Lakshmi Chaudhry in The Nation:
Most fish-out-of-water stories are told at the expense of the poor fish. But not so with Aliens in America, which may well be the best television show you’re not watching. Well, you’d first have to find that misbegotten offspring of the WB/UPN marriage, the CW channel.
Your efforts will be well rewarded with a very funny comedy that takes on racism, the war on terror, Islam, and that most hallowed of American institutions: high school. How can you resist a show that throws together a devout Pakistani teenager and small-town America?
Hollywood is usually at its excruciatingly racist worst when it comes to any plot that involves foreign exchange students of the non-white variety — think Long Duk Dong slobbering over Molly Ringwald in Sixteen Candles. The joke is always at the expense of the “fish.”
But not so in Aliens in America.