The bulging television schedule during Ramadan is already forcing some viewers to make heart-wrenching decisions on which show to pick. The subscriber network OSN has made those decisions even harder by releasing a slew of new dramas, comedies and variety shows to run during the Holy Month on its OSN Yahala! HD channel.
According to Khulud Homos, the OSN senior vice president of programming, programmes commissioned or bought by the channel aim to showcase a diverse mix of styles to appeal widely during a month where family time is paramount. "Our goal this Ramadan is to show our viewers that OSN Yahala! HD offers a variety of shows for everyone to enjoy," she says. "We worked hard to create a balance between popular drama series and new, fresh comedy programmes that the whole family can enjoy throughout the Holy Month."
One of OSN's flagship programmes finds Saudi comics taking their cues from the most unexpected source: the US TV series Glee. The glitzy musical comedy, shot in Mumbai with a Saudi cast, focuses on quirky tales of marriage and family, frequently peppered with Bollywood-style songs sung in Arabic. Seeing the cast speak in Khaleeji while decked out in Indian regalia is a treat in itself. Saturdays to Wednesdays, 10pm.
Al Ghesh Mamnoua
The Arab Spring is well and truly here. The host Muna Abdal Wahab will put Egyptian politicians, singers, actors and celebrities under the spotlight with her blend of fluffy and penetrating questions. One guest not to be missed is none other than Egypt's president Mohamed Morsi, who will be discussing his journey to becoming the country's first civilian president. Thursdays and Fridays, 10pm.
Not a cooking show but sororal, nonetheless, as three highflying sisters, Mais, Mai and Dana Hamdan, quiz celebrities and put them through their paces in a series of games and challenges. The show also comes with pre-shot footage where the sisters take guests for a spot of shopping to give and receive retail tips. Thursdays, 11pm.
Znood El Sitt
A programme where fusion is applied to its format as opposed to the dishes. Znood El Sitt is a comedy set in an old Damascene home where, among the comic plots and puns, are cooking demonstrations of traditional Syrian dishes. Daily, 8pm.
A Jordanian variety show that initially began as an internet sensation before moving on to become an acclaimed television show. Returning for its second season, the programme gleefully pokes fun at the quirks of Arab culture through a series of innovative sketches. The programme stars the renowned comic actors Wissam Tbeileh and Rami Dashad. Daily, 7.30pm.