Serial killers!

Serial Killers
Someone pointed out, gone are the days of Muthassi kathas from Kerala because the Muthassis are too busy watching television serials! Yes, I must be daft to look for deep revelations of the human psyche from the Malayalam television serials- but my curiosity is less about the characters, more about those who watch them.

Someone please explain to me why people are so hooked on to such titanic proportions of tragedy, sorrow, torture, resentment and personal strife? What makes them return everyday at one time to get their dose of negativity? What is so magnetic about characters who unleash their anger, sadism and greed on those around them? What makes them powerful enough to attract viewers and advertisers alike? Why have myths been stripped to simplistic good-over-evil stories (where evil dominates 95% of the screentime!)? Where the ‘good’ is caked in so much bad makeup and bad acting that one forgets who to be scared of…

Surely, something you watch with daily dedication for an hour or two must have some impact on one’s psyche… that brings me to my most dreaded fear – what if we were to imagine that our media mirrors our society? Or the reverse theory that society will mirror our media?

Eeeks…. Someone HELP!

54 thoughts on “Serial killers!

  1. Paradhuushanam paranju nadannawar innu Corporates kaludae aadukal aayi maariyirikkunnu. Keralathil ninn anyam ninnu powunna aa kalaaroopam serialukaliludae punarjanichu malayalikaludae jeevitham dhanyam aakkunnu. Ithonnum Shradhikkathae nadakkunnawarum kuravalla. Pandorikkal ente ammumma areyo patty aarodo kuttam parayumbo athonnum kaettu nikkathae wazhyae poya walyammakk innum poya wazhy thettiyathaayi njan kaettittlya.

  2. Hey,

    I do not blame anyone either the makers or the watchers.This is the only medium to take out the Anger they suffer at home.and these stories resembles more to their real life than a cinema.do u really believe our life in Kerala is much Polished or gentle.?

    I know a 26 year old s/w engineer husband beat his 23 years old s/w engineer wife when he’s drunk or angry.they still live togthr.our women are seasoned like this.(Do they watch serials?)

    These serials are nothing compared to majorities real life adventures & harrasements they gone though.if this didn’t make them psycho.serials cannot.

    We have more talent to forget than think.

    Aroon Varikkan

    aroonvarikkan gmail.com

    http://aroonvarikkan.wordpress.com

  3. .njan ente ammayode epollum chodikarunde enthinnane amme ee serial kannunathe enne apoll amma parayunna kariyamunde.ningal ellavarum jollikum,padikanum,pokumbol njagal ivide ottakanne apoll manassine oru santhoshamane ee serial. mathramalla ee satharanakaraya ammamake innu kannunapolle suspens thrillerum,twistum,frictions niranja cinema onnu arriyill avar innum, annum,ennum, avarude aa pazhayakalathill thanneyanne. puramlokam kandu jeevicha chechiyepolleyu,chettanmarepolleyum ullavarke chillapole pucham thonnam,nigal parayunathu shariyayirikkum. enkillum njan ishtapedunnu ee kochu..santhosh.
    enthayallum i congratulate your socialcommitmet. and i am waiting for new movie.

  4. During my childhood days in late80’s and 90’s i remember the serials being aired by our Doordarsan in TV in malayalam like……Kairalivilasam lodge( a satirical comedy),Giant robot(for kids),Scooter,kumilakal,vaitharani….and some of unforgettable serials in hindi too like..wagle ke duniya,eh jo hai zindagi,Vikram aur vetal,Ek kahani,Karamchand,Udaan,Jeevan Rekha,Byomkeshbakshi,Fauji etc …………………..was 13 weekly serials which will not go on like an elastic like todays mega serials in which a pregnant heroine would take atleast 4 to 5 years for delivery.Todays serials are trash when compared to the early 90’s serials which was being aired for only 13 episodes in Doordarsan.So finally i stopped watching todays mega super serials ,i hate watching these kinds of trash rather than watch good sensible films which have some stuff in it.

    Anjali you are one among those Directors which we as anaudience look forward and expect good films on and on from you.My self an expatriate from Dubai upholds all your movies which values relationship and also values the roots like Manjadikuru'” movie
    Indeed Bangalore days was also an awesome movie.What a magic in your films,doesnt seems like that a woman has taken it.Such a mesmerism !!! in your movies.Good job …..good going……Good luck in all your endeavours Anjali.

  5. Hello Anjali,

    I am not sure if I am too late here to reply. May be this topic is dead, albeit still relevant. With all due respect, to answer your blog “…why people are so hooked on to such titanic proportions of tragedy…” well…the answer is because of, ahem, you, the film industry, the television industry et al. Confused? You give people what they want, or what they “think” they want, and people tend to want more of those B.S. Why do we still have musical films in India? We are still living in the era of “sound of music”; stuck in the past. You yourself did that. Bangalore days did that. Trust me, I loved the movie. (biggest fan here! Not kidding!). But why the songs? Oh, I loved the songs too. Trust me. But do I really need it the next time? I guess, YES. It has been drilled into my psyche. I need songs. More. Drilled into all our psyches. I stopped watching Hindi movies because they are mostly just about songs and no freakin plot. The Malayalam film industry in that sense has more quality. But alas there are idiot audiences out there (let’s say 99% of them) who still need their daily doses of songs every now and then.

    The same applies to the TV serials. We have no choice. We watch what is being played and we tend to like em’. Who (film maker) has the guts (and it has to be a collective initiative) to show us what is real and not fantasy? Oh no, that would be counter-productive to the TV guys because we are already mind-f@#$ed!

    Regards,
    Rajiv

  6. I sincerely hope that someones gets inspired by ‘Mr.Mercedes’ and re-enact the killing at the venue any Television Award Show.

  7. I am fed up with these kind of serials like any other son of my age. Many mothers will wonder whats wrong with the serials if they can watch movies. Its a fact that they inject all the bad into the you slowly. Everyday you are watching the same thing again and again that you will easily get accustomed with this slow posion.
    And if you watch closely, you will find that these serials doesn’t contain anything more than a custom story. Custom in the sense, the story is made up and changed according to external factors. There is a serial of a Girl who was seperated from her mom and later they rejoins. But the mom didn’t recognise her daughter. She is working as a servant in same family. It was said one day that the story will end in 20 more episodes. But for some reasons they changed the whole story and came up with entirely new characters. And its been more than a year and the serial is still running with the same name and a make up.

    Coming to the BHAKTHI serials,
    Apart from the dubbed hindi version which started recently, if you watch the rest, you will lose the faith in god for sure. Some crazy stupid people write up something with a flavour of Ayyappa or Krishna, say something like a group of devotees who believe in Ayyappa and some day they get into trouble and god will appear in front of them and save them. And people watch that one also with great vigour and devotism. Honestly, that reminds me of the SHAKTHIMAN and MAYAAVI stories we used to watch/read as a child. They have simply replaced Shakthiman with Ayyappa or Shiva.
    And many people beleve that they will be blessed if they watch these serial at Sandhya time. At old times our grandmas and moms used to visit temple for the blessings. But these days, for the NEWER GENERATION, its has gave way to Serials as they are easily available at the comfort of a remote control every morning and dusk.

    I really feel pity for such people and Malayalam channels that broadcast these kind of non sense serials.

  8. In no way can a mind stay vacant, may it be of children or elderly. It must get some kind of input always. Just to criticise is easy, but to find an alternative is difficult .Hope this tragic situation can be replaced by some other good alternatives. For that, taleted people like you must come forward with your own scripts for good motivating serials

  9. I watch a lot of English tv series’ and I must say they are better than movies in many ways and when I accidentally hit q channel where a malayalam serial is going, I run for my life.The story is unbelievable .It’s always been the same old “Ammaiamma” story.Pathetic.Time to take this problem seriously because nobody is stepping forward to make a change . It would be good you know if Anjali Ma’am could direct a series .( :p just sayin)

  10. Kure varshangalku munbu megaserialugal arangu vaanu kondirikunna samayathu verum 14 episodeil theertha oru parambara undayrnu ‘Avicharitham’.Malayala cinemayile puthuthalamura ezhuthukaaril pradanigalaaya boby-sanjay kootukettinde rachanayil sree K.K.Rajeev orukya parambara.Rajeevinde mattu parambaragalum ere sredhayavum aazhathilulla vishyangalum charcha cheythirunu..pakshe nalloru shathamanam serial pravarthagarum ethoru tozhilaay matram kandu ethoke reetyil kudumbinigalude balaheenathagale chooshanam cheyamo athinde ange attam arochagamay tane vikalamaaya parambaragal orukikondu karmaniratharavunu..evide e parambaragalude prekshagarum kuttakaranu..swantham kudumbathil etharam koprayangal arangeryillengilum mattoru kudumbathil ethoke nadakundalo ennorthu sahathapikanulla twara avarkund…enyipo nalla premayangal vannal avar kandukoodaygayilla..pakshe avarku epo kitunna parambaragalil samthriptharayirikunaditholam kaalam serial pravarthagal athu vittazhikanale sremiku…kalakka vellathil meen pidikanale elupam..atra tane..!

  11. Every time I watch Mahabharatam with my kids, the first question they ask is whether the guy on screen is a “good guy” or “bad guy”. It is hard to explain to five year olds that sometimes it is hard to say what is good or bad and often people are shades of grey. But yesterday, I ordered good old Amar Chitra Katha version of Mahabharat and the first page says this. “And in his wisdom he (Vyasa) saw them (Kauravas and Pandavas) and their acts as neither white nor black but grey. He saw in their lives the human condition with an insight, a universality that is given only to the greatest of poets.”

  12. It’s a good topic…!!!

    I researched partially in few psychology related world wide publications, and my personal conclusion are:

    TV Serial presents periodically (same timing, length, presentation, etc.) – Same technique used in sales/marketing professionals, for example a medical representative to a doctor (about one week follow-up of sales person makes some times low quality sales).

    Branding: name of serial, dress, words, continues advertisement, etc… Womans attracts by feminine names/presentation/colors includes fashion; Mens attracted by some stills of glamour/beauty_____. It’s fact.

    Both Womens and Mens are more eager to listen unethical stories/gossips/relation.
    for example premarital relationship (-ve), after marriage relationship (-ve), or other hot subjects.

    —-

    Compared to men/boys, women/girls are more tend to addict tv serials. And the addiction makes behavioral changes in life, such as more chance to come some -ve commends to life.

    After Effects: Youngsters will (3 – 35/40/50+) misguide.

    —-

    If we check current tv serial trends, the core contents of every serials are same, marketability keeps equal procedures. The present culture change (-ve) from tv serial.

    [I don’t know anyone addict Film/Movie; ADDICTIONS ONLY IN TV SERIALS, MAJORITY WILL BE MALAYALEES]

  13. Muthassi kadakalude kaalam kazhiyukayaanu,, Mashitthandum, Valappoyyukalum, Manjaadi kkuruvum perukkan innu kuttikalkkum samayamillathayirikkunnu..veedinte sheetheekaricha akathalangalil TV Serial nu munnil thapassu cheythu Manassu maravichu durmedassu pidichu oru thalamura .. “manjadikkuru pole chithri veenu” aarkkum vendathavunna oru samskkaram..gruhaathurathakal,Nashttangal..

  14. Hi Anjali,

    Came to this discussion pretty late. I tend to partly agree with Uma Kumarapuram above, especially, when she says that you would not get any real answers from this forum, because we all would predominantly share the same set of opinions on this.

    I have observed this phenomenon among my family members settled across the country. The fascination with the 5 – 10 pm slot serials is not restricted to Kerala alone. Malayalis across the globe watch with anticipation (shudder!) for the next reason to cry (sigh!) with the serial’s central, but much-wronged-against character and it has to be a woman! And there are those Malayalis who also watch serials in Colors, Sony, Star Plus..etc, etc…they kind of consider themselves slightly higher up in the viewing hierarchy (after all they are watching a non-Malayalam language serial) and then probably come the ‘globe trotters’ who prefer a ‘Young and Restless’ or ‘A Bold and the Beautiful’🙂

    But what is it that pulls?

    I have tried to ask this question to my mom, mother-in-law, my aunts, grandmas, women who have full time jobs or are full time homemakers, graduates, post graduates or high school pass-outs, but without much luck in getting a rational, logical answer.

    And ironically, I have got different answers from different folks. For many, the stories take them back more than a couple of decades to their own villages and the society that they were part of. I realized it was true, because only the sets and the make-up are modern, the thoughts are still archaic. It gives them some amount of comfort I suppose, especially, to folks who are overwhelmed by the changes around them.

    To some, it just provided a half an hour to one hour break from the humdrum of life (something that I would do by watching back to back episodes of Friends, I guess :P) For few, it is actually a substitute for the gossip sessions they had in their hey days at the temple pond or the river bank, except that here, they are not expected to contribute, only listen (plus watch!).🙂

  15. Hi Anjali,

    I completely agree to your views. Malayalam TV serials are a menace and it is causing irreparable damage to the mindset of people watching it. I cannot even withstand the conversations in these serials even if I am in another room of my house.

    Gone are the days when we had fantastic 8 and 13 episode serials in Doordarshan like Kairali Vilasam Lodge, Kumilakal etc. Those were fun to watch.

    I request good and sensible film makers like Anjali Menon to give good quality fast paced serials or similar programs in TV.

  16. Its a very interesting question, though i guess i found this blog little late😉

    I have seen so many of my relatives watching serials everyday as a routine and many times i too have sat there watching that rubbish.. ( and it helps you to built a rapo with elders, something common to talk!!!)whatever media feeds people will take because of free time.. But I 100% agree that this stupid serials are influencing the mass who watch it..Every time heroine will be wearing saree and the negative character is always in jeans n colored hair ( u know, d modern kind) ..This obviously create an impression among the people who watch the serials that the girls who talk , who express and dress in the way she like are kind of negative which is stupid.Only the one who cry and cry and sacrifice all dreams for others are good!!!!!

    But how can we blame people only…Many times people are watching these programs because its the only available option…When reality shows came, serials were badly affected but soon it also turned as melodrama…with tear jerking scenes and angry outbursts..One of my friend told “Its better for me if my mom watch serials at least it wont make her SMS and waste money “!!!

    I think only left outs from cinema are in mini screen..including the directors and script writers ( many times actors too)..Why? It is a media with an uncountable number of audience..But its considerate some what second to big screen.. When good creative and artistic talents are giving the whole time in Cinema ,,How can there be quality programs in TV..I been in media and I know , all working in television industry dream of being in cinema and nobody is dedicated enough to worry about the stuff they show in TV..

    Only when good script writers and directors understand the real importance of Television as a media, we can expect to see good stuff there…

    There is no point in blaming when we are not ready to work for it..Try to come up with small skits for TV too..Only when somebody shows something good people understand the quality difference…..All cry saying quality of film going down..Give some time to this media too..Only when famous and successful people start involving in min screen, it will get the lime light.And then only we can expect a change!!!!

    Saw your movie, it was truly fantastic ..All the best..:)

  17. I think its the basic Keralian mentality. We are more concerned about the problems faced by our relatives or neighbours than the good they do or get in life. Same with the serials, there’s always an element of negativity in the characters and we are anxious to know how they face it or overcome it. Even the so called serials targetting children, shows a lot of negativity. It sure does harm our next generation who see and grasp the violence fast.
    I personally feel the ‘painkilli’s are far better. U need to take the energy to read and then vitualize it. But the TV media, does everything for you, and hence we just need to enact it in real life. High time some body does something revive the life that was lived in the 70s and 80s. Technology is definitely a boon and advantage, but are we using it in the same sense?

  18. Thank you so much for replying. I figured there was more to the quote than what was printed.

    However much we don’t personally feel affected, we do live in a gendered world where power structures regard men as individuals and women as an undifferentiated mass.

    The popular press isn’t known for its ability to convey nuance in stories like this. I feel like when women say such things it allows those who want to maintain the status quo to point to the one woman and say, “Look, she says it’s fine. It’s the rest of them that can’t adjust.”

    I’m not saying you shouldn’t speak your conscience, but I’ve personally met many men like that in film and other male-dominated industries and I’m sure you have as well, so I always keep that in mind before criticizing other women.

    Anyway, I believe you have some projects coming up in Malayalam. Good luck!

  19. Hi Anjali,

    I caught the entirety of Kerala Cafe recently and really enjoyed Happy Journey. It was the best of the lot.

    This is unrelated to your blog post, but I recently read this article in which you are quoted.
    http://articles.timesofindia.indiatimes.com/2011-09-17/news-interviews/30168775_1_mollywood-b-unnikrishnan-thilakan

    It states this:

    ‘Anjali also goes on to add that the problem might be when people stop to focus on their work and starts to project themselves as a woman. “That’s what gets the unwanted attention,” she exclaims.’

    There are so few women behind the camera in South Indian cinema and I’m genuinely curious to hear what you mean by projecting themselves as a woman.

    • Thank you Harsha for this question.
      I am fortunate that I have not been a victim of blatant discrimination but it does happen. Most professionals deal with it deftly like many other issues they face.
      The said interview seems to quote me as blaming the victims (!) whereas my point was as follows – I have come across unfortunate situations where some women expect to be allowed concessions in their work performance- their gender related roles emerging as excuses at these times. When these ladies crib about discrimination – I find it ridiculous.

  20. MAN IS AN ANIMAL BASICALLY.NOW HE HAS GROWN TO A SOCIAL ANIMAL.EVEN THOUGH HIS ANIMAL INSTICTS PRESISTS IN HIM.ONCE WE BECOME MORE AND MORE CIVILSED WE TRY TO COVER OUR BASIC INSTIN
    CTS TO A CERTAIN EXTENT.THE RELIGIONS SOCIAL REFORMERS HAD TRIED AND ARE STILL TRYING THEIR LEVEL BEST TO POLISH TH E MAN TO BECOME SOCIAL MORE AND MORE .AND WE HAVE ACHIEVED A LOT COLLECTIVELY EVEN THOUGH INDIVIDAUALLY WE ARE STILL ANIMALS.
    WE HAVE TO TRY TO GO AGINST THE ANIMAL INSTICTS .WE SHOULD TRY THIS EACH AND EVERY MINUTE .MANOHAR

  21. I fully agree with You. The Good old stories like Kadamattath Kathanaar, Kayamkulam Kochunni, Guruvayoorappan Stores etc. were presented in a grotesque manner… As You rightly pointed out ‘thinma’ holds around 95% screen time and ‘Nanma’ the rest….

  22. i dont think the situation is that bad.
    Have anyone seen some of the shows on this very channel in the afternoons (Adakala @12:30pm for eg) Highly informative and educational stuff. The other day they were talking about the Patho-physiology of Cigarette smoking, its adverse effects on male potency and fertility (with complete schematics!) These ammachis n muthashis watch n learn all the good stuff when the men are out working. The evening junk shows are just a ‘Hot cup of milk before sleep’ routine. just eating what they are served. They are simply playing dumb taking us for a ride guys!!
    As for the quality of serials, i think the makers are to be blamed. Churning out junk just to avoid hard work and research that goes behind the making.

    Here are some serials that probably established the routine:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hum_Log_%28TV_series%29

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vinaya_Prasad

    http://www.hindu.com/2005/03/16/stories/2005031615540300.htm

  23. why people are so hooked on to such titanic proportions of tragedy, sorrow, torture, resentment and personal strife?…………..

    Just as you I too wonder. I don’t watch any serials. The last one I watched was ‘Ayyappan’. Comedy serials I like a little bit, but there are not much of them with good standard. Till this date, the best in my mind is an old Hindi serial, in which a character often says ‘ye kya ho reha hai?’ – In Malayalam I liked Mallika sukumaran’s comedy serial, in which her character was often referred to as a ‘prasthaanam’. It was her acting I liked in that. Of course no message to communicate in these serials – just light-hearted. These days I don’t watch a serial. The reason is what u said itself. So much of worry in real life itself. Then why should we watch reel worry also? I like reading much much more than TV watching. And a bit of writing too. BTW, I write Malayalam lyrics. Any chance in your films? Not expecting any type of remuneration. Just loves to hear my lines sweetened with the beautiful music. Some of my lyrics I’ve posted in my blog. Please see them, if u have time.

  24. In 1961, U.S. Federal Communication Commission chairman Newton Minow gave a speech to the National Association of Broadcasters, labeling American television a ‘vast wasteland’ and calling out broadcasters for not doing more to serve the public interest:

    “When television is good, nothing — not the theater, not the magazines or newspapers — nothing is better.

    But when television is bad, nothing is worse. I invite each of you to sit down in front of your own television set when your station goes on the air and stay there, for a day, without a book, without a magazine, without a newspaper, without a profit and loss sheet or a rating book to distract you. Keep your eyes glued to that set until the station signs off. I can assure you that what you will observe is a vast wasteland.

    You will see a procession of game shows, formula comedies about totally unbelievable families, blood and thunder, mayhem, violence, sadism, murder, western bad men, western good men, private eyes, gangsters, more violence, and cartoons. And endlessly commercials — many screaming, cajoling, and offending. And most of all, boredom. True, you’ll see a few things you will enjoy. But they will be very, very few. And if you think I exaggerate, I only ask you to try it.”

    ——————————–

    Fifty years on and Minow’s words echo loudly, presciently describing this vast wasteland that entices across cultures and continues to hold us hostage.

    Ultimately, it matters not whether this type of ‘serial’ programming is a reflection of our societies mores, or whether the content beamed into our wide-screens shapes us. The effect is the same: a deadening of the collective soul.

    We, the audience, invite this deadening, like the innocents who must invite the vampire of classical literature into their home for him to gain access to their necks. Therefore, the responsibility lies with us. But we need help, guidance.

    The solution is the same as it has been since Minow’s day and before: Creating a counterbalance in the medium’s content: Fresh and hopeful films and shows, stories with serious, real characters who have heart and are memorable; stories that move our heart, not thrash it in the name of box office profit and share/rating.

    Somebody must direct this effort, undertake this immense responsibility. Luckily, we have a few dedicated and impassioned filmmakers and producers who willingly assume the role. They are acutely aware of our societies’ precipitous slide deeper into this vast wasteland enveloping us. They and only they possess the unrelenting drive and talent and courage to confront this challenge head-on, using their insight, their creativity, their compassion.

    The solution resides within them. Spurred on by their concern, their anger, and by their “most dreaded fear” at the injustice they see around them and feel so viscerally as to spend sleepless nights over it and to blog about it, they have no choice but to act.

    But they cannot do it alone. They need us, their audience, in their effort to affect change.

    Without an audience there is no medium, thus no message. (It is no accident that this blogger lists her titles as filmmaker/writer/audience.)

    Ingenious, really, her blogging a clarion call for help, using social media to change the mass media’s content for the betterment of her society.

    A determined artist, with the motivation of enriching her society, undertakes a quest to rally support to confront an antagonist– an antagonist repressing society using the consuming power of schadenfreude, but one with a tragic flaw: Thinking it’s the only one who can synergize the masses.

    Sounds to me like this will make a great film.

    • WHOA! Am overpowered by that surge of positivity and belief…. mentally polevaulting from the subterranean quicksand to that space where I CAN make a difference, in fact where each individual can make a difference. Thank you from all of us for that!

      Yes, the “audience” is far more powerful than most other terms and an honest organic reaction/movement from the audience is far more transformative than most other factors of media. Seeking such synergy, we live in hope.

  25. Since we’re on the subject of a “children’s version of parental controls”, isn’t it weird that since Censorship is a form of taking away the basic right to free expression anyway, that this is another cultural phenomenon that we’re going to have to live with. Personally, I’m waiting for the next outrageous reality show based in Kerala – 10 Film students and 10 Theater students watch 20 new Pilots for new Serials a week, and vote the more annoying ones out… But television is essentially meant to be junk, on whose image other junk is to be sold anyway. Think of this in our cultural history – our Television reported on society and ended up parodying it; our Movies imitated life, and then had to be struggled with to get made. I wonder which of these was more important; and more surprisingly, which one has society chosen to choose – and then crib about their own choice…

  26. the reason is clear. according to women psycology, they are always eager to know, watch and discuss other’s life. this gives them an unknown pleasure. even a family problem going on in the next door gives them a mysterious happiness. serials are nothing but merely an exploration of simple family issues filled with egos, possessiveness, selfishness etc.

  27. Oh… i cannot agree more! These days, the most irritating noise is the sound of Asianet from 5 in the evening! With elders hooked onto it, i have no escape, sadly!😦

  28. Sorry to say, your fears are turning into reality. To start with, villains in TV serials are finding ‘homely’ crowd pretty hostile these days – with incidents ranging from veiled counselling to slapping!

  29. that’s something to chew on isn’t it. kids growing up without muthashikathakal. maybe that’ll have to be made into serials as well. esp for losers like me, who can barely read malayalam.

  30. Anjali, this is quite an interesting subject. I never watch serials, but I’m often shocked at the news stories, presented without any consideration of ethics or humanity. An accused is shown in a close shot, when a graphic description of his “crime” runs in the background. Is an accused guilty until the court decides so? The channels often sentence the accused. What is the court acquits him? What is his compensation?
    These channels are practising media terror.

  31. dear anjali, i dont think u gonna get any real answer from any those who visit your blog, because all of them -including me- will have a taste that is similar to yours and a small section of society, who consider serials and melodramatic ‘painkily’ novels as tortures, and intellectual articles, news and classics capture our interests. if just a discussion was what you wanted, i can see that its going on in the above and the future comments. but if you really want an answer (please allow me to compare myself with you- like me, who started researching about the possible market of Malayali viewers generally, and still haven’t reached anywhere, because its vast’er than an ocean), i guess you have to go, stay with may be your relatives, friend’s realtives or family friends who actually enjoy these and see for yourself. i had once the chance of watching the first ever Hit Mega torture of Asianet- Sthree, when i was a kid, because one of my aunts were addicted to it, and we kids were forced to be in her home till parents came back from work. trust me, how much i detested it, after one week, even i started feeling like curious about what happened and how things are going. May be the psychological reasons that appeal these to masses are way deeper than we see, but the thing get you addicted more than the chinese food containing Ajinomoto.

  32. Most people watch those because they have nothing better to do. If you are a housewife in a small town with grown up children and a husband who reads newspaper after work, what do you do? Go out with your friends for shopping or movies? Hang around in a local library or art gallery or sports club? It is easy to judge when we are educated youngsters living in cities.

    Addiction to serials is just people killing boredom because none of the healthy alternatives are available or considered appropriate by society. I do not think these people consider these serials to be quite an art work. They watch it, despite it being gibberish.

  33. wow… that’s a good questing:) sorry its not only in kerala, its happening all around india. Even im thinkng abt this from the past 12years, learned a lot from my expeiance from media industry, ‘Actully this is our culture, we r immortionally f**…d up with others. and now in 21st century people become so restless, no hard working, looking for easy money lot like that. because of that even media and someof film produces also looking for easy money:)

    i worked my ass off to do something new or something different than the other film or promos which i did in the past 8years in mum. some where good and somewere fabulasa…:) only prob….. hard worker never earn money never got respect:(

    now i think i should look after my family estate, which good for our green land. that will give me some respect when i die:)

  34. Good that you pointed this out, Anjali. First of all, muthassikkadhas vanished not just coz muthassis are busy watching serials, they no more believe that they are aged to be called as muthassis – they would be happy if you call them chaechi.😉

    It is true. There is something that glue peoples’ mind to the negativity on screen – that too during the most productive time of the day😛 Is it coz, they dont have anything better to do? Is it coz, devil is working hard in his/her workshop? Is it again coz… they relate those characters to their son, mother/daughter in law….etc and live henceforth in fear that they would one day behave to ‘me’ like these characters?

    Whatever it may be, though templatized, i wonder how these guys churn out their ‘creativity’ so quickly.. with dialogues dubbed, sfx and music!

  35. It’s possible that both of the final conclusions you have drawn from your observations are absolutely true.

    There is a difference between those films that catch an audience’s attention, and those films that require the audience to exercise their own imaginations. Now, attention seeking films – such as the filmed material today which features sex, violence, perversion, and Illogical nonsense – as easier to write, devise, and create; quite simply because appeal to our instincts, not our senses.

    Media is a part of the culture of the age, so yes, it does mirror the corresponding society of the age. And the culture of an age mirrors the society of the age, it always does. It’s sometimes left to the people in the present age, who provide the proponents of cultural development for the next generation of people. That’s where the responsibility of Artists come in, they need to create a better blueprint by which to mold the culture that appears after they have gone.

  36. These kind of serials are mental and intellectual torturing to people of all the ages. Not sure why people are addicted to it. Human mind may be always curious to watch, hear and read all the scuttlebutts unless he is an intellect and media corps are trying to utilize the most out of it. Most of the characters in these serials are rumormongers trying to spoil or detrimental to the thought process of ordinary people. It’s easy to make these kind of trashes as it doesn’t requires any kind of artistic creativity. Not sure why good film makers are not interested in television, may be it’s less beneficial or is it something that could possibly create negative effect to their profile when they submit their resume🙂 ?

  37. Your post reminded me of Pete Seeger’s lines from his song Garbage.
    He goes…

    Getting home and taking off his shoes he settles down with the evening news,
    While the kids do homework with the TV in one ear
    While Superman for the thousandth time sells talking dolls and conquers crime
    Dutifully they learn the date of birth of Paul Revere.
    In the paper there’s a piece about the mayor’s middle name,
    And he gets it done in time to watch the all-star bingo game, oh,

    Garbage (chorus)
    We’re filling up our minds with garbage.

    Garbage indeed. The same can be said about the ‘comedy’ shows on Malayalam television. Malayalam comedy is now reduced to a crossdressed wife complaining about how her husband comes home drunk every night and thrashes her because she hasn’t prepared supper.

    Something needs to be done to the quality of content on Malayalam television. The quality of shows on live music dedication channels too can be highly improved.

  38. some 15years back ’twas mangalm, manorama n many a tissues..d so called painkily era

    now ‘ts e-media

    tomorrow…possibility of change in media…

    no escape

  39. A good question just same as the thought – how come Kerala has become so bloody religious now.

    In the 80’s a similar question was asked- why is it that the Keralan population getting so addicted to the weekly magazines like Malayala Manorama and Mangalam, which were termed as ‘Painkily’ magazines by the aristocrats. I dont watch tv serials, but I think the TV serials are giving a visual side to those novels from the magazines. My mother who used to watch 3 such magazines, now reads only one. But she is addicted to TV.

    A good majority of the society do not want to think, when they want to entertain themselves. At some point our movies were considered many levels above the TV serials. Now it looks like most movies have come down to a level of the serials, so that they can attract the crowd who do not want to miss the TV shows. Couple of really horrible movies, which were directed by ex TV serial artistes became big hits recently.

    I must still say that when serials came into our culture, one of the earliest was – Kairalee vilasom lodge – and that actually was a really good one, great compared to the present movies, even.

    And finally, yes, our media has made our society to think less. Nobody wants to think, they just swallow everything served by these media – all of them having their own corporate agenda. An exhibitionist satyagraha by a celebrity yogi is a big news, but one by Medha Patkar is never a news.

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