India has come a long way from having to choose between MTV Roadies and Channel V’s Dil Dance Dosti. While these shows, classics in their own right, have influenced hundreds of Indian millennials through the years, Indian television series has taken a far leap away from both these ‘young adult’ series and a few ocean-drives away from the evergreen K-serials.
Image credits: www.tvfplay.com
Today India is turning towards a new era, that of web series. These web series seem almost tailor-made for the younger generation of Indians, who practically live on the internet. What possibly guarantees brownie points for these series is the fact that its creators have webbed stories centring around the everyday Indian. Gone are the days of protagonists sporting heavy make-up and heavier ancestral jewellery for each scene. The flamboyance has toned down to flannel shirts and flip-flops coupled with casual ‘Hinglish’ and 21st century ‘modernity’.
Through dark humour and intelligent scripting, the writers of the series have decided to tap into the everyday problems of the ordinary middle to upper-middle class Indians. Additionally, the characters are quite grounded and ordinary in contrast to the overtly moralistic ‘bahu’ and the ‘evil saas’ of the K-serials. Viewers can relate to this new generation of protagonists and their stories without a blink of the eye.
From dealing with the pertinent issues of gender discrimination to the very realistic pains of amateur startups, the series explore a wide range of social conditioning and go on to hint at the stronger ties of friendship, family, and most importantly, choices.
While you may have seen or heard of some of these, we’d still to wish to round a list of Indian web series that are a must watch before the year’s end.
IMDB - 7.5/10
Gender discrimination is possibly the 21st century Indian’s greatest challenge – in both the professional world as well as in personal routines. Although this is an issue that has been showcased in various forms through literature and television before, Man’s World provides a fresh angle to the subject. The series aims to counter the anti-feminist perspectives that have become quite the norm in recent times. In the show, the overnight gender-switch of a Kiran, a staunch anti-feminist, leads him to experience the daily difficulties of an Indian woman first-hand. This is a commendable effort on the part of the show’s writers to supply a cutting remark to men and women who believe that feminism calls for ‘undue advantage’ to women.
IMDB - 8.9/10
Who doesn’t wish for a road-trip with their siblings? But when it’s between three siblings who haven’t met in a long time lead lives isolated from one another, tensions are sure to be high at a close-quartered and mostly forced-reunion. But the series is a wonderfully honest depiction of a family managing to adjust past their own lives to become a part of each other’s. A show that will make you purple in the face with laughter, while also giving you the ‘feels’ in all the sweet moments, this is a definite must-watch for an instant mood-lifter.
IMDB - 9.4/10
Nobody understands the pain of building a startup from scratch better than an aspiring entrepreneur. Luckily, the writers knew that India is currently teeming with them. From quitting stifling corporate jobs over beer, three friends and one outsider decide to challenge the status quo and launch the greatest startup in India. With Steve Jobs as their guru, more rejections than they can count, but a collective determined passion that can light up a room, the series follows the ups and downs of a meticulous journey towards building a startup in India.
IMDB - 9.6/10
We’ve all heard the story before. A young, idealistic guy with a notebook full of jokes and an air of forced lightness dreams to make it in the big city. But no one really tells you how difficult it is not to quit the race when you decide to toe the line of stand-up comedy. From having family deem your career unreal to staying up nights counting the last bucks, this series focuses on the ruthless make-it-or-break-it attitude that dominates the standup industry in India and the dramatic rollercoaster ride down the road to fame.
What are you waiting for? Start streaming!