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Jasmeet Raina returns with Late Bloomer

By Nimra Amir, March 28 2024—

Jasmeet Raina, popularly known by his online moniker Jus Reign, was one of few YouTubers who provided representation for South Asians in the early 2010s as a Punjabi Sikh in Canada with viral comedy videos like “Desi Parents and SCHOOL” or “Indian Grocers are WILD” that featured the memorable cast of characters in sketches. It was not long until Raina had amassed millions of followers across social media platforms. Yet just over six years ago in the midst of his success — with one of his last videos “In Defense of T-Series” earning over two million views — Raina had quietly disappeared off the internet. 

Since then, the community of fans who in large part grew up watching these videos would conspire on exactly what had happened from a suspected marriage to some legal issues over “In Defense of T-Series.” In reality, the reason for the disappearance was not as dramatic. Raina simply took the break to focus on Late Bloomer, the eight-part dramedy series on Crave, 

without the distractions of social media.

“I’m asked all the time why I left the internet,” Raina said in an interview. “It can be such a wild and demanding place, and I wanted to write something like this project. I had to put as much of me in it as I could and I needed space to do that.”

Late Bloomer, loosely based on real life, follows wannabe content creator Jasmeet Dutta ( Raina) who lives in the basement of his family GTA home while he works as the delivery driver for their family tiffin business. Like many his age, Dutta feels stuck behind his peers — that is until Dutta starts to build his audience. But there is a catch — with his newfound popularity, Dutta finds it harder to maintain his commitment to family and culture.

The show, inspired by the likes of FX’s Atlanta and HBO’s The Sopranos and Curb Your Enthusiasm, focuses heavily on showing the authentic experience of what it feels like to be a part of a community.

“When I was watching [The Sopranos], I was like, ‘Oh, this is how it feels to see yourself represented on TV,’” he said. “I feel like the Italian-American family is pretty similar to the South Asian family, all the family dynamics, all the uncles and the cousins. It’s a brilliant show and one of the funniest shows I’ve seen; it’s slept on how funny that show is.”

The parallels can be picked up from the jump in the first episode, “Nudes,” which follows Dutta after his laptop — with some very sensitive material — goes missing like in episode two of season three of Atlanta, “Sinterklaas is Coming to Town,” which follows Earn after his laptop — with the music — goes missing. The parallels continue in the show as Dutta with his cousin Neal (Ahamed Weinberg) who resembles the character of Darius (LaKeith Stanfield) of Atlanta both give similar speeches on the subjectivity of time or when Dutta is flexed on at the club by the popular table like Alfred (Brian Tyree Henry) of Atlanta

Raina in Late Bloomer continues to be the South Asian representation in Canada in the times — during the influx of recent immigration that is often blamed for the economic downturns — that we need it most. Of course, as his debut project, there are moments that fall flat because of what can only be described as the more millennial jokes, but the impact that Raina has made for South Asians in Canada will allow for media that can be perfected with time. Until then, old fans of Jus Reign content can indulge in what is undeniably more elevated content from his YouTube videos.

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