Alrawabi School for Girls
|"No, I am your father." -Darth Vader, The Empire Strikes Back
This article may reveal spoilers, especially considering the episode, season, or series had either been released recently or not in specific countries yet.
Alrawabi School for Girls (Arabic:مدرسة الروابي للبنات RR:Madrasat Alrawabi Lilbanat) is a 2021 Jordanian teen drama series about the impact of bullying on young women. It is premiered in 32 languages and 190 countries. On May 18, 2022, the show has been renewed for a second season and is slated to be broadcast by late 2022 or early 2023. The series is dubbed in British English, Spanish, Italian, French, German, Dutch, Polish, Japanese, and Turkish.
Three bullied outcasts at a prestigious all-girls school plot revenge to get back at their bullies.
لماذا لن يؤذوا أحدا بعد هذا (Why They Won't Hurt Anyone After This)
- It's not afraid to address a lot of issues that are considered taboo in Arabic culture and shed light on them such as:
- bullying and its impact on victims
- mental health
- honor killings/violence against women
- sexual assault
- homosexuality (without the use of an LGBT character)
- patriarchy society
- purity/modest culture.
- Talented and fantastic acting by Andriah Tayeh, Rakeeen Sa'ad, Noor Taher, Yara Mustafa, Joanna Arida, and Salsabiela.
- It has a very interesting plot about a progressive and introverted top student who isn't afraid to speak her mind turned vengeful and sadistic yangire anti-hero, Mariam, along with two other bullied outcasts chatty poetic girly-girl childhood friend Dina and new emo anarchist hacker student Noaf after getting expelled from her previous school after she was caught distributing quiz answers to students plotting on getting revenge on queen bee with a good side Layan, right-hand tsundere gal pal Rania, and pretty but dimwitted old-fashioned follower Ruqayya one by one with some elements from Mean Girls, Heathers, Elite, Odd Girl Out, Carrie, Joker, Insatiable, and 13 Reasons Why but in a clever and catastrophic way.
- Alrawabi School for Girls has well-written characters that developed over the series and showed a lot of personalities.
- What Goes Around Comes Around and The Calm Before The Storm are considered the most liked episodes of the 6 as we see Ruqayya, Rania, Layan, and even the rest of the students and the corrupt and incompetent excuse of a principal, Ms. Faten Qadi herself all finally get their just desserts for what they did to Mariam as we see the following happen:
- A photo of Ruqayya without her hijab is leaked to the internet after Mariam, Dina and Noaf catfished themselves as a guy, hacking into her Facebook account and posting her picture for the entire school to see, resulting in her family and classmates treating her like an outcast and banning her from going to any school or seeing her friends.
- Ms. Abeer and Ms. Jumana catch Rania sneaking out at night to party at a nightclub during the school field trip, causing her to get beaten up by her angry alcoholic father as we see her with a bruised eye in the next and last episode.
- Layan, who's mainly responsible for Mariam's ordeal, presumably loses her life in an honor killing when Mariam has Layan's older brother Hazem catch her skipping school to see her boyfriend Laith and assume the worst.
- Last but not least, Ms. Faten's honorary award gets thrown to the ground by Layan's father who threatens that he'll destroy her and her school as a result of Mariam's manipulations and Ms. Abeer calling Layan's parents about Layan's constant absence after the principal kept dismissing the latter's concerns one too many times. Though it was not entirely part of the former's plan, it ended up benefitting the former, since the former also wants payback from the school — particularly the corrupt and incompetent excuse of a principal Ms. Faten Qadi herself — for failing to do anything to help the former when she really needed it.
- Great life lessons and morals like “Don't do unto others what you don't want done unto you.”, "Your child's wellbeing is more important than your ego and reputation", "Your actions will come back to you" and "Your home/family lives shouldn't be an excuse to bully others".
- The pacing is sweet and simple as there are no moments that are too slow or fast.
- Beautiful cinematography.
- Great soundtrack with the music fitting the scene well, especially the cover of 3 Daqat and the dark reprised version of the school anthem.
- Suspensful plot twist where it's revealed that Laith is Ms. Faten's son.
- The show represents women writers and directors really well and has a huge influence on it along with almost all of the cast being female, which is new to Jordan and the Arabic tv industry.
- "The right thing"? The right thing would've been to not turn your back on your friend when she needed you. The right thing would've been to stop them when they were beating me up. The right thing would've been to tell everyone what you saw. Don't act all self-righteous when you obviously don't know what the right thing is. If you want to be hypocrites, that's up to you. But at least have the guts to admit it.
- You guys hurt me "a bit". You have literally no idea what you've done to me, do you? "Far worse"? You still don't get it, do you? You ruined me. You ruined my life. Yet you come here lecturing me, saying that what I'm doing is far worse?
- Like Joker, All Of Us Are Dead and Squid Game, Layan's presumed honor killing in the last episode is very chilling to watch (even though we may not know who Hazem shot or who died or was injured) as well as the scene where Layan and her friends beat up Mariam in the first episode.
- Satisfying ending where Mariam, after her plan worked perfectly, while the dark reprised version of the school anthem is being played in the background, struts around the school hallway, not caring about what the other students are saying about her or not regretting getting back at the bullies whatever the consequences are and gives Rania (while crying), her fake friends and the audience a cold death stare and an evil grin before the screen fades to the credits. Turning into something she became against, becoming a protagonist to an anti-hero, taking Layan's place as queen bee and is the definition of you either die a hero or live long enough to see yourself as the villain.
الصفات السيئة (Bad Qualities)
- Akward and forced dialogue with some conversations felt like being scripted with some use of English in the original Arabic.
- Uresolved issues like Mariam's mental health and if Hazem actually shot either Layan, Laith, both of them, himself, or the air.
- Like Jang Deok-su from Squid Game, Yoon Gwi-nam and Lee Na-yeon from All Of Us Are Dead, Layan, Rania, and Ruqayya are very mean-spirited and selfish. They even went as far as to accuse Mariam of homosexual assault, beating her up, leaving her to die, and exposing her suicidal thoughts and issues with mental health (which they caused) to the entire school! Although to be fair, they're supposed to be unlikable so that we can have someone to root against besides the parents, Ms. Faten, and Hazem, the show wouldn't have been made if it weren't for them and Layan and Rania also have shown a good side as we see Layan saving Noaf from a pervert in the spa and invited her to a nightclub and Rania covers for both Layan and Noaf and said she went to the nightclub alone and trying to apologize (while isn't sincere) to Mariam for what they did to her and promising to never hurt her or anyone ever again and are loyal friends and face repression and/or abuse at home at the hands of their families, but that still doesn't justify their bullying, unlike Dina and Noaf who are fakes and will flip-flop whenever they get upset or don't get their way.
- Speaking of Rania, she gets off lightly for sneaking off to a nightclub (along with Layan and Noaf) during the school field trip, when she's apologizing to Mariam, she says she and her friends only hurt Mariam a bit, had the audacity to paint Mariam (who they try to kill at one point) as the villain when she has had enough of them and is getting back at them and is only apologizing because Layan's life is in danger and not because she regretted her actions, wasn't even sincere in her apology and is somehow the surviving bully at school when she deserves a fate worse than Layan or Ruqayya's for being Layan's right-hand woman.
- Like fellow Jordanian Netflix original series Jinn, the show is criticized for its heavily Westernized way of living and unrepresentative portrayal of Arab society.
أمور تافهة (Trivia)
- It is the second Jordanian original Netflix series after Jinn.
- It has an all-female crew.
- Alrawabi means the hills.
أشرطة فيديو (Videos)