Thursday, January 28, 2021

REVIEW: Fabulous Lives of Bollywood Wives (Netflix)

Reading Time: 3 minutes 

If you like Keeping up with the Kardashians (KUWTK) or watching the Real Housewives of any city, you will love Netflix’s newest Indian reality show Fabulous Lives of Bollywood Wives.

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Starring: Neelam Kothari, Maheep Kapoor, Bhavna Pandey & Seema Khan 

Produced by: Aneesha Baig, Karan Johar & Ankur Poddar

Rating: *** (three stars)

But if you cringed while watching Indian Matchmaking, you will definitely cry while watching these Bollywood wives because unlike Masaba Masaba, this is fully real. While Indian Matchmaking showed us how NRIs and rich people get married, Fabulous Lives of Bollywood Wives will show you how rich people in Bollywood like to live.

Maheep Kapoor. Source: Twitter

The four middle-aged main characters are not that low-key, even though they are all married to lesser-known Bollywood actors. Seema Khan is married to Sohail Khan (brother of Salman Khan), Maheep Kapoor is married to Sanjay Kapoor (brother of Anil Kapoor and uncle to Sonam Kapoor-Ahuja), Neelam Kothari Soni (remember ‘The Neelam show’ in Kuch Kuch Hota Hai?) is married to Vivek Soni and Bhavana Pandey is married to Chunky Pandey (parents to newcomer Ananya Pandey).

All husbands feature in season 1, Jhanvi and Arjun Kapoor also appear in one episode, but the biggest cameo is attributed to SRK and Gauri Khan, the “original Bollywood wife” as named in the show.

Seema Khan. Source: Twitter

The show covers topics like nepotism(or rather we see Sanjay Kapoor complaining about it in the first episode), B-grade recognition, fancy international balls, B-town parties, worldwide shopping, and the individual businesses of each wife.

While it may seem like a prolonged episode of Koffee with Karan, I think this show is quite insightful. You are made aware of the mentality that these rich people have, what’s important to them, what upsets them and how they like to spend their time.

While you do feel like cracking up at Maheep saying her 21-year-old celebrity daughter works hard “in the sun”, it also exposes what a number of families belonging to this social class define “hard work” as.

Bhavana Pandey. Source: Twitter

I found the show to be quite entertaining, watching these privileged folks lounge around in designer wear and eat salads. Their Bombay accent that all of them have was something that I couldn’t get enough of, featuring phrases like “what ya”, “looking fab ya”, “ya no”, “tell no” and Maheep’s favourite curse word, t**t.

While the show lacked substantial Bollywood drama, I enjoyed Neelam’s candid nature, Seema’s trolling and Bhavana’s disappointing superstitiousness. It’s like eavesdropping on your neighbourhood’s wealthy family’s get-together, not super enriching to your life but not exactly a waste of time.

You might ask, “why should I watch this show?” or “why should I care about these people?”, but the real question is – why not? Fabulous Lives of Bollywood Wives is a show about real people, it’s moving, it’s fun, it shows celebrities’ lives and you learn a lot about pop-culture.

Neelam Kothari Soni. Source: Twitter

Indians of all ages watched KUWTK, so why won’t they watch this show? Just like the Kardashians, Fabulous Lives of Bollywood Wives portrays characters that people would love to hate; celebrities who are famous but not so much that they would escape public scrutiny but famous-enough to reel in the average viewer into a binge-fest.

Some good could come out of this show if you think about it. Imagine someone at the opposite end of the spectrum, a lower-middle-class school student might watch this show and realise that celebrities shouldn’t be revered, or be above the law, they must set better examples or even use their wealth for charitable purposes!

Honestly, this show is binge-worthy, I finished it in two days. Now, I’m waiting for season 2 because like someone once said: “There are only two sorts of individuals: those will watch Fabulous Lives of Bollywood Wives and liars.”

READ ALSO: Review: Darbaan (Zee5)

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Bageshri Savyasachi
Bageshri Savyasachi
Truth-telling, tree-hugging journalist.

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