Knock Ourselves Down

Remove this cheap shot at Persians


Knock Ourselves Down
by Marjaneh Zomorodi

Isn't it odd how we Iranians sometimes seem to go out of way to knock ourselves down?

Last week we all felt a euphoric pride after the movie "A Separation" won The Oscar. The beautiful heartfelt words Mr. Asghar Farhadi used to accept the Oscar were:

"At this time, many Iranians all over the world are watching us and I imagine them to be very happy. They are happy not just because of an important award or a film or filmmaker, but because at the time when talk of war, intimidation, and aggression is exchanged between politicians, the name of their country Iran is spoken here through her glorious culture, a rich and ancient culture that has been hidden under the heavy dust of politics. I proudly offer this award to the people of my country, a people who respect all cultures and civilizations and despise hostility and resentment."

“A Separation” is the story of a typical family going through normal life issues, a sentiment any culture would appreciate. The film is about the struggle of a mother wanting the best for her daughter, the struggle of a son taking care of his elderly father. These are the issues most Iranian American families are concerned with every day; kind, upstanding and respectful sentiments.

Enter “Shah's of Sunset," produced by Ryan Seacrest. There we go again knocking ourselves down. I would venture to speculate that one of the reasons there was a revolution reportedly was to prevent our children from becoming the Britney Spears or worse Beverly Hills wannabes.

Yes, there are many different Iranian Americans, just like any other culture. But must we sell our souls, our dignified ancient culture to Hollywood? Do we really want to keep in the same rank of “Jersey Shore” Girls or Snookie? Many Iranians try hard every day to represent our culture in a dignified light.

A few weeks ago I attended a presentation by three Iranian American filmmakers. You can see their work on // “Bridges TO Iran”. All of them showed the kind of humanity and respect we have been known for centuries.

I watched the preview of "Shahs of Sunset,” and as an Iranian American, I was mortified! Why do we do this to ourselves? In this climate of misunderstandings, talk of war, must we sell our beautiful culture? In the same ranks of cheap vulgar reality shows!? It seems to me most of us have tried very hard to demonstrate who we are, as Mr. Farhadi alluded to in his acceptance speech at The Oscars.

There are petitions being signed all over this country to have this cheap shot at Persians removed. This can affect the lives of many Iranian Americans. It’s important to remember we don't all live in Beverly Hills. Do we really want to show the world that our deep-seated pride has come to this kind of presentation?

Certainly the title itself portrays the betrayal of our history. The Shah's?! Are these the same people that used to drive their BMW's with license plates that read “Persian Prince”? Please consider signing these petitions. Most of us have gone through our share of being misunderstood these last 33 years; we have put up with too much. Most of us are too proud to yet allow another cheap shot being taken at Iranians. This petition has been started by 20...year olds that have never been to Iran. As parents, being older and wiser, I am proud to add my name to this list. We need to support our Iranian-American youth in their pride of preserving their culture. Let's not knock them down!

Please read and sign this petition. Thank you.


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by Yana on

They got the dough and they want to show it and make more "MONEY", you don't like it don't watch it, va salam shod tamam.  All this BS about "petition" to stop filming is out of hesadat, and why some of you even compare this with the movie "Seperation", as our great poet Hafez as said it somewhere (I am sure) in one of his poems "gooz be shaghighe che rabt dareh?" .

shad zee



A Separation.

by Farfromheaven2002 on

Separation was a brilliant movie.  The movie was made inside a suppressed country.  Mr. Farhadi acknowledged that the success of the movie was because of the pressure and limitations.  The success of the movie was because it passed all nonsense regulations of a suppressed country in a smart way.  So the director and the writer had to think two times before making any moves. 

Mr. Farhadi answered to a reporter that he didn’t think that working in suppressed country was worth the success because it was/is “too dangerous”.

There are many other examples of a successful work in suppressed countries.  Please go to Persepolis and count number of  dead bodies who were buried under each wall layer.


Popularity makes a TV show a "success".

by Farfromheaven2002 on

Popularity makes a TV show a "success".  Kardashian’s shows became popular and successful not because everybody loves to be like them.  It was because everybody watched the show and they were lots of talk.  A popular TV show shouldn’t portray an ordinary life of an Iranian.  Who is going to watch my life?  I can watch my own life, which is more real, but too boring for me.

A TV show has to trigger or activate a mechanism in a person's mind by attractive subjects like cooking exquisite food like Fesenjoon or attractive objects like wearing gold and marble.


Wiki definition of Television.

by Farfromheaven2002 on

Commercially available since the late 1920s, the television set has become commonplace in homes, businesses and institutions, particularly as a vehicle for advertising, a source of entertainment, and news.”

No one can influence the world more than celebrities.  That’s why 30 seconds advertisement during Oscar show costs billions of dollars. 

The show is also a must for Iranians.

(a)    There should be a TV show to represent Iranian women who are independent, are not tortured by their husbands, not forced to marry in their early 20s.  Iranian woman is able to stay single because he is financially stable, emotionally independent and she doesn't need to clean up after a husband or being cleaned up.  The present typical example of Iranian females is not a real woman.  A typical example is about Iranian woman who hides behind her degree because she has only One Thing to offer.

(b)   There should be a TV show to present Iranian men who are able to represent themselves; other than imitating behavior through a forced cultural attitude.  Haven’t you seen Iranian men?  Most act like a parrot to repeat things.  A man has to be a real man to represent his own self.

maziar 58


by maziar 58 on

Thanks A O

for pointing the truth  on your observation.

BUT that show is just a show and to entertain the audiences

that's all and luckily this time they picked EYranians fine with me.

And Asa is that Ahwazi girl who brought you the fesenjoon clip on IC  couple of monthes ago ! 



Good for the cast of Shah's of Sunset. I hope they have live sex

by fanoos on

on the stage and bring in multiple partners! It is time for the Iranian psyche to transform from diaper-wearing clergies to young and free spirited people who want nothing but having fun, material possession, and most importantly sex and lots of it! I say good for the cast of the show. I would have joined them in a flash but I am too old and too saggy.


I have a hallucination , The show will not be fair

by amirparvizforsecularmonarchy on

in any way, it will intentionally misrepresent the majority of Iranians in beverly hills.  It will twist characters and focus on being ghetto in order to be popular with trailer park communities and make lots of money from advertizing revenues, iranians will know it is totally fake, but sadly no one else will know.

Anahid Hojjati

I think it will be fun to watch

by Anahid Hojjati on

I normaly don't watch this type of reality show but I think I will enjoy this one. There are many Iranians in Diaspora who are shallow, only thinking about beauty/wealth/image, etc and I have a feeling that to watch them will be fun. No petition is needed. When they have shows like housewives of Atlanta/LA/New York/etc/etc, do you think people in those cities start petitioning. Iranians have arrived and this show is the proof of it. They now recogize that Iranians are a sizeable population in the US and they have also found out that there are many shallow Iranians who make up for good reality TV.

Anonymous Observer

On point Bahmani

by Anonymous Observer on

Unfortunately, sitting quietly in America's shadows and accumulating obscene amounts of wealth and not taking control of the image of Iranian-Americans, and presenting it to America properly, opens the door for Americans like Seacrest to do it for us.

Now maybe Iranians will get more involved in their local communities, vote more, volunteer more, donate more, represent true-Iranian values more, and most importantly object more, and take charge of their destiny here and now.

You forgot to add: accumulating obsecne amount of wealth AND spending it Iran on real estate and vacations.  

No one has isoltaed Iranians in America and elsewhere more than themselves.  The overwhleming majority of Iranians do not want to integrate.  Mentally, they still live in Iran, even if their physical presence is in the West.  And that goes across the board.  It applies to "bazaari" Iranians as well as the "educated" class.  Just bait them a bit and start talking about Guantanamo, etc., and you will see the anti-U.S. drivel pour out of their pie--or in this case--kabab holes.  They have no allegiance to the U.S.  Everything is the BEST in Iran.  The country is the most beautiful, the people are the best...even the government in Iran is better than the U.S.!  The U.S. is alwys the aggresor, blah, blah, blah...yet, they still prefer to live in this sub-standard country. 

Look, Senator Daniel Inouye's parents were in a Japanese American internment camp during WWII, and he honorably served in the U.S. military.  He earned four medals, Medal of Honor, the Bronze Star, a Purple Heart and the WWII Victory Medal.  By contrast, I once wrote a blog asking Iranian Americans whether they would fight for America as they promised to do on their citizenship applications (in case of a draft).  They were about to rip my head off.  They all said that they will be "conscientious objectors."  Right there you see the difference.  We really don't deserve any better than what we have.

Marjaneh Zomorodi

Shah's of Sunset

by Marjaneh Zomorodi on

Amen! YOU said it better than I could...please get involved...we need to care more:) Thx


Shah's of Sunset A Much Needed wake up call

by bahmani on

The formula for a good reality show is the "ICK" factor. The Ickier a situation , the more people watch.

I am 100% sure that everyone Iranian or American will go "Ick!" when they see the distorted lens that Seacrest and Co. are about to cast on Iranian-Americans, or shall I start to differentiate us now, LA-Iranian-Americans.

Unfortunately, sitting quietly in America's shadows and accumulating obscene amounts of wealth and not taking control of the image of Iranian-Americans, and presenting it to America properly, opens the door for Americans like Seacrest to do it for us.

Now maybe Iranians will get more involved in their local communities, vote more, volunteer more, donate more, represent true-Iranian values more, and most importantly object more, and take charge of their destiny here and now.

Most Iranians in the US harbor this "sickness" of sitting in their heated pools of inaction, quietly hoping and waiting to see what happens in Iran, and I often wonder if they are really hoarding all that cash so they can go back home in style one day.

Because they ain't doing much with it here, that's for dang sure.

What is also for sure though, is that the diseased tissue samples of deformed, gross, and hideous Iranians that Seacrest has collected for his freak-show, will be truly beyond bizarre.

Living in California, I would like to think that I have seen every kind of socially inept, embarrassing Iranian character, from rude drunks, to a turrets of racist and sexist comments, to the idiot Tonys who changed their easily pronounceable first name from Mehdi, but kept the Asghar-Gholi-Zadeh last name.

But I have never seen anything like we are about to see on "Shah's of Sunset", this Sunday night March 11, at 10/9c on Bravo.

I encourage everyone to watch, and take a good look at what America will now be thinking of you as they form an entirely new negative stereotype of Iranians.

Sometimes you need to stare long and hard at a distorted reflection of yourself, in order to see your real demons.

To read more bahmani posts visit: //

Do Not Shoot Me

Petition, my foot!

by Do Not Shoot Me on

There are some Iranians in LA exactly like this. I don't understand. What's the surprise?  Stop pretending that you don't know !!

Oon Yaroo

If you were to file a petition for all the dumb-down-ization in

by Oon Yaroo on

America, you would have 300, 000, 000 of them!

Once upon a time, if you wanted to fly across the country, you would have to take a shower, put some nice cloths on, splash some cologne, and they would not charge you for the extra luggage.....!

Once upon a time, if you wanted to come to America, you would have to pass an English exam, get an admission from an accredited school, wait in line in front of the US embassy, get a visa, buy plane tickets, and hopefully the US customs would let you in...!

Once upon a time, if you wanted to purchase a house, you would have to have a job, apply and qualify for a loan and if the bank assessed your assets viable then they would give you the money...!

Once upon a time, if you wanted to go out with a girl, you would have to play nice and plan way in advance, buy gifts, and flowers, later tell her you love her ... and maybe you would get something in return!

Once upon a time, if you wanted to be on TV or cinema in America, you would have to be at least 6' 2", handsome/beautiful, have talent, have a good voice, well-mannered, blond-haired, blue-eyed,....!

The list goes on and on...!



I have boycotted the show and all others like it...

by Bavafa on

By killing my TV many years ago.  But admit, trash shows like this can and will have a huge impact on how Iranians are portrait.  Although it maybe stereotyping, but not much else can be expected from the LA type Iranian-American crowd and the so called “Persian princess”

'Hambastegi' is the main key to victory 


G. Rahmanian

33 years of damage!

by G. Rahmanian on

If for the past 33 years the primitive Islamists with their stone-age Shari'a dogmas have not damaged the "Iranian culture," I don't think one show can do much in damaging it, either.

I can't think of anything more humiliating than the fact that our country is being ruled by the criminal Islamists currently in power.


Get a grip, stop the name calling

by TheMrs on

"Isn't it odd how we Iranians sometimes seem to go out of way to knock ourselves down?" Your sentence is a put down. And you didn't even go out of your way. 

There are plenty of shows that are trashy and portray people in one way or other. Inam yekish. Bi khialesh baba hoseleh dari. I'm not embarassed by it. It has nothing to do with me. My identity isn't defined by some Ryan Seacrest show.

And for god's sake stop the Oscar comparisons. Ye filmeh irooni oscar bordeh, enghad hameh khodash mikonan ke PUHLEEZ. Everyone is on a rampage now, comparing everything to Seperation this Seperation that...

Just accept that people have a different sense of humour. Heck, maybe if we see things we don't like we might start dealing with some cultural hang ups. There are all kinds of people out there, all kinds of Iranians. So this is probably a show on a segment of our society. Caricaturized. I'm sure there are better things to write about. 

Marjaneh Zomorodi

thank you

by Marjaneh Zomorodi on

The beauty of this country and is we can all express our opinions.

Marjaneh Zomorodi

thank you

by Marjaneh Zomorodi on

Sometimes, some of us parents need a reminder:)

The Prince


by The Prince on

Shahs of Sunset?!! Please, gag me with a spoon or just shoot me and put me out of my misery!! Are you kidding me?!!

This is the shit that even Kardashian watchers call Shit!

Forget about downgrading Iranians. This garbage is a global insult to all humans!!!

It’ll be better to just grab a pile of dog shit and smear it all over your TV screen. Then sit back on your couch, without washing your hands, and just watch the dog shit drip down your TV, while you’re stuffing your face with a three year old bag of Cheetos!!!


These vapid attention mongers can go to hell, but...

by Dara_N on

I'll admit, when I first saw an ad for this despicable show, I immediately posted a very disappointed and angry rant on Facebook. But honestly, that was more for my own catharsis than anything else.


In these cases, I think petitions and calls for boycotts only serve to bring more publicity to the show, which is counterproductive. I honestly think the best way to combat utter dreck like this is a) don't watch it, b) if you have friends and family who watch it, discuss with them calmly and logically why you don't support this crap, and c) as an Iranian or Iranian-American, contribute something better to society, whether it's through the arts (music, books, comics, movies, games, etc.) or political or social activism.


The mindless idiots that will watch shows like "Shahs of Sunset" will watch it no matter what the rest of us say or do. I say leave them to feast on their TV offal and instead spend your energy on something positive.

Anonymous Observer

Ahhh, stop taking yourselves so seriously

by Anonymous Observer on

and stop it with the "petitions" already.  Iranians' image was, and is, far more damaged with videos of flag burnings, embassy wall climbings and "marg bar [fill in the blank]" fist pumping.  

Get over yourselves already. 


 I agree. This is a

by vildemose on

 I agree. This is a disgusting show and it will only increase the number of people who want Iran to be bombed...These characters should be ashamed in portraying Iranians in such a vulgar way.

A state of war only serves as an excuse for domestic tyranny.--Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn.