Rest assured, you can always trust Bollywood to be absolutely comfortable in its own conceit. Everything here is a matter of box office numbers, masala, and of course perpetuating its own prejudices. Take, for instance, Bollywood's obsession with fair skin that knows no bounds. Just yesterday, a new item song was added to B-Town’s barrage of racist songs that tend to put white skin on a pedestal.
Khaali Peeli’s newly released song Beyonce Sharma Jayegi is a glaring example of everything that is wrong with the Indian entertainment industry’s prejudice against any skin colour that’s not fair. It is as if we have taken it upon ourselves to ridicule our own kind.
So infatuated remains Bollywood with its vision of the gori girl that Khaali Peeli makers didn’t even think twice before pitching Beyonce’s name against fair-skinned Ananya Panday. Also, they didn’t shy away from insinuating that the gori as featured in the song can actually put Beyonce to shame!
And while we have so much to say here, this is definitely not the first time B-Town went all bonkers with its love for the fair skin, right? Here’s a line up of seven instances when Bollywood really had us flabbergasted with its fair-skin obsession:
We are really confused, so please help us here: what’s the connection between having fair skin and needing bangles? Also, how does your skin colour make you eligible for asking things like that? Lastly, why cannot Bollywood’s goriya buy her own damn stuff? Imagine the impact that song can have and must have had on young impressionable minds, especially women who were led into believing that fair skin is all that it takes to get whatever you desire in life. Problematic and how!
Trust Bollywood to take its colourism to another level, mix it with ample materialism, and portray fair women as porcelain beauties who deserve all things nice, simply because of their skin colour. Not only is this song problematic for its colourist undertones, but it's also offensive for all the sexism!
This is especially under our scanner for attempting to peddle a dusky actress as a fair one. What was the purpose? Perhaps a need to hoodwink the audience into believing that the actress on the screen is actually fair by means of melodious rhetoric? And why? Simply to comply with its own problematic standard of beauty and perfection? Well played, Bollywood!
Now while a gori chitti girl is legit queen of the effing world in Bollywood’s eyes, it is the exact opposite for her wheatish, dusky, or dark counterpart. Thus, while goriya deserves to be showered with gifts simply by the virtue of her colour, the dusky girl needs to have a heart of gold to make up for her colour.
Remember the yesteryear song Hum Kaale Hain Toh Kya Hua, Dilwale Hain with the exact same messaging? Well, you get our point.
If you were ever confused about the racist implications of Bollywood’s unyielding love for the fair skin, then this song will surely clear all your doubts. Quite frustratingly, this song does not beat around the bush, has no ambitions for subtlety and directly comes to the point by talking about ‘white-white skin.’ Racist and how!
Yup because it is that simple for goriya to have her way! Also, this again is one of those songs where the actress (Shilpa Shetty) isn’t exactly fair per se but was still called so, simply for the purposes of the Bollywood's prejudices and stereotypes.
If there’s anything that comes close to Bollywood’s obsession with fair skin then it would have to be its love for drawing a contrast between kala chashma and Gora mukhda. From Gore gore mukhde pe kala kala chasma to tenu kala chashma jachda, jachda ae gore mukhde te, Bollywood has really held on to its prejudice all this while. Neither shocking nor surprising!
Well, high time Bollywood gets its game straight!
Featured Image: Instagram