The Flowers Supremacy

People might think that this post is about The War of the Roses, but the story about that Civil War is not the Flowers that we have here, for this one is a television channel, which Keralites have loved to watch since its inception. While learning about The War of the Roses was more or less part of the academics if not a requirement for raising the level of knowledge, Flowers channel has been all about entertainment. It was initially known for one particular programme, Uppum Mulakum, a series which competed with Mazhavil Manorama’s Thatteem Mutteem, and has not lost its charm due to repetitions and being outdated as a number of years have passed now, and Flowers itself has other shows which gained supremacy.

Among the shows of Flowers, the one programme which stands apart is Star Magic, an event which includes a number of performers who are skilled in more than one field, and it is like a celebration, which has been going on in Flowers channel for a long time, but doesn’t have a feeling of repetition at all. It has a limited number of participants, and they keep changing every day, even though more than half of them remain the same every day. There are talks, games and performances, and everything has a fine touch of humour to go with it. The programme is the kind of thing that we need to watch at night after a bust schedule or during a depressing Corona season to be happy.

A random screenshot from Star Magic (for blogging purpose only)

Some of the commonly repeated names in Star Magic other than the anchor Lakshmi Nakshathra are Binu Adimaly, Nelson Shooranadu, Kollam Sudhi, Sreevidya Mullassery, Jaseela Parveen, Anna Chacko, Dayyana Hameed, Anumol RS, Thankachan Vithura, Azeez Nedumangad, Shashankan Mayyanad, Shiyas Kareem, Bineesh Bastian, Kollam Shafi, Aiswarya Rajeev etc among others. Along with the same, there have been other names which made regular presence in the programme including Noby Marcose, Anu Joseph, Anna Prasad, Abhirami Murali, Mridula Vijay, Yuva Krishna, Naveen Arakkal, Stephy Leon, Saadhika Venugopal, Rini Raj, Krittika Pradeep, Manvi Surendran, Reneesha Rehman, Tanvi S Ravindran, Lakshmi Priya, Chilanka S Deedu etc and also a number of guests from films and other fields. The programme manages to be more or less like a festival, and has a wonderful spirit associated with it.

Along with Star Magic, another programme has risen to fame in the last few months, and it is a show on the lines of Ningalkkum Aakaam Kodeeshwaran, originally known as Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?, and best known in India as Kaun Banega Crorepati with Amitabh Bachchan’s early addition. This programme known as Flowers Oru Kodi is special because of having Sreekandan Nair as the host, and there is a certain amount of variety being added to it, with the help of its robotic sponsors, Lana Technologies, as it has two robots providing aid when required. It also has more or less a fun feeling rather than the emotional setting which was maintained by other programmes which provided cash to the contestants in exchange for answering questions – a case of positive energy here.

We have watched News 24 a lot, and basically it is the channel which provided a neutral viewpoint in almost every case, while all other channels were mostly having their anchors prejudiced towards one side. As both comes from the same source, we know that Flowers and News 24 are not to be separated when watching television. The use of technology and augmented reality has set the channels ahead of others, and the floor used for each programme is indeed splendid. This is the same reason why almost all the time, we are looking forward to watch News 24, despite having so many channels around. Flowers and News 24 are channels which know what to do when they have to do it, correctly, and without pretensions or prejudices.

Flowers also has Chakkappazham, a series about which I had already written earlier. Even though it had started become a little bit repetitive, it still remains fun, and you know how well a series with simple things of home depicted on the screen can work for the family audience. Thatteem Mutteem, the only programme which was giving competition to Uppum Mulakum has also paled in front of this one, as Mazhavil Manorama has once again lost the advantage here despite having Marimaayam much earlier, except for getting those new movies to have their television premiere in there, like Zee Keralam has been doing for some time – Asianet which earlier had Vellanakalude Naadu also has managed some similar television premieres rather than getting some quality shows in there. The competition is there, and it is good.

A random screenshot from Chakkappazham (for blogging purpose only)

Yet, in between all the competition, both Flowers and News 24 has brought an identity of their own, and it is the style which other channels have been trying to copy, but not with that much of an effect. After all, imitations can only be imitations, and won’t have that quality which is displayed by the original. We know about the same here too. During the time of COVID-19 pandemic lockdown, Flowers has been the one channel which we watched regularly, and News 24, the one news channel which we watched the most, and that is something which might not change for a long time, as other television channels surely seem to lack in that diversity as well as innovation.

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<— Click here to go to the last film review.

TeNy

The Great Jackfruit Family

As most of you might already know, I am not a fan of the television series in Malayalam which have been part of different channels. But there was Thatteem Mutteem which became a show which I regularly watched, and that had changed. With the children in the series growing up to have children, things were never going to be the same again. Then, with the beginning of COVID-19, the episodes stopped, and we were no longer interested in this particular programme. I was never a fan of the much hyped Uppum Mulakum, even though in the beginning, I had found the same to be okay. As of now, one can be pretty sure that it can only live on its past hype and can come up with nothing new.

Then in August, we had another television show focusing on a family and its members at home, and that changed the situation by a long way. After watching television continuously for a long time during the pandemic, we had lost interest in watching anything anymore, and that was evident in the time spent in front of the television in the later stages. Chakkapazham which started its journey on August 10 was quick to catch our attention, and we have been watching the show without fail, every day from Monday to Friday. Even the presence of the WWE-like entertainment like IPL didn’t change that as we were stuck to this show like never before. It is after a long time that a programme has created such an effect.

This show feels that good because of its funny side which works so well, without adding any emotional side in between. Uppum Mulakum and Thatteem Mutteem have the tendency to turn emotional at times, but Chakkapazham manages to be a complete comedy with feel-good elements. The funny moments are all effective, thanks to a group of talented actors and actresses doing a great job. Lead by SP Sreekumar who plays Uthaman, a veterinary compounder who take care of the house which has more members than one would expect. The members of the family include Uthaman, his wife Asha, their three children, his jobless young brother Sumesh, his sister Painkili and her son, his brother-in-law who visits at times, his parents and also his grandmother.

SP Sreekumar is no stranger to us, as we have known him from Marimaayam, and as that villain in Memories. He does a natural job in the series as he has been doing for a long time. Aswathy Sreekanth who plays his wife makes the entry into acting from anchoring here with a touch of comedy, really well. Shruthi Rajnikanth who plays the sister Painkili is a joy to watch, and it is her along with Mohammed Raffi who plays the brother Sumesh that elevates the comedy to the highest level. Both are united by the interest in doing nothing, and if the former’s main interest is in sleeping, the latter spends his time trying to find some way of making the family members fight with each other or find any way of making some quick money without hardwork.

Arjun Somasekhar who plays Painkili’s husband Shivan makes some nice appearances, even though he is not there in all episodes. In his acting debut, he brings some memorable, funny moments. Amal Rajdev plays Kunjunni, the father figure who pretends that he was a pilot in the airforce until retirement, while Sabeeta George plays the mother figure of Lalitha. Both are also interesting characters, and blend in really well. Indira Devi plays the grandmother who is also an integral part of the fun. The children are also really good, and they contribute to the tale so well. Such natural acting from child actors are rarely seen, but they just manage to make the whole thing better.

The fight scenes in the television series are funny, and it is to be noted that there is something very interesting coming up every time. The characters are people whom we fall in love with – they are all simple people, and their life and tales are also really simple, even though strange in a really funny manner as we look at it. I would say that the best thing which started in television during these days is this programme, and telecasted at the same time as Thatteem Mutteem in Mazhavil Manorama, this one is sure to have won the battle. Flowers channel seems to have programmes for all categories of people – even Star Magic and Koodathayi seems to be much loved, while in the case of Mazhavil Manorama, we only have the new and updated Udan Panam, which thrives on its anchors.

At the same time when Koodathayi and Star Magic are running in Flowers, we have Udan Panam in Mazhavil Manorama, a show which has been lifted to the next level, thanks to its new anchors, Meenakshi and Dain. One has to say that other than these, there is not much that can be watched on television these days. There are the movies for sure, like Kilometres and Kilometers being released on Asianet, and we also have those songs which can be watched here and there. Then we only have the sports. Well, with the COVID-19 cases showing no signs of coming down in number, and the number of deaths increasing, we need to stay more at home, but there is not enough entertainment within, and the need to work is also not the same for everyone.

***The images used in this blog post are promotions used by Flowers TV.

<— Click here to go to the previous post.

<— Click here to go to the last film review.

TeNy

Simona Times: Edition III

***Kitty Newspaper from the Cat World lead by Simona the little big cat.

Simona calls for cat participation in Badminton.
On one of those joint session among cats, dogs and humans, Simona said that she had enough of this discrimination. Humans play Badminton and dogs get to retreive the shuttle. She demanded that the cats be allowed to keep the shuttle, and it is how they can also participate in this game. She also showed proof that Badminton had its real origins in 2322 BC when a villager saw two cats playing with a dead mouse. “But it was soon forgotten because humans are good at pretending that they don’t remember”, she said. “After all, only what the rich do will get all the attention” she further complained. The dogs have decided to support this under condition that they get the right to fetch everything during all games.

I declare this as my property. Nobody touches this :D

I declare this as my property. Nobody touches this except me 😀

Local cats file complaint about the black dog.
“What is wrong with that dog?” a lot of cats have asked the same question. The big black dog which chases everything has become a big nuisance not only for the cats, but also for the humans. The cats say that the dog even chases other dogs and needs to be dealt with. They have also asked for installing security cameras on the road side to make sure that they all get to know the right dog and bring it before the law. Secret cat squads have been assigned the task of saving others from this mystery dog about which nobody knows anything. There are already talks about it being a dangerous hellhound coming from the underworld, but the cat intellectuals have denied it completely.

Let the sleeping cats rest, says Simona.
Simona told the press about how annoying some of the humans are, with no concern for the others. When the cats only sleep about twenty hours a day, humans are wandering around everywhere disturbing the highly intellectual sleeping procedure that the cats follow. “What is it with these humans? Why do they put the music in high volume and disturb even the people living at the nearby houses?” she asked. She also told the press that the humans haven’t been getting any better. But cats have always protected the humans from the evil forces from the other dimensions, she asserted. “The protection from the mice is just one of the things that we do” she said.

I like to sleep like I always sleep, because it is the main program :D

I like to sleep like I always sleep, because it is the main program 😀

Cats go crazy over Catwoman choices.
Uknown sources report a series of fights among the cats over who the better Catwoman is. Michelle Pfeiffer, Halle Berry and Anne Hathaway were the choices, as some of the cats were seen fighting last on the sunshade of an abandoned house. But this report was declared rubbish by Simona who made it clear that cats don’t need a Catwoman to show that they are awesome, even though they appreciated the fact that they also get the equal treatment when little insects like spiders and ants got their own superheroes too. Simona has also said that she is ready to play the role of Catwoman if the situation demanded. She did suggest that Womancat was a better title too.

Cat transport should develop more, adds Simona.
During the press conference about the sleeping cats, Simona also asserted that the necessary steps should be taken to make sure that the feline gets the advantanges of good transportation facilities. Nowadays, cats have developed into a superior species and they will requre a lot of traveling to display their skills. But due to the heavy traffic on the roads, and some hostile humans, it has been too difficult. She has asked the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways to provide the cats with a separate route or free travel in at least few of the cars, buses and trucks on the top. The betterment of the cat citizens meant the development of the nation as a whole, she said.

Start the car, human. Lets go and have some fish for lunch ;)

Start the car, my dear human. Lets go and have some fish for lunch 😉

Ban Cats and Dogs; Team Cat Power asks.
The new radical kittenist group, Team Cat Power asks for banning both Cats and Dogs and its sequel Cats and Dogs: The Revenge of Kitty Galore because both of them shows cats in a bad light, and hails dogs as heroes. The group has send a message to the humans that they will know the value of cats after being bitten by stray dogs. “The negative reviews for the sequel was just the beginning of the end for such discrimination, and we are thankful to the human reviewers who voted agains that movie” the leader of the group added. But they have not backed away from the protests, and are planning to do strike on the sunshades of random houses.

Is the Cheshire Cat Day a possibility?
26th November was the day on which Alice in Wonderland was published by the English writer Charles Dodgson under the pseudonym Lewis Carroll. But the cats basically know only one person from that novel because they have never cared about the other characters in the work. The big grin has been considered as a classic moment and something of great glory for the cats all around the globe. So, the cats are busy campaigning for this big day to be declared as the official Cheshire Cat Day in honour of the greatest cat character in the history of literature as they see it. They have often compared Cheshire Cat to the status of something similar to Dracula among vampires.

***The images used in this blog post were taken by me on my Asus Zenfone 5.

TeNy