Give yourself a break

Give yourself a break

telly talk

refreshing A still from a recent cola advertisement featuring Imran Khan.

So would Rocky, the magnificent-maned golden retriever, who bounds over gleefully to the ‘oh-so-stuck-up’ beauty who wants a boyfriend who is handsome, devoted and very, very intelligent. Not only are these ads combining some interesting story lines with some cute actors (both human and canine) but they are also giving viewers a taste of some delicious humour. Now humour is something our television programmes completely lack. When the competition includes over-the-top soaps and loud, slapstick comedy, these innovative and tastefully done commercials are an easy winner.

Advertisements are touching a creative high. Take the new Coke ad for instance. Bollywood’s current heartthrob Imran Khan is this young collegiate who is trying to steal his neighbour’s drink by using his fingers to draw shadow puppets on the other youngster’s wall. The magnetic old ditty (remix version) Aaj ki raat, koi aane ko hai…Re baba plays in the background. He doesn’t succeed in his greedy designs as the light switches on and the neighbour (who all this while appeared to be a young boy) turns out to be a gorgeous girl with a lithe figure and a charming boy cut. It’s none other than Marcela Rodrigues — Indo-Italian model. She hands him the bottle across the balcony with a cute smile. Imran is not the only one floored.

Another cold drink advertisement that has very high recall value (even if people don’t remember which dark fizzy drink it tries to sell) is where a young boy is trying to get home from Ladakh for Diwali. The bus in which he is travelling breaks down. To kill his disappointment, he has the soft drink. Just as he takes a sip, the bus is back on the road, it’s shining with Diwali lights and the driver — a scruffy looking man   — pushes his head out of the window and yells “Dilli?” The enunciation is so typically north Indian that anybody who travelled in an interstate bus even once, will be able to identify with it.

Commercials, by their perfect casting, also give film stars and directors a chance at doing some of their most entertaining work. Sachin is very comfortable with the camera and India’s cricket captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni’s earthy humility easily comes to the fore in advertisements like the latest for Pepsi, where he is on a farm where a boy is teaching him to use a harvesting machine.  “Kas ke pakad, jam ke jakad, lagaa.” He is then shown on the cricket field with the dialogues ringing out,  “bahut acche, ab wahan bhi aise hi karna.” (Very good. Now do this on the cricket field as well).That’s the technique for the helicopter shot, we’re told.

Even Karan Johar, an absolute pain on the sensibilities on Koffee with Karan, with his convent-school diction, air kissing and his latest penchant to do a Simi Garewal (hold hands and shed tears), manages to entertain in the new Nescafe know-your-neighbour advertisement. He walks into film star Deepika’s flat with a completely stuck up look on his face when he spots the gushing, star-struck neighbour Purab Kohli  there. Purab is being civilly ignored till he takes a sip of Nescafe and boldly asks Karan-the-Johar “You’re Karan who?” And then cheekily inquires with his pretty neighbour if he (Karan) is “uncle”.
Karan is perfect as the stuck up, snobbish film director, while Purab is very cute as the nobody neighbour who wants to make a place in Deepika’s heart.

Similarly, Abhishek Bachchan might not be getting too many films, but he’s quite well cast as the precocious working guy in the “Get Idea” ads. And much as we hear that Idea’s connectivity is pathetic, the ad line is quite chirpy by itself.

So, dear fellow couch potato, if you are getting exasperated by the fare dished out on the idiot box — the dance, the singing, the crass comedy and the suicide-inducing soaps, give yourself a break, surf channels and stop only to watch the advertisements tonight. You won’t be disappointed.

DH Newsletter Privacy Policy Get top news in your inbox daily
Comments (+)