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Thought and Reason

Band Baajaa And Imperfect Brides

I am yet to forgive my two best friends for what they did to me at my wedding. Now, don’t go getting any ideas. My buddies dragged me to a certain beauty parlour and got me a mini-makeover. I still cringe when I look at my wedding album. I don’t recognise myself, with all that face-paint on

This is exactly why I feel bad for the brides who participate in the new makeover show ‘Band Baajaa Bride’. I am a complete sucker for makeover shows, and I was excited to catch an episode of this show, where the famous designer Sabyasachi Mukherjee creates a grand outfit for the chosen bride-to-be.

On the face of it, the show seems like an amazing opportunity. Having a stunning dress designed by a top designer, looking like an Indian queen on your wedding day, adorned in all the finery, and getting all this for free ) – a dream come true for any bride.

So what is it that I am cribbing about?

Just this – the show takes the natural charm out of a girl and replaces it with stupid and needless glamour! Almost as if saying, your natural perfection IS NOT GOOD ENOUGH. You NEED to be an artificially enhanced doll. Or a live advertisement for designer wear!

The episode I watched featured an extremely pretty bride-to-be, with lovely long tresses and an innocence that radiated. She wanted a ‘lehenga-choli’ that was not ‘red’ in colour. And she wanted to ‘look REAL’ – just the way she was.

What do you think Team Band Baaja did? They took her to a cosmetic surgeon to make her lips look fuller (that by the way, looked perfectly fine to me), chopped off her ‘boring’ tresses to make her look younger (apparently her fiancé also said ‘she was pretty but not glamorous’), and created a very regal wedding outfit – in red.

The bride looked gorgeous. The outfit, the styling, the accessories were all perfect.

But somewhere down the line, that pretty girl who had walked into the show wanting to look ‘REAL’ had been lost. She now looked like a perfect Hindi-serial actress.

And in place of a naturally charming young girl, we had someone who represented the designer dreams of Bollywood. Instead of simple, realistic, and attainable charm, we now had glitz, sparkle and heavy work that is simply not attainable to most of population.

It is this stereotyped concept of ‘perfection’ that immensely bothers me. A show like this makes a bride believe she NEEDS a grand makeover, failing which she would not look ‘good enough’ on her special day.

Yes, you can say this is a case of sour grapes. There was no such makeover show when I was a bride 😉 😉

But on a serious note, isn’t this the problem with us? We seek perfection in everything that is superficial. A lame child, a dark girl, an obese boy – instant ridicule. Every matrimonial advert reads ‘Wanted: Slim, Fair, Good-looking bride for boy’.

How about people who do not fit the bill – are they not worthy enough of consideration?

Interestingly, we do not make any attempt in perfection ourselves, in terms of skill, education, vocational training, etc. We don’t aim to stand up for anything worthwhile. Instead, we watch makeover shows, dreaming of looking perfect, but not bothering to be perfect in the things that do matter.

Coming back to the show itself, not all is wrong with it. Yes, it does a huge deal of advertising for designer-outfits and designer-jewellery. But despite that, the anchor Team comes across as friendly and enthusiastic.

I loved what Sabyasachi himself said on the show – ‘a beautiful bride does not need Sabyasachi’ – That was incredibly humble and delightfully charming. I loved watching brides weave their dreams.

But I don’t like the fact that there is a huge chance, that it makes people believe they are imperfect ‘just the way they are’. That, is dangerous.

So what do you think?