Just a few days ago while I was flipping through the channels, Doordarshan came up and it just made me realize how much I miss the shows of yore.
Their relatability in terms of characters and stories is what made me want to watch these shows. There was something for housewives, something for the kids, something for the disgruntled men returning back after work and something for our beloved farmers too (Krishi Darshan ftw).
Fast Forward To The Ekta Kapoor Age
The undisputed queen of Indian Television, the “Soap Rani“.
Ever wondered why everything they are showing on TV nowadays is anything except something we could expect to see in real life?
Huge a** palaces for your homes, a family tree more complex than that on Game of Thrones, housewives with eyeliner and lipstick so foolproof that Maybelline still hasn’t been able to replicate it and OH-THE-NEVER-ENDING background music.
It would be safe to say that she has ruined the concept of ideal Indian women for us. Her broad categorization of women is hilarious if not relatable. The Dutiful one, the Icchadari Naagin, the one who will go to hell, the one who wants to kill her mother-in-law and the list goes on.
Why Am I Bashing Her?
The immolation of women at her hands to generate quick TRPs is what irks me and feminists across the globe.
Pallavi Joshi in her 20s produced and acted in a brilliant series called Aarohan which narrates the inspiring story of women joining Indian Navy and traces their journey and the ordeals they faced. This show came at a time when women couldn’t join Indian Navy. Now, imagine, how this make-believe scenario of 1996 would have inspired young women across all Indian households that maybe they too can be something else other than the trophy wives they are groomed to be.
While on the other hand, Ekta Kapoor running into the 21st century failed to keep up with the trend and continued to produce mindless, sexist garbage just because she thought that strong progressive content isn’t going to capture masses.
If a young 22-year-old Joshi could have gathered the courage to make content that glorifies women for what they are and could take a risk so bold, why do we hail someone as frivolous and spineless as Kapoor for revolutionizing how India watches TV?
An Ideal Indian Woman According To Ekta Kapoor
Strong, independent women aren’t her cup of tea because what even is a woman who doesn’t fight and crib!
Women in her serials are strong because they resist their husband for a month before they go running back to him. Women in her serials are strong because they are able to manipulate people into pandering to them. Women in her serials are never strong for being able to become a doctor or a lawyer. Women in her serials are never strong for being able to divorce their abusive husbands and raise their child on their own because that idea of a strong woman wouldn’t appease the crowd.
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She received the Social Empowerment award in 2012. Kudos to her!
Her notable works included inspiring young woman across India that, screw education and be pretty because ultimately your prince will come and whisk you away to his castle where you will make him his tea, churn out babies after babies to keep the ‘khandaan’ intact, while obviously, obviously, you wear a saree more embellished than your dreams.
Why Do I Want Her To Assume Responsibility?
Kitchen politics doesn’t only demean women but has also been successful in implanting the notion that all women must fight, all women must scheme to bring each other down and all women can clearly never rise above the hate they have for each other. She has only added fuel to the fire of patriarchy, and has upheld those very traditions that strong, fearless woman across India are fighting hard to uproot, every single day.
Her penchant for doling out bullshit like black magic and VFX worse than a kindergarten kid’s sketches (see: Naagin) is even more embarrassing than her spoon feeding the society, highly misogynistic perceptions about sex and women which she justifies by her TRPs.
You are a powerful, privileged woman Ms. Kapoor, who has all the means at her disposal to churn out inspiring, aspirational and progressive content.
Recognize your responsibility, Ms. Kapur, Kyonki Kya Hua Tera Vaada about being a powerful icon for women? Bade Acche Lagte Hai those men who let their wives work and are able to understand that she doesn’t want to keep a ghunghat over her head all the time. Strong, bold women who speak their mind should be the Kahaani Ghar Ghar Kii. Saas Bhi Kabhi Bahu Hogi but now she has moved on from Mihir Virani and has been the education minister and the textile minister of a nation of 1.3 billion people.
Ms. Kapoor NOW is the time you abdicate your throne and move on too.
Image credits: Google Images
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