Thursday, June 17, 2010

telly tales-part 1

I find television very educating. Every time somebody turns on the set, I go into the other room and read a book.
          -Groucho Marx

I beg to differ!

I have been an avid television viewer since my childhood days.I was never denied television (cable, to be more specific), and I exploited this to my advantage.
From Duck tales to Desperate housewives. From Chitrahaar to Indian idol. From Surbhi to The Ellen Degeneres show.From Khaana-khazaana to Jamie at home.From Bewitched to Shararat.I have watched all of it.I even gleefully gave into the avalanche of K-serials during the ruling period of Ekta Kapoor! Years later when I reminisced, I found that of the profuse T.V programs I strained my eyes for, there were a few that the sands of time couldn't erase from my memory. My redolent childhood/teenage memories.
I'm listing these down-rank wise.

1. Fullhouse



How could I ever thank Uttara, Prachi didi and Pallavi enough for introducing me to this wonderful family.Well...they didn't exactly make me watch it by force, but then they as good as did! Oh, how out of place I would begin to feel when my friends instead of discussing a common topic(read tattling about school) would discuss Michelle's cuteness and Jesse's hair. How clueless I looked  when one of them mentioned an episode joke. How I used to flash a silly grin trying to laugh with them. I say silly because, they didn't always quote the joke.Most of the times it was like.." Tune woh dekha jab Stephanie ne Kim se blah blah kahan?". The question would be answered with bursts of laughter. Incidentally that was the time when I had just moved into Vikki, and even though I knew them I wanted to make my way into the circle. And if watching Fullhouse was the answer, then so be it. I turned to Zee Cafe (which was then known as Zee English) with vengeance. No longer did I watch an episode, I was awfully charmed by the show. I knew instantly that I was going to like it. But I didn't know how much.. I didn't know I would wait for it with bated breath,even the repeats ( The week that was). I didn't know I would fall in love with the characters. I didn't know I would write about it nine years later on my blog. And I didn't know that these many years and countless TV shows later, it would still top the list.

2. The Wonder Years




Growing up happens in a heartbeat. One day you're in diapers, the next day you're gone. But the memories of childhood stay with you for the long haul. I remember a place, a town, a house, like a lot of houses. A yard like a lot of other yards. On a street like a lot of other streets. And the thing is, after all these years, I still look back...with wonder.
No television show made me as nostalgic as this one did. More so because I turned my attention to it when I was in my ambiguous phase. The one you have between just-out-of-school  and about-to-start-college. Growing out of school life was hard. The apprehensions about college was harder. But the hardest thing was to cope up with all those mixed feelings. Watching The Wonder Years was like a time travel-in past. All the early-life memories came back in flashes.I saw all this though Kevin's eyes. Kevin. I once knew a boy like him. In days when if anyone told me that "these are the golden days of your life", I would snort in derision and reply "Of course not. Wait till I go to college". Now I smile ruefully and agree than those indeed were the golden days of my life. The wonder years. And the boy? I know him no more.Or at least, he's not that boy anymore. If you too miss your childhood, your school, your bicycle,your playground, your old chums then don't miss out on this one.

3. F.R.I.E.N.D.S


Some even went as far as saying that not watching this sitcom should be deemed an offence. There was a time when when no one who watched television was unaware of friends. It was friends mania all over.Like many other shows this one too took it's own time to become a rage in India. But it became a rage alright. For me Friends became a classic example of the the fact that- First impression is not necessarily the last one.I was never interested in obliging the obscene number of people who kept suggesting it to me .One day as I was flipping channels I came across it and decided to find out what the hell was all the hoopla about. It was the last five minutes. But very nonsensical five minutes. Here's a woman who's given birth to three babies-her brother's babies :o (my dumb innocence  must be forgiven as I really was a little dumb in school. Plus surrogate pregnancy wasn't a workaday term). And whoever said this was a sitcom! With the amount of tears this woman was shedding it might have as well been a family drama. Little did I know that I was making the same mistake that an ex-classmate had made when he saw the first five minutes of a movie (a hospital scene), called it bakwaas , decided against watching it and invited a year long ridicule in his friend circle. The film in question was Dil Chahta Hai. I don't remember when exactly did I start watching it so fervently, with a near Harry Potter like enthusiam. But once I did, there was no stopping. Even today, six years after it's final season   the re-runs continue. I do watch it sometimes, when I feel blue. And honestly it's not just watching, it's also mouthing the dialogues because despite myself I know most of them by heart!

4. Who's the boss?








The first attraction was the song. The lyrics. It can be found in this post that I wrote some time ago. The second was the fact that my mother loved it too. She usually is disinterested in the firangi shows, but this one, she was very interested in. Mainly because she enjoyed Mona's character, who as she thinks and as I agree is as playful as my mother is. She teases me as Mona kept teasing her daughter Angela. The funny part is that it led me to contemplate that I've got a good deal of Angela inside me. The way she gets conscious of herself in certain kinds of social situations, the areas in which she feels insecure, her uptight nature, the way she's prissy at most of the times and nonchalant when nobody expects her to be, the way she secretly adores Tony and isn't even aware of the fact. And Tony! I love these Italian guys. There's some uncanny raw charm in them that eludes their other counterparts. It's as if their eyes twinkle, and their good-natured laughter reverberates. How I wish someday a macho housekeeper steps into my home and teaches me how to be footloose! :)
A footnote: I had named my favorite Barbie Angela, and the second favorite was called Samantha :)

5 Different Strokes


All foodies unite! (Fhah are you reading this? :D) Look at the one at the center.Isn't he the most adorable kid in the whole wide world? You listen to him once and you'll reply in affirmative. Once Arnold was asked to say two words in his birthday party and guess what he said? "Let's eat" :D
This comes from very early memories when I used to be in 5th or 6th, and lived in a different house. I made it a point to watch it even though it clashed with my playing schedule (5:30-7:30)  I remember coaxing my friends to reschedule it to 4:30 to 6:30, so that I could watch it from 6:30 to 7. Thankfully it worked-but not always. We had a lot of bullies in our group who wouldn't budge after a while. And you really shouldn't anger the gunda kids you know, otherwise they don't take you in their teams, and sadly these are the types who make ruthlessly great players. Aaah...the lessons of life one gets in small packages when one is small. Consequently I missed on a lot of episodes, but I kept watching it on and off. It was a good sitcom.

6 Small Wonder




Oh Yes! This was mighty popular ten to fifteen years ago. It used to be shown in Star Plus. This one was my gateway to foreign television shows. Their people.Their lives. And even their names.  Yes my secret is out! In initial days I was obsessed with Barbie dolls like every other girl and I had a hell lot of them.Needless to say a lot of my concern rested on giving them proper names, and I absolutely disagreed to call them by Indian names like some of my friends who had names their ones Karishma, Raveena, Madhuri (ugh). "They have golden hair, they are foreigners. They don't have our kinds of name" I had argued.In search of good names I began watching Small Wonder. It is so strange, isn't it? Some of the best things in life that we do, we do it for one reason and continue doing it for another.I would religiously watch it day after day. The only problem was that they kept switching languages. A few episodes in English and a few ones in Hindi.But language didn't matter much then. Still doesn't.
 I'm so glad I had Barbie dolls to name. Joan went on to become one Barbie's name and Harriette was the name of a baby Barbie) . I never named any of them VICI because despite what was being portrayed, despite how much I liked-loved-envied her white and red pinafore VICI (or vikki asI would think) was a boy's name not a girls's.

7. Mind Your Language



This was a jackpot! Not only did this satiate my desire to know about the first world countries but also combined it with my love for the English language. This is when I came to know that I simply LOVE the British accent! It is so much better than any other kind of English spoken in various parts of the world.I wish I had a British accent. Maybe this was one of those early influences that made me a stickler for Queen's English. I try my best not to butcher the language even if it means spending one extra rupee on an SMS because I refuse to type 'u' instead of you. I have a strong aversion to SMS language, something that I wrote about in this post.
This was also remade in Hindi and was called Zabaan Sambhaal ke, where Pankaj Kapoor played the role of a Hindi teacher. Although I don't like copied shows, it was a laughter riot even in the desi package.

So much for the TV shows I loved watching. These are the ones that I currently watch- with no descriptions (I have already outwritten my longest post)

 The Big Bang Theory- Because smart is the new sexy!








Two and a half men- Who doesn't love Charlie Sheen!






Castle- Murders. Detectives. Writer. Romance. What more can I ask for? :)




30 Rock- Make merry folks. Season 4 is here :)



So long for tonight! I would back soon with part-2

4 comments:

Nishit Raval said...

We had cable connection for the first time when SSC exams completed.So I liked almost everything on TV,cause everything was new for me then !
The first English TV show I watched in that vacation was "small wonder".It was on star plus,dubbed in hindi.
Co-incidently , just before 4 days I downloaded the entire 1st season of small wonder :)

And I need not say anything about Friends...you already know that that's my favourite show !

But,how can you not have seen LOST ? I mean you have been watching english shows since this long and you havent even mentioned LOST in this post ?
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0411008/

Nishit Raval said...

no comments???
Was my comment too long to read or what ? :)

neelanjana said...

No, I just didn't know what to say. Still don't.
It's just that there are so many good shows that I never saw you know. There's Seinfeld,How I met your mother, Gilmore girls, Doctor House,Family guy, Boston Legal, Grey's anatomy, and as you pointed out Lost. But then again, there's the time factor. A cruel, heartless factor. :)
Still I wish I catch up on these and many others sometime soon.

priyal said...

i have seen 2 or may be 3 out of the list..but full house is still my fav.bafu!!!after a very long time i read ur blogs.i loved it..awesome girl!!:D