Why Mahabharata Is India’s Answer To Game Of Thrones
“John Snow is dead”.
Internet goes crazy.
“John Snow returns”.
Internet goes crazier!
Rarely comes a phenomenon that captivates the world as eerily towards itself as GoT does. Game of
Thrones is one such exception. Arguably, the most sought after and talked about TV Series of recent
times, Game of Thrones, or GoT as it is popularly abbreviated to, has seen success like no one else. In a
country like ours too, people get so hooked, they are willing to beg, borrow and steal to make sure they
catch the episode the very day it airs – all thanks to the spoilers!
In the process of tirelessly binge watching and enjoying a foreign series, we have forgotten one peculiar aspect to it though. In a country that is so culturally equipped and historically engrossing, we do not have even a single show that can be termed as the “it” TV Series. “Why can’t any of our series get similar success” is a question that keeps popping up. Do we not have the chops to bring it on screen – albeit at a smaller scale, given our lack of funding? Do we not have the content that is both rich in fiction and high on wisdom? Do we not have the actors to live the characters on screen? I think your heads will be nodding a ‘Yes’ to all the questions above!
While GoT enjoys some exceptionally rich fictional content through the books written by George R. R.
Martin, here in India too, there is an epic left almost untouched on a visual scale as large as Game of
Thrones itself. The name that first strikes our minds in an answer to GoT, and that has been attempted
several times, is our very own- Mahabharata.
Although already made in the past, the one made by the Chopras stands out on everything. Be it the writing, technicalities, performances or the dialogues, the first Mahabharata to have ever cast on our TV Sets left us wanting for more. It still does! The later entries, IMHO, could not do much justice to the gorgeous work of fiction that is the Mahabharata. While falsely promising a grandeur and visually satisfying spectacle, all those attempts fall flat in comparison to GoT.
What is even more exasperating is the fact that, unlike GoT, we do not even have to wait for some
writer to complete his/her work so that the show could be continued. We already have a collection that is all but fiction. The attributes that carry GoT to the podium it presently is are all but present already.
Isn’t Mahabharata being driven by a stout story of love, hatred and betrayal? Aren’t there characters
that are all lovable (the Pandavas), a tad shady (Bhishma, Barbarika and all Gurus), grey (Karna) and hated (the Kauravas)? Isn’t there an instance of reincarnation every now and then (the whole Amba – Ambika – Ambalika and Shikhandi saga)? Aren’t the “Gods” willing to shower their deep hearted
affection to the “Good” and callous bout to the “Bad”? Isn’t there a Vidur who is much better in terms of wisdom than “the High Sparrow” shall ever be? Aren’t there pinches of magic (Ashwatthama,
Jayadratha, Krishna, Ghatotkacha and innumerable other incidents) to keep the viewers at the edge of
their seats? Aren’t there strong female characters that exemplify integrity, intellect and strength (Draupadi, Kunti)? Isn’t there a Sanjay who has the foresight to look at the warfront, miles away from it? Isn’t there a kingdom to protect? Isn’t there, well, a Throne to own?
YES! YES! and YES!
We have everything GoT has and more, and that too so conveniently available and makeable. There is
nothing more enthralling and fascinating than the Mahabharata. All it needs is some creative heads and a scale that could make it believable. It so deserves to be made on a big scale and into several parts. There is barely any content that is so complicated, yet so believable at the same time! The plot twists are a plethora and the set pieces are majestic. Most importantly, Mahabharata has a much bigger fan base to begin with.
And to add cherry on top, what on Earth would I not pay to see fans scream Mahabharata Idioms all
over Social Media.
Mahabharata is our own, raring to go – and deservedly so!
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