A wedding is for me the stuff nightmares are made of. And I’m not only talking about the constant “Indian” ‘guilt’gasm that we need to outdo our neighbors/relatives/ friends/ colleagues in terms of pomp, glitz, and show-off.
With this preconceived notion, no wonder Made in Heaven felt like a perfect binge-watch.
IMDB link: Made In Heaven
For the uninitiated, Made in Heaven Indian drama web series premiered on Amazon Prime on 8th March (eye roll at Women’s Day connotation). It’s the story of-
two Indian wedding planners- one woman, one man, from New Delhi who runs a wedding planning business (no surprise, there) along with an interesting mix of cohorts, are the closest buddies, practice different sexual orientations and have pretty muddled-up personal lives respectively.
Each episode unfolds some more problems life throwing at them and they dodging them deftly (or not) in the backdrop of 9 marriage ceremonies unfolding and showing the murkier sides of the great, big, fat Indian wedding.
So if you’re not a non- Indian/ Indian but snigger at “desi” entertainment, why you must watch Made in Heaven?
Fine script, a stellar cast
A brain-child of a group of supremely talented women artists-creators, Made in Heaven boasts a taut script and fine writing that Indian homegrown showbiz must feel proud of.
Though sometimes, the characters-wallowing- in- pity came off a bit repetitive and a tad too long, it never veered off far and snapped back right on time.
The cast had been tremendous. There were some strong performance and some out-of-the-park acting chops but never a sore thumb. A bunch of brown actors, delivering truly “local-in-root-global-in-spirit” acts looked phenomenal.
While the facade of big, glitzy, fat Indian wedding was the focal theme of the series, it’s heart was at right places. Made in Heaven dealt with many important issues that are plaguing India right now :
- Being gay in modern India where- a part of the society supports, a part opposes you and rest remains blissfully unaware of your existence.
- Getting married and stepping inside hetero-normative matrimony and hiding your orientation.
- The “feminism of privileged” class
- The parents-and-children alike bending backward to host a beyond-their-means wedding
- Adultery etcetra.
But each of them is written with utmost finesse and zilch melodrama.
The nuanced writing helps the characters to be as shown blood-and-flesh human beings and not caricatures.
Even the adulterous husband is a covert feminist in his convoluted way. The social-climber “despo/wannabe” female lead is oddly resilient, graceful and lovable.
How refreshing it’s to see “desi” actors not limited to shades of grey but the whole spectrum of the rainbow.
The subtitle in English is top job as well. There is no “sad tune”-in-the-bracket denoting a character sobbing on-screen.
The opulent visuals fully capture the mood of the series that it’s celebrating Indian (or more specifically) Delhi wedding at its gaudy-glory. I’m speaking as a layman, but that’s some seriously gorgeous camera/stunning production work running there.
Too many narratives
To address issues one too many, the direction sometimes came off as haphazard. It’s hard to call out –
- class divide,
- white-collar feminism; blue-collar feminism,
- the struggle to decriminalize homosexuality,
- social aspiration of third-world
in only 9 episodes.
Self-conscious & patronizing
The male narrator (the otherwise fabulous Shashank Arora) who sums up each episode sounded just the right amount high-brow patronizing and smug, especially when he spoke about the trials and tribulations of Indian women.
All in all, “Made in Heaven” is a very well-made web series with a global appeal. You can be anywhere from the world and with a bit of sensitivity and curiosity towards an alien culture, you will still enjoy it.
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Have you seen “Made in Heaven”? Or would you be interested to watch it? Spill out.