Friday, December 28, 2007

A tale of two Ustaads

Most of the time Mission Ustaad makes me want to gag. Take this week’s episode for example. The theme was liberation of women. Lara Dutta made some appropriate noises to open proceedings. Javed Akhtar threw out the somewhat tired, but tested, argument of not putting women on a pedestal but instead treating them as gender equal.

Then Roop Kumar Rathod and Sonali came out and sang something and Roop Kumar talked about what a progressive male he was. More appropriate noises.

A. R. Rahman went “Mumble, mumble”.

But then something funny happened. Sonali made the rather excellent point that even though women were making inroads, even after a full day’s worth of work, they still had to come home and cook. This is called responsibility of critical function, i.e. women still have the responsibility of critical household work despite working as hard as men outside the home.

And Kailash Kher – also known as the Nemesis of Javed Akthar on this show – picked up the mike and said something extraordinary. “Sometimes it’s just that we like women’s cooking” he said to a flabbergasted Sonali “People like Mummy ke haat ka khaana. So we are just saying, compromise and come home at 4pm instead!”

For Javed Akhtar this opportunity must have looked like a long hop from Brett Lee. And he promptly picked up the mike and hooked Kailash Kher. “Would YOU come home at 4pm?!” he thundered. At this point wisely, Kailash Kher did the equivalent of a Bobble head.

Interestingly, after Kailash’s retrograde outburst, he sang the most progressive song of the show. Praise came in from a lot of quarters. His partner Mahalaxmi Iyer - with whom Kailash forms a magnificent singing pair – must have asked him to zip it because the Kher stood around quietly. But when Javed Akhtar spoke, Kailash wore an “I don’t know this man” expression on his face. More Bobble heading ensued.

A. R. Rahman again went “Mumble, mumble”.

Later, Roop Kumar Rathod challenged Javed Akhtar’s criticism of his second song by pointedly saying that his message was for the masses and not for a bagalthela intellectual.

Point well made – and Mission Ustaad, having configured itself as “Javed Akhtar versus Everyone” might well be on its way to being an entertaining show after all.


Anonymous said...

Thanks Aspi. Glad you are back in action.

Saw the second half of SRGMP and gotta tell you this is the first time I shed tears on a reality show. It was sad to see Sahil voted out and how his mom is trying to make him a decent human being despite the circumstances they live in. My heart goes out to him and hope he makes it big.

Anonymous said...

Joules, u got the words straight out of my heart....we had a similar scene at home!I really hope Suresh Wadkar helps him out.

Anonymous said...

Aspi, so u have taken over the mantle of MU from Sidekick. (Wheres she?).
There is this other show on Sony in place of JDJ called 'K for Kishore'. My husband and I are great fans of Kishore (like so many others of our generation), so we decided to sit down and enjoy an evening of kishore;s music. There were 10 singers who tried to emulate Kishore. I think they r being very brave cos its a huge task to sing songs which people remember so well, and that too in front of singers like Sudesh Bhosle,Amit Kumar and Bappida. I think most of them just didnt do justice.Apurva of SRGMP(V-S gharana) was there, but to my surprise did quite badly.As the music began, we said 'Wow, what a lovely song he is going to sing'...but once the contestant sang, it was very exasperating.Its not nice to hear a person spoiling a song. Some were ok, esp this old man who is one of the greatest fans of Kishore.Atleast he got the mood and feel.
The silver lining was the singing of Sudesh Bhosle and Babul Supriyo.When they sang, it really sounded like Kishore.
Lets hope the programme becomes more interesting.I think there is no public voting, so the best should win.

Unknown said...

anu g, Sidekick is in India somewhere and out of commission. Otherwise she is our resident Ustaad. I'm sure she'll be back soon and itching to update us.

Unknown said...

BTW, I love Babul Supriyo but what's this with singing reality shows - I'm seeing them everywhere!

Anonymous said...

Well Aspi, i think the TV guys noticed that we drifters enjoy discussing all the musical reality shows, so they have decided to give us enough masala and more:).

Anonymous said...

megalolz @ kailash kher!

Anonymous said...

More masala indeed! lol! Anu g, good to have you back.

I dont like the concept of 'k for kishore'. I like to hear Kishore songs sung in the singers own style but trying to imitate Kishore will not work. Kishore da is so unique and eccentric. A genius in his own right.

I have heard a story from a family friend (who has done extremely minor roles in 60-70's movies) that Kishore was so random that some days he would wake up and decide to only talk in baby talk. At other times he would pick up some work like yahoo or something and yell it whenever he felt like doing it.

Anonymous said...

HEY shekhar ji..........hru.....and how is ur family...........
SHEKHAR JI firstly i'll lot lot u...
shekhar ji...i...feel...very
........shekhar ji i'll always
shekhar mails...nahi...kar...pare...
plzzzzzzzzzz don't mind..........and understand me..........i...hope u..understand me....

Anonymous said...

Hi Joules, what do u have to say about the 'chair of fortune' the lil champs have to sit on.Poor kids. It seems like an executioners chair, and the way it goes round and round, the poor kids will suffer from vertigo soon.Its worse for the kid who has to go round and round and then find himself unsafe.

Anonymous said...

U r right, Joules, no-one can ever reach Kishore;s standards. I watched the second episode yday, and its way below par.
I think most singers/celebrities are coming on as anchors/judges to come into the public eye, but Amit Kumar alas may lose the little fan following he has. He of course is a great judge cos he knows all the 'baareekiyaan' in his dad;s songs. But he sings badly. I was quite shocked yday. I guess he smokes and drinks a lot and that has taken a toll on his voice.
Sonu Nigam on the other hand is so multitalented, that Lil champs manages to remain very interesting with him around.

Anonymous said...

That chair of fortune is torturous. I get this pit in my stomach everytime the chair spins. Cant imagine what the kid and their family must be going through.

I do love the lil' champs a lot though. The calibre of the show is quite high and Sonu is not very kind to drame-baazi. He told one of the girls yesterday to stop crying for votes.

Plus enjoyed the guests yesterday. Amrita Rao was so un-affected that it was a breath of fresh air from watching Karisma last week.

And I totally love Sonu. He makes the show so entertaining without stooping down to Himesh's level.

Unknown said...

Wow, a chair of fortune! This I must watch especially after hearing what Joules has to say about it.