At some point or another, whether you still watch telly or not, we’ve all at least been glued to the screen and completed an entire season of a reality TV show. With established or reputed actors being a show host or judge, the song, dance and drama seems to sweep us away. These shows are however remakes and borrowed ideas from hit shows in the west. Khatron ke khiladi, Bigg Boss and Indian Idol, all have their Western counterparts.
The latest being Farah Khan’s Lip Sing Battle, much like it’s Western version Lip Sync Battle, except this is with popular Bollywood music as the star. Celebrities get downright funky onstage as they literally lip sync songs with effects! Farah’s musical extravaganza is her return to the small screen after being a judge on the popular dance show, Jhalak Dikhla Jaa, which follows the format of the British show Strictly Come Dancing. The premiere even had Megan Doeyle, a maker of the Western installment as one if its guests.
The trend is about mass entertainment and following a tried and tested rule, instead of being original, sadly. If it works in the West, all you need to add is that desi touch with a song and dance routine and the audience is sold.
Having celebrities participate in the show has become customary with film promotions, episodes or guest judges. Sonakshi Sinha has turned a judge on Baba Ramdev’s newest show that has contestants singing bhajans to win. Shilpa Shetty Kundra has now turned producer with a new game show, Aunty Boli Lagi Goli. Investing in popular faces gives satellite TV the boom it needs.
A mass production of entertainment shows encourages producers to gimmick the formats of Western TV shows although, a target of ridicule, making a beeline for the win! Director K.M. Chaitanya says, “Satellite television in itself is a Western concept. We have not had our own way for programming. The demands of various channels is to mass manufacture and you would obviously want to produce something that has worked. Whether it is a Kaun Banega Crorepati or a Bigg Boss, we have always adapted to Western concepts, because they have proven to be successful.”