Malaysian TV series Upin & Ipin has copped flak from netizens due to a scene in its recent Hari Raya related episode. The scene in question showed Upin, Ipin, Fizi, and friends gathering with one character saying he is unable to stay as he has to help his mother with errands. He is applauded for being a filial son, to which he said it is a must, since "heaven lies at the soles of mothers". When Upin and Ipin asked what happens if children do not have mothers, the character Fizi said there is no heaven for them.
Fizi's comment had netizens riled up and they called for a clarification for his statement. In particular, one of the comments in Bahasa Melayu loosely translated to: "Upin & Ipin will be broadcasted worldwide, and everyone should hate Fizi". Meanwhile a few other netizens said it is not right of Fizi to make that comment, that he should be reported, and that he has no morals. One netizen even went as far to say that Fizi "has no brain", while another on Twitter said "Fizi is cancelled".
Following the backlash, Les’ Copaque Production, the company behind the series, took to Instagram saying that Fizi was wrong to have said that comment. It added that if requested by more netizens, Fizi will create a video apologising to Upin and Ipin. The post has garnered 28,436 likes and 1,228 comments on Instagram in 12 hours. Netizens supported the decision to get Fizi to apologise and clarify his statement to the main characters, Upin and Ipin. Some also pointed out that it makes them sad to see Upin and Ipin hurt by the comment.
Shortly after, the company posted another response showing a footage of Fizi going to school and facing weird stares from his friends. In its caption, Les' Copaque Production apologised to Fizi's friends, urging them not to get angry at Fizi and not be friends with him anymore. A+M has reached out to Les' Copaque for comment.
Before these posts, the production house also acknowledged that netizens were unhappy with Fizi. In an Instagram post, it highlighted the scene where Fizi gave the insensitive comment and captioned: "Because of this video, Fizi is now hated. Sorry Fizi."
Upin & Ipin is a 3D animated series produced by Les’ Copaque Production and is currently receiving an average of approximately 800,000 viewers per episode, according to its official website. The series centres on a pair of five-year-old twin boys, Upin and Ipin, who tell stories of their everyday lives with their friends while learning new things during their day to day activities.
In 2018, Les’ Copaque Production partnered with Astro Malaysia for content sharing, distribution and marketing of animation content produced by Les’ Copaque. The partnership aimed to combine the expertise and media assets of both companies to strengthen the local and regional animation industry. As part of the partnership, Les' Copaque’s animation content IPs namely Upin & Ipin, Upin & Ipin Iqra, Pada Zaman Dahulu and Puteri, will be available to both Astro and NJOI audiences across the TV and OTT platforms including on-ground events.