Tuesday, April 21, 2009

I'm no prude.... but

This is the column that was published by The Week. I don't need to elaborate. It pretty much says it all. It's going to be a busy tuesday. I have a lady called Anne Cunnigham , a radio producer with the BBC, coming in at 5pm to set up an interview with Nikki Bedi (Kabir Bedi's ex). I have been on Nikki's shows before and enjoyed her sparkling style. I am sure we'll make a terrific show together!! Those of you who want to catch Editor's Verdict will be able to do so by logging on to the ndtv site. I am not sure whether or not I'll be on tonight. But the show is worth a dekho regardless.

************************************************************************************************************* Unbutton your passion

I am guessing Akshay Kumar was following a brief – for a big, fat fee, of course. I am guessing he was wearing his briefs when he followed the brief. I have stared and stared… but haven’t been able to tell . Like me, thousands of curious viewers must have scrutinised the actor’s crotch closely to figure out what lies beneath… if anything. It brought back memories of an ancient Calvin Klein ad for jeans . Yes, the same one that featured a bare torsoed Brooke Shields declaring wickedly, “ Nothing comes between me and my Calvins.” Now, with Akshay’s Fashion Week act being hauled over the coals in court, let us just say the man has more brawn than brain, or else he would have figured out the consequences of getting his poor wife to unbutton him in public. We live in strange times. Women in Bangalore are assaulted for displaying their bare arms and wearing jeans. Imagine then, a popular hunky actor thrusting his pelvis into his wife’s face and requesting the blushing lady to do what she may or may not do even in the privacy of their own bedroom. This is where discretion and good sense often fail our organizers. Clearly, it was a planned part of Akshay’s ramp strut for Levi’s Jeans – he is the brand ambassador of the product. I know the entire campaign is based on the ‘unbuttoning’ story. Great. So far, so cool. But to perform this cheesy number on the catwalk was definitely pushing it. I am no prude. I am all for freedom of expression etc . etc. But this is plain silly. And all the people involved , ought to have known better than to go along with the script, knowing the media would gobble up the tantalizing visual, and replay it a million times over.Which is exactly what happened.
Now what? Akshay’s wife has made her court appearance. Paid a fine. She has been subjected to all kinds of jibes and embarrassed by the excessive publicity. The clip is still being run across channels. Just the repeat value itself has rendered it pornographic. Viewed in isolation, it may appear innocuous and in- offensive – big deal, we endure much more garbage on various channels that specialize in such exposes. But what has actually triggered such a strong reaction against Akshay’s naughty behaviour is the fear that young people across campuses will mimic the movie star and ask girlfriends to unbutton them in the canteen. Hey Bhagwan!! How many kids will Muthalik’s men beat up if that really happens??Movie stars have it good ninety per cent of the time. But when they get it bad, it’s really terrible. I am sure Akshay thinks he did absolutely nothing objectionable – and he may be justified in believing that. The argument being – it’s a part of the entire ad strategy. Nobody objected to the print ads which were equally risqué and suggestive. So why the fuss over a small gimmick during fashion week? Besides, the lady who obliged happens to be his legally wedded wife, not some random chick in the front row. That is correct. Unfortunately, these sort of gimmicks have a nasty way of back firing sometimes. Perhaps this little disaster will soon be forgotten.But I doubt it. There was something lewd and disturbing about the entire episode. It appeared manipulative and exceedingly calculated. The minute I saw the clip, I said to myself, “ Oh no…. this guy has had it.” It was not a wardrobe malfunction, but something worse – it was a deliberately sexualized performance designed to generate shock. Well , the shock waves continue to reveberate throughout India as the Khiladiyon Ka Khiladi figures out how to wiggle out of this sticky situation. A real stud does not have to stoop to such cheap tricks. And a real gentleman never exploits his wife’s goodness by subjecting her to public humiliation. Par kaun sikhayega? Our movie stars love to learn their lessons the hard way. Akshay’s Free Willy stunt may turn out to be his most expensive one to date.Go pay for it,buddy.

29 comments:

athi said...

Poor guy! Or a rich guy with poor publicity ideas? Does he even have a PR guy?

But I think Akshay had every idea what he was doing. If the goal was to bury the CC2C horror and what was it... Tasveer something? he has hit bull's eye! About his wife, can't say. She did appear quite shocked, or maybe she is a better actress than we all know :P

kala said...

Poor Twinkle. Akshay should have known better. Let it be a lesson for him. 2 flops, one Padmashri, one bad publicity. Enough, I think. I think the person who conceptualised such a base thing must come forth and apologise publicly to Akshay and Twinkle.

MOHAMMED FARHAN KHAN said...

hehehe...Akki is under his brief

Roshni said...

I think Twinkle Khanna did not have the slightest idea of what her husband was going to ask her to do.Poor thing she was subjected to such mental torture by her husband!Don't u think that Akshay Kumar robbed her of the basic respect of being a woman and a wife? even she is paying for being the wife of Akshay Kumar!

Mayank said...

hey De,
Do our so called respected Politician knows that they are looked by all over the world by what they are saying to there counterpart,anything that comes into there mind they are doing that and they dont care abt the largest democrecy,The hue and cry we are making abt the youth i am sure enough that these youth wont make any big difference because when they will go to vote we will have the same faces in the parliamnet and i bet on this,Nobody is interested on what is going on With Adnan Sami who cares it is our media which make them hero ,are u interested abt what happened between pooja and sabah ,i think no one is really interested and i will request our media to show or highlightsome things which are meaningfull and create some impact for the Change,De u didnt wrote anything abt Narayan Murthi Ji on his back ,we will appreciate if you put some light on people like him rather than wasting this blog on people like Sarah,or the issues like unbutton,
thanks

cheers
Mayank

Rajlakshmi said...

poor guy...
But I wonder till how many more days will we be subjected to Akshay's stint with famedome... same old story repeated everytime with everyone giving his/her 100 cents...
c'mon people there are other serious issues troubling India than a silly Akshay prank ...

Rajesh said...

Mutalik is the best answer for such guys!!! where are Mutalik and gang... you are needed most here...

Dazed by the Light I See... said...

I really don't understand what was so wrong with what he did.. And would any, in fact so much attention be bestowed upon some other gentleman who would have behaved in a similar fashion??? I don't think so...

rajat said...

These things should remain on sidelines but media feeds on it.

Our TV news channels are nothing but "Randi channels". And the anchors, news editors are PIMPS.

It's as simple as that.

kala said...

Tiss case is disturbing. Already the girl is being blamed as she is from abroad. Hope justice prevails and the culprits are given swift and severe punishment. Parents fear when their girls go out with male friends and their fears get justified by such incidents. The educated behave as wildly as the uneducated when it comes to girls. People begin to say that they dress provocatively (even if they wear jeans and a top), went for a party with boys and generally asked for it. At Tiss, they should start giving lessons to boys as to how to treat a girl friend and to girls not trust their male friends blindly.

rajat said...

I saw Akshay tamasha first time on Barkha Dutt's program on NDTV and felt VERY LOWLY of her journalistic values.

It would have made some sense had the name of this program been either "BUTT stops here" or "BUST stops here".

Butt/Bust/Button/Jeans are kind of inter-related.

muthu said...

I believe that Akki did nothing wrong but a pity, it's just when and where he chose to do it..... And the media frenzy to gather and report such news has been the downfall of him.

Like when Kushbu - a south indian actress commented that there is no wrong in today's girls carrying condoms.... the tamil media fried her ass up to the sky... they filed a case that she has defiled the tamil culture, they burned effigies and put slipper garland for her pictures and made cheap politics out of her misery....

whats happening with akki is no different....

but as dude who has been in the industry for so many years..... doesnt akki has enough brain to know what will happen for his wife and him as a consequence for his actions.......

Bobo said...

Hi Shobhaa Auntie - Just discovered your blog and am loving the reintroduction to Bombay in your deliciously funny voice - Bobo

@lankr1ta said...

Seriously, dont we in India have bigger problems than a random Akshay kumar doing a silly stunt like that. As for the TIS case, what the heck does "character" for the victim mean. A rape is a rape, even if she was naked. We have a weird sense of morality as a nation- we view it as something that dangles between our legs.

Sanket Korgaonkar said...

Good column. My guess is Akshay will come out just fine. We are famous for arresting actors on all charges much more serious than a public unbuttoning and then releasing them.

My reaction :- I am appalled - not by what Akhay did but that the public and indeed our super efficient courts give this matter so much of importance. Suketu Mehta declares if our courts continue at the rate they are hearing cases and accept no more new cases, it will still take a FREAKING FOUR HUNDRED years to clear the backlog. Surely the courts of India have something better to do than waste time money resources and media on this stupidity.

As to college students asking their girl friends to unbutton their pants, well they do more than unbutton - and no amount of Muthalik's gundas can stop them. They have to define their boundaries on their own account - and any amount of forcing will be counter productive.

And while we are at it, lets not forget that when the blinds are drawn and the door is shut, Muthalik's Gundas are no different than college kids in their sexual desires.

So GROW UP India.

rajat said...

This new breed of journalists on TV should be lynched in public. A joota or thappad will not help much.

Because these are the people who are fueling the LUST among young and multiplying sins in the society with juicy stories on TV. The kind of stories which should stay in movie magazines and not on TV.

We need Ram Sena or Ravan sena to stop this filth and make life miserable for few TV anchors and their editors, who indulge in this kind of reporting.

Very soon you will see the RESPONSIBLE journalism returning to TV. And that's the only language understood by people when they become too POWERFUL.

It took just one joota outside the offstump of Chidambram to get the attention of Congress and within a day they decided to get rid of Tytler/Sajjan Kumar. Just grab a high profile anchor by collar and beat the shit out of him/her...The results will be out soon.

Hobo ........ ........ ........ said...

Censor Board required ?
If not, then marketing is a calculated risk.

AJai said...

Congrats on your new TV show. With the distinguished panel I'm sure it's going to be a great show. I haven't caught it yet but I will soon. It's time real issues are brought to the fore and are discussed by people who are knowledgeble and well read. All the very best for the show.

introspection said...

Every one wants their pound of flesh (a la Shylock), so they are pounding the cake (flesh).
In my opinion to devote 2 posts to Akshay's brief encounter is unnecessary. It's like playing up to the galleries.
Especially if Shobhaa writes ".... am guessing Akshay Kumar was following a brief – for a big, fat fee, of course. I am guessing he was wearing his briefs when he followed the brief. I have stared and stared… but haven’t been able to tell . Like me, thousands of curious viewers must have scrutinised the actor’s crotch closely to figure out what lies beneath… if anything...". This sounds like Dada Kondke's dialogue to me.

Media is as irresponsible as our politicians, and mafia. Period.

Nandini said...

Pay for it?? As in cash?
Just summon the fellow to dedicate a few hours of his precious time towards community service, or an apt way of triggering his conscious would be to lecture him on public decorum.
Why is money the quintessential repent mechanism? In our country, everyone's a partner in crime.

Heeral (Nairobi) said...

totally agree. was a completely cheap publicity stunt that embarassed his wife to no ends. lucky for him she didnt walk away or he wouldnt have been ablt to look at his preety face in the morning.

Gajendra said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Gajendra said...

Akki should have known better. Apprehension should have worked in his favour, but alas.

I think he should be wary of everything he does, now that he has been projected into the number one league, he should be aware that media is following every move of his.

@Shobhaa:
Bangalore nehi bengaluru, ....ahem..!!
:)
pleasee...

Mayank said...

hey de,
my second dont want to write for this one but want you to put some light on the incident which not only made us feel shame but our country too yes the TISS issue,any views about that when the people of india will change themselves.

Anil Kumar said...

It makes perfect sense to go after those in TV media who are misusing it's power.

The Gandhi's way of teachings no longer matter as we are in Kalyugi times.

Anyone who see these TV journalists in PUBLIC, who are involved in showing "nanga naach" and fueling the lust among masses to create more crimes against women MUST BE DRAGGED AND KICKED ALL OVER THEIR BODIES.

TV MEDIA PEOPLE are worse than TERRORISTS.

Terrorists destroy few families at some interval of time. But these bastards on TV media with the help of BOLLYWOOD are destroying families every single day with their journalism driven by love for CHEAP money.

Watch out those who are every single day bombard the average person with "Swamywar of Rakhi Sawant", filmi times, Dhoni's crush on Deepika Padukone clippings. The time has come to BEAT THEM BLUE so that their families can't recognize them for few days.

Theyoginme said...

This post was a great masala chai relief after an extremely stressful workday..now off to some rejuvenating iyengar yoga and hanging upside down on ropes - I wonder how that cat walk would like if we all watched it hanging upside down.

sharad said...

whether a small time wife of HS one, AKis conduct on the ramp is shocking. AKi should understand that he is loved by the masses for his simplicity and with unbuttoning episode have fallen from the grace and severly too. I wanted my son to start his film viewing experience with a AKi movie, but now have to think smething fresh.liink http://omsherryom.wordpress.com/category/my-bollywood-lifecycle/

*Aham* said...

there is a difference between being sexy and being prissy. This pissed me off completely. There was nothing that was sexy in his undoing act. The idea was not wrong, the execution was super frivolous. The way he walked up to Tina and asked her to unbutton didnt even pass off as a C grade porn flick.

I am feeling bad that tina has to go through this... Because of the scatterbrained bhatia's (kumar) act. What was the need to file a PIL. What did the applicant think??? i fail to understand.. why no one raises a voice against the stupid and heinios crimes that happens in our city??? We need to understand that our courts are crowded, our jails are crowded. In national interest you need to gauge which issue needs court intervention and which not... A guy unbuttoned by his wife... big deal?

Why not file a PIL against the many "Flashers" in mumbai who are seen peeing in the roads??? why ??? when a woman can go hunting for a loo. A man cant???? He has the right to stand there and flash his anatomy in public view?? File a PIL against all such men sir...

When a woman can go to the loo... a man can too. Isnt it... Equal rights...


and De, i have seen unbuttoning acts happen in colleges. On the stage, no big deal if it is done aesthetically. It infact is a very sexy choreography. but now that Akshay has grabbed all the attention, everything will seem as inspired by his act.

And Pramod Muthalik! fuhhget it.


To have a tiff and to engage in a hand-hand fight is a different thing. but such acts like the mangalore wala... id like to say...

He isnt a man, who beats up a woman. Even eunuchs are better. They are kind. Men who beat up women should be castrated. Thats the only solution.

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