Currently Watching: NBC’s Outsourced

I’m sure a lot of people are scratching their heads, wondering why a show like Outsourced is still airing when their favourite, <insert name>, got canceled right after the premiere. To the naysayers, I say, “Ha!” Although, I acknowledge there is a large chance, given the competitive market, we won’t see a second season….

I thought the show was great from the first episode and even got a little fooled and wondered if they didn’t film in India. If they did, they really cleaned up a street and I knew it would be more crowded and dirtier than depicted. And it seemed like a valid question given five of the eight actors shown below look and sound to me like they are authentic Bollywood stars. And couldn’t production costs be much lower than in the United States? Quick Google and I’m bashful to learn that the show is filmed in L.A. and scenes of a street in India are way off the mark.

The vocal and Asian-American blogs cried foul but I think they focus on quirky Indian cultural traits and habits just as much as Americans are being poked fun of. There is an unfair and unsophisticated number of jokes made about smells and a touch of toilet humour, but Charlie Davies (played by Diedrich Bader of The Drew Carey Show fame) is a red-blooded American poking fun at macho, military, and American attitudes. Another platform to make fun of Americans is the farcical novelty items the call center worker need to learn how to sell–their initial reaction to most items is, “Why would anyone want this?” while staring at a cheesehead hat or fart noise-making device.

Beneath the colour–and you do learn something new every week, and you remember it because of its comedic context–Outsourced is a simple and engaging comedy with some cariactures of people with regular dilemmas that need to be solved. Todd, Tonya, and Charlie bond over being expats and frustrations running their respective call centers; Todd learns how to befriend people he never before spent time with in his seeming mid-West-ish background; and characters grow from having known each other.

Personally, I think a good ole sitcom comedy is refreshing when the scene is flooded with “sophisticated” and quirky fare (Glee and The Office, anyone?). Yay for a really diverse cast making it this far!

I think the above photo was taken very early on as I do not recognize the woman at the farthest left. Presumably, she was first slated to play Tonya and was replaced by gorgeous Pippa Black.

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