From Page to Screen: Mismatched

Book vs. Movie: Mismatched (When Dimple Met Rishi)

Posted January 19, 2022 by Amber in Bookish Things / 4 Comments


Did you know there’s a Netflix adaptation of When Dimple Met Rishi?

Most adaptations that are not widely circulated in the United States don’t gain a lot of chatter and traction in the bookish community (to my experience). Mismatched aired on Netflix India in late 2020 and was approved for a second season in March 2021. It’s a light teen drama, reminiscent but not the same as the books.

In episode one, we experience the parallel to the very beginning of the book – the “When Dimple Met Rishi” moment and yes, the iced coffee incident is definitely still there. For those who read the book, the build up of the entire first episode seems to lead up to that moment, because it’s so iconic we know it’s got to be coming.

There are some major changes to the background as well as new characters added into the story. To start, the story takes place in Jaipur instead of San Francisco. We quickly see the addition of two new characters – Zeenat and Namrata – and Celia has become Celina. Dimple’s relationship with Celina is different than Dimple/Celia – they are assigned roommates, not chosen, and they have no relationship with one another prior to meeting in their dorm room.

Rishi’s background has also changed a little. Instead of having a close relationship with his parents, he is close to his grandmother. We see nothing of his mother in the first episode so we don’t know if she’s around at all, but we do get a glimpse of his father and his “summer fling”… Rishi’s father is clearly going to play a very different role in Mismatched than he did in When Dimple Met Rishi.

For me, I didn’t mind the changes because I feel the additional characters and more complicated backstories will add depth to the characters that allows or more variety in episode-to-episode plots. Die-hards of the book will certainly be frustrated. There are two things that irked me about Mismatched. First of all – Rishi’s POV is beyond cheesy. It’s Valentine’s-Day-engagement-in-Paris-with-roses-and-champagne-and-the-worst-one-liners cheesy. Mismatched opens with this bubble of hopelessly romantic blathering and I thought for sure I was going to despise the show. Fortunately, Dimple’s POV is much more down to earth and I really enjoyed the show from her POV. I do think the perspective moods match up with the book pretty well, but WOW I was not ready for that level of mush when I started watching this at 5am on a Friday.

Dimple’s POV has its own problems, which, again, do align with the book but are somehow extra clingy on screen. Dimple is constantly hounded with body shaming. From her complexion to her glasses, shadows under her eyes, hair, lack of smiling, lack of makeup… oh my gosh. It’s a constant battering. In the short 29min. episode, I am already deeply defensive of this girl whom nobody seems to appreciate except her father (who doesn’t defend her) and Rishi (who is a creep at the beginning, just like the book).

I expected Mismatched to be a one-episode-and-done situation where I’d review it for the blog and be done with it, but with only 7 half-hour episodes, I think I’ll watch this one through. I’m really rooting for Dimple to win. I know it’s going to develop differently from the book, especially with these additional characters and background changes, but gah. I just want everyone to see Dimple as she is and love her for it instead of judging her for everything she isn’t. So I’ll watch a little further to see if that happens or if it goes very much in the wrong direction.

If you’re looking for a cozy, bingeable show for an afternoon, Mismatched is light and airy and interesting. The only thing you need to be aware of (other than the differences noted above) is that it’s Hindi-language so if you don’t speak Hindi, you’re just going to want to turn on your subtitles.

send me your thoughts

Did you know there was an adaptation of this book?

If not, do you think you’ll look it up for your next quick, light binge?

Share with me in the comments!

stay magical amber

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4 responses to “Book vs. Movie: Mismatched (When Dimple Met Rishi)

    • Amber

      If you don’t like big changes, then definitely give Mismatched a miss! I’ve watched a couple other episodes since writing this post and it strays further and further from the book. In completely unnecessary ways to make Dimple seem more like a self-centered nerd. Disappointing.

    • Amber

      Hi Nicole! It’s interesting to watch if you liked the books! I e watched a bit more now and there have been further changes, but the characters have taken on a life of their own and it’s growing on me!