It's sad that people are so racist, all they can see and react to is the brown face/Tongan aspect of Jonah from Tonga.
That is judgement at its most base. Judging something from it's external appearance without giving it a chance.
Yes, Jonah is painful to watch because he's clearly troubled but he isn't troubled because he's Tongan, he's troubled because he's an adolescent.
Chris Lilley's writing is exceptional in the way he sets up relationships, showing how complications and misunderstandings arise, especially with Jonah's naivete.
But he also shows the compassion and empathy of those who Jonah most antagonises.
It's a shame the majority of those reacting can't see that this series, as with Summer Heights High, gives adults and young teens an opportunity to view the complexities of the adolescent transition.
There are strong story lines around the characters who don't give up on them and the resulting trust and respect the young ones develop with them (reference when the boys sing the traditional Tongan song for someone who is leaving, to their favourite teacher)
This is what should be taken away from both series.
To see the children, not their behaviour and the ultimate outcome of resilience.
It's such a shame that the Maori TV Board have taken away this opportunity, projecting their 'adult' views on a series, that could have a positive impact on the adolescent viewers.
These series could be a relevant resource to use in class to draw out children experiencing difficulties. Pointing out Jonah's behaviour, why the adults react the way they do, then how they could do things differently.
Yes, I'm a sickeningly optimistic idealist and I'm hoping, for the kids sake, others are too...
Pimp My Attitude
This is where I think out loud as I transform my appearance, thought processes and most of all, attitude - no matter how unpretty.