Throw: Bhuvan Bam, Shriya Pilgaonkar, Shilpa Shukla, Prathamesh Parab, JD Chakraborty, Deven Bhojani and an ensemble cast.
creator: Bhuvan Bam and Rohit Raj.
the director: Himank Gaur.
Streaming On: Disney + Hotstar.
language: Hindi (with subtitles).
runtime: 6 episodes approximately 40 minutes each.
Breaking News Review: What it’s about:
A dysfunctional boy from the lower middle class of Mumbai gets a boon just around his 25th birthday. He can see the future and he decides to use it to earn big money. But with time the power turns into a curse as it starts playing with his head and turns him into the monster he always feared.
Breaking News Review: What Works:
More than the merits and demerits of the first show of 2023, Taaza Khabar is a celebration of a man who wills to win. Bhuvan Bam aka Bibi Ki Vines has carved a niche and paved his way to the position where he now produces what he believes in and even if it means pulling out his chair and honoring that By demanding what he deserves. Full marks for dedication, as the YouTube sensation now works hard to be recognized as an actor and shows that there is a lot more to him than the ego he plays in the plays.
Coming to breaking news, there is a story designed to celebrate its leading man. Soaked in wealth but brimming with glitter and swag that creates slow-motion shots of men with cigarettes and bare bodies, Power is par excellence. But what makes it different is that it’s all centered around a person who looks just like us. Has no abs or solid muscles, is un-groomed, and bears no resemblance to any of Rocky’s brothers in the world. Written by Hussain Dalal and Abbas Dalal, this is where the show directed by Himank Gaur finds its strength. The character creation is surprisingly dynamic yet connected to the environment the characters come from.
The first episode introduces us to the helplessness of everyone in the main team. There is an ambition to rise above but no means. The world sees them all as third class citizens and does no one any good. One works in a public toilet (Vasanth, Bhuvan), there is a sex worker who dreams of becoming a designer (Madhu, Shriya), and also a man so righteous that he will not do wrong, even if it costs him Jeevan (Mehboob, Deven). They are accompanied by a guy from the local Chinese restaurant who just wants to exist and have fun (Peter, Prathamesh). They have been explored well enough to root for them in the limited amount of time and that is a commendable job.
The way the show structures fantasy in a story laced with realism is a merit in itself. A man who hides even a thousand rupees under a lock of three layers becomes rich overnight. So it must be either a crime or magic and the latter is given a literal plot in the story. Plus it’s a growing community and the makers are dedicated to bringing it to you. There is a lot of style in the second half but that is only to make you realize the lack of it in the first half and how things change once a man comes to power. Bhuvan is known for showing the stupidity of a man who is trying to take a bite bigger than his mouth. He does here too. His Majesty manages to go ‘out of bounds’ but it also has a purpose.
The eye for detail on this team has to be commended. Dhindhora, a more experimental show all together since, here they feel things are really major, but they ensure that the set up never bores the audience. Even the lack of a strong buildup in the second half and the cliffhanger without any anticipation doesn’t bother as they invest more in the casting and it works in their favour.
Another thing that is impeccable about Taaza Khabar is its music. Bhuvan being a musician himself understands its power and importance. He brings together some of the most underrated ensembles with a one song amazing parikrama featuring Mohan Kanan, Divya Kumar, Dev Negi and others from the team. So much talent and a great influence.
Breaking News Review: Star Performance:
Bhuvan Bam must be commended for his dedication to excel with each and every project. Different drumming Where it was their playing field was wide, the latest news here is a completely foreign landscape. With no refuge behind his decade-long alter ego, where he is expected to play a completely different character. With full scope to develop, he manages to bring out the feelings of spring well. While the ego looks inorganic, it is never completely corroded.
Shriya Pilgaonkar is absolutely right. The actress played the role of a sex worker who aspires to own a boutique with clothes she designs. With no authority over herself, she decides to name her boutique Madhu Creations. The strength also lies in how empathetic the writing is to its character and how the gaze isn’t always there. Pilgaonkar has done a wonderful job in playing his character. Bhuvan and Shriya run away one day and go on a date, it’s a very cute sequence.
JD Chakraborty plays the role of Satya, a local politician. If naming him after him was a tribute to his hit film, I’m having fun. Taking a 180 degree turn, he plays the villain and does it very well.
Everyone else enjoys the spotlight and make sure they don’t waste the opportunity at any cost.
Breaking News Review: What Doesn’t Work:
While Breaking News makes absurdity its strength, somewhere it realizes what it wants to achieve. We cannot decide whether this is a moral or just an entertainment story. Because the characters are constructed with so many intricacies, but the point where their lives intervene and the show must move forward, time begins to race.
For a long-form show that each builds up to a slow-motion story of a man’s rags-to-riches rise, the team takes the approach of a feature film, where every five minutes a spring climbs to the summit. Goes on and the audience doesn’t get time to digest its success. So one can root for it. The change in his attitude doesn’t happen step by step but only with bangs which makes it all seem half-baked. Also, why not explore the part where the scope of an engaging story is maximum. The recently released Faadu does pretty well, if you’re looking for an example.
All of this also affects the climax and cliffhanger as the grip loosens, never to tighten again. The show can literally be divided into a first half and a second half as the first is more of a slow burn world building than a hurried story that doesn’t bother with the details it relied on so much in the first was doing.
Breaking News Review: Final Words:
It may sound old and trite to many, but the latest news is more about adding freshness to Pradhan and watching Bhuvan Bam grow. Binge-watch it because it’s so windy.