Forced and Hatred Filled Marriage Track in TV Shows

Forced marriage tracks where one or both characters are tortured and subjugated into matrimony, later to be humiliated through various circumstances are common fare in Hindi TV shows. I find such tracks sadistic. But I am not looking for social reform through TV . I understand that this is light hearted entertainment so that people can forget their real life issues and enjoy a story, some romance, some comedy, and thrill and intrigue for some time. My bigger issue is with the fact that such tracks often ruin characterization and what we are left with are inconsistent, schizophrenic, and psychotic characters whose actions we justify just like we may justify a parent’s, a child’s, a sibling’s or a dear friend’s wrongdoings because we just love them to the very core. Creatives know this human weakness and use it to the hilt getting away with bizzarre and even heinous tracks. But why? Let me clarify my question.

Why forced marriage? What is the charm of it? What is the socio-cultural mindset underlying the appeal of such tracks. Here are a few things I have figured out.
1. All classic romance has frail, dainty heroines , possessive macho men, and eventual subjugation of the female in front of a more powerful male who is loving and doting until his jealousy is aroused. Arrogance in man is seen as attractive while in a woman as shrewish and bitc*y. So there something attractive about the heroine being completely made powerless by an overpowering testosterone oozing hero.

2. The romance that an audience wants to see between the leads is only permitted (in out society) between married couples. Any premarital indulgence in intimacy would mar the female protagonist’s character so a marriage is devices by hook or by crook to give various (permitted) opportunities of intimacy. It’s thrilling after all.

3. If for the sake of intimacy a marriage us devised without any Hatred and conflict, the necessary friction and edge needed to keep up the audience’s interest going will be lost.

But will you accept marriage tracks devised through any torturous situations? Does it not compromise the character of the lead we love so much? Is there no other way of maintaining friction and edge without CVs being so brutal to the male and female lead?

To conclude, I love the leads in Ishqbaaz. I love how complex Shivaay is. How gray he can be.
And that is why I resent the writers ruining his characterization so badly.And when Anika forgets this ultimate torture and indulges in romance with him in distant future, it will also ruin her characterization as well.

Sorry for any boring rants and hurt feelings. Please do post your opinion on this topic so that I may look at this issue from various perspectives and have a better understanding of and insight on this matter. Thanks for reading.

  1. I agree..its very difficult to improve from -ve to +ve.Progress it as fast.

    1. Diyaa

      Thanks Pohor. Yes. I hope the story will progress fast.

  2. Samm

    i loved this post diyaa 🙂 all these questions aren’t being asked for the first time. it often happens that when a show is new and shiny, it has something like appeal, brought in by various factors like a different characters, out of the box storyline, sometimes addressing the social evils and/or psychological developments, etc. but when the show progresses, it loses the ultimate goal, which was so clear from the beginning. everything added on to the show, like forced marriage tracks and family politics and scheming by the vamps to ruin just one person’s life for no good justifiable reason whatsoever, it all muddles up the actual plot, making the show boring and the charm is lost. just like that. but coming back to your question, there is nothing remotely good about forced marriages. it’s just that societal pressures may push the virtuous heroine into being subjugated, but that doesn’t mean every girl can go along with it. the one thing i liked about ishqbaaz in this case was that anika at least tried to go against shivaay’s orders until he blackmailed her. shivaay, on the other hand, wasn’t all wrong in his intentions, as wrong as his actions may be. marriage holds many different meanings for the different people. for instance, for anika it is sacred, but she wouldn’t give up her self respect for it, whereas for dadi, who believes thatonce it’s done it cannot be undone. shivaay, loyal as he is, has a completely different set of beliefs that it’s just a means to an end. of course his redemption will take more than justification of his actions and the context underlying the current of events, but i guess that’s where the show is going with this. anika will be shown as a big-hearted and kind girl who eventually changes his views and makes him realize his wrongdoings and then forgives him when he repents. it’s still the classic romance, but it remains to be seen how the scenes unfold and will nakuul mehta and surbhi chandna be able to portray this delicate changeover. moreover it will be interesting to see the change in family dynamics with this development, but of course,it’s still a long way to go.
    wow! i can’t believe it, i wrote so much! anyways, nice writing, diyaa 🙂

    1. Diyaa

      Thanks Samm? You writing will pull me through all my low times in this soap world. Yes, I guess the unfolding of future events will be interesting to watch. I am faint-herated. I stop watching when a good character keeps getting tortured. Makes me so stressed ?I know I am crazy. But I love IB. I’ll keep reading updates till I know that I can watch without going into cardiac arrest. Thanks so much for reading my post and appreciating it. Means a lot. Waiting for your next piece of writing.

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