To the untrained eye, this brief shot in Homeland would seem like any other:
Look closely, though, and an escalating PR nightmare emerges: artists who were hired to decorate a Homeland set with graffiti took the opportunity to spread a message about the show, and subtly—or now, not so subtly—criticise the HBO show and its portrayal of Arabs and Muslims – something the show’s been slammed for many times before.
In Arabic, the graffiti artists wrote “Homeland is racist”, “Homeland is not a series“, “BlackLivesMatter” and “Homeland is a watermelon.” (Nb: here, the term “watermelon” is used for something not to be taken seriously, according to the artists.)
The graffiti clearly flew directly under the producers’ noses without any red flags – as the episode already aired in the US, with two of the scrawled statements in shot.
On their website, the hired artists released an extensive statement over how the stunt played out, what their motivations were, and further criticised the show, in a post titled, “Why We Hacked An Award Winning Series.”
“What’s wrong with Homeland’s political message? The very first season of “Homeland” explained to the American public that Al Qaida is actually an Iranian venture. According to the storyline, they are not only closely tied to Hezbollah, but Al Qaida even sought revenge against the US on behalf of Iran.
This dangerous phantasm has become mainstream ‘knowledge’ in the US and has been repeated as fact by many mass media outlets. Five seasons later, the plot has come a long way, but the thinly veiled propaganda is no less blatant. Now the target is freedom of information and privacy neatly packaged as the threat posed by Whistleblowers, the Islamic State and the rest of Shia Islam.”
Read the whole post over here.