Synopsis by Hal Erickson
Originally telecast in the United Kingdom, the two-part miniseries White Teeth was based on Zadie Smith's 2000 bestseller about the perils of cultural assimilation in modern day North London. Taking place in the years 1974 to 1992 and set in the melting-pot community of Willesden Green, the story focuses on three different families. The Jamaican-English Archie Jones (Phil Davis) is a professional envelope-folder, while his wife, Clara (Naomie Harris), is a lapsed Jehovah's Witness. Archie's old army buddy Samad Iqbal (Om Puri) is a Bengalese waiter who hails from Bangladesh, also the home country of his sharp-tongued spouse, Alsana (Archie Panjabi). And the Malfen family, headed by Joyce and Marcus (Geraldine James, Robert Bathurst), are fiercely dedicated charter members of the Keepers of the Eternal and Victorious Islamic Nation (or KEVIN for short). Deftly combining comedy, drama, melodrama, and pathos, the Dickensian interactions and interrelationships among the three families manage to accommodate a variety of dizzying plot convolutions involving disenchanted youngsters, racial prejudice, social pretensions, cult worship, misguided animal activists, a genetically modified mouse, a Nazi war criminal, and a bizarre but brilliant kidnapping scheme. In the United States, White Teeth first aired May 11, 2003, as part of the PBS Masterpiece Theatre anthology.
bourgeois, commune, friendship, middle-class, neighbor, school-principal, suburbs, working-class