OP-ED

Hami Hamak Loses Most of its Audience

National Yemen

Actors of Hami Hamak

By Tamjid Alkohali

“It’s a heavy blood comedy.” That was Akram’s description for the Hami Hamak serial, which airs on Alsaeedah TV every Ramadan, after watching it.  The title Hami Hamak reflects the people’s concerns about different problems in their lives.  The serial was displayed for five years, and this is the sixth year respectively. Despite the serial earning a high rate of viewership every year, it has lost many of its viewers significantly this year for many reasons.

According to the broadcaster Abdulrahman Al-Abed, Hami Hamak serial this year carries among its events political aims belonging clearly to the Reform Party, which is one of the rival parties of the former regime.

“Its no matter if the serial works to document the political events that take place in the history of the country, but not in a way that makes us feel there is specific policy the serial tries to impose it on the viewer,” he said.

Al-Abed emphasized that the serial this year is promoting the Reform Party in Yemen, and this direct political orientation will lose the serial a lot of viewers.

Huda, another viewer of Hami Hamak serial, said that unlike the last years through which the serial was treating social issues, it came this year carrying the Reform Party’s opinion about the political situation in Yemen, and trying to convince the people on it by drawing a yellow smile on their faces because of the lack of humor.

“After Sheikh Tafah, the head of the village, was arrested last year, the serial began this year with many problems which are caused by Sheikh Tafah, but in an indirect way like abductions and fabricating crises. All these events are similar to what happened in Yemen these days and the serial tries to convince people that all Yemen’s problems are due to the former regime,” Huda explained.

Huda added that the return of the character Tafah this year made the serial boring. It was supposed to offer a new story with a new issue in order to make the serial more interesting.

Akram, a father of three children described Hami Hamak serial as a heavy blood comedy. He said that after ending the first episode of the serial he noticed a disappointment filling the eyes of his children who are waiting eagerly to watch Zambaka, one of the main characters in the serial.

According to Akram, his children felt disappointed because Sheikh Tafah returned again after he was arrested last year.

“I tried to watch the serial, but I couldn’t fish it. In fact, there is a repeat in the scenario, scenes, and places as well as the artificiality and affectation in performing the roles,” Akram explained.

From the point of view of Akram, Zambaka reflects a bad side of Yemeni woman in the Tehama governorate, because they portray pictures of very ugly women. Also, their roles are close to the clown role, more than the dramatic comic personalities.

Unfortunately, objections of people for Hami Hamak serial this year don’t stop here. Ghadeer, 33 years, said that the serial is a media war against the people of the Marib governorate, because it shows them as monsters and bandits without mentioning any of their positives qualities, though people of Marib are known for generosity and cooperation.

“If there are vandals from Marib, they are few. The serial shouldn’t circulate the image to everyone,” she added.

Ghadeer doesn’t deny that the serial was discussing social issues like Injustice, revenge, and ignorance, but this year it repeats the same scenario, so she decided to not watch it.

Hami Hamak is a comedy drama. It’s considered one of the most important programs on Alsaeedah TV during Ramadan. The serial aims to simulate reality through the main characters Zambaka and Shutter as well as a group of Yemeni, Syrian and Egyptian actors.

However, this year the serial shows clearly the events that happened in Yemen during the year, which make some people think that it has political aims and some other refuse the repetition.