The Mallika of many roles
THE labels rest lightly on her slight shoulders — committed feminist, theatre personality, dancer, author, scriptwriter, choreographer. Now add to that the role of a high-profit TV hostess and you have Mallika Sarabhai — a women of many facets.
No, this is not one of those blink-and-you-miss-me roles. Mallika is the anchor of the Miss CNN’s Style South Asia. Saturdays 9 p.m. It is a showreel of lifestyle, art, food, fashion, music, personalities, heritage and trends from across the subcontinent.
From rubbing shoulders with celebrities, or re-interpreting heritage and age-old culture that this region is best known for, Mallika brings this and more to the viewers in India. Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Bangladesh and Maldives.
With a formidable reputation in art, it is not surprising that Mallika Sarabhai was a natural choice for CNN when the channel first conceived the show.
"I am thoroughly enjoying it. It is as much a learning experience for me as it will be for the viewers," says the Mallika all set to explore the cultures of the subcontinent.
Back on TV
There is a hint of bitterness in his voice even as Suhaib Ilyasi tries to reshape life after his wife’s death and the agony of incarceration. "I am amazed at the way things turn out if one tries to fight the system," he says.
India’s Most Wanted crusade many be over for the time being but Ilyasi’s TV forays continue. After spending two months in prison he is back in action. His new serial, Ek Nazar Ki Tamanna is going to be aired on Doordarshan soon.
"It’s a collage of human emotions that discusses issues like communal relations, ambitions and interpersonal affairs," says he. The story of a Muslim family that moves out of its old Delhi home to an upmarket address, it seems autobiographical in parts.
But Ilyasi vehemently denies it. "One builds on experience. Yet it does not mean it’s my story. No it’s not." Right. His story would be full of fire and brimstone.
Web of the underworld
In the cyberworld of computers and random memories, no one — not even an expert — is safe from the mysterious dangers that lurk behind the screens and hide deep within the motherboards. It is the world of the Internet.
The story of The Net AXN every Friday 9 p.m. revolves around Angela Bennett is a beautiful but eccentric computer consultant-cum-hacker who specialises in debugging systems.
On one of her routine assignments, she stumbles on a plot by a secret society to control the world through computer systems. Unsure of how much she knows, the society assigns trained operatives to pursue Angela and erase her identity.
Her credit cards, bank accounts and entire past disappear and she is forced to take on the persona of a criminal on the run from the law. With nowhere to hide, Angela must find a way out of this deadly game, save the world, and get her life back.
If you are expecting entertainment here, perish the thought. Rehnuma on B4U, Thursdays 8 p.m. is a tear-jerker which euphemistically passes off as ‘intense drama of human emotions’. It revolves around Saher, who has lost her father at a very early age. Her mother, too, abandons her and moves out with her second husband. So she is brought up by her grandparents.
Saher has lived in a hostel most of her life and is happy and contented, until she has to sacrifice her love to marry the man of her grandfather’s choice.
As it happens in all tear-jerkers, this man turns out to be a drunkard and abuses her emotionally and physically. She loses her child and when she can take it no more, leaves him and moves to another town to begin life afresh.
And then starts her fight for existence and right to dignity of life. But there are many roadblocks ahead. No need to stretch your imagination. Everything is predictable around here.
Exploring natural habitat
From sun-drenched deserts to deep ocean caves to treacherous cliffs, animals around the world take inhospitable conditions and turn them into cozy homes.
While these places may not sound like dream domiciles for humans, they are the habitats of choice for many of the world’s most spectacular wildlife.
Animal Planet makes house calls to exotic locations in southern and eastern Africa to meet some of the animals that thrive there with premiere episodes of Fit for the Wild every Saturday beginning in December at 8 p.m.
The forest canopy shelters an impressive range of species that thrive in its trees and in the hot, humid undergrowth. Many of them face one of the greatest struggles for survival in the animal world.
Viewers get a firsthand look at what it takes for a species to survive in modern-day environmental threats and coexist with other animals in inhospitable terrain. A must-see for all animal enthusiasts.
Shine’s back on Ruby
She’s back. The all-new and re-invented Ruby Bhatia. After years of being out-there-somewhere, the former stay VJ of Channel V has suddenly discovered her lost metier.
As the co-host in the daily breakfast show, Good Morning India. Ruby returns with her bubble and verve and she is obviously ecstatic at the turn of events in her life.
Back in 1996, she was the icon of hip who turned fast talking into an art form. Her gamine charm won her a million viewers as she hosted shows like BPL Oye, The Vibe and Ek Ka Teen.
But even as she was riding the crest, came the fall. She was suddenly was out of Channel V and a big question mark stared her in the face. She anchored a few shows, acted in Yeh Hai Raaz but still fame eluded Ruby who started missing those heady VJ days.
Now, as co-hostess of Good Morning India, Ruby is putting in everything she’s got in a show which will define her future. Nobody should be surprised, considering that she’s been through a rough time ever since she abdicated as the queen of VJdom.
— Mukesh Khosla