August 9, 2022
Sima Aunty is no longer telling people to “compromise.” The cringe-worthy term typically acts as code for singles, and specifically women, to make concessions in the name of getting married. At first, this seemed like a step in the right direction. But a few episodes into Season 2 of Indian Matchmaking, it becomes apparent that Sima Taparia, the self-proclaimed top matchmaker in Mumbai, has simply rebranded, asking her U.S. and Indian clients to have “patience.” Different term, same meaning.
This is the guidance she gives Akshay, “the world’s most eligible bachelor” struggling to find a partner in his hometown of Nashik, India, and one of the matchmaker’s new clients. When the first season of the reality series came out in July 2020, in the depths of the COVID-19 pandemic, it became a worldwide hit and social media phenomenon. As with shows like Love is Blind or Dating Around, fans got deeply invested in the cast of Indian singles and their search for love. The show even scored a 2021 Emmy nomination. However, critics and viewers also called the series out for its glossy depiction of the arranged marriage industry that perpetuates sexism, casteism, colorism, and classism — conversations the original cast and producers readily engaged in.
It seemed like, with time and ample feedback from South Asians around the globe, Indian Matchmaking Season 2 would be different. We just had to have patience. But as one of Akshay’s friends points out, “patience” comes from the word “pati” in Latin, “to suffer” — and unfortunately, that applies to anyone hoping to see improvements this time around. Instead, on August 10, Netflix will release a new season with the same problems.