By Shilz

I’m seriously losing any respect I had for the MTV India crew. Granted roadies was a series of bleeped out sound bytes and mind numbing cat fights with added masala of changing rules and re-entries. However, the challenges were nevertheless good enough for it to be rated a ‘reality adventure show’. But MTV’s Splitsvilla, was the worst show I have ever seen. It was just a shameless skin show being proclaimed as a rocking reality show!

I never thought that people can go to such extent for grabbing TRPs! Yes, this reality show looks like just a package created to grab as many TRPs as possible, and nothing else. Viewers craving for humiliation (of others) and skin show can be happy with such shows and they may criticize my views, but I seriously want to address this sick trend, which is growing! 20 something girls going all the way – from dressing low, wooing the boys, boys figuring who has the “best” and worst” body, belly dancing of gals to bathroom tub caressing – they are letting nothing hold them back.

While watching this show, I recalled my friend, Rocksta’s thoughts about responsibilities of mass media. Please find below an excerpt from his article titled: “Mass Media and its responsibilities”:

“The extent of reach which Mass Media in this digital age commands, is truly amazing and eye opening; both in terms of viewership and the ability to influence a person’s thinking. But why do I get the feeling that Mass Media is misusing this power, misleading people, creating unnecessary hype to increase circulation numbers. With absolute power comes great responsibility. Mass Media has acquired absolute power, but lacking in the responsibility department.”

I really don’t get the fascination (some) youths have developed for this “Splitsvilla” show. In a nutshell Splitsvilla consists of 20 women vying for attention of two young men. The folks behind this reality show would like us to believe that the concept of the show is the search for ‘True Love’. (along with a fetching sum of 5lakhs!) Each week one girl’s fate rests in the hands of the two men, who have the power to vote her out of the show.

In splitsvilla, all the contests (the supposed search for qualities) seem to be aimed at one thing alone. Getting the girls to wear the least possible amount of clothes! Think of it, the best body contest, the dare (sadly didn’t work out as planned I suppose), the sensous dance/ lap dance, the bubble bath, the mud wrestling, the beachwear photo shoot??? and many of their dates are somehow near some water body or other ( the pool, spa jacuzzi, beach, man made lake) just inviting them to don their swimsuits yet again!

I fail to see the point behind a show such as this and that too being heavily promoted by a channel responsible in so many ways for shaping the minds of our youth.

What makes matters worse is the reason behind such crass behavior – two men, worth nothing. And I mean nothing. Thin, squirmy, ugly, all backed by high headiness – that seems to be their only qualification. Frankly I wouldn’t be surprised if tomorrow it is revealed that the boys belonged to the sponsor’s clan or the production/channel’s household. So here we have two absolute losers tossing girls around as per their whims and fancy.

The show preys on the desire of young girls to make it big in showbiz. There is absolutely no competition, just puppetry and I think it is sending out the wrong signals to a lot of young minds over there.

Every time I watch the girls on Splitsvilla, I really feel bad for those gals, why they are letting themselves to be used like that! Guess this is one instance when a parent would not proudly proclaim “meri beti TV par aa rahi hai!”

These are young beautiful girls, reasonably intelligent and well spoken and obviously from well to do families. They have everything going for them. Why they would opt to do a show of this sort is beyond my reasoning. And if u think the reason is money, judging from their outfits and demeanor, I seriously doubt any of them is in danger of running bankrupt in the near future. Besides weren’t they told about the money only on their first day in the villa!

Which gets me to the most important point – while the channel, viewers and the boys are having a gala time at the expense of the participating girls – is 15 seconds of fame a good enough reason for these contestants to completely demean themselves?

Not looking at it from a feminist view point, as a life lesson I believe nothing is worth more than one’s own self-respect let alone mortifying yourself on national television not once but umpteen number of times. While MTV may call their creation as ‘testing of one’s character’, I simply see it as TRP game play, being done at all costs.