Thursday, December 27, 2012

OF Livewire LIVEMINT and Indian Mothers in law!

http://www.livemint.com/Consumer/Lybufe1rqIfUUnqVUPLwcI/Indian-soap-operas-ruled-by-mothersinlaw.html

Reading the article from Livemint above, sends a chill up my spine and is capable of leading a nation into a state of despair.
Accepting the argument provided by those who select content which runs on all television channels in India would spell doom.
Lets not forget that those who believe Indian Television is not ready for progressive programming are taking a growing television market for granted and depending on viewership which they will accumulate irrespective of whether the content they provide is of good quality and forward thinking, or not.

Lets also not forget that if content in Indian Films is becoming more and more ahead of time, it is because writers of depth are acceptable in the industry of films unlike that in the industry of television, not just acceptable but respected as well.

There is a fear of good writers in the television industry.
Good writers are more informed and therefore more assertive. Good writers trust their instincts, draw from the well of their vast experiences and research.
Good writers make the fore tellers of change, redundant, in this case those executives who give precedence to collections above all else, even above the damage they cause to a psyche of a country as a whole.

The pundits who believe they know the viewers' needs because of skewed numbers that arrive at their desks every week are not just pulling wool over eyes of the larger public but also doing harm to a society struggling to understand the complexities of its times.
If the article above is true and all that those who are quoted say is right then what a contradiction it is then that Ballika Vaddhu is the topmost rated program in India, and it is a series that hits hard at the worst social malaise in India, which is child marriage?
It is a series that cuts across all audiences in India, not just appealing to slum dwellers and villagers, because it is a series well made, well written and with top quality performances.

None of the youth is watching storytelling on Indian Television and it comprises of more than 60% of the Indian Population.
None of their problems are addressed through storytelling, none of their real issues resolved.
That is why they are on the streets today, protesting against evil, demanding answers.
That is why the son of the President of India has the audacity to call those women agitating on the streets in the capital city of India, dented and painted, women who go to discotheques in the night, and walk the streets by day!
There is a complete apathetic attitude of the spin doctors who care for the results in cash, more than in behavioral or attitudinal change. Have no clue what to do when the need of the hour is to give impulse to a revolution in the hearts of a whole society.

Whoever talks about content being generated on Indian Television at present is for aspiring viewers, is completely out of sync with the aspirations of an average Indian and if they think it is the archaic sets and costumes of serials that people of India aspire to ape, they are sadly mistaken.
There is nothing worse than dishing out mythology upon mythology to an average Indian viewer who laps it up daily, the viewer who cannot discern between mythology and religion.

I have said time and again, and often made myself unpopular with my trade, that there is a responsibility, we as a creative industry, carry upon our shoulders.
We cannot afford to mete out what we believe that Indian audiences want, from the analysis derived out of a dismal sample, just to prove our point right which we so easily can because of the positions we hold, the chair we occupy, the huge funds we can release.
Like the Government of India, we too collect sycophants around us, yes men, who make us believe that we are right all the time, who revel when we delude ourselves.

We need to go into those places where our television reaches and observe what is missing.
Not just depend on what we think is there.
Because what is missing out there is a lot about what we have and they don't.
Other than uninterrupted water supply and electricity that we have and is missing in those lives, there is a culture standing still out there, which fortunately is evolving in our societies and because of which we can sit out here in privileged domain and pontificate about what we think we know.
Those people who consume our television also desire that their lives should move forward, their cultures should evolve, their futures should blend with ours.

Let's not be shortsighted and imagine that what is too far in the horizon is blurred therefore we can get away with anything that we want.
We have turned our passions into our business and now we cannot afford to exploit it by keeping the business rolling at the cost of a generation of young aspirants lost, mindsets led astray.

We have to blame ourselves for a confused youth today.
It is the result of the last 15 years of programming on our television which has slipped into the lives of young impressionable minds whom we have fooled into believing that what we show is how we are, how we think and how we live, whereas we ourselves look down upon what we create and consume programming from the west which provides us with the impetus to design our own evolving cultures.

The attitude of disdain towards our own audiences is the outcome of our feudal backgrounds which compel us to believe that what we like, should be different from what people we consider to be lesser beings, like.
Let us not make no mistake that programming from the west may be cheaper to run on English Channels, but is not the answer to qualify our substandard output.
There is no alternative to home grown quality work, and it can only emerge from sensitivity of executive functioning in a creative industry, a genuine concern towards its creative resources.
Money will be made either way.
Hierarchy has to shift from the carpetbaggers to the bard.

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