I may have watched the entire first season of Quantico last week, and I might have been fangirl excited about the fact the main character is Priyanka Chopra, former terrible actress of Bollywood who somehow became pretty good in Hollywood. (Dang! My dream of being a Bollywood star could come true!)
It’s not really so much who the actor is, but more that she’s a Bollywood actor. An actual Indian actor that I grew up watching, and she plays an Indian woman — American-born, but that’s something I can identify with as first generation Canadian.
In case you didn’t hear about it last year…
Quantico is a new TV series about an FBI agent who has been framed for a terrorist attack on Grand Central Station. THe show goes back to her time at Quantico with flashbacks because the culprit was in her class. It’s gearing up for its second season to be released in a few days.
Quantico is getting mixed reviews from critics and bloggers, but I’ll be the first to admit that I LOVED it.
First of all, the show is openly pretty feminist from the beginning.
The main character Alex Parrish (who, by the way, is biracial — awesome), sleeps with someone she met in a bar right away and later when she runs into him and he pretends not to know her she says, “Are you serious? We had sex six hours ago.”
He responds saying, “I thought you wouldn’t want others to know.”
And her response?
Yes! Why should a lady have to hide that she’s slept with someone, when men don’t have to?
Needless to say, I got really excited during that scene, ready to see what other awesomeness the show had in store.
And I’m so excited to finally see a show with an Indian actress!
I know that the first time a big Hollywood TV series features an Indian actress in a main role, it’s freaking Miss World who is gorgeous and probably one the lightest-skinned Indian women out there (feeding into the pale-skinned ideal) but it’s still so exciting!
It reminds me of the reaction that The Great Wall got from people in China. While a lot of the American internet exploded in anger about Matt Damon being cast, many Chinese people were happy to see their actors alongside a major Hollywood actor. Similarly, I’m less worried about how Priyanka Chopra is not the perfect representation of the average Indian woman, or how her thoughts on diversity are a little controversial.
I’m more happy to see someone of my culture in Hollywood!
I mean, when’s the last time you saw a female Indian actor in any Hollywood show?! Probably Aishwarya Rai in Bride & Prejudice… which was not great. And she was also a Miss World winner.
It’s amazing to see at least some representation of myself in the media. (I realize how sarcastic that sounds… but I’m being totally genuine!)
The funny thing is, while I was so excited, I didn’t expect to be mindblown.
It’s not that I had low expectations, I just really didn’t know what to expect. My mom told me Priyanka Chopra was surprisingly good in it, but I had a hard time believing it — her first Bollywood movie where I saw her in a leading role was a bit of a disaster in terms of her acting. And honestly, action series can be hit or miss.
So with that attitude, I was amazed at how she’s grown! I haven’t seen any Bollywood movies in a while, so if she’s been better for a while I didn’t know. But Quantico definitely showed me!
There’s also finally excellent female Muslim characters in the show.
There are two really important Muslim women in Quantico, and they are not nearly as stereotypical as you often find in Hollywood. They have different personalities that go beyond the “conservative good Muslim girl” stereotype, showing a full, well-rounded individual, as well as a less conservative, more headstrong young woman. (Gasp! These women could be real!)
Seriously, this show made big strides when it comes to equality.
But the most common negative comment I’ve seen about Quantico is that it’s far-fetched and kind of silly.
It’s been called a cross between Grey’s Anatomy and Homeland.
And it’s true — it does get a little cheesy and it can get a little confusing, but I mean, there are a million action shows and movies like that! Just because it’s a little predictable (which by the way, I didn’t find it always was) doesn’t make it a bad show.
I’ll admit that it’s possible I’m forgiving some of the silliness because I’m so excited about seeing an Indian woman in a main role, but honestly, if it were any other woman I’d probably enjoy it as well.
And it’s definitely better than CSI: Miami at least… but maybe not as good as White Collar.
Anyway, I still enjoy it! I’m interested in what they’re going to do with Season 2, which is confirmed to air September 25th — so get on Netflix and watch the first season so you can be ready!
What’s your favourite TV show right now?
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