Hasan Minhaj’s life struggles showcased in new Netflix special ‘Homecoming King’

“Daily Show” correspondent Hasan Minhaj gave the keynote roast at the White House Correspondents Dinner 2017 in Washington, D.C., on Saturday. Photo for The Washington Post by Marvin Joseph.

NEW YORK – Hasan Minhaj of The Daily Show brings his off-Broadway, one-man show “Homecoming King” to Netflix where he discusses his struggle of growing up as an Indian American Muslim in a white dominant, Californian town.

Directed by Christopher Storer, the 72-minutes long special takes place in Minhaj’s hometown of Davis, California and focuses on his childhood; how his parents immigrated to the United States and how he had to live alone with his father until the age of 8, when his mother came back from India with her medical degree and his sister, whose existence he was not aware of.

Minhaj also talks about the difficulties he faced in school and what his family had to go through the day after the 9/11 attacks when some men called at their house with threats and slurs and then destroyed their Toyota Camry.  He recalls the moment when he and his father went outside to pick up the broken pieces of glass, “that’s the price we pay for being here,” his dad told him.

Minhaj displayed his stand-up talent at the RTCA dinner last year where he called out Congress and earlier this year when he hosted the White House Correspondents’ Dinner targeting President Donald Trump, who decided not to attend.

He tied his own experiences to those of other immigrant families who are in the same position as his.  He expressed anger against the killers of people like Freddie Gray and Trayvon Martin and exclaimed that Trump’s wall and Muslim ban are connected in favor of how racism impacts people of color in America on a personal level.

He then explained how brown people (Indian Americans) have been experiencing prejudice everyday in this country since the attacks on 9/11 and how he desires to fight back.

“If you come to this country, you pay this thing like the American dream tax. If it doesn’t cost you your life, you pay it,” he said.

“Homecoming King” also highlights Minhaj’s relationship with his father and the rest of his family, his heartbreak in high school and the various racial intricacies he has faced while growing up as well as now.




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