Television: Aamir Khan vs Amitabh Bachchan!

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By Hindustan Times

Aamir Khan’s show Satyamev Jayate (SMJ) wrapped up this Sunday on an emotional note. Talks for the next season have already begun, but following criticism, from certain groups, that it was a platform that only presented one side of the story, is a second season viable? Has the show really connected well with the audience?

“It has got people thinking for sure,” says trade expert Komal Nahta. “Instead of being glued to a song-and-dance show, people sat up and took note of issues that were all around us but were not discussed as openly on a public forum. A second season should happen because despite the criticism, I can see a connect between Aamir, the issues and the public.”

While Aamir’s show was hard-hitting, audiences prefer watching light-hearted entertainment. Come September-October, Amitabh Bachchan and Salman Khan will return to the tube with KBC 6 and Bigg Boss 6 respectively.

Anu Ranjan of Indian Television Academy differs from Komal. She believes the audience loves being entertained rather than being told about the dark side of their society. “I can understand that SMJ only skimmed the surface of the issues in its limited episodic durations and made some sort of a promise to help those in need. It will be great if we can see what the show does for society in the gap between the seasons. Only if it does something solid will people connect with the show,” she reasons.

Meanwhile, Amitabh Bachchan has emerged as the host with the most. “He cuts across a wide segment. His is a game show that plays or highlights people’s emotions and simultaneously entertains,” points out Shailesh Kapoor of Ormax Media, an agency that specialises in entertainment research. “Salman Khan connects well too, but thatis because of his sheer popularity over the last two years with a slew of hit films and his histrionics on the show.”

Who shouldn’t come back to the tube
Anu Ranjan: “I wouldn’t take names but those who had to come back and were ‘most-looked-forward-to’ have already returned with multiple seasons. Those who haven’t, well, maybe they’re not wanted back on the tube.”
Komal Nahta: “Akshay and Shah Rukh have had multiple outings on TV and they’ve been loved. Hrithik I think is busy with his movie commitments. Maybe he will return after that. I don’t see Sanjay Dutt returning to TV again. He was more of Salman’s companion on Bigg Boss than anything else. I’d prefer to see him in strong movie roles.”

Which lady works best?
Komal Nahta: “Madhuri, Preity and Priyanka were good but there was nothing exceptional about what they did.”
Anu Ranjan: “If you replaced Archana Puran Singh with another actress, the show would fall flat on its face. It’s so difficult to continuously hold the show by laughing, even at times when the jokes and punches are pathetic. She’s the only Bollywood actress who works fantastically on TV.”

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