Columns The Poor Cleaner’s Struggle Becomes Netflix’s Surprise Hit – Books and Movies Have Already Risen to the Unfairness of US Capitalism

The drama series Maid shows how unfairly difficult it is for the low-paid to rise to a steady life, writes Tero Kartastenpää.

Penniless needs money to do the job. Before Alex (Margaret Qualley) can get paid, he has had to invest in work clothes, cleaning supplies, a car, fuel.

A hungry single parent cleans eco-homes where he is ordered to throw expensive treats in the trash. All work gigs must be accepted and no one cares when you are late due to a crash.

Poverty drama Maidista is becoming Netflix ‘s most watched mini – series, although its success has been considered a small surprise. It doesn’t kill people in candy responses like in a Korean hit Squid Game.

However, the two series of phenomena have much in common. In both, at the lowest rung of capitalism, persevering people have to do desperate deeds at the mercy of others.

In Maid living in American nightmares. A citizen starting from scratch tries to satisfy his or her own and his or her child’s basic needs in a country where social security is non-existent.

American poverty has been addressed more diligently in non-fiction than in television series.

The series is based on Stephanie Landin to a book about self-sufficient cleaning experiences Maid (2019). Author of Land’s preface, investigative journalist Barbara Ehrenreich again has written a low-wage classic Nickel and Dimed (2001). The book concretely tells about the cycle of poverty.

Ehrenreich proves that it is not a matter of inability or laziness but of a system that cannot be exited by doing more.

The unfairness brought about by the fragmentation of working life has also begun to show in art house films. British director Ken Loach has portrayed in a frantic way how drivers pushed into the platform economy take on entrepreneurial responsibility but not freedoms in film thank you for your order (2019). Chloé Zhaon In the nomadland (2020) seasonal workers half-marginalized by application firms form an exchange economy community.

Maidin Creator Molly Smith Metzler has gained his scriptwriting experience in theater, but rare, it doesn’t show up in the series as a constant opening of doors.

Strength is an imagination embedded in everyday realism. The sleepy protagonist sinks into his memories, prejudices, and misconceptions.

For example, in the shredding, all legal terms become incomprehensible: legal-legal-legal.

Alex’s survival can be viewed as a story about a superhero learning his powers. The goal is not just to challenge other special people to a boxing match but a home and a couple of meals a day.

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