(I have been intending to write about this for quite some time now, but yesterday’s episode proved the catalyst.)
Over the past few weeks, I have become a huge fan of Vijay TV’s Neeya Naana. The talk show pits two groups of people against each other to discuss and argue about inane, inconclusive topics like “Are people happy before marriage or after?” or “Is romance in public places correct?” or “Should people believe in astrology?” Whereas, no conclusion is reached during the hour-long debate, it is fun to see people having a go at each other.
The strongest point of the show is the moderator, Gopinath. Seemingly well aware of the various shortcomings of the talk show, he treads the golden mean very well, ever alert to simmering tensions and quick to shifting perspectives when he senses trouble or repetition. Vijay TV, which has a long history of producing winners, has once again pulled it off, making this show, which airs on Sundays at 9 PM, one to wait a whole week for. Indeed one is led to think when was it last that one eagerly awaited a programme on television. Probably as far back to the days of “OLiyum Oliyum” on Doordarshan, decades ago. OLiyum Oliyum was a defining programme on Tamil television. It aired on Friday evenings, and the whole family looked forward to it, as if it were an event instead of a TV programme.
So despite the evident stupidity of the arguments expressed (of course, if you hand the microphone to an excitable Tamilian, and seat a couple of good-looking (?) girls in front of him, he will forget that he is on camera, and become a rare poet-philosopher-social scientist mixture), the show is worth watching at least for the fun portion. What a way to round off otherwise boring weekends!
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