From the classy characters of Mirza Ghalib and Byomkesh Bakshi to garish, over-the-top theatrics of afternoon soap operas, television in India has had its up and down moments. But no more will we suffer the tyranny of Ekta Kapoor and her ilk.
The internet has propped independent creators ahead of traditional studios and if views and engagement are the new TRPs, the former seem to be succeeding by more than a mile. Add good city-specific storytelling that blends contemporary issues and great soundtracks to this mix, and you’ve got entertainment that’s beyond the reach of the idiot box.
These 5 interesting web series based on characters in Indian cities honestly capture the pulse of today’s youth:
1. Baked (Delhi)
With its inherent range of shady characters, Delhi has been the perfect backdrop for a number of entertaining movies and shows in recent times. Baked is a series of misadventures of three Delhi University students, who start a late-night food delivery service.
Combining startup pangs with growing up angst, this web series is a side-splitting watch, especially if you’re acquainted with Delhi’s campus culture.
Watch it for free here.
2. Girl in the City (Mumbai)
The bubbly Mithila Palkar plays Meera Sehgal, a girl from Dehradun who moves to Mumbai to intern at a fashion studio.
It’s a familiar story of most migrating youngsters — a girl finding her bearings alone in India’s biggest metropolis. But what makes it tick is the effervescent spirit of the protagonist who has only three months to prove to her army-retired father that she can make it. Will she, won’t she?
Watch it here.
3. Not Fit (Mumbai)
Talk about Mumbai and Bollywood is never far away. Sitting alone in the brightly-lit coffee shops of Lokhandwala and Versova’s Aram Nagar, many struggling actors face the biggest challenge of getting that one prime role that will catapult them to fame and fortune.
This series tells the story of Neerav Kapoor, who despite the famous surname is just another actor trying to get cast for a role in a movie/ad/TV show, actually anywhere. Shot in a documentary style, the humour is dark yet supremely entertaining.
Watch it here.
4. Pushpavalli (Bangalore)
Available only on Amazon Prime, this series turns the tables on stalking.
Pushpavalli is stand-up comedian Sumukhi Suresh playing the role of a girl from Bhopal who’s infatuated by Nikhil Rao, an okra exporter she meets at a food festival. Valli moves to Bangalore to find Mr Rao, and the adventures begin.
The very funny Naveen Richard plays her boss. This is a pretty bold series that puts the protagonist in the spot that’s usually reserved for maniacal men.
Watch the trailer here.
5. Star Boyz (Bangalore)
Kenny Sebastian leaves behind his guitar and embarks on an inter-galactic voyage with buddies Naveen Richard and Mani Prasad on a spaceship in an irreverent take on sci-fi.
Bangaloreans will understand each and every reference made about the city and the north-south divide, as its quirky characters go about asking a local anna for peanut chikkis and egg puffs in the very first episode.
Don’t miss the episode when a Bangalore cop stops them to check for drunken-driving. Uproarious, rollicking times are guaranteed!
Watch it here.
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