New year, new me, but the same old drama, looks like that is the theme in Indian TV shows this year. After the latest portion of blood-boiling Kasautii Zindagii Kay served us with this week, I decided to dig a little deeper and couldn't help but observe how sexist KZK, and in fact, most of our shows have been. What shook me the most was the fact that the way we were portraying women two decades ago is still the way we are portraying them today. Well, these shows are:
Of course, you have read all about our thoughts on the latest, and might I say, the most sexist episode of Kasautii Zindagii Kay 2. I mean, they took the breach of promise to marry provision by the Indian Penal Code to a whole new (read false) level. Prerna's sister is slut-shamed for having consensual sex and getting pregnant. And to top it all, 'Tum candle jala do candle march ke liye, it's very in nowadays,' are Komolika's exact words! Some kind of women for women, eh!
Created under Ekta Kapoor's production house, Balaji Telefilms, Kasautii Zindagii Kay went from being mildly annoying to misogynist, sexist, and downright backward.
I really don't understand why my parents are hooked to the show when, in my opinion, it is outright nonsense and very insulting. Two couples, Manmohan Tiwari - Angoori and Vibhuti Narayan Mishra - Anita, live across the street from each other. Both the husbands are fed up with their respective marriages and are smitten by each other's wives. They take their own loving, caring, and devoted wives for granted and devise schemes to impress each the other's wife instead, pulling each other down in front of them, and in turn, creating problematic situations for everybody else.
That's funny because marriage is a joke, right? And women are nothing more than objects of pleasure. If not in the eyes of your own husband or boyfriend, then in the eyes of your neighbour. Now I get it! Ha ha ha.
In this particular serial, Major Rudra holds Parvati at a safe house (his father's house) to get her to confess about her dead terrorist, newlywed groom, while she has no idea about the man she agreed to marry other than his name. Rudra's malicious aunt, Mohini, manages to discover Paro and insults her virtue (I am so done with female vamps), causing Rudra's father to falsely proclaim that she is Rudra's fiancee. Meanwhile, the hatred turns into love but only for Paro. Rudra is accused of being violent towards her which causes him to lose his job. Angry and drunk, he marries Paro and promises to make her life a living hell. What a vow!
I don't understand why women in the Indian television scenario still get married just because they are asked to. Either that or women are so gullible and naive - something men love to take advantage of. That's so not 2019, people!
Indian TV has some definition of 'Junoon' and this show is one such eye-opener. Madhubala fights a case of hit and run on behalf of her friend, Mukund, against RK (a Bollywood superstar) and sends him to jail for four days. In order to teach her a lesson, RK humiliates her and her family publicly by insinuating that she is his girlfriend, drags her mother into it by calling her out for living with Madhubala's guardian, not father. Her engagement with Mukund is broken, surprise surprise! RK is a rude and an egotistical man who is hell-bent on ruining Madhubala’s life who, at this point, is his wife. He tries to insult her in any way he can but, is also possessive about her. Now that is he married to her, he has the right to treat her however she likes.
To sum up, 'Junoon'.
First of all, a woman (Khushi) is hired by another woman (Anjali) to teach ethics to his brother's (Arnav) girlfriend (Lavanya). My question - WHAT? You can't just hire a person to teach someone how to conduct yourself, especially when your boyfriend is a giant misogynist who tells you what to do and what to wear. In one scene, he actually insults her and yells at her in front of the entire house telling her to go inside and change her outfit. Who gave you the right, may I ask?
Now that the show is returning after six years, I only hope that the makers have figured out that this 2019, and changed their ways.
Geet marries Dev because her family wants to. However, three days later, Dev ditches her, takes her family's money and property and heads off to Canada, leaving her pregnant on the airport. If that shocks you, get this - her own family attempts to wrongfully kill her (due to her pregnancy). Severing all ties with them, she comes to Delhi only to land up working under Maan Singh Khurana, Dev's elder brother. But Maan is not Dev. Maan only hates her because he secretly loves her. And that's totally allowed, #Bollywood.
People always find a way to keep a woman miserable, whether she's married, single, or independently working. Exhibit Z: Geet... Hui Sabse Parayi.
CID has been the longest running show on Indian television. Now, you must be wondering why an investigative series that centres around the Crime Investigation Department (CID) solving criminal cases is making it to this list. I'll tell you why - because the show always has a young, qualified woman going undercover as the criminal's sexual interest. The question remains though, when does that ever happen in real life? And why do the people at CID think that women are only capable of seducing criminals, even if she is a forensic expert?
Care to solve that conundrum, ACP Pradyuman?
Shall I go on?
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