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Four More Shots Please promised to bring us more 'real women' on screen, but does it deliver on that promise, or is it just a superficial rendition of the 'modern woman'?
Four More Shots Please promised to bring us more ‘real women’ on screen, but does it deliver on that promise, or is it just a superficial rendition of the ‘modern woman’?
I was excited when I caught the trailer of the Amazon Prime Original series, Four More Shots Please. It seemed like there was an addition to the growing portrayal of the modern and ‘real’ women in cinema. However, after accommodating the first two episodes, I continued to watch the first season with a growing sense of disappointment and feeble interest.
The four main characters, all female, successfully reinforce the stereotypes held in society about women. The general personas are thickly bracketed, giving shape to characters so evenly painted in shades of black and white, leaving the show to be a rendition of cliches and memes.
They give us the workaholic with neurosis and commitment issues, the female lawyer who is a divorced with a child and has fulfilment issues, the rich, plump girl under her mother’s thumb with self-esteem issues and wrap it up with the bisexual who sports tattoos, piercings and, in my view, has style issues.
If some of these features and traits had been shuffled between the characters, the writers would have managed to add some depth to their story, because right now, it comes across as plain and obtuse like the instructions of a product on a cardboard box. Albeit a pretty cardboard box, because, well, they do look hot.
If I compare this show to Parched, which left me breathless with its honest, poignant and courageous depiction of women, it feels like I’m likening lukewarm tea with a used tea-bag to the potency of a strongly-brewed hot mug of swirling chai with wafts of cardamom and ginger in the air.
Parched made love to the image of women and delved into the crevices of their sexuality, vulnerabilities, flaws and perpetual wrestling with subjugation. Four More Shots…is a quickie with a Tinder date; limited, superficial and a vague recollection in the future. And its biggest mistake is the ignorance of the wide spectrum of grey adorned by women. I may be unfair in this comparison, but as a representative of the group the lead characters target, I am allowed to expect something above commonplace impressions.
In an age where feminism is still construed as anti-male, women in large organizations attempt to raise their head beyond the glass ceiling, sexual harassment is swallowed as a dose of reality and careers linger at the opposite end of family, we do not need stereotypes aiding the misnomer of ‘modern woman’.
I want to see women who are my friends on TV; the girl with the tattoo who is single and craves for a child, the chubby VP in an MNC who is dropped to work by her husband, the cynic who flits from one man to another and has a beautiful relationship with her parents and the thousand other combinations that can successfully exemplify women today.
We need the portrayal of ‘real women’, who are not defined by their looks or traits but choices. The real women who don’t follow the categorisations of society easily and step over boundaries. Women who are reserved and horny, wear Indian attire and can drink a man under the table, clean their house on the weekend and school a boardroom during the weekday, are single and happy, are married and sad. We need more real women in cinema to help us absolve ourselves from the fairy tales we grow up with and come to realize the fairy tales we write for ourselves.
I want to see real women on TV, like the ones around me, who are unique, different and yet the same, but always fail to fit stereotypes.
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Meenakshi Iyer is known to put the "fun" in dysfunction.
Writer, poet, avid reader she is known for her pragmatism, whimsical personality, and obscure inclinations.
Meenakshi published her first book of poems, 'Briste' in 2014.
Women's Web is an open platform that publishes a diversity of views, individual posts do not necessarily represent the platform's views and opinions at all times.
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Be it a working or a homemaker mother, every parent needs a support system to be able to manage their children, housework, and mental health.
Let me at the outset clarify that when I mention ‘work’ here, it includes ANY work. So, it could be the work at home done by a homemaker parent or it could be work in a professional/entrepreneurial environment.
Either way, every parent struggles to find that fine balance between ‘work’ and ‘parenting’, especially with younger kids who still need high emotional and physical support from their caretakers. And not just any balance, but more importantly, balance that lets them keep their own sanity intact!
I watched a Tamil movie Kadaisi Vivasayi (The Last Farmer), recommended by my dad, on SonlyLiv, and many times over again since my first watch. If not for him, I’d have had no idea what I would have missed. What a piece of relevant and much needed art this movie is!
It is about an old farmer in a village (the only indigenous farmer left), who walks the path of trouble, quite unexpectedly, and tries to come out of it. I have tried my best to refrain from leaving spoilers, for I want the readers to certainly catch up on this masterpiece of director Manikandan (of Kakka Muttai fame).
The movie revolves around the farmer who goes about doing his everyday chores, sweeping his mud-house first thing in the morning, grazing the cows, etc and living a simple but contented life. He is happy doing his thing, until he invites trouble for himself out of the blue, primarily because he is illiterate and ignorant.