Friday, April 30, 2010

Should we have kid based reality shows???

I was seeing a program today that was being aired on the colors channel. The name of the program is “Chak Dhoom Dhoom”, and this essentially is a dance reality show for children.
First of all I would like to tell that my opinions are solely of myself and there is no intention from my side to malign the concept or mitigate the wonderful things that are propagated by this program. I have but only one point to make and that point is when we are so much against the concept of pressurizing children, then why on earth are we launching such programs at a massive scale on a huge platform that pressurizes the children to the core?

I was amazed about the fact that how so many children of the age of maybe 5 or 6 are bringing up such great performances on stage and that too in-front of eminent choreographers like Saroj Khan and Ahmed Khan. Having said that I would like to quote one incident that really perplexed me. It was about two girls who were showing their dance performances on the songs “Dekhta hai tu Kya” and “Ring-Ring-Ringa”. Both the songs are very famous and are almost played in every part of the country and are also known for their good filming. To make a long story short, both the songs are very good item-numbers.

What shocks you in the first instant?

I see children of the age of maybe 8 or 9 doing these numbers, and giving expression that you would only see Rakhi Sawant or Freida Pinto giving in those songs. Let us understand the fact that the songs may be good and the performances in these songs may be of a very high stature, but all said and done the song is essentially for an adult audience. The expressions that I saw in the dance steps were pretty raunchy and were not of a nature that you expect in a children dance competition.

What shocked me more?
The judges’ panel immediately stops the performance and calls the parents. The judging panel also lays down the same logic that I explained above. It was learnt that these steps were actually taught to the girls by the parents themselves. This statement and this information is a shocking revelation as to how much a parent can do to get a 15 minute share of the limelight that is being thrown to the people by the medium of this show. This is a very serious situation that our country has to deal with. Our children are actually our future and if this is the way we are going to raise up our future then we surely have a problem. Is the romanticism of a TV show so high that you will actually go to such limits to promote your child.

Mistake that the judges did:It was very right for the judges to point out the fact that such raunchy expressions are not worthy or not suitable to a children dance program, however this message should not have been conveyed in the presence of the child herself. This irresponsible act of the so called judges Saroj Khan and Ahmed Khan leads to the following things.
1. The child is totally discouraged and would probably never want to dance again in her whole life. She is actually demotivated to hear such words like “Gande Expression hai”, “aisa expression is aurat karti hai” and stuff like that.
2. You give a dose of your expert advice to the parents in front of the child and this leads to the fact that you are actually insulting a parent in front of his/her child. A parent holds a very high value for a child, it is sometimes the child’s dignity, and by doing this act of so called judgment you are actually assaulting the dignity of the child. You are forcing the child to lose all the respect that she may have for her parent.
3. You are forgetting the fact that you are also one of the persons who has choreographed this song or may be belonging to the fraternity that has done this. Now when you speak for obscenity you have to take that into matter as well. Why does choreographers like Saroj Khan even choreograph these songs. I have never seen her choreographing a song that may be called as non-raunchy or non-suggestive. She is always involved with songs like “ek do teen” , “choli ke peechhe”, ,“dhak – dhak” and stuff like that. Today how dare she, raise her finger on the obscenity part.

Seeing all the above points I really feel that we should not encourage such shows for kids on Television, which actually leads to more pressure in the kids. This is worse than child-labor, it is stress-loading the child from day-1. It is a way to convey to the child that the whole world is a racing track and you are running a race in which you have to win. It is loading the child with immense amount of aggression in the very start, at an age where you want them to explore, make mistakes, play you are actually making them success-achieving-robots.
Please lay down your comments on this.


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  2. For Once I agree with you completely.

    but I wanted to broaden the debate itself..
    "Should we have reality shows??? "

    The whole concept of insulting people before a large (Sometimes live) Audience somehow seems to be very inhuman to me.
    But at the end of the day its all about the money I guess :)

  3. Entertainment, but at what cost, that is the key to this problem.
    Today we all want to see something different,and more like to see someone being abused in national TV. Not only that, sometimes even the victim actually enjoys it, because probably he is getting a fat pay-cheque for it.

  4. I don't have problems with reality shows.

    Its purely upon the parents discretion on whether they should be sending their children to these kind of shows.

    But yes...there should be a filter on what kind of performances a child should be allowed to perform in front of a television audience.

    Like in your example, this act should not have been allowed by the channel.

  5. Hi Kartik,

    I also feel that there should be a kind of sensibility involved when you appoint judges for the show. You cannot appoint an irresponsible judge such as Saroj Khan doing this activity.
    The first two points that I mentioned are really very strong against her sanity.