5 Thoughts I Had About ‘The Family Man’ Season 2 Trailer. Mainly, What’s With Samantha Akkineni’s Brownface?
I don’t think I’ve ever met anyone who didn’t like a good spy story. When we were young and adventurous, the style, the secrecy, the cool perks and gadgets of the spy life was what enticed us the most. But as we grow older, and do more that tiresome thing called adulting, we understand that the logistics of it all can be a nightmare. I can’t even keep a regular job without my family complaining about it, imagine what people who work in special covert ops and spy organisations manage to keep their sanity intact! We got a glimpse of that ‘how’ with The Family Man on Amazon Prime Video, starring Manoj Bajpayee, Priyamani, Sharib Hashmi, Sharad Kelkar and more. And now, creators Raj and DK are back with The Family Man Season 2, the trailer for which dropped fresh and early on Wednesday morning. This one adds Samantha Akkineni to its cast, and she plays a suicide bomber that Bajpayee’s Srikant would be chasing this season.
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This marks the OTT debut of Samantha Akkineni, and while the role looks pretty interesting, described as a brutal and worthy adversary for Srikant’s exemplary spy, Sam herself looks… erm… problematic as hell. The otherwise fair-skinned actor is clearly wearing a brownface, and it’s pretty hard to ignore. But, for you, Manoj Bajpayee, I will try. The trailer packs a heavy dose of humour which seamlessly mingles with the serious thrill of foiling another threat to the nation, in typical Family Man fashion. And Srikant’s FOMO and his marriage driving him to couple’s therapy is probably going to bring in more of that!
Clearly, watching the trailer is a mixed bag of emotions, both good and bad.
Here are five thoughts I had about The Family Man Season 2 trailer:
1. The new additions to The Family Man 2 cast are quite bomb! While some from Season 1, like Vedant Sinha, Mahek Thakur, Shreya Dhanwanthary and Sharad Kelkar return, there’s a whole new bunch of actors I spotted in the trailer that got me excited, particularly Seema Biswas! There’s also Darshan Kumar, Sunny Hinduja, Shahab Ali, as well as some actors from the Tamil movie industry, including Mime Gopi, Ravindra Vijay, Devadarshini Chetan, Anandsami and N. Alagamperumal.
2. Some of the show’s funniest moments come from Srikant being the titular ‘family man’. And it looks like there’s more of that in Season 2. Manoj Bajpayee is brilliant all the time, but I think I enjoy his Srikant’s scenes with his kids, played by Vedant Sinha and Mahek Thakur, the most. Vedant is already up to some hilarious antics, I see!
3. It’ll be interesting to see the direction Srikant’s FOMO about his job and his marriage is headed toward. As I mentioned before, it’s easy to get caught up in the whole ‘spy’ fantasy. But most spies do lead extremely lonely lives and that can leave them very emotionally messed up. In the event that they do form relationships or a family, like Srikant has, there’s always the risk and tension of having their identity discovered and their family put in danger.
For Srikant though, the problems are not exactly this high octane, but that doesn’t mean the stakes aren’t high! His marriage is pretty much on the rocks, and I like the couple therapy plotline being explored here! Since we know he lies a lot and is amazing at it, it’s going to be an entertaining angle, I am sure.
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4. It’s going to be a bittersweet feeling, watching the late Asif Basra on screen. The actor, who plays a counsellor in this season, died by suicide last November, and this will probably be one of the last times we see him on screen.
5. Erm, what’s with Samantha Akkineni’s skin colour? Yay for more strong female characters but why are we still brownfacing in this time? So many instances of brownfacing—from Bhumi Pednekar in Bala to most recently Konkona Sen Sharma in Ajeeb Daastaans—have been called out for this. If the character is supposed to be dusky or dark complexioned, or belonging to a particular region where people’s physical attributes are a certain way, why won’t you cast actors who look like that organically? Samantha Akkineni is a far cry from her that!
The Family Man Season 2 will arrive on Amazon Prime Video on June 4, 2021.