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Powered by, one of the most popular daily English language newspapers in the United Arab Emirates.

Whats hot on TV?

08/22/2009 10:43 PM | By Kelly Crane and Dina Aboud Hosin

Get the lowdown on this Ramadan's hottest shows on television with Kelly Crane and Dina Aboud Hosin. From soaps to drama, history to comedy and everything in between, the only problem you will have is picking exactly what to watch.


Bab El Harah - Season Four (Syrian)

This season begins by replaying the tragic scenes which closed Season Three. The voice of the narrator guides viewers through the battles which were lost, and the many lives which were martyred. The series chronicles daily life in a Damascus neighbourhood through the inter-war period under French rule when the local population was fighting for independence.

As citizens agonise and grieve the loss of their young countrymen, one group gains greater resilience than ever before. Filled with exciting twists and turns, this season is entertaining and an unexpected ride.

- Did you know? Many people believe life resembles what they saw in this series and started copying the characters' words and acts. It is believed that Bab El Harah is the first Arabic series which sold merchandise, such as clothes and canes.

- Starring: Sabah Jaza'iri, Wafa Moussli, Jumana Murad

- Directed by: Bassam Al Mulla

- Duration: 60 minutes

- Episodes: 30

- Shown on MBC

Afrah Eblis (Egyptian)

Actor Jamal Sulaiman has completed shooting his new series, Afrah Eblis (Satan's Joy). The series follows businessman and his relationship with a high flyer from Cairo. Deals are done and big plans are made for new iron and steel factories in the city. But has anyone considered the consequences? Only time will tell.

- Duration: 60

- Episodes: 30

- Orbit: Fri-Mon at 4.30am, 12.30pm and 8.30pm

- Did you know? It took 120 days to shoot at a cost of more than $21 million (Dh77,161,774)

Funjan Al Dam (Bedouin)

Set at the beginning of the 19th Century when the Ottoman Empire ruled most of the Arab countries, this series explores tribal conflicts among some Arab tribes as well as the consolidated fight against the Ottomans. Conflicts combine with love stories.

- Did you know? Funjan Al Dam, which means blood coffee cup, shot to fame after it was banned last year because it offended some of the featured tribes.

- Starring: Jamal Sulaiman, Maisaa Maghribi, Nisreen Tafish, Abdul Mohsen Al Nimr

- Directed by: Al Laith Hajju

- Duration: 60 minutes

- Episodes: 30

- Shown on MBC

Qulub Lil Ijar (Khaleeji)

A family of six live in a compound of villas but all is not well among neighbours. Rent hikes, court cases and sleepless nights follow for all. But who will come out on top in the end? The title means hearts for hire.

- Starring: Abdul Aziz Jasim, Basma Hamad, Hiba Al Dary, Shahd Yassin.

- Produced, Scripted and Written by: Widad Al Kawari

- Duration: 60 minutes

- Episodes: 30

- Shown on MBC

Kalam Niswan (Egyptian)

Four women from different backgrounds, with different personalities and a mixed bag of stories and problems are brought together by fate. As they struggle to solve their individual dilemmas on their own, they turn to one another for support and find strength in each others.

- Starring: Lucy, Nadeen Al Rasi, Maya Diab, Firyal Yousuf, Sami Al Adel

- Directed by: Omar Abdul Aziz

- Duration: 60 minutes

- Episodes: 30

- Shown on MBC

Ashan Malesh Gheirek (Syrian)

It seems the Syrians have found friend in Abu Dhabi's growing television network Abu Dhabi TV and the result is drama, drama, drama. Syrian director Radwan Shahin leads the way with his new Egyptian series Ashan Malesh Gheirek (No One but You), which was co-produced by ADTV. Starring Elham Shahin and Ahmad Azmy, written by Atef Bakri, the show follows the story of Mounira (played by Shahin) who, after losing her husband, is forced to handle her family's land in a remote village.

- Shown on Abu Dubai TV

Rejal Al Hasm (Syrian)

Director Najdat Anzour returns with his popular drama Rejal Al Hasm (Decisive Men). Basil Al Khayat stars as Shahada in this spy thriller about the battles between Arab and Israeli secret intelligence agencies in the aftermath of the 1967 war. Shahada returns from the war to discover that his family was killed and accepts a mission to go undercover in Europe to find out more.

- Shown on Abu Dhabi TV


Freej: The guys at Freej won't disappoint, bringing double the fun this Ramadan. A welcome addition of English subtitles for the non-Arabic viewer, not only will Season Three be screened daily from today, but a new 30-episode bonus series, Freej: The Book of Riddles, will also debut during the holy month.

The daily three-minute episodes will end with a riddle which viewers have to fathom and SMS the answer for. Weekly and monthly prizes of up to Dh500,000 will be up for grabs until the first day of Eid Al Fitr.

Freej: The Book of Riddles

- Sama Dubai: 8pm and 1am (repeat) daily

- Dubai Television: 2.30am daily

- Dubai One: 10pm daily


Tash Ma Tash

The most successful Ramadan series to date, Tash Ma Tash is in its 16th season and is back again to set record audiences. Each episode of this satire delivers an outstanding mix of sarcasm, drama and comedy, which combine to shed light on various issues and dilemmas within Saudi society. All topics are tackled by the heroes Abdullah Al Sadhan and Naser Al Qasbi, who take on diverse character roles to portray societal problems in a unique and hilarious way.

- Duration: 30 minutes

- Number of episodes: 30

- Shown on MBC

Bayni Wa Baynak

A classic fish-out-of-water story, Bayni Wa Baynak was the second most popular Ramadan programme last year. Season Three follows Manahi and Mifrih who switch roles - a move which finds Minahi living in Mifrih's southern village and Mifrih lost in the big city. As the culture shock kicks in. comic situations unfold.

- Directed By: Saeed Al Awwari (Mohammad Al Awali)

- Duration: 30 minutes

- Episodes: 30

- Shown on MBC



On the back of four successful seasons, Khawater returns to document the achievements of some of the most progressive Asian nations. Highlighting the positive aspects of non-Muslim countries, various social and religious topics are discussed, in an appealing way for young people.

- Episodes: 30

- Shown on MBC


Hourof Wa Oulouf

Sports cars, cash, home appliances and electronics are up for grabs in the new series of Hourof Wa Oulouf. The new season features more chances to win than ever before. Anyone who calls the answering machine or sends in a text message answering a question, can win the opportunity to participate live. During the contest, the computer chooses a letter for the participant who must answer the respective question correctly, as fast as he can. With each correct answer, the possibility of winning increases.

- Duration: 60 minutes

- Episodes: 35

- Shown on MBC


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