Category: Indian Television

Eka Lagnachi Dusri Goshta

ELDG-arch1I rarely identify with serials and film romances – they are great to watch but they don’t often translate into real life especially if you are as practical as I’ve been in life. Don’t get me wrong – I fell in love and got married that too quite early – a shock that my family and friends have never been able to overcome till this day.

In June last year I chanced upon this Marathi Serial “Eka Lagnachi Dusri Goshta” – thanks to my mumma and MIL pestering me to watch it. I cannot watch daily soaps or serials – my job does not give me the luxury to follow serials regularly at a particular time. I tend to catch up with my favourites on the weekend at one go and I prefer that.

I finally caved in to my mumma’s and MIL’s wishes and went hunting on youtube to catch this serial from the start and I did not realise when I fell in love with it – more importantly how much I fell in love with all the characters.

Middle-class Marathi families, one of them a joint family. The girl – independent , rebellious yet loving and respectful to her elders, only child of a single parent. The guy – the most loved by his family and especially his mum. He is loving, caring, respectful – always giving his family importance over his wishes. The parents and relatives of both central characters – the chirpy, mischievous grand mom, the younger siblings, the funny uncles, the inquisitive aunts – it felt like they picked bits from my life and put it in there.

Have you ever had a deja-vu in your life? I did, umpteen times when I watched this serial – especially the interactions between Ghana and Radha. Their silly obsessions, their stupid fights, their endless arguments and their expressions of love.  I was a bit shocked as to how the dialogues seemed to be verbatim copy of the conversations between MDH and me when we fell in love and of our married life that followed (of course my love story has got no relation to the plot of the serial);  no wonder my mother and MIL insisted that I watch the serial.

Mukta Barve is one of my favourite Marathi actresses and no one I know could’ve have portrayed the simple, lovely, strong and later confused Radha so beautifully as she did.  I was not a huge Swapnil Joshi fan but his performance as the innocent, sensitive, emotional Ghanashyam a.k.a Ghana in this serial stole my heart.  Ila Bhate as Radha’s MIL was an exact replica of my MIL – in everything – looks wise and nature-wise; I could not stop smiling watching scenes that involved her and her son. The rest of the cast is also stellar with some fine names like Vinay Apte, Sukanya Kulkarni, Mohan Joshi, Vivek Lagu, Spruha Joshi, Umesh Kamat, Girish Joshi, Asawari Joshi.

The serial was directed by Satish Rajwade – one of the finest directors in the Marathi fraternity today – his earlier works include the famous TV serials Asambhav, Agnihotra, and the film Mumbai Pune Mumbai.

I’ve been meaning to write about this serial for a long time now but never got around to do it. The reason I’m posting about it today is that Zee Marathi is doing a “cinematic version” of this serial for its fans tomorrow at 7:00 p.m. IST. If you don’t have the patience to play catch up with 190 episodes of this serial I suggest you don’t miss out on tomorrow’s telecast.

There are no large mansions, no jazzy cars, no heavily decked daughters in laws, no wicked plots, no vamps, and no unnecessary villains and definitely no over the top acting. It is about our lives portrayed to perfection. It is about love and friendship and relationships. Relationships that matter, relationships that bind us together, relationships that are important in this world and we seem to lose track of them. In a world where joint families are a disappearing phenomenon, it shows how we can still continue to have them without the fights and nasty bickering.

It is just a simple tale told about simple folks – like you and me. I can’t thank Satish Rajwade and his team enough for bringing our lives to the small screen and changing my opinion – Eka Lagnachi Dusri Goshta made me believe that screen romances do translate to real life and vice versa!

Go watch this serial tomorrow and let me know what you think of it. Until then let me leave you with this lovely track composed by Nilesh Mohrir “Tujhya Vina” from the serial

What’s my TRP?

I’m a complete TV buff. I know loads of people who consider watching TV as a complete waste of time. They raise their eyebrows when I tell them that I can spend an entire day in front of the idiot box , surfing channels and not doing anything else!

I don’t mind a day like that once in a while. To me it is not a waste of my time. Why am I always expected to be reading intellectual stuff, discussing the burning issues, going to art workshops, honing my creative skills (if I have any that is), catching up on the world news, getting the house in order or just winding up chores on a weekend so that the week stays in order! After the grueling work and home schedules, I’m allowed a little bit of nonsense, brainless, mindless viewing once in a while and I enjoy that!

Hence, of all the crap that the idiot box offers us mortals, the reality shows are the last on my viewing list. There are enough interesting serials ( mind you only English), movies and documentaries (Animal Planet and Discovery – once in a while, honestly speaking, but it makes for excellent viewing)to keep me glued in and not opt for reality show viewing be it the American/UK versions or our copied national versions.

However, sometimes the curiosity does get the better of me and I had to see what the big (-ve) hype was all about around the 3 Indianised versions of the western reality shows. The blog post is where I can vent my frustration, so apologies in advance if you are at the receiving end when you are reading this piece!

1) Rakhi Ka Swayamwar adopted from the The Bachelorette – Currently on NDTV Imagine

2) Sach Ka Saamna adopted from the Moment of Truth – Currenty on Star Plus
3) Iss Jungle Se Mujhe Bachaao adopted from I’m a Celebrity, Get Me Out of Here – Currently on Sony TV

Rakhi ka Swayamwar a.k.a RKS
This is a first of its kind on Indian television. Although The Bachelor and the Bachelorette have been running in America for long; India picked up this idea pretty late and only Rakhi Sawant could have made this show a success. The Drama Queen of India ensured that this drama fell in place. I’ve watched episodes of this show and I was in fits of laughter. Seriously, if you missed it, you must watch a few episodes for pure comic relief.

MDH has thrown enough fits at home and on FB (His status messages on RKS have been out of this world. Even more interesting are the comments that followed up) He, despite his frustration, helped the show gain popularity as most hooked on to see what his frustration was all about! I think he was more frustrated with me for watching this mindless crap of a TV show.

Either ways, the show ended as expected, Rakhi selecting the best bet of all – the Canada based businessman but not marrying on prime time national television citing that this was only an engagement and they needed time before they settled down into the holy matrimony. I have not seen a bigger mockery of the institution of marriage and the events preceding in it as portrayed on NDTV Imagine. It’s quite a shame that NDTV of all channels had to resort to such a show to boost its TRPs.

Sach Ka Saamna

I chanced on it a week back & spent the next half hour chewing MDH’s brains as to how can people be so money-thirsty to put their private life on public display!
But then I thought, if the people on the show think it is completely worth it to put their private life on display in full public view, why are we fretting about it ? Here’s what a blogger friend of mine had put up and my answers to her questions below. My thoughts in the same order as the questions she has raised
1) NO but the partcipants on the show think otherwise
2) NO – the show says its courageous to do it – I think its pretty stupid almost hitting the axe on your own feet
3) I think they are, but as with all things this could have flaws.
4) That’s what I meant that the tests can be flawed
5) NOT AT ALL but apparently those who are on the show think it is worth it!
6) BIG YES! See the last episodes and see what made people lose their money!

In India this show will work, it tickles the curiosity bone of the public, it speaks opendly of ‘taboo’ topics like sex, extra-marital affairs, and most of all it provides good fodder for gossip; as people love to know what is happening in others’ lives and not mind their own business.

Iss Jungle Se Mujhe Bachaoo

Finally, the crappiest of them all. Some little known celebrities trapped in a jungle struggling for basic necessities. I’ve no interest in seeing people eat cockroaches or take on spiders/crocodiles to earn a basket of food, to drown themselves among reptiles and do the creepiest of things! Sorry save me this nonsense, and since this might not work; the producers of the show got the Indian Bahu Sweta Tiwari and the item girl Nigar khan show off their bathing bodies! Is this what national television has come to? And these small –time starlets will do absolutely anything just for publicity.

The 3 shows prove that Indian telly channels will stoop to any levels to gain TRPs, and so will all the so-called celebrities. Earlier it was the crappy Saas-Bahu saga started by Ekta Kapoor now it is the mindless reality show boom.

But why am I surprised? It is after all a sickening rat race and money game ; for the money & TRPs, the channels and the people will do just about anything! It’s not about good clean entertainment anymore. It’s all about the moolah!

If I need some mindless entertainment, I’ll stick to the old formula of a Govinda movie, reality shows are no where close!

Wish the TRP rat race will end someday! Think about the good old DD days when the TRP concept did not exist! Don’t you miss the Fauji, Circus, Yeh Jo Hain Zindagi, Humlog, Dekh Bhai Dekh, Meri Aawaz Suno, Ramayana, Mahabhartha, Chitrahaar days?
I do and the song ‘Koi Lauta De Mere Bite Hue Din’ is playing in my mind!

Dance With Me…

When I saw the promos and the concept I wasn’t really kicked about viewing this show. In fact, with an overdose of reality shows who really cared about celebrities dancing? No real career dreams to chase, no points to gain, and nothing to prove. Apparently the producers must have had something in mind to go ahead with this concept. After watching it yesterday, I’m pretty glad they stuck to their belief.
I often feel that if you don’t build up any expectations, the results are often more enjoyable. This is exactly what happened with Star One’s new Reality Show Nach Baliye.

Now the concept is simple, 10 real life celebrity couples- stars of Indian television and choreographers for each couple will set up a dance piece every week. This will be judged by the three judges: Farhan Akhtar, Malaika Arora and Saroj Khan. Fairly competent judges I think, and Farhan himself is a good dancer (Apparently he cherished that dream). Judges will score the couples and their choreographers, and viewers will cast their votes to eliminate a couple every week. All couples are supporting a charity of their choice and will donate the prize money to the same. The real gainers from this show will be the choreographers who will get a helping hand in their career.

Well it’s not all that simple though; now none of the star couples are great dancers. Those who have been in movies can shake their legs a bit but most are paranoid dancers with two left feet. The biggest challenge lies with the choreographer and if you can get a person with two left feet to move around with a bit of grace, you are on your way on the road to success.

If you are a trained dancer or love dancing; you know there are Three Important ‘E’s to being a good dancer:

  • Enjoyment: However bad you are , if you enjoy your dancing you won’t seem half as bad
  • Energy: Energy and vigor has to be seen in every small step you do. It just about helps you make up for everything else you lack
  • Expression: Express the dancing mood, just don’t do it mechanically. It makes a world of a difference to your audience and to you as well.

And after the ten performances, all the couples realised the importance of these three Es Surprisingly the oldest couples ‘Sachin and Supriya & Parmeet Sethi & Archana Puran Singh’ got them right. Sachin and Supriya have a 16 year old daughter, and seeing their chemistry and enthusiasm everyone was dazed. They really rocked. Delnaz and Rajiv Paul probably got the Second E the best among all. Oh, that Delnaz was so cute! Absolutely loved watching her! Mihir Mishra and Manasi Joshi-Roy openly admitted that they had two left feet, but they were pretty sporting about it. All the couples seemed to have really worked hard and taken effort on this. In all, it seems quite an enjoyable show.

Now for the irritating part of the show and sadly we have to bear them throughout. The anchors: Shabbir Ahluwalia and Sangeeta Ghosh. Star One has got it terribly wrong here. Both can’t dance for nuts. ‘Kajra Re’ is a super dance number and they made a mess of it! To improve the popularity, avoid getting these two to dance at the commencement of the show. Why do they have to shriek and talk! And after Delnaz-Rajiv Paul’s performance on, ‘It’s The Time to Disco’ , Sangeeta Ghosh’s comments such as, ‘Now is the time to Breako’, and ‘Let’s see what’s the Scoro’, were so not happening. Not done, not done, even to evoke laughter. It only evoked embarrassment! And I found the dresses and make-up a little garish and overdone. Sometimes simplicity and subtlety works wonders!

Anyways, overall it was pretty enjoyable and a nice way to spend your Saturday prime time compared to the stupid saas-bahu sagas! I hope it sustains itself for the next ten weeks.


I wrote the previous piece on 27th, many things have happened since, blast on the Shramjeevi Express, Maharashtra still facing its worst downpour, Konkan has collapsed, Railway tracks and Highways under water, Mumbai is still facing the aftermath of the torrential rains that hit the city on 26th July, and in times like this Ganguly’s ban reducing from 6 to 4 matches is DEFINITELY NOT A BREAKING NEWS!!!!

I’m a cricket fan but right now I care two hoots about whether he plays or not, whether he captains or not!!!! It is not a priority news for the nation!!

For heaven’s sake will the news channels and newspapers ever grow up???

Why were they covering Aamir Khan stuck in Traffic Jam in Mumbai and what the other stars were doing on Mumbai’s fateful day?

I could care less, would you?

Kaal Spoof

Whenever possible I catch ‘The Great Indian Comedy Show’. It’s nothing compared to its counterparts in the West but I think it’s quite a hit on the Indian Television. The ensemble of the cast is quite good. Some jokes are really silly and stupid but some are neat too.

If you appreciate PJs, you would like this show compared to those awfully boring and over-the-top saans-bahu sagas and soap operas with no logical storyline, marital affairs and multiple kids from multiple marriages! Wow what a shining example of the Indian joint family! Ok this will make for another blog so back to The Great Indian Comedy Show.

A couple of spoofs on Karan Johar’s Kaal that I caught and quite liked.

Save the Tiger: Vinay Pathak is a forest officer who accompanies a tourist in the Park. A tiger strikes the tourist and he screams for help. Vinay Pathak calls up his boss and then fires the gun. Then calls him back and reports, “Sir I shot the tourist” and to the audience he says, “When in doubt always SAVE THE TIGER”.


The Sajid Murder Incident: In the movie, the group discovers Sajid’s headless dead body. They enacted the same scene here and Manini De is a total hit with her take on Lara Dutta. She has got the accent and acting bang on target. Gaurav Kapoor playing John Abraham on seeing the body asks, “Did your friend Sajid have a head?” The actor playing Vivek Oberoi says with a serious look, “I think he did; but now he has lost it!!! Cut the crap!!:-))”

Oh! How I kept wishing the Karan Johar camp was watching this, what a tribute to their so-called “hit”!!!

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