Lights, Camera, Ramadan
A DRAMA FESTIVAL IN THE REGION OR A CLICHÉD COMMERCIALIZATION?
Photo: AlArabiya News.
By Aya Nassar
As Ramadan is coming to an end, and with it the peak of the series season is waving us goodbye, we can’t help but think of how the month has become a spectacle of its own in recent years. With a plethora of TV series and dramas being aired during this month, it has become a festival of sorts for series in all their different genres.
But the question remains: Can Ramadan be considered a drama festival of its own, or has it become too commercialized and cliché?
On one hand, Ramadan series have become a staple for almost all households during this month, with everyone gathering to watch their favorite shows and the ongoing online and offline discussion on the latest episode. This has given rise to a whole industry of producers, writers, and actors who cater to the demands of the masses. However, some argue that this has led to a decline in the quality of the shows, with many of them being formulaic and predictable.
One of the most common criticisms of Ramadan series is that they are often melodramatic and cliché, with the same tropes being repeated over and over again. From the family betrayals and never-ending schemes to rags-to-riches trope, these storylines have become a hallmark of Ramadan dramas. Some argue that this not only makes the shows boring and predictable but also often reinforces harmful stereotypes and negative perceptions of different social classes or people’s different backgrounds.
On the other hand, there are those who believe that Ramadan series still have the potential to showcase true cinematic talent and incredible stories. While there may be some formulaic shows, from time to time, there are also those that push boundaries and explore complex themes. These shows may not be as plentiful as other ones, but they are still there.
Collage reminiscing Ramadan. Photo: Dina Al-Mahdy.
Iconic Sherihan. Photo: Sayidaty.
So, can Ramadan be considered a drama festival of its own? We believe the answer is yes and no. Ramadan has become a time when people look forward to discovering which series their favorite artists, from actors and actresses to filmmakers, are releasing. Some of these series are clichéd, predictable, and seem to follow the same storylines every year. However, there are also some gems out there that showcase true talent and explore themes that open up much-needed conversations. The question is, what do you choose to watch?
In the question whether Ramadan, on a general scale, has become too commercialized, it's hard to deny that it has, but that doesn't mean that there isn't still room for creativity and artistic expression. It's important for us as audiences to demand better quality shows and support those that push boundaries and explore new territory.
At the end of the day, Ramadan may be a drama festival of its own, but it's up to us to ensure that it reflects the best of our culture. So, what are your favorite Ramadan series, either from this year or earlier years, and why do you think they stand out from the rest?