Friday, October 4, 2013

Open Letter to Kapil Sharma

Dear Kapil,

It's not been very long since you started your television career, but you've entertained us so immensely over the past few years that I thought it's about time I wrote you an open letter. After all, I don't want to give you a chance to complain about Mr. Raghuram Rajan getting love letters in the Economic Times, while all you get is the Babaji ka Thullu.

As a member of the metropolitan generation which stopped watching television since the day Sarabhai vs. Sarabhai was pulled off air, I always fancied situational comedies set in NYC more than Raju Srivastav's brilliant acts on weddings and villages. While The Great Indian Laughter Challenge opened the urban youth to primetime Hindi comedy, it was your presence on Comedy Circus that really made us overlook all the slapstick performances that preceded your well timed acts and admire a Hindi comedian so openly on the social media, a space that we had earlier reserved only for mentioning Russell Peters. It's liberating to admit to the brilliance you have brought about in our (or my, if I should only speak for myself) otherwise heavily Americanized, often pseudo-elitist, taste in humor.

Your self-production, Comedy Nights with Kapil, is enjoyable beyond what words can express. For once, there's a comedy show on which I do not mind Navjot Singh Sidhu's laughter because there's enough for him to genuinely khadkaao his hahakaar at. While your interaction with the audience remains my favorite part of the show, there are a few things that I'd request you to improve on at the earliest.

The Bua

If you must do just one thing to improve the show, please cull the character of bua. There's a limit to which one can go on and on about not getting married. I think it's about time you realize that Upasana Singh's picture deserves a position in the Oxford Picture Dictionary, right next to the definition of annoying. It was a pain to watch her go “Abba Dabba Chabba” in Judaai, so you can imagine how much Tiger Balm it would take to relieve me of the headache that her hundred word script can induce. There's no need to think of another character for the actress; just let her go. I was feeling guilty about being so harsh, but I got over the feeling as soon as I realized that “twanty too years old, hawt and saxy” is how I literally describe my patootie, and I would not want to see images of it on national television.

The Dadi

Ali Asgar has had so much screen time in a drag act throughout his television career that Bobby Darling's existence finds it difficult to compete with it. If there's one thing funny about his portrayal of dadi, it is being called “buddhan” and being given a kick on his butt in every second episode. He looks nothing less than a Saroj Khan duplicate in sneakers, and I think his imaarat's buniyaad clearly needs some pest control for continuously acting like some cockroaches crept up his salwar.

Please take a hint from Akshay Kumar when he said that he would rip his wig off and throw him away if he dared to kiss any more people on the show. Kissing Shahrukh Khan and Ranbir Kapoor is one thing, but planting his leech of a mouth on Tusshar Kapoor is just mean. I mean, at least let the poor kid get some real action in life first before he is teased by a red lipped drag queen originally born out of Kahanii Ghar Ghar Ki.

To be honest, I can still bear his idiocy as long as the bua doesn't enter the same frame. If I were to choose just one, get rid of the bua already!

Guthi

An extremely underrated actor, Sunil Grover has never enjoyed the respect he deserves probably because all the original talent has mostly gone unnoticed behind his small mimicry stunts on Indian television. His portrayal of Guthi and some other recent characters has salvaged the image that he carried into the show in some of the initial episodes. I would love to watch him perform more on the show, provided he does not overdo what he is already doing up to a level of perfection, beyond which looms a saturation point.

The Question and the Thullu

Humor lies in the unexpected, which you so wonderfully exhibit every time a member of the audience puts up a question. It's hilarious to see you pull off the brat attitude with such innocence. However, it is now getting a little disappointing to see that your first question to every guest boils down to asking them how they feel on having finally made it to your show, after you mention all their well known works one after the other. It's been repeated as many times as the number of episodes, and I can see through how it ends even before it starts.

Babaji ka Thullu has undoubtedly been the biggest contribution of the show, as it finally gave the country a phrase to replace “ghanta” with. All of us are guilty of using it in our everyday lives now, complete with the little naag gesture. But I hope you will give us more such things to laugh about in our lives before Troll Punjabi's Thullu internet memes become too much of an inspiration for people to visit every meme generator, post Asaram Bapu's image and make jokes about how the babaji ka thullu is still in perfect working condition despite the age.

The show is undeniably the most entertaining on present day Indian television and deserves all the TRP's that it's already getting, and more. My only concern is that it might slowly lose its charm if the characters try to constantly stick to the same eccentric traits or jokes time and again, one episode after another, only because they worked wonderfully in a few initial episodes. Constant reinvention of the characters might break the repetition which is slowly beginning to cause monotony in the humor.

I am only a lowly mortal and probably not someone with enough credibility to make any suggestions to your highly acclaimed work. However, you may give the advice some heed, if you so please.

Irrespective of whether this letter reaches you or not, there's a hope that you will stay just as entertaining as you are, because without Kapil Sharma's “oh mayi goad”, all that my cable connection can provide is no more than a Babaji ka Thullu that looks like a designer blouse, a minor bride, or a lady on a Laado murdering spree.


Image Source: mid-day.com

66 comments:

  1. @@@@@@@@ (since I love that show too) :)
    I was hoping u would suggest Navjot to be shown the THULLU.. cz he keeps interjecting kapil's nice one-liners
    and I love gutthi the most :D

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    1. I'm too disturbed by the bua and dadi's presence to be bothered by Sidhu anymore. And, yes, Guthi is one entertaining character. Thank you :D

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    2. It seems really very authenticate & genuine when we see the maximum LIKES FOR GUTTHI in comparison to KATRINA KAIF !!

      & undoubtedly you are AWESOME KAPIL...I LOVE YOUR SMILE THE MOST!!

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  2. Excellent article! U took the words right out of my mouth and into this page. Asgar is highly irritating and so is bua to a lesser extent. Kapil 's comedy circus acts were pure genius. Still watch it now. anyway, brilliantly written post with some excellent points made abt the changes needed.

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    1. Thanks, Sandeep. I think Comedy Circus could keep the audience's attention for so long because it brought new skits with new characters every week.

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    2. Ali is playing a commendable role, i mean, it takes a lot of talent to come out as a lady in every episode and make the role hilarious.He does hold much credit for making the show hit.I can consider bua to be a bore character but ali is awesome.

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    3. All right, sir. Thanks for bringing in a different opinion :)

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  3. The most natural Indian comedian !
    sunil grover with his vicky chadha and guthi acts - whimsical yet hilarious !
    And a Halwai Shop for you :D

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  4. Thank you so much for letting everyone know that Gutthi is Sunil Grover.
    You won't believe that Sunil Grover's Facebook page has lesser likes than Gutthi's.
    He moulds himself so effortlessly in any character.
    Also, I agree with the bua part. I find her annoying the minute she enters the screen.

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    1. Thanks, Zeitgeist. And, I can believe that. I'm sure I don't know the names of a lot of good character actors whom we've been watching in movies for years now. Definitely deserves to be better known.

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  5. @@@@@ Yaaaaaaaaaye!

    Gutthi Jalebi, Jalebi blog, blog typing, typing english, english Kapil, Kapil Sidhu Sir, Sidhu Sir Jalebi, Jalebi readers, readers Sarthak!
    Thokko taali? "Sidhu style :p"

    Well written piece there! :D

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    1. Hahaha. Loved your comment. Thank you, Anonymous. Anonymous, thank you :)

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  6. I agree with most of the things that you mentioned except the Dadi part. I know that Ali Asgar's character has become a bit monotonous, but so have the other characters. I really like the way he does that dance step with his feet. There are actors far less talented than Ali, example, Palak, Kapil's naukar and wife. Replace them first before even thinking about changing Dadi :)

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    1. I assume the wife, servant and Palak to be mere props. I chose to keep them out from the piece because I think they don't eat up as much screen time. Ali is a very gifted actor, no doubt. I'm just sick of his cross dressing act. It's like he's been doing the same thing at every Telly Awards show and every other public event for almost a decade now. I just wish for his versatility to be put to better use.

      I would want the bua to be sacked because the actress, again, has been doing the same thing for years. Maybe I haven't seen some of her best performances, but whatever of Upasana Singh I have watched growing up is exactly the same. Her talking style and mannerisms remain the same irrespective of the character she plays.

      I am only against the idea of so much repetition, especially in a genre like humor where originality and novelty is always appreciated. There's only a limit to which one can go playing on cliches.

      And, thank you so much for your honest comment, Noor paaji :D

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  7. Lovd this article......though I stil love bua n dadi....n this z the first comedy show tat doesnt uses cheap jokes lyk other shows do....@@@@ jalebis for u....

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    1. True that about it being a complete family entertainer. Thanks :)

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  8. @@@@@ ;) well written! yet again! :D

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  9. and how would "BUA JI" react to ur post>>>"Bittooo kaun hai yeh aadmi :@" very well written, and i agree i find very annoying when evrytym dadi gets chaep with male celebrities..

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  10. I agree with every single point you have mentioned in this post! I love the part where Kapil interacts with the audience, and find the bua really annoying. Enough with the 'Kuwaari Buddhi' acts already!

    You have, yet again, expressed in words something that I can only describe as stuff that I totally agree with! So, there, have your well deserved jalebis! @@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@

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    1. Thanks, T-BUB! I wasn't expecting so many people to be thinking on the same lines. Feels good to know that it turned out to be the voice of a majority.

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  11. I've just watched a mere three-four episodes, in between, in parts, maybe because I've earlier been traumatized by those ghastly laughter shows that gave me a headache. It's like I don't trust Indian comedy shows anymore :P But yeah, when everyone on the planet is talking about it and then your parents turn up the volume and watch it too, you do get curious. I liked what I saw, though yeah, just Kapil is better and yesss, his audience interactions are so funny and witty! :P

    I can't say anything about the overdose of bua and Gutthi because I've just watched moderate doses and considering how I get easily annoyed by overdose of non-sense and the general distrust of such comedy, I think I'd continue the watching-in-moderation thing. Thanks for this post! ;)

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    1. My views are parallel with yours. I'm sure I'd have said the same thing if I had seen just an episode or two :)

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  12. I totally agree with your observations and suggestions. Hope Kapil gets to read this to prolong his success story and entertain all of us.

    http://neoimaginations.blogspot.com/

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    1. Thanks, Neo.

      P.S. Very colorful blog you've got there :)

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  13. This post has been selected for the Tangy Tuesday Picks this week. Thank You for an amazing post! Cheers! Keep Blogging :)

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    1. One more post picked so soon! Yay! :D
      Thanks, you cool BlogAdda peeps :)

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  14. Oh my God, Did you just read my mind ?? Thats exactly what I think of the show. Well written.. Crisp and perfect to taste !! Kudos

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    1. Thanks, Jyotsna. I guess everyone thinks the same :)

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  15. A great post! I too love this show. I agree with all that u have advised but i would like to add that i like sumona very much. They arent exploiting her talent as well :(

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    1. Thank you, Rucha. I think I don't mind her presence because she's little, cute and ignorable :D

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  16. This post deserves @@@@!

    I feel that the show has begun to behave iteratively - especially the Gutthi-Palaks' entry and the things that follow. Moreover, last few episodes have seen a deficiency of Kapil's interaction with audience and his quick-witted replies. I guess, he should take a break and wind up with this season so that the hunger for his comedy strives in our minds.

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    1. I agree. We're all slowly losing interest.
      Thanks :)

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  17. guys i havent read all the comments... but i do like this article... being a big big fan of kapil i had a day off and i just felt like watching all the episodes back to back on youtube... and then i noticed something very important... the audiences are planted with scripted questions and the whole thing is a script... if you notice the episode in which tushar kapoor and ravi kishan are invited for the promotion of bajate raho, a guy from the audience tells ravi kishan that he would like to sing a bhojpuri song that he had written for him.... i found the same guy on another episode in which vidhya balan and emran hashmi were invited... this time he asked to try and tell a joke that could make the two guests laugh....

    he is not the only guy, i can understand him coming for kapil's show being a big fan of kapil.... but i found other charechters from the audience as well who were common to many episodes... it just cant be a coincidence that they come for the shows regularly and the mic is always given to them for asking questions... one female who appeared twice appeared under two different names as well, which ticked off this whole thing inside me to do more research and i found many charechters like that...

    when kapil says that audience interaction is the USP of the show and that it has maximum emphasis, it should also be genuine... not just a humour gimmick...

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    1. Oh! I had one of my friends tell me that the audience interaction is scripted but I brushed it off. Seems like there is truth in his claim. Thank you for pointing it out. Now I'll go and check the guy in both the videos just for fun :D

      Honestly though, I've stopped watching the show after they built the new set. Now I'm bored of it.

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    2. Oh, somehow I've always known that those audience are nothing, but junior artists, like many other shows being telecast including some of the very famous prize money shows. Just happened to read it somewhere few years ago.

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  18. gr8..... awesome... u said xactly same wht people thinks abut his show... & for bua"s charecter... thumbs up.... :) :)

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  19. Yeah, the show has become monotonous. But the characters cannot be removed! If they are removed,baaki kaun bachega?All we can hope for is the laughter we had during the earlier times of the show.
    We need the actors to come out with different material which makes us laugh rather than annoyed.

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  20. And yeah, my fav part too is the interaction with audience (no matter scripted if it is)
    Dadi and bua have always over-acted and such loud characters anyway are more exhausting than entertaining. But something I beg to differ here, I've never personally liked guththi and palak much either. They just add to the fact that there is too much cross-dressed acts going on in this show. Although I loved Sunil Grover's random acts when he used to come as a different character in every episode - my most loved one remains as when he came dressed as a baba.

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    1. In complete agreement with you there. I've completely lost interest in the show now. Haven't cared to watch an episode in months. I think none since the new set was made.

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  21. Very well written!! and of course you deserve this,"@@@@@"

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  22. You are hot Sarthak boy. Cheers

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    1. Tch tch. Posting that anonymously would make people think that I write such comments on my own blog myself only to maaro some tashan.

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  23. Very well decribed... couldn't be said better. I too find bua & dadi very annoying. & I totally miss gutthi on the show. I also like Kiku sharda on the show. Also I think they are overdoing the ' baba ji ka thullu' , wen in the beginning kapil sharma was using the phrase in a ' je ne sais quoi ' way, it was very appealing but now many a times its unnecessarily used just for the sake of it

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    1. Seconded. I'm so happy to learn I'm not the only one who got annoyed and stopped watching it.

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  24. Kapil Sharma rocks and his team has done great job !!!
    kudos to bua,dadi

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  25. Kapil Sharma is a gifted and talented actor ,. He alone can run the show instead of bringing in other characters . Dadi and kapil's wife acting is good .. But other characters are really boring sometimes specially Palak .. And the naukar who comes as an old man in some episodes is so boring .. All i watch the show is only because of Kapil Sharma ..

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    1. Yessir! Some wonderful comic timing right there :)

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  26. Ali Ajgar need to get a life, should stop doing cheap comedy. Once or twice its ok, but same thing again and again, its annoying and disgusting. I have got insurance for my TV now, because I will sure break my TV if I see Ali Ajgar doing cheap low life stupid act on comedy show. He gets on my nerves instantly as soon I see his dirty face, cant tolerate him even for 5 seconds. Kapil is just great, great sense of humor and presentation

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  27. liked your article :)

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  28. loved dis article.. @@@@@ for u .. :-)
    completely agree wid u on bua.. she's been an irritation for me since day 1... but i still enjoy dadi, noukar and guthi... nd kapil's wife she is also a burden on show.
    the best part of this show which m missing is when kapil used to make fun of audience as evrything was real in the begining but now it's all scripted nd he hardly interact wid people..

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    1. Hi, Hans. Thanks for reading :)

      I got so sick of the show soon after I wrote this piece that I stopped watching it altogether.

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If you had 5 Jalebis, how many would you give me for writing this post?

None = You don't deserve any >:O
@ = Soggy and stale! :(
@@ = Stale! :|
@@@ = I'll need a samosa to digest this with! :P
@@@@ = Sweet and Crisp! :)
@@@@@ = I'm opening you a Halwai Shop! :D