural expectations. The culture clash emerges from a post-9/11 world that believes the term ‘Muslim-American’ is an oxymoron. In the previews, you also see him questioning whether he’s even a good enough Muslim to be accepted into his own community while dealing with explaining his beliefs to his non-Muslim friends.
What makes this new series so special is that it has never been done before. There has never been a show quite like Ramy that centers around the voices of young Arab-Americans like this. And as Ramy has said in his own interviews, Arabs have never had their ‘pop-culture’ moment. These truthful characters are finally taking the main stage, and the creators promise that they are going to have actual depth to them. In an interview with Vanity Fair, Ramy said his goal with this series is to not display his community as squeaky clean and polished people, nor is he playing into the harmful stereotypes we’re so used to seeing on screen. He’s simply showing his community as they are. “Meeting at our fault lines is much more interesting to me than meeting at shared values. I’m not trying to sell you something. If anything, I’m trying to show you where we are. There is nothing to hide.”
If a Hulu series isn’t enough, Ramy also has his first stand-up special set to premiere on HBO this summer. Between a stand-up special and this upcoming Hulu series, Ramy Youssef is making important strides for his community. Make sure you press play on April 19th to finally see Arab-Americans have their pop-culture moment!
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Why Hulu’s Upcoming ‘Ramy’ is an Important Show To Watch: Featured Image Credit: @Hulu on Instagram.