Tag Archives: Hariyudan Naan

Recalls, Wildcards and celebrations

If you watch talent shows on Indian television. You will get the drift.

My Thoughts

Watching an Indian talent show is like watching a mega serial. The concept is same, if it’s doing well, stretch it as much as possible. Sometimes as fan of talent shows as me, it becomes pretty draining and boring to watch. The last show I really followed and watched to completion was Airtel Super Singer 2008. Even that one at one point got irritating but I somehow pulled myself through to watch it to completion.

The major problem with these shows is that, there are so many meaningless episodes. The countless recalls, Wildcards and celebration rounds get on your nerves sometimes. I started watching Hariyudan Naan, the other talent show on a different network and after a while when it started to follow the familiar pattern, I gave up. I had no intention to watch it till the end. It’s funny when the channel tries to justify these extra episodes…

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Recalls, Wildcards and celebrations

Watching an Indian talent show is like watching a mega serial. The concept is same, if it’s doing well, stretch it as much as possible. Sometimes as fan of talent shows as me, it becomes pretty draining and boring to watch. The last show I really followed and watched to completion was Airtel Super Singer 2008. Even that one at one point got irritating but I somehow pulled myself through to watch it to completion.

The major problem with these shows is that, there are so many meaningless episodes. The countless recalls, Wildcards and celebration rounds get on your nerves sometimes. I started watching Hariyudan Naan, the other talent show on a different network and after a while when it started to follow the familiar pattern, I gave up. I had no intention to watch it till the end. It’s funny when the channel tries to justify these extra episodes with some weird logic. When I switch on to watch a competition, I would be happy if there is one. Like for example Airtel Super Singer comes 4 days a week, and if there is a festival on that week they go into a celebration round. Celebration round means, there is no competition, no eliminations but just some time for the network to stretch the show.

Then comes the wildcard rounds, no idea what that means. Suddenly when they have a top 10 or 15 identified, they pop this in. No idea why, suddenly they have 2 weeks of getting the eliminated singers to comeback and compete and 2 or 3 of them are called back. So 15 becomes 18 after couple of weeks and then you are back to eliminating those 3 in another 6-8 weeks before we get to 15 again. Amidst all these we suddenly have the episodes where the judges become incredibly generous and after rigorous competition and judging they say that there will be no eliminations this round. This last minute revelation keeps the audience engaged till the fourth day, because they will have no clue that the judges are going to drop this bomb on them at the end of it.

The funniest of all is the recall round, not sure what’s the difference between a recall and wildcard. Different networks use different terminologies but all these exist on almost every talent show. I did not watch Hariyudan Naan completely but I remember Airtel Super singer when they had top 7 contestants and just when we were hoping to get to the finals soon, they pulled out this recall/wild card out of the hat and had two separate rounds of that too. First the contestants who were left judged and then the judges themselves did later. Well what a great trick to extend the show.

When these shows begin the producers probably wait for the TRP and once they know that it is a hit, they just try to prolong it as much as possible. Some people enjoy it but some get terribly frustrated. It’s fine with me if they have one recall/wildcard in the entire length of the show but having multiple of them and also having these celebration rounds gets on my nerves. I just hope that we get a show which after getting to the serious competition works towards completion rather than finding ways to stretch it as much as possible. In the day and age of mega serials, it will be great to have a decent and up to the point talent show. We don’t want a “Mega” talent show too as we have enough of the mind numbing TV serials already.

Hariyudan Naan, Super Singer – What happens to the non winners?

Over the weekend I caught up with Hariyudan Naan after almost 4 months and it hadn’t moved that much, not surprisingly though. I saw when they had top 12, now they are at top 8. Also simultaneously on Vijay TV we have the Airtel Super Singer taking place which has barely begun at this point. I don’t expect a result on that until 2012. While watching the episode this weekend, one thing which struck my mind was most of these contests are winner takes all format, so what happens to the others?

I know that Vijay TV gives some opportunities to prior participants to sing in their tours and programs but would that be enough for someone wanting to make a career out of music? I have noticed that some of the contestants keep jumping from one talent show to the other. Like Gopalkrishnan, Barghavi, Aruna who were part of Airtel super singer 2008 participated in Hariyudan Naan and did quite well. Except for Aruna, the other two are now in top 8 but if they don’t end up in the top 5 what’s going to be their future. Do they keep shuttling between TV shows? Santosh who was also in the super singer 2008 is again back in this season.

All these competitions are judged by famous singers and some music directors too come in at some point, so it’s a surprise to me that the contestants at least the top 10 don’t land up with some chance in music. The contestants go through grueling selection process to reach a particular level like a top 8 or top 10 and when they get eliminated at that point they have to go through the same process again in a different channel or competition or just give up. This is actually really sad and must be heartbreaking for these contestants who might end up making top 10 in all competitions but not win it to make the cut.

Ajeesh won the Airtel Singer 2008 and in 3 years he has sung like 3 songs but what about the 2nd and 3rd place finishers in 2008? Where are they now? Are they getting any chances? Are they even pursuing music as their careers? No one knows.

Probably these channels should do a show every year like American Idol in the US does, where they tell us where the Idols are and what they are up to right now. The viewers watch these shows for almost a year and get involved with these contestants and when the show is over we have no clue what goes on with them except for the winner who gets to sing couple of movie songs. It will be great to know what Renu, Ranjani, Ravi, Vijay, Prasanna, Raghini (Even though we see her in Koffee with Anu) and others are doing after the super singer and whether they are still pursuing their musical dream. Probably the channels should consider doing something like that after a year of each season. Pick the top ten of the previous season and have an interview with them.

These contestants shouldn’t have to keep jumping from one show to another as at some point frustration will creep in and they will give up. The fact that some of them are able to make it to Top 10 in all the channels and competitions in front of different judges says quite a lot about their ability. So it will be great to learn what they thought about the competition and how that has helped them in their goal. Probably the channels like Jaya and Vijay should think about this. Don’t you think it will be great if these singers are invited on Vijay TV to talk about their post 2008 season life? Wouldn’t it be great? I had written exclusive reviews of Airtel super singer 2008 and would surely love to know what the contestants are doing right now.

Hariyudan Naan – Confusing elimination round

Hariyudan Naan elimination round has gotten me really confused. First of all let me explain the concept of the show from the round before the current elimination round. Hariharan judged the contestants and gave them different coloured badges according to their performance on that day. So according to color, green you were safe, yellow you needed improvement and red you are in the danger zone. So that wasn’t the issue for me as it was a straight forward exercise.

But the confusing part starts in the next round which is called the elimination round where anyone who performs badly on the day gets a red badge and gets eliminated. This happens even if you had green badge from the previous round. So why wasn’t this used as a yardstick in the previous round? I feel that this is really unfair to the contestants who got the green badge in the previous round. This means that people who received the red badge in the previous round get another chance to redeem themselves but the ones who did great in the previous round get eliminated based on just the one performance?

I am not sure who came up with the concept but this has lots of flaws in it. If the producers/organizers of the show decided to eliminate contestants getting the red badge then they should have followed that in the previous round and a natural progression would have been a better method. The concept should have been such that you cannot be eliminated unless you are in the yellow zone. Let me explain it more clearly. The singers who sing brilliantly according to the judges should be given green badge, the ones they think need improvement but were not that bad should get the yellow badge (which almost says that you can be eliminated if you don’t do well in the next round) and finally the people who get the red get eliminated.

So this way you cannot eliminate the people in the green zone just after one bad performance. They would have to get to the yellow zone first, get to prove themselves in one more round and then get eliminated if they don’t pull it off. This will make for much fairer judgment. Currently what the show is doing is ridiculous as they have given people with red another chance and have eliminated green after one bad performance. I hope that the producers take this to note as this does not make any sense to me. You cannot introduce the badge in one round and then change your policy in the next round.

Hariyudan Naan – Unique in concept,repetitive in execution

Hariyudan Naan - Unique in concept, repetitive in execution

I started watching “Hariyudan Naan – Yaar andha Naan?” about couple of months back and it does come with a unique concept. This is yet another singing competition but with a difference in what the eventual winner or winners would get at the end of it. Hariharan himself would be mentoring the top 5 winners and few of them will be even singing in his album along with him. So the concept is good and is unique compared to the other shows across the country.

The other good thing about the show is Hariharan speaking to the contestants after each performance and giving them tips as to how they can overcome their flaws. That actually is a very good thing as it will be a great learning experience for budding singers from one of the greats of Indian music. Even though the show has lots of good things going for it the execution of the same is still following the dead beat formula. It seems like the aim of every talent hunt show in India is to stretch it as long as possible.

We saw the same with Airtel Super Singer and countless other talent shows on Indian television. It gets irritating for the audience when they are expecting the winners to be announced in a week or two and there props up a recall round or a wild card round thereby increasing the contestants. This show initially is following the same principle. 16 people eliminated from 50 odd contestants and then the eliminated contestants competing again for 5 spots. The reason given for such a decision was childish too. It seems like Hariharan and Jaya TV thought that the 16 eliminated contestants were good but had one off day, so they deserved another chance to get back into the competition.

If they are going to follow the same yardstick throughout the show then I see a lengthy one year competition with numerous recalls and wildcards. The positive aspect of the show is the way Hari Ji has been judging in the past couple of rounds and also the talent pool has been fantastic. If only they can avoid the minor glitches and give us a short and slick competition it has a potential of becoming a trendsetting show. The way Hariharan has been mentoring the kids has been fantastic and is really different from the other shows.

He has been crisp with his comments and has never come of rude with any of his negative comments either. My only disappointment in the earlier rounds of the show has been the judging panel of James Vasanthan, Tippu and Harini. I can understand them being forthright and honest with the contestants but making fun of them and laughing at them is not on. Every contestant there comes with a dream and most of them have never been in front an audience before leave alone the camera and television.

People react differently to pressure and sometimes even the best talents have off days so the judges should be mindful of that fact. You can provide your critique to the contestants without being rude which they can learn from Hari Ji himself. So James the hate mails are not because you have been calling “Spade a Spade” but it’s because the way you have been calling it.

Well that being said the competition has been fierce and the top 40 contestants have been really good. Hariharan taking over the judging has brought a new lease of life for the show as the initial judges were too full of themselves. That’s the reason he is a legend. All in all a great show and I hope that they iron out the few flaws and make this a short and sweet competition.