By Joginder Tuteja, Bollywood Hungama News Network
This Friday, Farhan Akhtar's show 'Oye! It's Friday' debuted on television. In essence, 'Oye! It's Friday' has managed to make a decent beginning on the small screen where reality shows have (thankfully) started proving to be a huge challenge to the yawny 'saas-bahu' sagas. Again, 'Oye! It's Friday' is nowhere close to being 'reality' in look and feel but at the least it talks about 'real' stuff around us belonging to the world of entertainment, politics and current affairs.
It's the concept of 'Oye! It's Friday' which is its USP. It can't be solely classified as a chat show or a spoof show or a song-n-dance show or a celebrity-host show. It mixes all of this and a lot more in it's one hour duration and though at the end of the first episode (with Hrithik Roshan as the star guest - more about it later!) didn't make a viewer go wow, it at the least had its heart in the right place when it comes to ideation and conceptualization. The show has tried to be genuinely different and new though it would still take at least a couple of episodes more to figure out what it is all about and if it turns further interesting in weeks to come.
Farhan Akhtar has the charm. He tries to play a natural game here. He has worked on his voice too, something which was critically analyzed in his debut film as an actor. Of course his familiarity with the industry, due to him being a part of it, helps but there is a certain 'I-am-attempting-this-for-the-first-time' feel that one gets from Farhan's body language. However, he is expected to only get better in episodes to come as he gets more and more comfortable in his sometimes-standing-up and sometimes-sitting-down act!
'Oye! It's Friday' certainly is a glossy affair. Very much in synch with the Friday mood and boasting of a touch of class as well, the sets are just the kind that one expected from a Farhan Akhtar show. Especially impressive is the tunnel through which the stars and the guests and the dancers make an entry, though one expected the props in the prime sitting place to be far glossier!
The show boasts of quite a few female dancers from 'saat samundar paar' and that of course adds to the visuals. To see the pretty, young and sexy girls dancing to Bollywood tunes may not be something unique (we see that in the biggest and the smallest of Bollywood films these days) but for a TV show, it is not a bad deal at all. Especially, when one looks forward to the breaks during the show, because this is the time when the girls make an appearance.
The show saw three guests, headed by Hrithik Roshan with song and dance appearances by Neha Dhupia and Hard Kaur. Hrithik certainly deserves 10 on 10 for his appearance since he came across as quite a sport when he took the joke on himself on more than just a couple of instances. The anecdotes he revealed about his growing up years and the camaraderie he shares with Farhan brightened up the show only further. Neha had her moments when she danced to a few songs and though the small stage setting did prove to be a hindrance with regular dance steps not quite helping her cause much; her presence on stage was good enough to have your eyes firmly on screen. This was not the case with Hard Kaur though, who was an unwanted distraction with her strange clothing and hair-do.
Aah, now this is one area where I have complains. Seriously, the jokes were not funny all the time. They ranged from good to average to 'Ok, now should I laugh' kinds! They were original yes, were meant to be PJ's at few places - yes, but still didn't make much of an impact. In fact there was nothing that was exceptional here and the blame lies with the writing which could have been much better. Ok, so we are not looking at senseless ha-ha-hee-hee but at least give us something that indeed is good enough reason to stay home in front of TV on a Friday night!
The skits and the spoofs
The same holds good for the skits and spoofs. Though they were better than jokes at most of the places, the issue (in some cases) lies with the way they ended. After a very good start, they turned out to be just about average in the end. How one wishes there was more consistency in the mood because the actors didn't really do a bad job. In fact the one on something that went like a pension plan/standard life insurance (or something like that) was in bad taste (Farhan, did you really approve that?), though the Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi 'secrecy spoof' was well thought of.
The Magic and the Magik
Ok, so we are talking about two kind of 'magic' here - one which was real and the other which was the 'ultimate impact'. There was a segment in the show which showcased some real magic around a stunning beauty getting her clothes changed (4-5 times) in a matter of seconds by a magician (yes, it was all happening on National television). Now this one really made one gaze at the happenings wide mouthed. Terrific!
And how about some MAGIK of the overall show, (as the team of Rock On would want to call it)? Well, it is not really magiKal in the true sense since the overall impact created wasn't amazing or out of this world. It was good, certainly different and as mentioned earlier, 'Oye! It's Friday' would require at least a couple of more viewings for an opinion to be formulated.