I am not a big fan of contemporary television shows. Well, my parents are. These days, whenever I speak to my parents over phone, they tend to go gaga about Kaun Banega Crorepati. I had watched a few episodes last month. I also watched the re-runs of a few episodes recently. And I must say, the show is impressive, often inspiring. The reason is simple- the nature and the background of the contestants on the show.
I am personally disturbed by TV shows. These rags to riches stories essentially sell the American Dream in an contextualized Indian way. But this show in particular focuses on masses and has the heart in the right place. In the show we meet struggling young men, housewives and teachers from rural areas. We meet physically handicapped yet mentally strong people. We get exposed to a whole new world out there, a world less known to many people living in cities. A world that makes many of us uncomfortable. A world that has been given step mother treatment by the privileged ones. And then, we get to know how knowledgeable, intelligent these people are! I personally take pride when I am unable to answer a question, and a rural student, or a house hold lady ends up answering it. These little moments reaffirm my belief in this land and it’s people- the real people!
The show is quite melodramatic which for good reasons or bad, helps it from a marketing perspective. But by and large, I find the show realistic. Listening to the accounts of tragedy in some of the contestant’s lives depicts how unpredictable and cruel life can get. Not just their stories, but even the way these contestants conduct themselves on the show has been a treat to watch. And to add to it, Amitabh Bachchan’s presence, his subtle support towards the contestant, his humour, personality and voice – all added, make the show an evening well spent.