Sunday, February 25, 2007

Death of a soap

This is going to be one tear jerker of a blog. I usually try to write light stuff but today, the occasion demands gravity, so forgive me, dear reader, if you find typos in this page - I can barely see through my tears.

The soap "Kahin to Hoga" is dead. Stopped breathing last week, though it was paralyzed for several months now.

"Kahin to Hoga" is loosely translated as "he's gotta be somewhere" - a line which irresistibly brings to my mind an over sized pushy corporate type babe looking for her dork boyfriend in a dark and noisy night club, the dork trying to hide behind a barstool, but its nothing like that. Its a soft, romantic, sentimental tale full of loud, scheming, arrogant characters. No, I havent been having a couple.

Judging from Sheela's reactions, it is an epic love story which makes "Casablanca" look like a chick flick, though my take on it is slightly at variance from that view.

The typical episode which runs for 30 minutes, has a five minute re-cap, a five minute song or music sequence where the leading lady, who has the emotive abilities of a mannequin, weeps silently or the leading man brushes away a few manful tears, another five minutes where something deeply significant is said and the rest is advertisements. I'm not kidding.

The deeply significant parts of the dialogue are highlighted by a loud "dishhhh" of the drums followed by close ups of the various characters' mugs. The stuff said is quite innocuous, usually, "Dinner is served", perhaps, or "How are you" but when you hear the music, you know that its a declaration of war.

Another curious feature is the ability of the story to remain static. Episode after episode, the situation remains frozen in time. Then, someone dies, usually the result of some disagreement with Ekta Kapoor, and the plot sort of shudders and wakes up for a while before settling back into rigor mortis.

The story line is probably the work of a committee, oscillating as it does between extremes of love and hatred several times in the five minutes allowed for the actual plot. The trick, Sheela tells me, is to admire the clothes and the actors, because if you try to delve too deeply into the plot, you run the risk of feeling dizzy. But I know she is not telling me the whole truth because I catch here brushing away a surreptitious tear or two ever so often.

I guess I belong to the wrong sex. Maybe I'm one of those born squares. But for the life of me, I can't fathom why someone would spend half an hour on this kind of stuff when Victoria's Secret is showing its 2007 lingerie collection on FTV. You wouldn't know, would you?


Cynic in Wonderland said...

is that the one about the three sisters ? the cinderella one? im confused. they all have names like that. kahin kisi roz, kahin na kahin, kahin kahin mere dil mein la la la

Deepak Gopalakrishnan said...

You should read Greatbong's book. The chapter on serials is pretty much similar to what you've written here :-)

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