Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Jo Jeeta Wohi Superstar: Mother's Day Special

At the risk of sounding like an insensitive clod, let me confess that super emotional mata-pita reality show "special" episodes leave me feeling hugely uncomfortable.

Squirmworthy moments ensue when parents are dragged on the stage by their kids and serenaded with recycled Bollywood sentiments. Fortunately, back to back episodes of The Office on long flights have schooled me in humor that can be derived from awkwardness. Plus I never thought I'd say this but sometimes I miss Nirupa Roy.

And thus it was that while the Drift Memsaab emptied cartons of Kleenexes, I chuckled through the entire Mother's Day special of JJWS like a twerp. But more on that later.

JJWS has three judges who appear downright straitlaced by SRGMP standards: the composer duo of Vishal-Shekhar and their newest filmi benefactor - new mom of triplets - Farah Khan. These three seem to be a balanced lot: Shekhar focuses on the music, Vishal makes sure the BS is down to a minimum and Farah provides the no-nonsense gut feel type of feedback. So where does the drama come from?

Turns out JJWS has a curious format. Contestants are divided into two lots: champions and challengers. And every week, after the judges scores and incoming SMS votes are tallied with equal weight, the lowest ranked competitor is booted off the show. But the highest ranking three are put in front of the reigning champions. The champions cast a ballot to decide which of the three will join them.

This seems to result in a lot of emotional dhishum dhishum - jealousy seems to abound, cliques might be forming. And the judges and host Mandira Bedi - who keeps the nok-jhok to a minumum - have no problems fanning any small sparks that may arise between the contestants into a full fledged fire. Last week a rather cocky kid called Vineet joined the upper ranks after much teeth gnashing that resulted when Mandira revealed the voters behind the votes.

This is entertaining enough to carry the show because the singing is excellent - the best I've heard since SRGMP was mothballed.

Back to the rona-dhona. Copious tributes were offered to Moms. The judges joined in making appropriate noises about mamta. Everybody ki aankhen nam hui. Mandira Bedi bawled her head off. When it was her turn to say something nice about her mom, she bawled some more and said: "I'm sorry I fight with you Mom!"

Also:

84 comments:

anu g said...

Wah Aspi, I am glad I am back here! After being off-tv for almost 3 weeks, my tv-re-addiction began with JJWS. My reaction was a mix of urs and Lady Drift. I began giggling and then gagging.But at some point, the hormones worked, and I was all teary-eyed! My son who was passing by called out to everyone asking them to see me weep.grrr! I told him that it was Mothers Day, and said the kids there were tlking abut their moms. Poor guy! It was only then that he realised it was Mothers Day (we had been off-media too). So he and my daughter casually walked out, got a lovely gift for me. Of course my son said "Ma, this is for u.Happy Mothers Day. I know u will say that u dont need gifts, and the best gift we can give us it to be good and all that, but we have got this for u":). Sigh,I guess my sermonising has no effect any more! But I must say Thanks to JJWS, my kids rememebered it was Mothers Day, and it was so sweet of them to do something for me:).

Anonymous said...

Bah, Mandira bedi makes me gag! haven't seen JJWS at all...sounds like it's worth it...but yeah, while i can be as sappy as the next mom, all the focus on thanking mom this past Sunday was hilarious...you even had golf-channel getting in on the act!

Bitterlemons

.m.a.n.o. said...

I was emotional for the first half of the show--- then thru the second half I just wanted it to end. Looked so fake yaar :S Seriously, they cud have celebrated Mother's Day in a more sophisticated way than having OTT emotional stuff.

P>S>> One thing I was really glad about was Toshi's two lines singing :D I luv it when he sings that song! :D

Pitu said...

Dear Lord, sounds like a weepfest!

girlie girl said...

what's a reality show without some rona-dhona?!!?

Aspi said...

Bitterlemons, I don't know if you've been with us since the SRGMP days, but if you liked that show you might enjoy JJWS.

anu g, kya complicated chakker hai. As long as you enjoy the duality you're good. Hope you had a good vacation off.

Aspi said...

.m.a.n.o, I'm sure there is a better way of doing it. But it wouldn't be this tacky-good. I still remember the jai jawan episode on Lil Champs. It wouldn't have been fun without those backdrop film scenes of jawans getting blown to bits.

But otherwise, just choosing a theme would be good enough. This way, certain people (like some contestants on the show who had nothing to say) don't feel left out if they aren't up for the drama.

I thought Abhijit Sawant's family did it pretty well.

Lin said...

Didn't really read much after your first paragraph (cause I REALLY shouldn't be procrastinating. And I gotta say, I quite agree.

I saw a few clips of this on Youtube two days ago. It was just a WTF. I couldn't bring myself to watch the rest of it--not because it made me sad, but because it was just so gag worthy.

I honestly just don't get it.

And maybe this will make me sound like a cold hearted b**ch. But so be it. I hate that U.S. Mothers Day has seeped in to India. HATE! No, originally it wasn't a Hallmark holdiay, but that's what it has become.

Over Rated said...

I only happened to catch one episode of this show and that was due to certain unavoidable circumstances [too lazy to leave the room]. It was the one in which Roop-something was eliminated. And as hard as she was bawling, I was even laughing harder. Whenever I do watch a reality show, I am either amused or disgusted by their drama!! :P

Plus the pictures are hilarious!! Everyone seems to be bawling :P.

And Aspi, you really are an artist. You make Indian reality shows sound interesting. :P

Dr. Mind Rush is in.... said...

The Drifters who were half giggling and half horrified at the Mother episode...Your reactions are symptoms of an ambivalent, unresolved, oedipal relationship with your mother. You are suppressing your true feelings....(whatever they may be.)

Mind Rush said...

Seriously, from the old Mother India movie to the recent Mother's Day episode on reality TV....
When will our desi folk get over their "mother" fixation?

Can we not have a mature, balanced treatment of motherhood on the little or big screen???

Aspi said...

Yikes, so Mandira had it right with regards to a more realistic relationship!

Himesh Reshammiya said...

My favorite singer on this show is Amit Sana because he sang my song. No one sings my songs on shows even though they are the most popular.

Its because when people try to match my voice they fall short and get bad marks from the judges. (Shekharbhai, thanks for pointing that out).

But Amit Sana, good try. 10 out of 10 for trying. God Bless!

Everyone go see Karzzzz when it comes out. It will rock!

Pitu said...

Himesh, you ain't no Chintuji, brother. So don't even try to shake yo booty in the silver jumpsuit and don't u dare mess with ma Kishoreda's songs!!! grr

anu g said...

Ok, Dr. Mindrush, I guess the dig was at me.Aspi also seems to disapprove of my duality! But why complicate matters with such big words like ambivalence and Oedipus Complex.I love my parents and vice-versa; we r not the demonstrative sort, but it doenst make our relationship any weaker.Similarly if my kids hadnt given me a gift its not as if I would love them any less. In fact, if my husband were to suddenly become very romantic on one Valentines Day, I would possibly get all suspicious and be reminded of the Pati,Patni aur woh movie where the husband gets romantic with his wife to make up for the guilt of having an affair:). I think we must just learn to be at peace with oneself, and love and respect the others for what they are...no expectations of obligations whatsoever.

Anonymous said...

That Shekhar is such a hypocrite!

Joules said...

When I talk to my American friends I find their lives very cookie cutter. Every person almost had similar teenage experience as the next one. Spring break on the coast, braces as a tween, nuclear families, no raw fish, being either the popular teenager or the nerd boy, regardless of whether you lived in California or South Dakota.

What I love about India is that people have distinct experiences depending on where they live and although there are similarities it is not a cliched experience.

What I fear from the creep of American sentimentality in India is bringing this homogenized view to India and expecting people to behave a certain way.

ok, I will get off my soap box now :)

Joules said...

A little bit about my vacation: Tuscany was absolutely gorgeous and when you are there it feels like time has stopped. The sun is bright (hence Under the Tuscan Sun although that may be the only thing I had in common with Diane Lane).

This is the villa we stayed at http://www.tuscany.net/barberin/pages/profile.htm and the pictures dont do justice to the place.

And the cities you visit are so different from each other: Siena has its own character, while florence flourishes on its history. (Another reason to avoid american creep).

We could'nt make it to Milan but Rome had enough fashion for me. Although the fake purses on the side of the street are a real turn off.

And ofcourse, I toasted a few glasses of wine (my fav being the noble wines of Montepulciano) for the drifters.

girlie girl said...

Dr. Mind Rush, as long as we have sappy movies and dialogues like "mere paas Maa hai!" we will never get over our 'mother' fixation!
Although I love my mom, I know that I don't have to go to extremes one day of the year to show her that I love her...we have a very different type of a relationship and both of us know that so flowers and a card on mother's day is ok with her (I hope). Like Joules said, it's the American way, visit your mother and take her out to lunch on Mother's day, otherwise, who had time!!

girlie girl said...

Sounds like you had a great Vacay, joules! It's nice to have you back...

Joules said...

Also, Italians seems like have done a research on torture. There were torture museums abound. We visited one and although some in the group wanted to go see the others, most of us came out of it gagging.

Amongst our group we also had a rule to take a shot of grappa every time we were called idiota or got a roll of the eye from the locals because we were acting tourist-y. Needless to say all of us had a few shots.

Anonymous said...

Aspi,

I don't think I read your blog in the SRGMP days, but yeah, I watched that show (if I was home at the time it was on) -and liked it. But Am going through a anti-reality_based-artistic--competition phase - am so tired of the needless drama surrounding the 10 minutes or so that the contestants actually sing/dance whatever. I think R&R family did me in and I only saw bits of one or two episodes! :-D

I'll catch up with the singing on youtube - it seems to get there soon enough :)

Bitterlemons

Aspi said...

anu g, no dig yaar. Duality is actually one of my favorite human characteristics. If we could all only embrace it more and be comfortable with it (like you). I think Mind Rush was just having fun as the residential analyst :)

Joules, glad to know the vacation was fun. That idiota anecdote was hilarious. Those torture museums sound terrific - I'm always fascinated by the medieval weapons room in every museum I go to.

Bitterlemons I'm with you. RNR Family did more damage to reality TV than any one single event. However, I do tend to balance my reality TV with other stuff far removed from it. And in between episodes of JJWS you can really appreciate Wes Anderson and Darjeeling Limited.

Mind Rush said...

Ya'll...the "analysis" is all just in jest....Please do not take it personally or seriously. I did not mean to hurt any feelings.

When in doubt, do what Joules did...down a shot.

anu g said...

Hey Mindrush,take it easy. I have just returned from a retreat, so am dishing out some intelligent-sounding quotes.You go ahead dishing out ur psycho-lingo and I will keep dishing out some self-improvement-worthy dialogues:). And God save the drifters:).

anu g said...

I missed watching the first month of srgmp last year. And I got hooked on to the drift only towards the advanced rounds. So this year, I am really looking forward to watching the show, and reading Aspi's fun-posts.Any idea who the judges r going to be this year?

Lin said...

Okay. Granted, I really don't understand Hindi. I go by with then Hinglish spoken on the shows, and also by catching a few of the words to which I know the meaning.

But...
Is it just me, or do the judges in JJWS actually give good advice and point out the mistakes with their singing than the judges in SRGMP and SVOI and most obviously Indian Idol? I mean, sometimes I watch the judges comments, other times I don't bother--especially with SRGMP cuz I couldn't stand the drama. But from the little I've watched, it does seem to be the case.

I also noticed this on SRGM lil champs, where the judges do point out the technicalities.

Have never watched the SVOI kids version. And I know Javed Akhtar did it once to Toshi in Ustadon Ka Ustad when he some song. (I haven't watched much of Ustadon either, just a few clips yesterday of Toshi.)

Aspi said...

The judges do point out technicalities - they primarily focus on whether the singer held the tune and then on pitch, scale, etc. But on JJWS, as they always do, V-S vote as a bloc. And along with Farah, they are virtually a cartel - they rarely disagree.

Himesh - when he's not playing his games - is a decent judge. Javed Akthar is actually a terrible judge, but because he is articulate, he tends to get away with it.

These are just my opinions :) I'm probably just envious of Akthar's bagalthela and Himesh's hair.

Anonymous said...

Does anyone around here like Rahul Vaidya? I think this guy has a huge attitude. He is like Abhijeet Bhattacharya and our very own Himesh.

Cinderella said...

i din't feel emotional at all when i was watching that show and at a certain point of time i felt like a bad girl.
thanks to you,i felt i was just normal!! why did they have to cry for everything???only Debojit made me feel sad,though!
i was glad Shekhar wasn't crying at the end of each song!!he saved the show for me.otherwise i would have probably turned it off!!

Cinderella said...

and i love the captions...Nirupa roy attack LOL!

Anonymous said...

Rahul Vaidya ?
Correct Observation - The guy is just average and wants to be launched by Mahesh Bhatt as a leading man.
Hate the looks of Amit Sana - he can be paired with Mahaluxmi Iyer easily !!!

Aspi said...

This might sound very odd but I think Mahalaxmi Iyer is cute. Amit Sana, on the other hand, tries his best to look weird.

Pitu said...

Iyer looks 'homely' :-p but Amit Sana ewwwwww. Shreya Ghoshal is pretty enuff to give some Bolly starlets a run for their money.

megan said...

I hate Rahul whatever his name is. he thinks he is some sort of a hottie. He couldn't be any more wrong. What is with desi girls and these 5 foot 5 skinny girly fugly guys?

I also hate that Prajakta biarch, she rubs me the wrong way (no lesbian jokes please thanks)

Amit Sana OMG i feel terrible saying this but he looks sooooo how do i put this, umm UGLY when he sings. He makes the most weirdest faces. I just can't look at the screen when he sings.

Anonymous said...

Sharing comments from my Mom on Amit Sana's Looks
Mooshakraj ( Mooshak is rat in Sanskrit )
Aspi - You find Mahalaxmi Cute ???

I feel she too is like Sana Ghati !

Aspi said...

Yaar, Mahalaxmi (or as her rapper name would go M-Lax) somehow seems aligned to my liking. I can't tell you why - but she just is.

Actually Rahul and Vineet are both rather annoying. Unfortunately they both are very good singers so they'll be around to annoy us for a while it seems.

Anonymous said...

BS?

Aspi said...

BS = bullshit

Anonymous said...

what is BS & in which context Please !

anu g said...

Amit Sana definitely looks horrible these days. I used to sympathise with him when he first came on Indian idol, cos he was this simple smalltown guy-very modest and humble.He wasnt a great looker but his attitude made up for it. But now, whats with this terribly shabby look?
Aspi, u find Mahalakshmi cute???/ er , I dont like to comment on looks, but by calling her cute, u prove to be someone with a big 'hephda'.Before someone think I am giving a gaali....I watched the Zee Awards show yday, and it was announced that 'hephda' is hindi for 'heart'. Aspi, coming up with a review on that show?

Pitu said...

Are you sure? It sounds like the word 'fefda' and that means lungs..

Spruha said...

anu g, i think they said 'hiwada'.

Pitu said...

ROFL! hahahaha hiwda se fefda pahunch gaye Drifters lol. Hiwda makes more sense, it does mean 'heart' :-)

Cinderella said...

even i don't like Amit Sana..i never saw Indian Idol but i always heard he is liked a lot by people!!i begin to wonder why!!

and Vineet?i find him ok....better than many others..but if he's just 19,how come he participated int he challenge 2 yrs back????aren't u supposed to be above 18?? or maybe 16???..i don't know!!

anu g (very embarrassed) said...

Oh my God, Pitu and Spruha, I am so terribly embarrassed. I defintely got it all wrong.Here I was trying to show off.:). Aspi,am really sorry for getting ur heart mixed up with ur lungs. I think I should stick to simple Indian English henceforth!

Anonymous said...

I agree with Cindrella.
Amit Sana was much better when he came and now with so called designer looks ( as per him ) is ruining his chances in Career and loosing Fans like some of us.

Less said about Maha is better !

Cinderella said...

i read somewhere that Amit Sana is on drugs.any truth in it?

Cinderella said...

And about Zee cine awards,i din't like the way Sajid Khan was talking about Pritam and how he 'lifts' ........ and Pritam was right there with all cameras focussed on him....and he was like 'it's ok ' or something like that....i myself din't feel good looking at it!!!
i actually felt sad....
lifted or notor watever i still like JWM and race and Jannat and many more...

i wonder how much of Heyy Baby wasn't 'lifted'!!!

Anonymous said...

Sajid Khan is a loud mouth with no Talent.
The success of his movie for what ever reasons brought in this arrogence.

Aspi said...

Yaar, I didn't watch the Zee awards. I had no idea they were on!

In any case, heart ke liye lungs chahiye. In any case, my main exposure to the M-Lax has come from Mission Ustaad (speaking of which, wonder if Sidekick is on vacation). And she looked good in that - except looked like someone had used some bad ass cosmetics on her cheeks.

Pitu said...

Actually, Anu, it was rly cute :-)

Cinderella, are you serious?? I cannot believe someone (even someone as tacky as Sajid K) would say that, and you're right, since when is Heyy Baby even original? Gawd, that Sajid Khan has so much attitude, and for what? I wish his film had flopped, now he is insufferable :-p

anu g said...

Pitu, Sajid did say that. And the timing was horrid.....he said "here r the nominations thought Pritam deserves it cos his music is very uplifting.....he lifts music" or something to that effect.And the camera panned on poor Pritam. And after all that, he didnt win.(but he did get some other award, and this time he went upto Sajid and lifted him up:)).
Cinderella, My kids happened to watch that segment and they were so shocked.They both hate Sajid now:).

m said...

i hate sajid khan and his overweight sister and the whole khan clan.. so full of themselves..

Anonymous said...

phewww --- I am glad others share my view of Sajid K. I want to throw out my television when he talks or more like shits out of his mouth...

Anonymous said...

i want to request to u for dat please call amanat ali of pakistan runnerup of saregamapa as a challenger. and give him name as a MAHA CHALLENGER 4 both.4 challenger as well as 4 champions.please invite him 4 make da show verry interesting & dynamite.pleasssssssssssssssss.

Aspi said...

Anon, (I'll temporarily name you Amanat-lover), I think the Pakistani singers have major visa problems. Or something. Which makes their participation in shows a problem.

Anonymous said...

hi Aspi'please call amanat pl pl pl pl pl pl pl you can do every thing.aap aik martaba amanat aur 'Jo Jeeta Wohi Superstar' ki team se baat to kar k dekho naaaaaa.pleaseeeeeeeeeee.aap bohat MAHAN log ho i know .pl try to kar k dekho.ok bye.

Aspi said...

Amanat-lover, clearly you have no idea who I am. No one knows me and I'd be surprised if anyone on these show reads the Drift seriously.

Plus here I comment on what I see. I don't do appeals, break news or give people the inside scoop. Its good that way. People trust me and tell me all kinds of things :)

But I do agree with you: it would have kicked ass to have Amanat and say Mussarat on JJWS as the wild cards.

Anonymous said...

ok thanx aspi,by da way i m dil(amanat's...........)you wrote dat i (me) dont know who u r.so would you plaese like to tell me WHO R U.

Anonymous said...

o ho aspi where r u (dil)

Hiroko Nakimura said...

Dear aspi, can u plsssss write a hole artikle deedicated to the hottest and sexiest man on two legs. The man with sexy and smooth dance moves who drived millions of my fellow japanese girls scream in shier extasie

Yes I are talking about the one and only Mithun da!

Aspi said...

Hiroko, I cannot disappoint millions of screaming japanese fans - so after that Don Muthuswamy movie comes out, I will work on one. Say hi to Ayumi for me.

dil, what are you looking for? There's always email if you have a question. Or you can message me on Facebook.

Anonymous said...

do u have any id of amanat(dil)..........

Parveen Sibal said...

I have and he will be performig here on June 15th along with Chhotu Kher i.e Kailash Kher and Atif.

Anonymous said...

o thanx parveen jani .can u please give me id of amanat.u can send me on my id ,dat is sky_queen786@yahoo.com i'll b thankful 2 u.i m waiting 4 your reply.

Johan Svennsen said...

Parveen Jaan! Can you pleaze gave me email address of Mithunda. I has been a hugest fan of his for 24 years old.

My mother use to play Disco Dancer soundtracks when I were a little foetus in my mother's uterus! now Johan are a big boy and want to meet my idol who has been my inspiration for so many many years old.

My first born will be named Mithunda.

Please gave me his email address, Parveen Jaan. I will be your servant for 12 years old.

Parveen Sibal said...

Anonimous :
EMail ID of Amanat is mailed to you.

Johan - I wish I could help you but unfrtunately I do not have email ID of Mitun Da.
I am so Far away from India but will cec with a relative whose Hotel was bought by Mitun a zillions years back.

Parveen Sibal said...

Anon !
sky_queen786@yahoo.com

This email ID is incorrect and the mail came back undelivered

Parveen Sibal said...

For Johan
Hope the following suffices in the absence of EMail ID of Mithun C

Name: Mithun Chakraborty
Nationality: Indian
Profession: Actor
Address: 702 Garden View, 16th Road
Guru Nanak Park, Bandra
Mumbai 400 050

Parveen Sibal said...

Mithun's second address
Mithun Chakraborty
Monarch Hotel
Ooty Tamil Nadu
Tel: 44408-44420/43646-43655

Anonymous said...

i m really very sorry.dat is sky_queen786. so nice of u .kia tum mere sath frndship karo gi.luv u byeyeyeyeyeyey.quetoo

Parveen Sibal said...

amanat_alii2007@rediffmail.com

For You Anon or Amanat Lover

Aspi said...

All right Parveen. First, your ability to dig up the coordinates of people impresses me. And second, we can all guess the email that's going to make its way into Amanat's inbox soon :)

Parveen Sibal said...

It will - H e is a member of my Orkut community and will be In Toronto fr a concert tour.
He has been very good in replying as Wasi Effendi , Aneek , Suneel , Arshpreet , Ishmeet etc. BTW - You will see Suneel in II4.
I am just a loyal fan of drift and love it from all angles. I think you have the Best Readership , Fun Living , dignfied and my only question is how many are they. My guess will be a couple of thousand or more.
Keep up the great work - This site is more entertaining than the actual program.
Case i Point , I had to buy Black & while CD to relisten based on your article.
Cheers as always !

Anonymous said...

thanx parveen janu ,by da way my name is dil.thanx a lotonce again.beyeyeyeyeyeye(amanat's.......)

Aspi said...

Parveen, I'll second those comments about the people who stop by here. Thanks for doing the same yourself.

Anonymous said...

parveen do have amanat's yahoo id.

Anonymous said...

hey aspi h r u.(dil) amanat's........

Anonymous said...

by da where r u nowadays(dil).

Aspi said...

hi dil, i'm right here. did you touch base with amanat? how's our boy doing?

Anonymous said...

hi aspi. yaar he(amanat) iz very buzy nowadayz and nothing.(dil)

Anonymous said...

hello aspi where r u .(dil)

dil said...

hi aspi vr r u???