Saturday, November 05, 2011

Simply Hate

Owing to the mass unpopularity of open letters in recent times, I'm ditching the plan of writing one and embracing the idea of launching into a full-fledged rant instead.
Hate is a popular trend of our times. By hate I don't mean a Communist's trademark 'We hate America and capitalism' kind of hate. 'Hating on' Justin Bieber for example, for crooning in that semi-childlike-semi-effeminate voice of his, and making hormonal teenage girls invent creepiest of hashtags to trend on twitter-if #HornyforJustin isn't creepy, then nothing else is. (Please to note, that 'hating on' is technically incorrect English but that's what 13-year old Americans write.)
Hating latest SRK/Salman movie. And so on. There are countless items on this list.

Now when I say this kind of typical hate-mongering is
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fashionable, I mean that there are a few of us who have just jumped on the 'hate' bandwagon, supposedly because 'hating' is cool. It shows you're putting up a stubborn resistance against the viral marketing tactics and publicity stunts you're being subjected to on a daily basis via all media channels. And the minute you openly proclaim your disdain for one of these over-hyped, below-par, but well-marketed products on Twitter or Facebook, you automatically acquire taste.
Okay enough of the self-referential humor. A majority of haters are genuine haters. After reading three of C-Bag's books I decided I wasn't going to read any more of his masala-lathered stories and waste time by writing reviews trashing them. If you have time enough to do all that, go read an actual book and stop making a fool out of yourself.
Now let me state the real purpose of this post. Just recently, I came across a few promotional videos of a new reality show named 'Love 2 Hate You' on Star World - the format of the show specifies that a 'super star' meet up with his/her 'biggest haters' and do god knows what. Whether they will spar verbally, or with a couple of swords or have a tete-a-tete over coffee is best known to the makers. My best guess is something along the lines of this. Also I'm not sure about who these 'super stars' are. But this is what I want to say to them.
Dear all 'hated' ones and the makers of this innovative, new tv series, please don't flatter yourselves into thinking that we 'love 2 hate'.
We hate. Just that.
We don't experience some form of vicarious thrill by dissing over-rated actors, music artists, writers and other celebrities. Social media has given us the opportunity of getting to know actual facts and not distorted versions of reality, made interactions with individuals all over the world possible with the click of a mouse, helped dispel a lot of popular misconceptions. And it is because these social networks have given us a platform where we can write opinions freely and be read in turn, we can call a spade a spade. Please don't insult our intelligence by deriving reality show ideas out of our new-found power of expression. We don't do this for fun or to get noticed or to get our 15 minutes of fame.
I have never written a tweet full of hate or in abusive language and tagged a celebrity's handle in it. I have no desire of trolling anyone. But I have every right of posting my honest view of a book I've read or a movie I've watched. Which code of conduct in the world states that we are only entitled to lavish praise on an actor and keep negative criticism aside? If you're being hated by a group of individuals for the work you do, please stop saying 'they're jealous of my stardom' or 'I earned crores in profit and people love me.' in your defense. I mean, in what parallel universe does that make any iota of sense? We're also consumers here, and steadily running out of options while choosing products from the market because you are flooding it with your shit encased in glittery packages. Books with awkward English sentences, incorrect grammar get published all the time - 3 pages into it and you start regretting having faith in the publisher's aesthetic sense. So you'll excuse us if we feel the need to give vent to our frustration somewhere.
Instead of producing more fake reality tv shows and using sneaky marketing tactics while pandering to the tastes of a certain kind of consumer base, put your heads together to make something worthwhile. There was a time when youngsters in our country read Ruskin Bond and R.K. Narayan and grew up watching School Days and Hip Hip Hurray. Now they read Chetan Bhagat and watch Mtv Roadies. Or better still, Bigg Boss.
Commercial doesn't automatically translate into asinine or a mish-mash of anything low-brow. Commercial can also be meaningful, devoid of cliches, characterized by sensitivity, depth, heart-felt emotions, unique/familiar stories and closer to reality. Remember all the popular tv shows of 80s-90s? - Dekh bhai Dekh, Nukkad, Humlog, Mahabharat, Chandrakanta, Malgudi Days and the likes?

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They were liked by one and all. Young and old. Literate and the illiterate. Not only were they a hit with the masses but they also managed to keep the viewers with refined taste, interested throughout their runs.
Bring back that era when better sense still prevailed with our entertainment industry.
Or else prepare to keep being 'hated'.

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