It pays to be cool

It pays to be cool


LOYALTY TEST A still from ‘Emotional Atyachaar’.

With its innovative programming content targeted towards youngsters with urban sensibilities, Bindass has garnered a huge fan base. Although the culture vultures or the so-called ‘custodians of moral law’ have often taken offense to the content of the shows, there is no denying the fact that shows like Date Trap, Love Lock Up, Big Switch and Emotional Atyachaar are extremely popular among the young crowd.

Take the show Date Trap for instance, which gives you a chance to play a prank on your friend by setting him/her up on a blind date. The show has two contenders pitted against each other and they design the worst date ever for their respective friends — they choose the setting, the actors who will take their friend on the prank date, and inform the actors about their friend’s likes and dislikes. The contender, whose friend’s date is worse than the other, wins cash! Now, this may sound inane, probably a little shallow too, but these elements make the show hilarious.

Next, you have Love Lockup, a show which the channel claims, will help estranged lovers in giving their relationship a second chance. In an enclosed setting, lovers, who have issues with each other, are made to stay together for eight days. The idea is to make them address their problems; they have no other choice but to deal with them. But, very rarely do you find them mending their fences. On the show, most of the time, you can see couples who harbour bitter feelings which have turned into intense animosity, arguing with each other relentlessly. As an offshoot of their spats, you can also witness drinking water glasses breaking against room walls, food plates crashing on floors and saucepans flying in the air!

And of course, there is Emotional Atyachaar, which has somehow achieved cult status. Testing your partner’s fidelity on air is like washing dirty laundry in public, but no one seems to care, especially when you go by the show’s popularity. A good-looking undercover agent, used as bait, tries woo the ‘suspect’ as the ‘lead’ or the lover in question wants to know if the person he is committed to is loyal. The show provides ample high-voltage drama peppered with endless mutual accusations. Sadly, this is voyeurism at its popular best.

Big Switch is another show on UTV Bindass which deals with hot-blooded, impulsive-minded youngsters who have to live, temporarily, with a new set of parents. Here, you see parents taking a jibe at today’s youngsters’ callow, flippant and nonchalant attitude; their slapdash ways of handling household chores. And you also see youngsters perpetually raising objection to their (replacement) parents’ imperious behaviour, provincial attitude and warped opinions. Big Switch shows that generation gap is a reality and clashes between parents and their children isn’t uncommon.

Not to discount, the show Dadagiri, which is presently off-the-air for reasons unknown, did strike a chord with viewers. It showcased the undaunted courage, unflinching determination and the indomitable spirit of youngsters who were tested by the show’s hectoring and bulldozing task masters, but it also took it a little too far. We must understand that there is a thin line between courage and credence. Doing hideous tasks, purely for entertainment, cannot be labelled as ‘youth spirit’, especially when the contenders were subjected to obnoxious tasks like slapping their own faces with sandals which were slathered in black slime!

So, if soppy saas-bahu sagas are not your thing, shows on UTV Bindass might be an option. If you call this entertainment, so be it. I guess, no one is complaining either.