When almost every contestant on Bigg Boss season 3 confessed on stage that Amitabh Bachchan the host and pop philosopher on the showwas their chief reason to participate,we didnt doubt it one bit because its precisely our reason to watch the show as well.
After the second seasons tedious routine of watching Shilpa Shettys manicured hands flick her blown-dry hair back every two scenes,to have Big B replace the self-appointed diva sounds like the best strategy Colors could have adopted to bring back eyeballs to the show that was beginning to lose them.
Expectedly,Bachchan saved the day. His magic was unleashed on viewers as well as tongue-tied participants. He speaks chaste Hindi,quotes from his fathers verse,recounts anecdotes from interactions he has had with the participants if any,and chats convivially with their families. Bachchan is no pop philosopher. He is the guardian angel.
However,one does fear some monotony in this performance as the respectable distance that Bachchan seems keen to maintain from the participants may limit his scope as the guide. He had already begun to repeatedly refer to the show as Bigg Boss Tritiya,which gets a bit tedious to the casual ear.
The final 13 contestants were introduced in the marathon of an episode,and include reality TV regular music director Ismail Darbar,actor-director Kamal R Khan who made himself popular through his patriotic Deshdrohi,the always-in-bikini actress Sherlyn Chopra whose last outing was Dil Bole Hadippa!,1980s actress Poonam Dhillon,popular reality TV couple Tanaz and Bakhtiyar Irani,wrestler-actor Dara Singhs son Vindu Dara Singh,ex-model Aditi Gowitrikar,German actress Claudia Ciesla whos trying her luck in Bollywood,actress Shamita Shetty,a cross-dressing designer Rohit Verma,and Jaya Sawant,the mother of the reigning reality TV queen Rakhi Sawant.
There are a few surprises: this is the first time they have allowed a married couple into the Bigg Boss house,and theres jail for punishing errant housemates.
Never mind that it was only the first episode,some participants wasted no time to slip into their character. Sawant,as if in an attempt to match up to her dramatic daughters reputation,had already begun to complain how she was not invited by the channel for her Big Day. Darbars brooding was reminiscent of last seasons participant Sanjay Nirupam; we now await a firecracker quarrel between one of the girls and him. Verma seemed eager to establish connection with both men and women as he asked them if he should use the mens washroom or the ladies.
The current season looks promising if voyeurism is what you are looking for. But the USP of the show is to watch holier-than-thou Bachchan sit on the periphery and deal with the murky world of Bigg Boss participants. With Bigg Boss inside and Big B outside,Colors seems to have stumbled upon the magic formula.