Routine saas-bahu dramas are a "once is enough" case for TV actress Rati Pandey, who has garnered praises galore for her portrayal of a strict, stubborn and over-possessive Indira in Zee TV's Hitler Didi.
The bubbly actor, who has featured in shows like Miley Jab Hum Tum, Raat Hone Ko Hai and saas-bahu saga Har Ghar Kuch Kehta Hai, is averse to shows with a heavy dose of "rona dhona".
"After having done a saas-bahu drama once in my career, I would like to explore other types of roles. As long as the show has a different concept, I am open to doing it. I don't like saas-bahu dushmani, rona dhona type serials. I think they've had their moment under the sun, they're outdated now," said Rati.
She feels there are many sides of a woman, and these sort of shows limit it just to two aspects.
"Those shows project only two done-to-death stereotypical images of a woman … They're either the evil, ever-scheming, ever-plotting breed or they fall in the category of the demure damsels perennially in distress. There are so many other aspects to a woman's character. I like shows that feature women as well-rounded individuals with depth of character, rather than painting them as limp, uni-dimensional caricatures," she said.
That is also one reason why she took up the role of Indira, an independent girl who takes the responsibility of her family, single-handedly.
"While Indira has had to face some difficult circumstances, there are also several lighter aspects to her life that are brought out on the show," said Rati, who detests the idea of playing negative roles.
"If I am offered a role which is not only noticeable but also challenging to the core in a serial, I am game to do even a negative role. However, let me reiterate that I do not want to be yet another vamp in yet another saas bahu serial. I do not wish to play the vamp in any saas-bahu show for the simple reason that the actresses playing these roles are required to not only wear loud makeup which I find obnoxious, but are also expected to ham ridiculously, resorting to all kinds of exaggerated mannerisms and facial contortions. Strictly avoidable!" she added.
However, a music reality show is definitely on her mind.
"I would love to do a reality show someday, but the show should be music-related. I can't live without music. Music is like relaxation therapy for me. Right now it's just a hobby and I am not yet talking about getting into it as a professional. But I would like to go down that path someday.
"But how good I am as a singer, only time will tell. In fact I was to come up with an album of peppy numbers with Piyush Soni but there was an inordinate delay in the project. In any case, I prefer to go slow and steady instead of zooming to the top overnight and crashing down with a thud shortly," she said.