“Mr. Chatterjee” more ignorant racism or just bad/no research
For the numerous asks from followers who wondered what the race issue was in BASK. It’s one of those ‘pay close attention or you’ll miss it moments’ which I didn’t catch the first time myself. Mr Chatterjee was Mrs Hudson’s boyfriend in the beginning of the episode:
SHERLOCK: I wouldn’t pin your hopes on that cruise with Mr. Chatterjee. He’s got a wife in Doncaster (he adopts a south Yorkshire accent to say the town’s name) that nobody knows about.
JOHN: Oh! Looks like Mrs Hudson finally got to the wife in Doncaster.
SHERLOCK: Mmm. Wait ’til she finds out about the one in Islamabad.
Now, Gatiss and Moffat and whoever checks your facts if there is such a person (I suggest you get one before you export this to the subcontinent) I’m not saying the following couldn’t happen, I’m sure it has, but if you’re looking for some kind of shorthand for “Muslim” all you managed in THOB is to be insulting all over again. (See: numerous posting regarding end of ASiB)
“Chatterjee” is a Bengali Brahmin surname. That’s Eastern India (Bengal) and Brahmin as in a Hindu social caste and one of the oldest and most venerated Hindu family names — a royal line of descent from the men who supposedly wrote the Vedas : the Hindu holy books.
Hindus do not believe in polygamy. As a matter of fact, it’s one of those common Western mistakes that makes most Hindus foam at the mouth. FYI.
Since one of the many wives of Mr. Hindu-Surname-from-East-India lives in Islamabad (that’s Pakistan which is west of India) then the implication, or perhaps the general inference that one is supposed to make, is that he’s Muslim.
Just for the record, polygamy is quite rare in Pakistan. FYI
The least you could have done was put Mrs. Chatterjee in Bangladesh which is partially made up of the part of the world that used to be called “Bengal.” You’re not likely to have too many Chatterjees there either, since Partition, (look it up if you don’t know what the hell that is — funny that I happen to be writing a fanfic where Mycroft takes John to task for apparently not knowing his Raj history — but I digress) but it’d be more likely than in Pakistan.
Is it because you’re afraid if you say that the other wife is in Dhaka nobody would know where the hell you were talking about and the joke would fall flat?
Is it because having Sherlock say “one of those funny little dark men from the subcontinent” sounded too racist?
Or maybe Khan or Abidi or Malek sounded too racist?
Or wasn’t “subcontinental” enough?
Reminds me of this Larry Wilmore bit on The Daily Show
Again, that’s another hit against Pakistan in the span of 2 episodes.
If that wasn’t enough, Moffat had to rub salt on the wound after he was asked about it on twitter. Instead of doing the decent thing by apologising, he instead chose to ignore the issue (like always):
Because racism is cool! Especially when white dudes write the show! *sigh* What a strange, privileged little world he lives in.