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Stunts, Salman and the same old reruns

I could never watch Khatron Ke Khiladi (season one and two, Colors) without flinching (think rats swarming all over your body, snakes slithering all over your face, creepy crawly bugs mincing their way into your mouth). Poonam Saxena writes.

tv Updated: Sep 10, 2010 23:58 IST
Poonam Saxena

I could never watch Khatron Ke Khiladi (season one and two, Colors) without flinching (think rats swarming all over your body, snakes slithering all over your face, creepy crawly bugs mincing their way into your mouth).

But I would still watch it off and on - primarily because it was so difficult to imagine all those showbiz glamour dolls (the contestants in the first two seasons) doing stunts. And not just any stunts.

I was convinced there must have been some evil genius (with a designation like Creative Director, Evil Stunts Inc or some such) lurking in his sinister lair, rubbing his hands in glee and thinking of how he could make the stunts even tougher and weirder than the previous ones.

I was equally astonished by how Akshay Kumar, the host, was so laconic about everything ("Oh you just picked up five scorpions with your hand? You should have picked up all ten. Not a very good performance." Gulp.)

The latest season of Khatron… has quite a few new elements: Priyanka Chopra has replaced Akshay Kumar and the showbiz girls have been replaced by male models, actors, sportspersons. And the setting is faraway, exotic Brazil.

Priyanka's style is quite different from Akshay's. She's not quite in the same league as him as far as doing stunts is concerned (can't see her hanging from helicopters though we may yet be surprised). But she has a feisty manner though the tough chick persona does slip once in a way.

When the contestants had to pluck cockroaches and assorted bugs off a rope with their mouths and deposit the critters into a glass bowl, she suddenly turned all-girl, began jumping up and down, and shrieking "Eeww!!!" (much like all of us watching the show).

The men on the show are a quirky bunch - from Cyrus Broacha on a leash (Cyrus unleashed would mean Khatron Ke Khiladi would turn into Cyrus Ke Bakre) to muscleman Rahul Dev.

There were some quirky moments too - expert swimmer Milind Soman quickly and confidently entering the water for a stunt and then equally quickly and confidently exiting without even attempting it.

So far so good. Khatron… has a resonance because (unlike Fear Factor), the people on the show are people you've seen in movies and TV shows. And you can't believe they're doing what they're doing.

You can't escape Salman Khan these days. Even as the promos of Bigg Boss featuring him have begun airing on TV, he's been here, there and everywhere, busily promoting his new film, Dabangg.

Dancing is an integral part of the promotion, it seems, because most of his small screen appearances have him doing the mandatory 30 seconds of dancing.

The Salman frenzy will continue till at least the film releases. And after that, it'll continue because he'll be on Bigg Boss every week. Prepare yourself for Salman Saturation.

And finally. Am I the only one who just happens to switch on my TV set at the wrong time or is it true that movie channels are constantly playing the same films again and again?

I've lost count of the number of times I've seen Jab We Met, Bhoothnath and Welcome on different channels at different times. Baghbaan seems to have become something of a Sunday special on Colors. Just as something called Indra The Tiger seems to be a Star Gold staple.

Currently 3 Idiots is doing the rounds of all the entertainment channels. Even English movie channels are guilty - I've seen The Mist and Joan of Arc, to name just two, repeatedly.

Come on, people, give us a break.