Anil Thakraney: Sex and the city, anyone?

12 Mar,2012

By Anil Thakraney


Ekta Kapoor’s legendary saas bahu TV shows are officially dead. Both Tulsi mata and Parvati bhabhi over-stayed their visit to our living rooms, and that’s generally agreed upon. Further proof is Ekta’s increased attention to the movie business… the soap queen perhaps realizes that her sort of forever weeping, forever sacrificing, sati savitri naari is dead. And that’s a good thing; massive audience fatigue had set in on the format.


However, after watching some of the new prime time daily soaps, I observed that the senior woman/younger woman face/off isn’t really over. Sure, the producers are attempting to feature the ‘modern’ woman and the plots now include remarriage, late marriage, young girl/old man, wife beater husband, and so on. But almost always, lurking in a dark corner, is an older woman who’s ready to give our young protagonist some serious stress. We haven’t really eschewed kitchen politics, in that sense.


And I suppose the reason is this: Production companies, and more importantly the entertainment channels, are playing a safe game. There is a formula that’s worked in the past, and while they are ready to experiment with new ideas, there seems to be a reluctance to totally deviate from the tried and tested stuff. Too much money rides on television programming, there are also sponsors to worry out, and so it makes sense to be cautious. Fair enough, I understand where they are coming from.


However, I do believe time has come for a ‘Sex and the City’ sort of a show. This could be exclusively targeted at the upmarket urban women (they are the ones with money power), a segment that really has nothing tailored for it on the massy entertainment channels. It’s a badly starved segment. In any case, high living, blind dating, promiscuity, binge boozing… all of that (and more) goes on in the metro towns. So why not capitalize on it?


Yup, it’s a slot waiting to be filled; it’s a great programming opportunity. And the first mover will have the big advantage. Marketers of premium brands would be very interested in such a show. A chance for them to exclusively reach the hip, loaded, urban woman.


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So people, ready for some sex and sleaze in our living rooms. Any takers?


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PS: Fabulous, fabulous media innovation fromIsrael. To create awareness on the problems faced by those suffering from Alzheimer’s disease. Hats off to the creators.


Brilliant stuff.


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