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I began watching Yeh Rishtey Hain Pyaar Ke on Hotstar during the lockdown and it proved to be a different than usual show with feminist ideas.
I don’t usually watch Hindi serials, particularly the Star Plus soaps, due to their extra-dramatic effects, and cringe-worthy storylines. And also the toxic ass male portrayals and justification of patriarchy.
However, since it’s lockdown, and I had nothing else to do, I started watching the show ‘Yeh Rishtey Hain Pyaar Ke,’ on Hotstar. And I absolutely loved the show for its different content.
It is totally different from all the typical daily soaps with the ‘angry-young man’ type guys. These men aren’t just normalised but have their behaviour justified too. What’s even worse is that they’ve convinced the audience to fall in love with the character. Meanwhile, the heroines of who claim to be independent, strong and bold, fail to speak up for themselves when they are harassed by the male lead.
This show portrays how the male is completely normalised by society and how it affects a girl. It also shows how the society blames the girls for standing up for her choice.
Here are some of the things I liked about the show.
It emphasises the fact that the girl’s consent is important for a marriage and normalises things like marital courtship, and surrogacy. And also the society’s response to all these things and how it shouldn’t affect the girl’s choices as long as she is happy. The show, with its strong content and storyline justifies feminism.
Another plus point that the show has is the male lead. He isn’t just another ‘angry young man,’ nor is he a momma’s boy! The man knows what he wants and is a feminist himself and strives to break the patriarchal rules of the society. He fights with his mother and brother for feminism. The serial breaks another stereotype since his favourite colour is pink!
We talk a lot about how patriarchy affects men too and this character is the exact opposite of a typical Indian man. He knows it’s okay to be sensitive or to cry when he needs to. And he even normalises going against his family and parents if they’re wrong, which is a big thing in a conservative Indian family.
Meanwhile, the female lead is an eye opener to all the conservative Indian women who have been taught to forget all their feelings and dreams for the sake of their husbands. The character is very well written to teach women to do what they want and to prioritise their feelings over others’ including their partners and family.
Where there are so many TV soaps that show bullshit like women being ignorant to the point where they wash their laptops, this show is a gem. And people need to be aware of such undoubted gems.
While we troll other shows for their illogical storylines, we also have the responsibility to appreciate such shows. This show is an example of how daily soaps should be. It’s high time we support such shows and have more shows like these made. These just might help us demolish patriarchy and help us evolve better.
Picture credits: Still from Hindi TV series Yeh Rishtey Hain Pyaar Ke
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