You must avoid making your characters become caricatures if you want to produce a successful show or movie about young people. In numerous films, youngsters are depicted as a group of irresponsible individuals who consume alcohol and marijuana. This may be true in many instances, but it is not all those young people are about.
Mismatched, a new series on Netflix, depicts a remarkably diverse bunch of adolescents. However, this diversity is only scratched on the surface, and the show fails to capitalize on its virtues.
In Jaipur, a group of adolescents is enrolled in a three-month computer programming course. Each episode is told from a different student’s perspective. This is a love story between Dimple (Koli), a ‘career-centric’ know-it-all, and Rishi (Saraf), who loves Bollywood and his grandparents’ love story.
Rishi’s grandma is a member of a “faith no bar, location no bar” WhatsApp group to find him a wife. Her mother sends Dimple to college for her to meet her future spouse. Moreover, they are both 17 years old.
While we adore a good romantic comedy, and both Dimple and Rishi have adorable moments throughout the six episodes, we can’t help but notice the problems that are staring us in the face. In the pursuit of being edgy and unique, Dimple’s character has a strong “I’m not like other girls” mentality.
On the other hand, Rishi likes Dimple because she doesn’t “require make-up, like other girls.”
The show’s diverse cast of characters makes it entertaining to watch. However, the show focuses excessively on Dimple and Rishi to the detriment of other plotlines. We wish to learn more about the family life of the lesbian-in-concealment girl. We wish to learn more about the youngster who suffers from alopecia in secrecy.
The gaming whiz was rendered crippled by accident. Whoever conceals her socioeconomic status from her acquaintances. We think the creators are saving these stories for future seasons. But what happens if it is not renewed for a second season?
Vidya Malvade’s portrayal of Zeenat Karim, a 41-year-old widow who returns to school to begin a new inning in her life, is the only tale executed flawlessly. She confides to Ranvijay Singh’s character that her initial emotion of her husband’s death was one of relief. This is quite likely the most lovely moment in the show.
Mismatched is a show that should be viewed for what it is, a weekend binge-worthy teen drama. It would be unreasonable to expect the show to contain great depth.
When will authors learn to let their queer characters be unapologetic versions of themselves? Why are LGBT characters generally viewed as plot devices for the protagonist’s straight character?
I am weary of celebrating in representations that are then exploited to inflict severe suffering. Why was this character’s trauma so easy to criticize if the show had been so accustomed to glossing over reality? Much to think about.
A final note to Netflix India, writers’ rooms, and young-adult narrative makers everywhere: can we just stop casting adults as teenagers? Big spectacles, purple hair, and do not make them appear to be seventeen; believe me on this. If we continue, we’ll wind up in Riverdale territory, and you do not want that.
And it wouldn’t be if the disastrous season finale didn’t leave me wanting more (i.e., an explanation). If you’re seeking a decent concert, you should continue browsing. But if you want a few pleasant moments and background noise, this is the binge for you.