That was fine evening. Everyone was at home. Me, sis, mom n dad. All were chatting on some useless topic. As usual i was busy in leg pulling of my sis and mom. Mom has always been a soft target for me in leg pulling because there is very less or perhaps no danger of counter attack. My sis sometimes creates maximum damage through counter attack. But that’s not the topic here. The time was like 7.45 p.m. as soon as clock started approaching towards 8.00 p.m. There was sudden change of activities. i sensed the change and reason for it. It was time for mom n dad’s daily dose of T.V. serials.
These T.V. serials are the toppers in list of “Most hated things in the World”. At 8.00 p.m. my parents start their devotion towards those overly melodramatic serials which are full of overacting, indigestible dose of emotions and unending, complicated storyline presented with crawling speed and poorest possible direction. You must be thinking then why the hell , people watch those serials. To get this answer we have to go back some years when T.V was introduced in India.
That time there were only 1 or 2 channels with limited time of broadcast. So people used to remember time of broadcast and seat front of the T.V. Soon it has become routine. Slowly after that Cable T.V. was introduced. People were smart in India. They started to sort out some programs which can match their free time. if people in India can become smart then why not channel broadcasters. These channel people were much smarter. They figured out that in evening 8.00 pm to 10.00 pm is the time when most of the people watch T.V. Channel people started calling it as Prime time. Now the main problem in front of T.V channels was “What to show in Prime time” and “who our potential target is”
Soon Ekta Kapoor found answer to above both the questions. Through careful analysis of Indian viewers she concluded that middleclass women in India are our potential target and they will watch everything that they don’t have in real life for example a big family, luxurious standard of living, jealous relatives, extra marital affairs, confusion about the offspring and siblings, presence of at least one Evil lady (they call her vamp). These things were shortlisted as compulsory material in every serial. You can say that after the success of Ekta kapoor’s Saans bhi kabhi bahu thi, every channel has made checklist for producers of such daily serials. Some of the important constraints were like….
- Presence of huge family with untraceable source of wealth.
- Presence of an immortal person (Baa)
- Mother and daughter must look like sisters of same age and grandmothers must look like older sister but age difference to be minimized as much as possible.
- All festivals in calendar must be celebrated.
- Presence of one or more negative characters is must.
- Plastic surgeries, death and reappearance, loss of memory etc. should appear repeatedly until audience develop sixth sense.
- Each episode must end with suspense.
- There must be regular addition of new character in serial.
- Long form of co-incidence in the language of serials is taken as commonly occurring incidents.
- And the list is endless………
Soon all producers started following above rules And Indian audience started watching those serials in prime time. But still we don’t get the answer to the question that why people watch those serials.
Answer is simple, suppose you want to read magazine and there is only one magazine available which is very boring. But you don’t have any choice you want something to read on your way to work, so you buy that magazine. Likewise there are many people who want something to read. So obviously sales of that magazine are high. It gets higher when other people see you reading that magazine and out of curiosity they buy that magazine. So all these marketing Gurus conclude that people loves reading boring magazines. And as a result new publications follow the footprint of the existing magazine. Till that time we get into the habit of reading those bore magazines.
Now this is the same case with the T.V. serials. Now trend is changing, some channels are coming up with new ideas. Some started focusing on youths and some started focusing on injustice against woman. Channels discovered new weapon to hypnotize the audience – “reality shows.” But still everyone is watching the T.V. So we can draw a simple conclusion that Indian audience just wanted to watch television in their free time. You can show them anything. you show them “K” serials, game shows, reality shows like Indian idiot oops idol, Indian version of foreign T.V shows, Indian audience can watch anything and everything you show them in prime time. I am not saying that TV channels don’t have quality stuff to show. They do have quality stuff. But their “Marketing Gurus” reject that with reason that it’s not a public demand. Let me tell them that it’s not public demand; it’s our helplessness that we are watching. I request to those channels please show something that is productive as well as filled with entertainment. Don’t just copy foreign TV serials in Indian Version. And don’t follow the footsteps of particular programs and come up with more or less same thing again and again. PLEASE DARE TO DIFFER.