Much admiration for glam add-ons

08 Dec,2011

By Ranjona Banerji


Just to entertain myself, I decide to read the glamour supplements of The Times of India and Hindustan Times. Though now I am not sure whether entertainment or aggravation is what I was looking for. Since the arrival of Medianet and its variations in other newspapers, I usually ignore Bombay Times, HT Cafe and the entertainment/celebrity sections of all newspapers. Disclosure: I used to write a restaurant review for DNA After.Hrs but I haven’t seen that either for over a year and many years ago, I edited the Ahmedabad Times and Baroda Times. This takes nothing away from my life as I have minimal interest in Bollywood and tinpot celebs.


So what have I learnt today? That a supermodel I had never heard of (though they told us her name) has agreed to launch a perfume (which was not named). This unnamed perfume will cost a million dollars and proceeds from sales will go to charity (named). So what do I make of this? That the supermodel paid Bombay Times, while the perfume and charity did not? Or that the editors just take the line of least resistance and do not name whoever had paying potential?


This then turned into a fun game. Ekta Kapoor made an appearance (some new movie or something) on the front pages of both Bombay Times and HT Cafe. Money paid or not? Time Out has its food awards this week. HT Cafe covered it, Bombay Times did not. Because Bombay Times has its own awards or… By the way, these are the people whose pictures appeared in HT Cafe as guests or presenters at the Time Out awards: Abhay Deol, Malaika Arora Khan, Neha Dhupia, Shahana Goswami, Mahie Gill, Kalki Koechlin and Shruti Shah. Barring Deol and Dhupia (though it could be her large dress), none of the others looked like they’d eaten a meal in two weeks. Two winning chefs got a mention in the accompanying paragraph and no restaurants were mentioned (paid or not…?).


A story on French producer (called veteran, which means just about anything) Marc Zermati is headlined ‘I’m not interested in Bollywood bulls**t’ is next to the Time Out story which perhaps shows someone in HT Cafe has a great sense of irony or none at all.


Both Bombay Times and HT Cafe have the same people in the lead: Priyanka Chopra and Hrithik Roshan. Bombay Times says they both get ‘wet and naughty’. (Actually the headline says ‘Hrithik and PC get wet and naughty’ so for a moment I thought it had something to do with Hrithik and computer porn. The pic showed them really close, so give me a break). HT Cafe has Priyanka Chopra saying there is no “lip-lock” in this movie. So don’t get disappointed when you watch it, presumably.


I was pleased to see that I no longer needed a magnifying glass to read my fortune in Bombay Times but was disappointed to see that it did not say reading “advertorial entertainment promotional features is bad for mental health”.


Anyway, by this time I was so bored that I had to stop.


Question for those who make them and those who read them: how do you guys do it? Full admiration!

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