Category Archives: television

Facing the Truth


When I first heard that Siddharth Basu is bringing Moment of Truth to Indian television, I was very curious to see what it would turn out like, when put in the Indian context.

And what I saw, surprised me, pleasantly.

Naah, pleasantly is such a mild word. I love it!

It’s so much fun to see people squirming in their seats – actually, it’s mostly the contestants’ family and friends that are squirming in their seats, while the contestant just goes on and on.

It must be a very strange kind of person who’d go up on TV, on prime time, with all that many people watching the show, not only then, but also later on youtube – and be able to sit there and acknowledge their deepest, darkest truths. I know I’d never do that. And neither would I put someone I love through that. There are people who make someone they know and love go up there and take part in the show. Like, I remember one episode where this woman made her husband go. Strange, no?

Is it the magic of wanting to be on TV? Is it the money you could possibly win? Is just that they want to hear the truth, or tell the truth, badly enough to even want to do it in front of the whole world? Or, are they – and I suspect this is the most correct answer – just crazy people?

I mean, really! WHY would you do that? Or, what would make you do that?!

But I think Star Plus has finally hit upon another winning show.

Siddharth Basu and Ekta Kapoor together probably make up for 90% of the channel’s revenue and TRPs – no? 😛

Really, since after Colours took over as the most-watched Hindi GEC, this show has finally started making people go back to Star Plus.

Of course, though, the most watched Reality Show on Indian television, in the last two years, has been Rakhi ka Swayamvar, which by the way, I LOVED!! But, I digress.

Back to wondering about what makes people do such blatant “khulaasa” (as popular Hindi news channels would say). And I really can’t say what it is. I know why I like watching it, though. And, I actually do like this one more than the American version. I guess because this is in a context and space that’s closer to relate to? Because the American version just seems to hold my attention for a while, but this one makes me not want to change the channel at all. And it’s also because all of us like watching other people’s discomfort on TV – no? And not our fault – they put themselves under the spotlight on their own, crazies that they are!

Oh, and Rajeev Khandelwal, I think started out as a slightly uncomfortable, awkward anchor, but how he’s grown into his role! He’s perfect, I think – the correct mix of being involved and sensitive, and also detached and business-like.

What I find myself doing most often, though, while watching the show, is making up stories in my head about the kind of life the person’s had, or has.

The relationships that are important to them, the circumstances that made them who they are, what’ll happen to those important relationships once the show’s over and done with? Will a man just move on after getting caught out on a question about him having been unfaithful to his wife? Will his wife just move on? Will that be the end of the marriage? How will their family, their friends, their children, their neighbours and colleagues at office react to them from this moment on, for the rest of their lives? Will these memories actually last for the “rest of their lives”, or will it just be forgotten as a TV show?

The woman who said that she still believed that her parents always loved her brother more, and they continue to love her brother’s children more than her own, and then had tears in her eyes while admitting this – would she have got closure after having admitted this on TV, or did this admission bring the whole problem that had been pushed under the carpet for all these years, out in the open for the whole family, to be forced to acknowledge it? How will her parents react now, knowing what they do? How will her brother react? And her brother’s wife, for that matter?

I think one could write many stories. I think I will, actually.

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