A culture’s morals, values and principles can be most certainly reflected by its media.
And well, ours just represents, er, extreme stupidity, blatantly sexist and racist behaviors, and our age old obsession with the fair skinned.
And this particular ad by Emami endorsing it’s cream, Fair and Handsome, starring none other than Shahrukh Khan, is one of those which amuses and infuriates me at the same time.
But guess what, if you are SRK, you get to endorse racist shit on television and get away with it. And how do I not mention the fact that this shit is so deeply ingrained in our craniums that the youth, ironically, finds it entertaining.
And while there are so many things I find upsetting in this ad, I’d like to ask four main questions:-
A) Why is masculinity associated with displays of prowess, brutality and toughness?
In the first scene, the super dark guy is showing off his masculine moves when he begins to apply a female “pink” fairness cream and SRK comes rushing to mock him for doing something which is considered “feminine” in the society.
Pre-defined gender roles are followed so religiously in the Indian society that we’ve come to associate men and women with specific characteristics and values, and refusing to accept anyone who challenges them- stay at home husbands, men who cook, men who cry, the list goes on.
B) “Mard hoke pink fairness cream?”-Why is pink for girls and blue for boys?
Ever since I was a little girl, I have been showered with dolls, dresses, flowers, shoes, backpacks, jewellery- all in pink. Did anyone ask what MY favorite color was? Well, no, because if you’re a girl, you ought to like pink, right?
C)Ah, finally, how does a guy who is, er, dark as dusk in the beginning, goes snow-white?
Come on dermatologists from all over the world! This is a medical revolution! Quick, Emami is here with a miraculous elixir!
Gosh, this is messed up.
D)Why are girls always portrayed as “dumb enough to fall for a guy based solely on skin colour”?
Dudes, break your bubble. Girls are NOT brainless creatures who crave fair-skinned idiots. We need loyalty, grace, humour, care, attention and not “whiteness”.
The saddest part is that similar ads, shows and even films are being created, watched and enjoyed everyday and no one seems to bat an eye.
The problem is not that I see wrong everywhere, the problem is that YOU don’t.