I don't suppose there's much point in me oohing and aahing over the opening ceremony of the Commonwealth Games since everyone has already done that. But yes, I truly enjoyed watching it, from the beginning to the end, from the sight of that enormous aerostat rising sedately in the air to the dancers moving in graceful unison. The blaze of colour and light was — sorry to use an over-used word — spectacular. What I didn't enjoy that much were the number of ad breaks that Doordarshan took (it couldn't possibly have been a live telecast, could it?). Even less the commentary. There's a typical DD-style of commentary that's hard to explain – but you know it when you see it (or rather, hear it). At times, you can almost feel quite affectionate towards it – the world may change but some things won't, ever. You can count on DD commentators to remind us of that happy — or unhappy, depending on the way you look at it — fact.
I also never thought that I'd watch DD Sports with such deep interest – but I have been doing exactly that, whether it was watching wrestler Geeta, her hair escaping all the clips, pinning down a Nigerian pehelwan; or boxer Dilbagh Singh bobbing up and down in the ring, and then suddenly (or so it seemed, I'm sure it was well thought out) jabbing at his opponent with a huge glove-encased hand; or gymnast Ashish Kumar defying all laws of gravity and turning somersaults (or whatever they were) in the air to land on his feet; heck, I even watched fascinated as our women archers shot off arrows from their hi-tech bows and hit bronze.
Since I'm not a madly keen sports enthusiast, I've been content to just switch on DD Sports and watch whatever is being shown. But my sympathies to those viewers who know exactly which events they want to watch, because (till the other day at least) there was no information forthcoming as to which sport was being shown when and on which channel.
(Oh, just an aside: since Times Now carried out what appeared suspiciously like a concerted campaign against the 'Shame Games,' I would like to ask them a typical TV question now: "Aapko kaisa lag raha hai?")
Though the Commonwealth Games have dominated TV viewing, I did manage to see the opening of Bigg Boss (Colors). The channel has clearly upped the ante: the contestants are a very odd lot, with several, er, rather dysfunctional inmates you'd rather not bump into in a dark alley. Then, this time round, the men and women have to share sleeping quarters (you can almost see prudish viewers passing out in front of their TV sets). The Bigg Boss house itself looks most unreal – like a brightly-coloured plastic toy house. Any moment you expect Barbie and Ken to walk in and sit down at the yellow (and when I say yellow, I mean yellow) dining table.
As for host Salman Khan, he is quite mad and crazy – but so much fun. Fridays (which is when he'll appear for the eviction episodes) promise to be the best days of the show.
And finally. It was good to see the Shillong Chamber Choir win India's Got Talent (Colors). The finale of the show was — given the long-drawn out elimination process — high on emotion and tears. Contestants wept. Judges wept. I'm sure many viewers wept. But the Shillong Chamber Choir sang so divinely, I don't think anyone would have grudged them their win.