A concoction of same old spices

A concoction of same old spices

'Khichdi' is back on television

In a season that is seeing many a silver screen flick unveiling its sequel with a bang, it is but natural for the small screen to also bring in and boast of its own league of sequels. And so, into the telly soap space re-enters a staple of the sitcom template — Khichdi Season 3.

A staple and a showstopper in the sitcom series, Khichdi, on Star Plus, has carved a niche for itself as a comical family drama, having previously had outings on the small screen as Khichdi and Instant Khichdi, and a celluloid outing consolidating on its popularity further, Khichdi: The Movie. As much as the serial has evolved into a staple of the sitcom template, so have the protagonists making up its comic cast become household names. And sure enough, to imbue the series with a sense of continuity, Khichdi Season 3 returns, after over a decade, with the same faces — Supriya Pathak, Rajeev Mehta, Vandana Pathak, Anang Desai and JD Majethia & Co. What infuses an element of novelty is the new faces in the form of Ratna Pathak Shah and Renuka Shahane, as well as a new track.

Its much-awaited return after over a decade naturally raises expectations as much as questions about what makes Khichdi 3 different or better than its previous editions. Coming to the content, the new edition takes forward the adventures, or misadventures of the quintessential Gujarati family — the Parekhs, comprising Babuji aka Tulsidas Parekh (Anang Desai), Praful Parekh (Rajeev Mehtab), Hansa Parekh (Supriya Pathak), Jayshree Parekh (Vandana Pathak) and Himanshu Seth (JD Majethia).

This season unfolds the poignant predicament of the Parekh family when it has been befooled by a builder, who defrauds them and leaves them in a hapless state and in a house without walls and ceilings. To compound matters, they are badgered and bullied by the people who had invested money in their housing project and have now ended up losing that money on 
account of the builder’s scam.

The action revolves around this plot: from Jayshree Parekh and Himanshu Seth being doled out threats by the affected investors; to a lady don (Renuka Shahane), who had also booked an apartment in the Parekh’s housing project, dishing out ultimatums of dire consequences and taking Hansa captive (Supriya Pathak); to the Parekhs being assigned the task of robbing a bank and other such comic-tragic moments.

As far as the characterisations go, members of the Parekh family portray a continuity with their individual idiosyncrasies and signature styles. In addition, the signature punchlines like, “Chai leke aa rahi hai, ki bahar se mangaun?”, “Main hu na, main samjhata hu,” etc, suffuse the script with a sense of sameness.

This season has its own set of cameos, like the hype about Ravan visiting the Parekhs, which is a ploy by Jayshree to gain media attention by spreading the news that Ravan will attend Himanshu’s painting exhibition, and all such stunts. There are also comic caricatures aplenty, from Babuji dressing up like Michelle Obama to Jayshree doing a dacoit act and all that. And not to forget, to cash in on the IPL fever, Khichdi showcases its own ‘cricketainment’, as the Parekh family have a field day, showing there is no ‘match’ for them.

Overall, the new Khichdi tale does indeed regale, quite like a dish of paneer chilli or murg masallam served on a new platter but with the same ol’ spices.