Lakshmi and Me explores India’s modern caste system

Tonight, PBS’ Independent Lens debuts a documentary that follows the life of a 20-year-old maid in Mumbai, India, who works 10-hour days every day for monthly pay that’s roughly $120. She’s filmed by one of her employers, documentary filmmaker Nishtha Jain, whose film Lakshmi and Me illustrates their differences and similarities.

PBS’ Independent Lens calls it “an intimate yet critical look at the bond between an employer and domestic worker in modern-day India, where one’s status, relationships and livelihood are often still ordained by the ancient caste system.”

In that system, professional women have women from lower classes to do household chores and other work, and for that, as PBS notes, Lakshmi receives “the paltry monthly pay of 600 rupees or so from each home (the filmmaker confides that is what she herself would pay for a fancy dinner out).”

Here’s the trailer:

Lakshmi and Me [PBS]

Surprisingly, man not eaten alive on Eaten Alive

Eaten Alive

Discovery Channel’s happy family holiday special Eaten Alive aired Sunday, rewarding viewers for their two full hours of viewing by ensuring that they spent quality time in the company of others instead of wasting that time doing something else that might not have been as satisfying, such as buying things that have labels which accurately reflect their contents.


Winter 2015 reality TV debut schedule

winter 2015 reality TV schedule

Mark your calendars with all these upcoming reality TV show debuts, including Celebrity Apprentice, The Bachelor, and another season of MasterChef Junior, all of which kick off in early January.

There are also 20+ shows debuting in December--including the one-off return of The Sing Off. No winter break for reality TV.

about the writer

Andy Dehnart is a journalist who has covered reality television for more than 15 years and created reality blurred in 2000. A member of the Television Critics Association, his writing and criticism about television, culture, and media has appeared on NPR and in Playboy, Buzzfeed, and many other publications. Andy, 36, also directs the journalism program at Stetson University in Florida, where he teaches creative nonfiction and journalism. He has an M.F.A. in nonfiction writing and literature from Bennington College. More about reality blurred and Andy.