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Archive for January 4th, 2010

Alright. Enough people have accused me and the BF of being stingy and not investing in a new TV set or getting a cable connection. Enough for me to seriously write a post on it. It’s the ‘Stingy’ title that I hate the most!!!

Frankly, none of my family members crave watching TV. What is there to watch anyway?? The news channels are full of drama. The television serials are full of drama. The reality shows are full of drama. The game shows too, are full of drama. It’s as if the TV moguls decided to inflict an onslaught of sentiments to wring out that last tear from the viewer’s eye. “Make them cry, choke them with emotions, make them have a lump in their throat so large, they have difficulty in breathing and thinking straight”, is what the channel head says to his team.

And so we get hours of news reels looping on how a woman was dragged by the hair through a colony when found cuddling with a married man. The camera conveniently keeps the man out of focus. we have news reports running throughout the day on how a kid was trapped in a borewell and was being rescued. We have immense footage on how a muslim woman must be judged because she married a second time, and then her ‘assumed dead’ first husband turns up demanding her to return to him. Who benefits from these news items anyway. And how are they categorized as “Breaking News”??

The only un-sensational , sincere news channel, dedicated to delivering ONLY news and nothing else, is Doordarshan. And so , we watch that.

We have hours of soap time dedicated to scheming DILs and MILs. In a way that would make Lalita Pawar (God bless her) turn in her grave . Name one TV serial which doesn’t have a scheming vamp/villain, whose life is dedicated to making the lives of others and viewers miserable, and I’ll show you a 5-legged iguana.

We have dance/song shows where, if the contestant is not able to move the viewer to tears with an impassioned speech about his/her impoverished background, lesser are his/her chances of obtaining votes and consequently, lesser chance of winning. So they go on and on about how hard it is for them. How life has dealt them a raw deal and how the viewers can change all that. How many times do we actually see the contestant asking the viewers to use their sense of music to judge them. How many contestants actually request the audience to judge them on their performance and nothing else? So the show no longer showcases talent. It showcases poverty. The poorer you are, better are your chances of winning. The channels and the service providers, make hay.

We have game shows, where the celebrity guests try and move the audience emotionally just to promote their latest films.

These are just a few rants against what’s on TV.

The second part of this post is on what we want our children to watch. I would prefer giving my children knowledge through books. Make them read , like our parents did with us. There was a time when the family favourite was our collection of Reader’s digest encyclopedias. Anytime we were free, we would grab a book and read from it. And I’m talking about the time I was 9 or 10 years old. We didn’t have TV those days and it was a blessing . I didn’t miss out on knowledge because we knew where to seek it. And knowledge does not stay in TV boxes or cartoon network. So I would not get into the argument of having a cable connection so that the children can watch National geographic or Animal planet to enhance their knowledge. It’s just as easy for a child to switch channels to his favourite cartoon as soon as your back is turned. No, I would rather give up watching TV myself.

It is said that parents/elders have to set an example. and its true. It was recently reaffirmed when the SIL was visiting with her kids. Her MIL is used to watching daily soaps the kids spend their time glued to the TV with her. Once she is done, the kids take control of the remote and spend hours in front of the TV, watching cartoons. So while the kids were staying with us, it became awfully difficult for them to spend a day without television. The elder one refused to eat unless he gets to watch his cartoons. The younger one followed suit. Both the kids drove the SIL insane with their constant demands for TV and the poor girl had to leave a day earlier than what she had planned.

We did think of getting a couple of CDs of cartoons and play them on the computer. The BF objected to it. He said unreasonable demands should not be met. In a way, I agree with him. We may sounds mean here, but there is a purpose to it. The strict control is not only for the children, it’s also for us.

It’s easy to dump the child in front of the television and go about with your work. It’s more difficult to actually keep them entertained yourself. And we have chosen this difficult option. So we all take turns. If the MIL is busy, the GMIL spends time with them, else the FIL plays with them. If I’m busy, the BF or the BIL spends time with them.

If no one else is around, we try to involve the kids with what we are doing. Or give them playthings and play around a little and then get back to task as hand.

But none of us even suggests putting on a cartoon CD for them. We don’t want that. We don’t want to miss out on this time we spend with the twins. Forced though, it may appear. We are glad. The kids are happy. This is what ties our family together.

Isn’t that itself worth the so-called “sacrifice” ??

Edited to add :

I had missed out venting my woes on the movie channels. The advertisements inserted in them are enough to put me off watching movies forever. Thank God for theatres and DVDs.

And thanks to G for reminding me of one more reason on why I hate TV :D.

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O-MI GOD!!

Like everyone else and their uncle, I watched 3 idiots this weekend.

And before you get any ideas, this is NOT a review. I can’t do reviews. Seriously. Because the movies which I generally like, turn out to be duds 😦

And the movies that I think stink like rotten eggs, come out toppers.

So don’t rely on me for reviews.

Anyhow.

The verdict?

Its fun. Its patronizing (to a certain extent). It definitely presses the right buttons with the audience (comprising majorly of college going students). To a certain extent, Kareena’s role was insipid. The director could have easily done away with her role. But I guess, a little eye-candy was required.

But overall, the movie was just so-so.

Now before you start throwing those rotten tomatoes at me, hear me out.

I felt that all the actors did what they usually do. They were good actors and putting in their regular performances. I’m a die-hard Aamir Khan fan but I still feel, this role was just too average for him. He could have easily sleep-walked through it. It didn’t challenge his capabilities as an actor. Madhavan and Sharman were also just fine. Nothing outstanding from these two. Sharman, by far , was more interesting in “Rang de Basanti” and “Life in a Metro”. Madhavan, doesn’t get to display much emotion. And yeah, all that puppy fat didn’t help his cause either!!!

I went in for the movie, expecting to see something new. Something different. After all the rave reviews from all quarters, I thought it must be really fresh.

And this time, though I was initially sceptic,  I did get to see it.

Ok, now honestly, if you have seen the movie, which character did you like best? Which character drew the maximum laughs? Who was it who lit up the screen with his/her presence? The mere entry of whose was guaranteed to draw a laugh from you.If not, then atleast a smile 🙂 .

Yup, you got it right!!

Am talking about Chatur Ramalingam.

Aka, Omi Vaidya.

Omi Vaidya

Where were you all these years , Omi???

This guy blew my mind with his acting. His welcome speech in Hindi in his curious mix of Ugandan+Tamilian accent was mind-blowing. It wasn’t the content so much as was his presentation. And the best part was his consistency of performance. When he was a student, he looked like a student. And when he was a middle aged successful executive, he looked that part.

Compare that to how the three main leads appeared during their college days and their appearance after the 10 year gap. Not much. They looked middle aged during college and looked the same after that too.

Omi’s was the only role that stood out. A performace that stood out among the stalwarts.And before you think he’s just any comic actor, let me tell you that he is a writer, editor, actor, director and producer.

Its just unfortunate that he’s more into American television/movies than Indian.

I would just so love to see him in more hindi movies.

I’m personally looking forward to him doing an out-n-out comedy with him as the lead.

What fun it would be?!!

So Omi, Kya yeh ho sakti hai?

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