On Sunday morning, as the teaser of Kapil Sharma’s new show Family Time With Kapil Sharma played on television, my parents asked me to remind them of it in the evening. Not just my home, I believe this would have been the scenario in every household where watching Kapil’s comedy shows has been a family ritual on the weekends. After his last small screen outing, The Kapil Sharma Show went off air following an unpleasant course of events, many Kapil fans were left disheartened. But the ‘King Of Comedy’ promised to return with a bigger and a better show.
Staying true to his words, he was back but unlike what he has been. The laughter that came along with Kapil didn’t make me laugh as hard as it did in the last few years. The same repetitive and stale jokes targeted at his teammates and members of the audience made for a major part of Kapil’s repartee and Navjot Singh Sidhu’s “Chaa Gaya Guru” on these, looked forced and completely unnecessary. His two team members Chandan Prabhakar and Kiku Sharda too didn’t have anything new to put on the table. Kiku once again slipped into a female character (Bumper) to provide laughs but failed miserably. Chandan was decent, as always, but the narrative didn’t have much for him to do. Though Kapil had the maximum screen time, he still relied on the same ingredients of sexism, racism and parroting the same old jokes that were no longer funny. It took away the excitement of watching the show beyond a point.
Also, the trademark of Kapil’s shows, the celebrities and their leg-pulling by the comedian was missing. Ajay Devgn who was there to promote his film Raid had a blink and miss appearance of sorts. Just when Ajay and Kapil’s banter was picking up pace on an otherwise dull show, it was time for Devgn to leave. The new addition to the team Neha Pendse, who co-hosts the show, added nothing more than glamour and was not saved from Kapil’s generous flirting which he has been doing from his first show – Comedy Nights With Kapil. The only difference being that this time he has a real woman to flirt with.
But yes, if you look at the show as a ‘game show’ (as Kapil addresses it) and not a ‘comedy show’, then definitely Family Time With Kapil Sharma is a reason to return to your television sets. His show is the one thing that brings back the fond memories of game shows like Khulja Sim Sim (hosted by Aman Yatan Varma) and Takeshi’s Castle which every Indian kid grew up watching. The gifts on the show make you look up ‘how to participate in Kapil Sharma show’. If not the TV audience, at least the studio audience was in for a gala time as they played a string of interactive games with Kapil.
However, for someone of Kapil’s calibre, who once revolutionised the comedy scene on Indian television with his inimitable style and spot-on comic timing, we expect a lot more. In the coming weeks, we hope to see the comedian-actor in a newer version of himself. Barring which, the show could go for a toss in sustaining the interest of the viewers.