The Cultural Faux of the Sharmas and What ‘Bridgerton’ Season 2 Got Wrong About Indians

The Cultural Faux of the Sharmas and What ‘Bridgerton’ Season 2 Got Wrong About Indians

After waiting for a lot of time, and surviving what can be called the worst possible time in the 21st century, we finally were able to get our hands on Netflix’s Bridgerton Season 2. And it was everything that we hoped for, and at some points even better. However, there is no such thing as perfection, and Bridgerton proved it yet again. While the show has always done justice to the original story of the books, it did come short when depicting different cultures. The prime example of this is the portrayal of the South Asian culture in the latest season of the Regency drama.

It was rather obvious that we will be seeing a lot of South Asian culture in the second season of the show. Primarily because of the addition of the Sharma family into the London Ton. Hence, there were always doubts about how well it will be portrayed. While it gave audiences a lot of pleasure, Bridgerton Season 2 came short with a few things. In this post, we will look at the one thing Bridgerton got wrong about the culture of South Asia.

The out-of-place use of “Appa” by the Sharma sisters in Bridgerton Season 2

Well, apart from all the Hindi words that Kate and Edwina Sharma use in the second season of Bridgerton, there is but one word that feels a bit too peculiar. Phrases like “baap rey” and Edwina calling Kate “didi” throughout the course of the series hint at them having a North-Indian influence. However, they call their father “appa” which is something Tamilians and Malayalis use. And given that they are settled in Bombay, and have the Sharma surname, it all shows that they are originally from North India. But are they though?

There’s a possibility that Kate’s mother was of South Indian descent. However, the show doesn’t quite explore Kate’s origins or past for that matter. In that sense, Bridgerton focuses single-handedly on Anthony and his troubled courtship. Maybe, in the later seasons we can hope for more insight, but we doubt it because the next one is likely to be on Benedict.

ALSO READ: ‘Bridgerton’ Actress Charithra Chandran Almost Didn’t Play Edwina Sharma in the Series

What is Hindustani? And How does Edwina know it?

Well, for those who are joking and claiming that Hindustani is not an actual language and the show actually meant to say Hindi. Let us burst your bubble and tell you it is an actual language. A rather beautiful amalgam of Hindi and Urdu, this is a language native to North India, Pakistan, and the Deccan Plateau. So, Bridgerton Season 2 at least got that right.

However, the problem begins when you examine the possibility of Edwina knowing the language. Kate mentions her sister knows Marathi as well as Hindustani. Sure, given that they grew up in Bombay, it makes sense that she knows Marathi. But how can she possibly know Hindustani unless they are from North India or the Deccan region? Well, maybe they are from North India, then how can you explain their use of the phrase “appa”?

So, we thought these to be a little odd with the South Asian representation in Bridgerton Season 2. Regardless, the show has done a great job and portraying multiple cultures and is a prime example of inclusiveness. At the very least, they have started the tide on inclusiveness in Regency Era shows with an aim to make everyone feel seen. Tell us if you caught any more such references or issues from the latest season of the Netflix Original.

ALSO READ: “My crotch ripped and it’s all on camera”: Jonathan Bailey Describes His Crazy Wardrobe Malfunction on the Shoot of ‘Bridgerton’ season 2

Bridgerton Season 2 is now streaming globally on Netflix.

7 thoughts on “The Cultural Faux of the Sharmas and What ‘Bridgerton’ Season 2 Got Wrong About Indians

  1. Reply
    Priya
    March 27, 2022 at 1:52 pm

    Appa is not used in Malayalam only in Tamil. Cultural faux to be verified before writing this article.
    Both artistes playing the role of Kate and Edwina are tamilians. So they must be aware of this. For whatever reason the creators decided to go with the distortion is quite intriguing.

    1. Reply
      Parvathi Ajith
      March 27, 2022 at 11:25 pm

      In certain Malayali families, mainly Christian ones, ‘Appa’ used to address their father, which is a shorter version of the term ‘Appachha’

  2. Reply
    Vaanie Krishnan
    March 28, 2022 at 3:52 am

    What about the fact that haldi ceremonies are traditionally north indian? We dont do them in south indian culture. It warped everything and made us all one when we are all so different across the country.

    1. Reply
      Parvathi Ajith
      March 29, 2022 at 8:14 pm

      Precisely, the whole thing was a mix-up. Were they South Indians? Were they North Indians? No one could tell. On one hand, they follow North Indian customs like Haldi and on the other, they call their father “Appa.”

  3. Reply
    Sumana
    March 28, 2022 at 12:39 pm

    Appa and Sharma can co-exist. Sharma is Brahmin surname in South Indian states as well…. (you must have heard of cricketer Rohit Sharma whose mother tongue is Telugu). And she probably calls her sister Didi because of the Bombay/ Hindi upbringing. Appa is used in TN, Karnataka and Kerala. The really sad part was that their father’s identity was reduced to being “just an ordinary clerk”, and this whole show promotes the colonial slavery mindset.. Their only “Indianness” was in Kate’s chai preference, and using Haldi in the ceremony. Complete disregard for their Indian roots… Beginning from their names- Kate and Edwina…. The shocking part was that their mom appears to be half-Indian(Shobu Kapoor is their grandmom)… Just a big mess I would say.

    1. Reply
      Parvathi Ajith
      March 29, 2022 at 8:12 pm

      I totally agree! And that half-ass attempt at defining Kate’s heritage in the last episode with “Kathani” jeez!

  4. Reply
    Bridgerkilo
    March 29, 2022 at 7:30 pm

    Be happy that they start to include. As a German-Tamil I was surprised and smiled, as she called her dad „Appa“.

    I hope your analysis has nothing to do with the caste system or other disgusting things.

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