For about 140-150 days a year, I spend almost 90 minutes daily watching the reality show Bigg Boss. I complain about its repetitive content, crib about the staged fights and even promise myself that I will not watch another season of Bigg Boss. But, in all honesty, the show has been a guilty pleasure. Despite knowing that it’s never going to get better, and will likely only get worse, I return to it every year to satisfy that voyeuristic urge. But, the announcement of the fourteenth season of the immensely popular show, has left me wondering whether we really need it right now.
The world is battling a pandemic. All of us have felt like contestants of Bigg Boss in the past four-five months. We have fought over daily chores: who will mop the floor, who will cut vegetables and who will do the dishes. To kill time when even the 4G networks ditched us, we have played ludo, UNO, carrom and several other games. We even caught up with friends and family members who once existed only in our phone’s contact list. Just when we were on the verge of boredom, PM Narendra Modi gave us tasks (bang thaalis and light diyas).
So, since all of it is too real and everyone is waiting for simpler days and some positivity, here’s a reality check for the makers of Bigg Boss. No one really wants to watch people scream at each other for household chores, reveal each other’s secrets, plot and plan cheap strategies to win ‘tasks’ or see them whining about not being able to meet their loved ones. In the real world, many have braved even worse situations and that too with dignity, unlike the contestants on the show.
Also, anti-heroes are everywhere these days. Be it in the dark, violent and gory web series or in primetime coverage of actor Sushant Singh Rajput’s death case. So, we, the avid audience of television is in dire need of feel-good options to balance out the steady stream of gloomy content. And, having watched the previous seasons of Bigg Boss, the show just won’t cut it.
Bigg Boss is supposedly a social experiment where a group of strangers are made to survive different situations. But, the makers are living by just one rule since 2006 – create a lot of noise and attract the audience. What they have failed to realise is that the show has become a misbegotten hybrid version of itself.
Every year, a bunch of people, some of whom are trying to revive their career, and some who have entered the house only for fame, mug up the guidebook on ‘How to win Bigg Boss’ created by the contestants of previous seasons. Hence, they have nothing new to bring to the table. And, why blame only the participants, even the creators hardly have any creative ideas to keep the audience engaged. Every year, they have been re-using the old tasks with tiny tweaks.
So, dear Bigg Boss creators, now that you have announced another season, please try not to serve us the same dish in a new platter.
📣 The Indian Express is now on Telegram. Click here to join our channel (@indianexpress) and stay updated with the latest headlines