Pakistan

The Burka Avenger, Pakistan's Newest Superhero

Rescues a girl's school from a corrupt politician in the premiere episode

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i shall become a bat, or not
Geo TV

A new children's show called "Burka Avenger" premieres in Pakistan next month. It features a female superhero in a fictional northern Pakistani town, and two regular villains meant to reflect the reality in Pakistan; a corrupt government official and an evil magician styled to look and feel like a Taliban commander. The show was created by Pakistani pop star Haroon Rashid. Rashid explained the use of the burka as the costume, via the AP:

Rashid, who is certainly no radical Islamist, said he used a burka to give a local feel to the show, which is billed as the first animated series ever produced in Pakistan.

"It's not a sign of oppression. She is using the burka to hide her identity like other superheroes," said Rashid. "Since she is a woman, we could have dressed her up like Catwoman or Wonder Woman, but that probably wouldn't have worked in Pakistan."

Each episode has a "moral," focusing on issues like girls education and the problem with discrimination. The first episode, which was screened to a group of Pakistani orphans, focused on the evil magician and the corrupt politician working together to try to shut down the local girls' school, where the Burka Avenger works as a teacher when she's not a superhero. The show has the potential to push back against radical Islamists seeking more influence in Pakistan and provide a media role model of sorts for young Pakistani girls. The Burka Avenger is not the only superhero in Pakistan—there's Commander Safeguard, created by an advertising agency to sell soap.

h/t Bardas Phocas

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38 responses to “The Burka Avenger, Pakistan's Newest Superhero

  1. Of course, during the end credits of each episode, whatever school or mosque or playground she just saved from the evil magician gets bombed by American drones.

    1. I’m gonna be watching this. Really interested to see if/how the “America issue” is treated on the show

      1. That will be interesting to see. Keep reporting on it.

      2. Be helpful in that case to get an understanding of where the financing for the production is coming from, if at all possible.

        1. It sounds like it’s coming from Haroon, who’s the owner of the production company behind it, Unicorn Black.

          1. Good luck to her, and I hope she shells out enough coin for a top-notch security detail.

    2. I’m against the consistent drone strikes in Pakistan, but Americans should take this as a sign that we really aren’t the most pressing issue Pakistan has.

      My bet is that drone strikes are as abstract as drive-by shootings to the Pakistanis. They hear about them, but since they tend to happen on the sparsely-populated border regions, not many people know someone who was impacted.

      Again, I’m against the strikes. But I am also glad to see the Pop culture there considers its biggest problem to be corrupt government and radicals.

  2. Does she still wear the burka when working as a teacher in her non-superhero role?

    1. Apparently not.

      Link with a trailer

      1. Then how is it a disguise, other than the same disguise that many other women in Pakistan wear.

  3. I think this is a really positive sign. And god knows, I very rarely say that.

    1. It does seem like it is, so I must be missing something big.

  4. Sounds like idolatry to me.

  5. Typical cosmotarianism:

    “Southern Avenger” on Rand Pauls staff=BAD

    “Burka Avenger” on Paki TV= GOOD

    “Since she is a woman, we could have dressed her up like Catwoman or Wonder Woman, but that probably wouldn’t have worked in Pakistan.”

    American Exceptionalism FTW!

    1. What?

      1. Either SIV is being sarcastic or he’s retarded. No one has yet been able to discern the truth.

        1. Maybe SIV’s secretly a hipster, and he’s only being retarded in an ironic fashion?

    2. SIV is getting more and more retarded.

      1. That had to be a spoof.

        Please tell me it was a spoof.

        1. When superheroines wear burkas the terrorists win.

  6. I’ve been trying to root for Pakistan for a while now, but it’s so depressing. It seems there is a contingent within the population who really want to step up and advance their position in life, but circumstances are stacked against them.

    Besides, Pakistan seems to produce some hotties.

    1. “It seems there is a contingent within the population who really want to step up and advance their position in life, but circumstances are stacked against them.”

      That’s certainly true in Iran as well, and I believe it was largely such a contingent in Egypt who pushed for the ouster of the fundamentalist-aligned Morsi.

  7. It features a female superhero in a fictional northern Pakistani town

    Meanwhile, in the very real Pakistan, a Taliban commander blames a 16 y/o girl for ‘asking for it’ when some other Taliban decided to shoot her

    http://afpak.foreignpolicy.com….._yousafzai

    Rashid…espoused the group’s argument that it attacked the girl, not for going to school, but for running a smear campaign against them. He closes the 1,863-word letter by encouraging Yousafzai to return to Pakistan, “adopt the Islamic and Pushtoon culture, join any of the female Islamic madrassas near your home town, study and learn the book of Allah.”

    You be a good little girl now, and get back in the kitchen.

    And of course, in the rest of Pakistan, people think this kind of blatant misogyny is horrifying, right?

    Erm.

    However, since [the shooting], opinion has hardened against the girl. Last week, on the local Pakistani language versions of the BBC website, in the national language Urdu and the Pashto spoken in her native Swat, the majority of comments were venomously against the schoolgirl. Some even described her as a “prostitute.”

    Detractors seized on the assistance and attention Ms. Yousafzai received from Western governments and media after the attack. Her appearance at the United Nations seemed to confirm the view that she was somehow working on a Western agenda.

    1. Last week, on the local Pakistani language versions of the BBC website, in the national language Urdu and the Pashto spoken in her native Swat, the majority of comments were venomously against the schoolgirl.

      Statist media supporting the state? Shocking!

      Question: If Rachel Maddow went to Saudi Arabia, would it be required to wear a burka?

    2. The existence of Pakistan is a disgrace. India should’ve terminated it decades ago.

      1. Not sure if serious.

        1. With Cychotoxic, assume seriousness when the desire for death and war is displayed.

      2. I suspect India is quite pleased that so many Islamonutters who might otherwise be in India, aren’t.

  8. TYhere is a dude that knows what time it is. WOw.

    http://www.Only-Anon.tk

  9. I’m a guy, but I always wear a burka when I go out and fight corrupt government officials. It fits my figure *and* conceals my face.

    Of course, I originally wanted to wear a *white* burka, but my PR consultant vetoed the idea. Don’t know why.

    1. Because a conehead wearing a white burka could be misinterpreted in the American South.

      1. Not to mention Indiana, Oregon and California, heavy Klan areas in the 1920s.

  10. On next week’s episode, the Burka Avenger must face her nemesis in the one place where all of her powers are stripped away: France

  11. “The Burka Avenger is not the only superhero in Pakistan?there’s Commander Safeguard, created by an advertising agency to sell soap.”

    I’m so proud of you guys, they lob this softball at you but none of you is tasteless enough to reply with an offensive joke.

    1. But Commander Safeguard is there to assure you won’t be offensive!

      Actually I’ve encountered him on YouTube while I was doing soap-related searches.

  12. Has anybody asked for Johnny Chimpo’s opinion on this?

    1. He said he wants a mustache ride.

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