Do you find this romantic?

The man – To win you have to think, not with your heart, but with your brain . Check and mate.

The woman – (Taken aback) But this move is wrong!! You are the one who said so…

The man – Yeah but now I am saying, all’s fair in love and war.

The woman – (looking mildly frustrated, but impressed with the intelligent,  ‘because-I-say-so‘ logic) – Aap bhi naa… bilkul girgit ki tarah rang badalte hain!

(Can be translated to, You are so unique/there’s no one like you, You! etc – You change colors like a chameleon! How unpredictable and impressive!!

The manAur tum? Mere har rang mein dhal jaati ho. Jaise ‘innocent green’!

(And you? You follow my example and adapt to my latest mood/color etc. For example, ‘innocent green’)

The woman looks relieved and delighted with the ‘praise’. Will always sense and adapt to his moods. Lesson learnt.

What’s wrong with this idea of romance?

1. Accepting illogical arguments without questioning is shown as a virtue (only in women).

2.  Helpless credulity is equated with child-like innocence, and both are shown as desirable traits in adults (If they are women).

3. Unpredictability in a man is shown as a harmless (even admirable) trait. What’s wrong with being unpredictable?

This ad makes unpredictability, unrealistic expectations and stupidity seem normal (even desirable) in a relationship.

4. Romanticizes the idea of man as the guardian, older and in command, and the woman as the follower, eager to please, obey and adjust to his requirements. What about her requirements? I guess she is to believe that if he truly loves her he would know without being told.

What do you think of the ad below?

A rough translation on Nish’s demand🙂

Man – See you then, I am gonna go…
Woman – Okay…
Man – … (looks at his mobile) oh mom’s birthday!!😯
Woman – Oh!!!! …I forgot!😦
Man – Obviously, what do you ever remember!🙄
Woman – Listen. It’s going to be twelve.
Man – It’s going to be twelve!! I want to be the first one to wish her!
Woman – Oh yeah?!
Man – (Starts attempting to dial but has can’t get through)
Woman – (Dials with her Reliance network) Hello aunty! Happy Happy Birthday. :lol:  He? He’s right here. He must have forgotten,
Man – What!!😯
Woman – …you know how he is🙂 (To the man) Listen, it’s your mom’s birthday! How could you forget! (Hands him her Reliance phone) Here, wish her!
Man – Happy Birthday Ma. No!!!! No I was just trying!!
Connect your call in one go, reliance gsm and cdma network.
Man – (After he finishes wishing his mother) – You!!! You are going to get me killed!
Woman – (laughing) If we didn’t have my network, you would have made it twelve O clock anyway…

100 thoughts on “Do you find this romantic?

  1. Great comparison!
    In fact at a get together of family and friends a couple of weeks back, an older man commented that the recent Reliance ad’s with Anushka Sharma comes across as too offensive. He pointed out that she does not use respectable words for the man like ,”aap”, instead she calls him,”Tum” or “tu”.

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  2. I moved to India about 11 months ago and I find the ads on TV really hilarious. The jewelry ads, especially the wedding jewelry ads are awful–they pretty much equate a woman’s worth in how much godawful and hideous jewelry she’s wearing! There was this one particular ad with a popular actress–supposedly on her wedding night, dancing in a weird way with her ‘husband’–and I swear, the ad was advocating that wearing the biggest and most hideously designed jewels by their retailer would lead to better sex on the wedding night.

    There are also those life insurance ads which make me and my fiance roar with laughter every time. There’s one in which a husband is telling his wife that he’s just gotten a promotion…and then he gets hit by a bus….but apparently he’s all okay. The message goes: ensure your future and invest in our life insurance. Oh yea, the husband is just a tool through which you finance your life, so you gotta make sure you still have the money once he gets unceremoniously hit by a bus don’t you? Bahahaha.

    As for the ads above–they’re definitely screwed up notions of romance and love. I think the whole concept of being in a relationship is still ‘new’ in India–so people just tend to rush into things without taking a hell of a lot of factors into consideration. I think these ads tend to reinforce really immature stereotypes of ‘men’ and ‘women’ and I think that’s harmful to society in a lot of ways.

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    • Adding–the second ad’s kind of cute and far more consistent with the times. Though, when you think about it, I think these two ads are aimed at very different audiences–in terms of socioeconomic status.

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      • Only socio I think… because even amongst the poor and uneducated there are women who are confident in their relationships and do not feel the need to prove their virtue by being obedient.
        And there are men who are confident and glad to be partners, and don’t feel the need to prove their superiority/manliness(/or just fit in) by being guardians.

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      • Even in UK, If you watch the ads on Indian channels they are a big annoyance. Whether they are matrimonial, jewellery, food or remittance ads they will make u sick to the core if u happen to consider urself as an equal partner in a relationship..
        I have even written to those companies at times but nothing come out of it. I fail to understand why are we propogating such stereotypes in this day and age?!!

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  3. TV ads need not be given too much importance.
    The aim is to grab eye-balls, in order to sell a product.
    Some are deliberately provocative or simply outrageous.
    Staid and proper ads would not receive the attention they pay for.
    Even you would not have noticed and mentioned them in this blog.
    If I ever watch an ad I neither get offended by them nor do I praise them.
    I simply ignore the ad or laugh it off.
    When I watch TV I use the time when ads come on to read a newspaper or periodical or make a telephone call, or quickly check my e mail on my IPad.
    I would be concerned if the scenes like this part of a regular broadcast and not an ad.

    As regards my comment, the girl in the paint ad is dumb indeed.
    The girl in the Reliance ad, is cute and intelligent!
    I hardly noticed anything else.
    Regards
    GV

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    • Ads do reinforce stereotypes, just like TV serials do. How Romance and Relationships are seen by young people can change the society and how women (and men) are treated in future.
      There was a time when women in romantic scenes in Indian cinema immediately touched the man’s feet for honoring them by accepting them as their ‘daasi’ – today that is not seen as romantic anymore, hopefully being dumb or being a ‘guardian’ will not be seen as romantic some day in future.

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    • GV jee, you may be able to ignore the embedded message in advertisements, but we cannot ignore the fact that ads are a great reflection of popular culture images, and obscene amounts of money go into researching what sort of images does the target consumer associate with. There are millions of people out there who, whether they like it or not, will absorb something from the ads.
      These are not JUST to grab eyeballs, trust me, it’s a vicious cycle, where there is an interconnection between contemporary societal norms and images on television-be it ads or TV shows-both are influenced by each other. In fact, ads are a greater influence on the masses due to its repetitive nature and the fact that it is not confined to just one time slot or channel. Everyone gets to see it over and over again.

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      • GV-jee, I agree with AK..

        often the problem with ads is they are repetitive..which means more the tv you see, more the ads you see and more it gets ingrained..

        While you definitely utilise the time for ads in a very positive way, most people do watch the ads

        I am talking from a 3 year old’s mother’s point of view..R doesnt watch much TV, but then her friends at the daycare do and tell her about stuff which even I am not aware…

        I have a lady in the bus who tells me that her 7 year old daughter is asking or rather crying to get some shampoo which gives a free clip, necklace etc etc with it..and its really expensive..but the mother has no choice but to buy it because all her friends have it..

        now you would realise that these ads do have an effect..definitely on kids and perhaps on their parents…if that is the case, the boy will obviously learn that its okie for the girl to agree to him…however subtle, the message does gets ingrained na!

        IHM, please delete this comment if you find it offensive!

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      • Thanks AK and R’s Mom for your views.
        I read them with great interest.
        R ‘s Mom, it would have been a real pity if IHM had deleted your comment.
        Why would you even ask for it to be deleted!
        There was absolutely nothing offensive in your views.
        I am never offended if I hear a contrary opinion.
        In fact I read them with even greater attention.

        Thanks to AS too for that video link and tipping us off about AK’s field of interest.
        I saw the video but would not have noticed the subtle message without being alerted in advance.
        In fact I watch TV ads only half attentively.
        I have been believing that they are fleeting, and so their often insidious messages don’t get a chance to sink in.
        I would be more concerned with ads in the print media which stay visible and have an opportunity to do more damage to our minds.
        But from R’s mom’s comment, I can now appreciate what effect this is having on impressionable kids. It’s been nearly two decades since we had kids at my home.

        AK, do feel free to give more of your views, since you have special competence in this area.
        Mine is purely a layman’s view.
        I look forward to reading more of your thoughts and views.
        Regards
        GV

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    • @GV You wrote, “If I ever watch an ad I neither get offended by them nor do I praise them. I simply ignore the ad or laugh it off”

      But how many of the others do that same? That is the crux of the matter. In my house we laugh at all the silly and unfounded claims of ads and children have grown up hearing us and so look at them skeptically, knowing they are meant to catch eyeballs and nothing more. But that is not the case with the vast majority. More is the pity.

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  4. I find discussions on Ad hilarious.Just look at ads targeted towards unmarried men and they all have 1 concept that you purchase our product and you will get the girl.Just watch recent little hearts biscuit ad a boy enter into girl’s house and her younger brother is not allowing him to be near his sister then he keeps little hearts allover the house and the child forget everything and guy gets the girl.

    As far comparision of 2 ads is concerned .In the first ad it is the traditional house and 2 unknown faces.In Reliance ad it is Anushka Sharma who has done roles of freely outspoken girl.People watch Reliance ad Because of her so it is obvious she will play role of dominant partner

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      • thats a very important Question you raised IHM .. i wish we have adds where people dont redicule or dominate or make a mockery of another to prove a point … why we have to emphasise that in a relationship one person is superior why whatever virtue . I like reliance adds for the lighter tone ..but why guy has to be so dumb..its as if people are either dumb or loud and manipulative ..women are either submsisive or always ready to fight .. i have liked a certain add of detergent where women step in to get a car out of mud while other ppl watch … and then i saw them wearing all kind of clothes …4 diffnt women ..that sends some msg .

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      • Don’t know but i grew up in Joint Family and what I have seen everywhere is that there is always one.The comments on this Blog also show this.There are 4 Reliance advertisements and in all the advertisements Guy is shown as dumb ,idiot and Anushka is always right yet majority of commentators like the ad Why? because they find its O.K that a modern woman is dominating a man.let any other company reverse the genders and majority of comments here will start screaming sexism ,sexism

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  5. i hope you know that AK is doing her dissertation on the stereotypical ads for young girls and boys? trust me they are much WORSE. an example.

    P.S. do ask her about this. you could perhaps write something on this. she showed us a host of videos. its pretty scary!

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    • This, seriously is the most disgusting thing I have seen in a while. On the same note, I have recently learned that some schools in USA give girls a toy baby that cries and poops and ask them to take care of it, to emphasize that motherhood is not romantic. While I agree with the message, the procedure is highly disgusting. Why not simply educate on birth control measures?

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      • I have been a lurker here, and could not keep myself from commenting. I have a son and a daughter.
        My kids see me go to work, perch on the last rung of the step stool. Nothing gender-specific here. Now, my daughter is a fierce three-year old, but she keeps asking me if girls can do this or girls can do that. Nobody in my family ever tells her that girls should behave in such and such a way (both my Mom and my MIL have been working women), and I really don’t know where she got these ideas from! It is really scary.

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    • This Ad is just so disgusting! i mean, a breast feeding doll?!! for such a small kid? Arent they already like telling that its a ‘girls only’ toy and that is her prerogative or something? Its so not in the right spirit.

      If I had a daughter, I would’ve probably bought her the same kind of toys that I buy for my son-blocks and shapes and something gender neutral… I wonder who buys such stuff!!

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      • Yet, would someone in your position buy a doll, breastfeeding or otherwise, for their son? A girl playing with blocks, electronics, legos is all fine because it is ‘gender neutral’ but unless everything, including dolls, becomes gender neutral, it is not a level playing field. Nothing personal,@RS🙂 just found your comment as a springboard for saying something I have always wanted to say!

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      • Nitya,

        I get where you are coming from, but I have noticed a lot of young boys like to play with dolls, but are generally discouraged.

        However, I do find a breast feeding doll disgusting and to no purpose for either gender!

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  6. I love the comparison. I wonder what makes some of us more influenced by the second one and some others more influenced by the first. Would you say it is an awareness of the inequality that is served to women everyday from the day they were born?

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  7. IF you want to have happy life Use Delux paints. If you want unhappy shattered life use Reliance mobile.
    It’s simple, don’t prolong

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  8. Did you notice how, in the first ad, the man came up to the woman in the end and put a ghoonghat over her head with the sari pallu while mouthing ‘ aur mere rang mei dhal jaati ho’- as though reinforcing how putting a ghoonghat on her head corresponds to ‘earning’ her husband’s love? Why, cant she love her husband without the ghoonghat on and also expect to be loved and accepted by him? And only love and acceptance… no respect, mind you. No she cant expect her husband to respect her as reinforcingly as he commands it from her( read the serious expression on the man’s face as an indicator). Respect is only one sided in our society, isnt it? Mutual respect is a dream in our society. Dont know if I’m reading too much into it, but that particular gesture somehow stood out and made me think along these lines.

    Loved your observations on the first ad, they hold true to a large extent in our society. The girl surely looked dumb. The second ad was rather cute and more acceptable. I do hope though that this equation and understanding between couple like the one potrayed by Anushka & Rannvijay would remain even after marriage.

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    • Oh yes, covering of head by the man is an indication that he ‘respects’ her and is willing to protect her honor /respect/izzat generally by controlling her life and choices.This respect from men is often more important than her life.

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      • I suppose that not many of you have seen the Is Pyaar Ko Kya Naam Doon serial on Star Plus. The two characters in the first Ad are from that sitcom. I follow it on and off and I have so been put off by the story line because the girl and guy are shown to be in love but not accepting of the fact. What they try to show as love ends up being classic domestic abuse – the guy is so infuriated by what the girl says that he ends up hurting her physically or verbally, but as soon as he sees her tears he softens up and asks for forgiveness.

        I cringe at how that is normalizing the concept of domestic abuse in the name of love.

        Also did you notice the difference of costume between the ads? The “mere rang mein dhalne waali” is in salwar suit and the progressive one is shorts?

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  9. Answering your question IHM, I find nothing in the first ad even remotely close to romantic. The ad just screams on top of its lungs.. STEREOTYPE!!!
    And didn’t the line ‘jaise tum mere rang mein dhal jaati ho’ sound more like ‘jaise tum meri unglion pe naachti ho’ underneath? And even though they are supposedly being shown as ‘equal partners’ apparently sitting across each other playing chess, the woman’s character screams out ‘dumb doormat’.

    The second ad, which I do find really cute, on the other hand sends out a positive message at many levels, like:
    1. The obvious equality the two have between each other by the way both address each other, and the parity in dialogue and tones.
    2. The fact that the woman is even technically sound enough to operate high profile gadgets and knows about network and stuff.
    3. The relationship that the woman shares with the guy’s mother, contrary to the infamous TV saas-bahu relationship.
    4. There is no objection on the kind of clothes she’s comfortable in.
    5. In the ad, the two aren’t married (since she calls his mother aunty, and she’s even okay with it), they’re just shown as a financially sound happy couple living an independent life in an aesthetically done up apartment.

    Did I miss anything IHM? Well.. the ad is simply a MUCH better portrayal of popular culture images and I DO find it a gazillion times more romantic than the former one.

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  10. Good comparisons. Like GV as far as possible I do not watch ads. But I am very much aware of the influence of Ads in the society, especially among kids.The paint ad re in forces gender stereotypes while the Reliance ad breaks it. We need more and more ads that break gender stereotypes

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  11. Comments above have summed up my thoughts on the ads. Taking off from AK’s comment about ads vs society being a vicious circle – I couldn’t agree more. In college, I interned for a market research agency. For those who may not be aware – market research firms conduct in-depth analysis on consumers, what they buy and why they make the buying decisions they do. My job there was to listen to audio tapes of consumer interviews and transcribe them so they could be sent for 1st level of analysis. You’d think it would have bored me to tears but listening to women talk about why they would buy certain soaps vs others, why they would buy a certain brand of tea based on ads vs another opened my 19 year old brain to an India I never imagined existed. Here are a couple of gems i remember –
    1. Wearing salwar kameez is a sign of modernity. Jeans et al is plain slutty
    2. The woman in XYZ soap ad wears western clothes and probably even goes to the parlour. She probably neglects her family. Therefore that brand is ‘not for women like us’. However, I might buy it for my young daughter. She can use it while she’s young. Once she’s got her own family why does she need these things
    3. Looking after yourself means you’re a bad mother.
    4. Taking independent decisions makes you a bad wife
    5. Its my job to think about my husbands health. If he has to think about it himself “why did he marry me?”
    6. I am lucky my husband is kind to me
    So all these wonderful gems are faithfully sent off to marketing depts where the branding professionals sit down and brainstorm on how best to subliminally tell their target consumer that buying XYZ product is a sign of how good a wife, mother, DIL, daughter etc etc they are. As a result you have ads like the paints one mentioned in the post. Salwar kameez, dutiful and suitably grateful. ChaChing!!!!

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    • OMG! I just wasnt aware of this! seriously your comment is an eye opener…no wonder the ad guys come up with such ads…or the saas bahu serials are such a hit..I mean if the ad agencies had to make ads to sell, they would take this in account isnt it? Gosh I am truely shocked…

      and on a side note..I am definitely a slut by their standards…I always move around in jeans🙂

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    • Very interesting, KMKH! Thanks for sharing. I didn’t know this is how it works. So in essence, the ad makers just throw out whatever the majority wants to hear. Whatever sells the product!

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    • Interesting observations (1 to 6)
      People who think like us are a negligible minority.
      These ads are not aimed at us.
      They are for the teeming millions out there who will buy their products and not analyse their ads critically like we are doing here.
      Regards
      GV

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    • OMG. point 5 was the most hillarious. Do these women think men are too dumb? As far as they are considered an Ideal husband is some one who is not capable of taking care of himself.

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    • This should open eyes of those who think ads are just that ‘ads’! A real eye-opener of what goes on behind to prompt people to come up with those stupid ads. Look how ideas are getting reinforced!

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  12. why do we have to go into the nitty gritty of everything .. in all this man – woman issues dont you think we are going too deep and trying to find something wrong with anything ..

    Two people talking .. its between them what they say to each other its doesnot always mean that a manis putting down the values of a woman or vice versa..

    if we continue like this nothing will ever be good enough, soon it will be men who will start to see it that way that they are being let down .. where does this all end ..
    you know when i see ads such things dont even enter my mind, I dont even think about it .. maybe i am dumb or something but why evertyhing needs t obe so minutely checked and seen ..

    AND the above lines i have written on what i think , I have not watvched the AD’s and I dont intend to do sooo.. maybe i am wrong or well I am sure a lot of people will say I am wrong but just a question isn’t all this Disection of everything making things worse ?

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    • Bikram, I feel certain Ads strongly reinforces conservative patriarchal culture,while certain others show us a peek of more gender-sensitive and more just life. If one favors such a positive change in our society we should try to encourage the latter type of Ads. That is I think the purpose of this post and should be welcomed. So this dissection is to make things better,not worse.

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    • There are Ad’s which let the man down. IHM has mentioned those before. The 1 in which a man of 35 doesn’t know where his socks is, the ad where a man is afraid to tell his wife that the food tastes good because his mom was there, most of the ads where men are seen as dumbass, the malayalam ad of Kalyan jwellers where the girl ditching her BF is seen as a symbol of trust, and lots more.

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  13. Adding to KMKH’s comment, I was once a part of a team monitoring Focussed Group Discussion on a health drink brand’s proposed advertising. Since that job and that work and my commitment to be a neutral observer have long been over, I can share how depressing was it to meet women who thought of other women and therefore maybe themselves on these lines:
    1. Why is the mother in the ad talking in a complaining tone about kids not eating the food? Maybe she doesn’t know how to bring up kids or maybe she’s too busy with other things!
    2. Only women who are not good cooks/ are lazy use diet supplements for their kids!
    3. This is money not well-spent, and it is obvious from her lifestyle that she can afford it which is why she takes the easy way out (she was shown as a working mom in the prototype ad)

    The only thing that revealed worse judging tactics in women was an ad of detergents.. and it was damn interesting because that one was specifically targeted at women working in MNCs. One would think that their concern with detergents would be speed, not harming delicate clothes, suitability for washing machines etc., but NO! the biggest common criterion was “husband shouldn’t complain about dirty cuffs and collars”. Is it any surprise then that such regressive ads continue to be thrown in our faces?!!!

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    • LOL! if I had to re-write the ad.. I would have made the woman ask her man to do his own laundry, if hes that picky and then show the man bringing home a better detergent paying a little more money(after all that is the deal isnt it? making money off of the product) home which gets the job done speedily without fuss.

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  14. These ads are completely “innocent” in comparison to e.g. Bharat-Matri-something, which is very consistent with the openly racist, chauvinist and “tradition”-reinforcing content.

    There, your racist grandma praises you for choosing an Indian guy, whose light skin shade, engineering degree and colgate smile are a lifelong insurance for your attested and approved marriage. You just sit there and look beautiful with the most childish and clueless face expression an adult woman can make.

    Role models they are!

    Even though the majority of these ads are relatively easy to ignore, I don’t think they should be discredited as something out of space. After all, they are a response to and a self-generator of the very audience they are addressed to. The more popular these ads are, the more “supporters” they are likely to have.

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  15. Hi IHM,
    I have been following your blog and the comments for a couple of days now.
    Its interesting…
    As for the ad….I have understood the ad now only.I found it so stupid that i never watched it after the first time.
    Talking of potrayal women , i and my hubby actually find the fair and lovely advertisements even more offensive.Apparently you need to have a very fair (don’t forget the glow) complexion to find friends, even the love of your life ,and success in what you are doing!!! Whats your take on that?

    Me – Rahmath, take a look,
    https://indianhomemaker.wordpress.com/2011/09/16/fair-and-lovely-meets-fair-and-handsome/
    and here,
    https://indianhomemaker.wordpress.com/2011/03/15/so-why-do-some-women-judge-other-women/

    And adding one more,
    https://indianhomemaker.wordpress.com/2011/09/16/does-beauty-really-lie-in-the-eyes-of-the-beholder/

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  16. I always love it when @IHM shares two videos in a single post. The videos are usually from YouTube and to get a more unvarnished look at what she is saying in the post, all you have to do is read the comments under these videos.

    The first one is appreciated a lot more (unfortunately) and the second one has all kinds of comments which mostly are not so nice.

    I like the second ad, rather the whole campaign as I find it quite a normal representation of life. But I guess a majority do like the first Ad better.

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  17. Aww, how sweet. Not.

    Obviously, the guy portrayed in the first ad isn’t exactly the sharpest tool of the lot. Of course, the woman isn’t all that bright either. But look at the positive side – at least they’re compatible with each other. At least they aren’t screwing up the life of some smart, liberal-minded person unfortunate enough to get bullied into marrying either of them.

    “All’s fair in love and war” is such a meaningless statement anyway.

    As a half-humorous one liner, it’s okay.

    As a seriously uttered philosophy, it’s completely pathetic.

    Everything is NOT fair in love. If everything is “fair”, it’s slavery, not love.

    Vishwanathjee/KMKH hit the spot, I think. Ads like the first one aren’t targeted at the kind of people who comment here on IHM’s site. They are targeted at the kind of people who would giggle and blush (or grunt and sneer, depending on their gender) at the “romance” it showcases. I know a LOT of people, male and female, who would consider such an ad very cute and definitely worthy of further attention. The number of people in that category greatly exceeds the number of people I know who would consider it dumb and worthy of scorn.
    It would be a rubbish ad if it was targeted at someone like me. But it is not. Considering the target demographics, it’s probably GOOD marketing.

    Ads tell you a lot about the social fabric of a place. They tell you a lot about what a society values, what it abhors, what it considers desirable, even what changes are happening inside it. Advertisements tell a very eloquent story about the core beliefs of a culture and India is no exception to that.

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  18. Hmmm…Just saw the first Ad today, and here I read just what crossed my mind-especially someone above commented on the ghunghat thing, the same thought crossed my mind-Why that ghunghat action?

    As for the second Ad – Its actually very very well done. I could identify with it-coz I’ve done it myself🙂 Also, i read in some comment above that the couple might not be married because she calls his mom as aunty-I dont think it can be generalised like that coz I know a lot of DILs who call their MILs as “aunty” – not saying that they *should* be married either!

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  19. Enjoyed reading the comments of everyone much more than listening to either of the ads.

    My personal take🙂 – The first one a big bakwaas, the second one is appropriate for the people open to changing society and lifestyle.

    I have to say that the comparison is not fair. We are not comparing apples to apples or oranges to oranges. As Kay said, the targeted segments are different. With the marketing research data to support, the contents are bound to be different for these segments.

    I understand that we cannot what everyone else is thinking, but I can make the difference in my own household esp with my kids. The underlying lesson and what should get passed on is : ‘respect the other human being’.
    The scales may be different for different people. And we are all heavily influenced by the way we are brought up. We still see arranged marriages in India where the get-to-know-each-other process is very short , vague and awkward before they are declared as man and wife. What if the husband in such a marriage is like a guy from the second ad and the wife is someone like from the first ad , a lady who thinks that her world is her husband. Each have to find a way to respect the other, be and keep each other happy.

    With the second ad, I believe the future generations will have a more balanced outlook.

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    • I was not really comparing the two ads, I was comparing how the way we see romance has changed. There was a time obedience and touching a husband’s feet was seen as romantic, in Parinita Saif Ali Khan’s slap was seen as quite normal, but today we see romance as more of a mutual love and respect and care thing, than one partner always leading and another following him to the end of the world.

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  20. Just one little note: I haven’t seen the 2nd ad but someone mentioned that the couple couldn’t be married because the girl calls the guy’s mom ‘aunty’. I know of women who refuse to call their MILs ‘mom’ or ‘mummyji’ and insist on calling them aunty even after marriage.

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  21. urgh. i saw the first ad on tv today itself. it sickens me. another thing i watched on tv and felt quite disgusted by was a particular review of the ‘dirty picture’ starring vidya balan. the guy reviewing the movie praised her acting skills and then called her a ‘hero among the heroines’ of bollywood. i found it quite sick that even when you praise a woman, you can’t praise her calling her a woman. you have to do it by saying she’s like a man. ‘my daughter is like a son to me’ is another example of this. we hear several parents saying this and thinking they are very liberal. i keep hearing about a changing Indian society and culture, as portrayed by the latter ad, but honestly, i see very, very little of it. even people who are not narrow minded and believe in both men and women being rational individuals entitled to opinions, choices, and thoughts of their own, behave in this manner only when they are with their friends, and not their family. ‘you don’t know how it is at my place’ or ‘i can’t talk to my family the way you talk to yours’ is something i get to hear very often. while i do understand that many families are conservative, i feel its a little hypocritical.

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  22. The first one is boring! If the husband was to change rules in the middle of a board game just to get his way, I sure would have woken up the whole neighborhood! What bugs me the most that the obeying/subservient partner is always a female (in the advertisements). I think it is ok to take a step back at times and let the other have his/her way, but when it is the woman who does this most of the times, it becomes a gender bias.

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    • And, if by chance, the obeying/subservient partner happens to be a male, then he should be a weird looking comedian who is scared of his tyrant looking wife…

      This way an overall perception of women is made – if she is confident, she must be a tyrant; and if she is submissive then she is a perfect woman.

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  23. To be honest, I’ve seen worse ads🙂 . I don’t mind the woman “taking the guy’s word” for it in chess, because I assume he’s more skilled with the game. It’s not always easy for an experienced player to explain all the variations of a chess move, so he was just fooling around…

    But the part about the innocent credulity does ring true…though I had difficulty understanding the ad in the first place due to the lingo.

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  24. I saw both the ads on your post for the first time. If I had seen them on Tv directly my observation would have been
    1) the first ad is a super stupid ad done half heartedly to somehow bring the reference of colours and drive thr point home that buy so and so paint.
    2) the second one is a witty ad done with some intention like smart people opt for reliance network.
    But reading the comments of AK and KMKH now I learnt that there is so much of research ( to feel the public pulse and make use of it ) and systematic study done , they only forget one small detail iehow it may reinforce regressive beliefs and stereotypes in the society but who cares as long as product is getting sold.
    PS-i had done a post on similar lines some time back with sarcastic tone.please find time to read it
    http://housewifesrecluse-kirti.blogspot.com/2011/03/toying-with-mess.html.

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  25. More than ads I think the daily soaps need to change. There is a daily soap that airs on Star Plus at 9:30 pm every week night where the female protagonist is pregnant and she goes for a checkup with her mom-in-law (she and her husband had a fight or something and she doesnt call him). The police catch them assuming that they were trying to know the gender of the fetus. Though they are later release after all the confusion is cleared (in another 2-3 episodes) the men of the house cooment that they shouldn’t have gone without male company.. How can we progress when people still think in this way?

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  26. I dont have much to say that isnt already said…I watch stuff on videos/DVD’s cause that way I dont have to watch ads…I also record programs I like watching and watch it later by fast forwarding ads… I am already wasting time watching my favorite TV program when I could probably be learning something new, so I dont like to further waste time watching something that tells me how to waste my money too.;). As for the ads you posted up there…Nope, I dont find either one romantic. Without much analysis, I prefer the second one, cause thats more in line with how I see the world. That doesnt mean I will up and go buy the cellphone on that particular network. As for the later being an unmarried couple…I would say that is not guaranteed cause I have seen people who do not assign the position or of Mother to their Mother-in-laws and continue to call them Aunty.

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  27. I totally love the Reliance Ads with Anushka in them. In fact all of them have a very bold take on partners and not easily digested by many. Many elders I know do think, she is just a girlfriend, and can’t be a wife. That shows the expectation from a wife, and being bold is not one of them.

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  28. Lately, I had started to worry about myself because I take quick offence to all such sexist content — crude dialogues (and there are a lot in our films!), vulgar gestures, advertisements (as you have noted), songs, depiction of women in films etc — which a lot of people (including women) laughed off. I am quite relieved that there are people like you, IHM, who take this as seriously as I do. Thank you.

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  29. The first is an ad? Seriuosly? Suffocatingly chauvinistic…i cant imagine being this brainless in reality! The second made me laugh,and remind me of my devrani…she is as naughty and fun!

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  30. Hilarious observations and so true.🙂 Loved the post. The only word that came to my mind after watching the first ad was CRAP! If I was in the gal’s place, I would have told him ‘Sorry man, I am not innocent green. Let me go.’ and then divorced him or broken up with him. Lovely post! Keep it up.🙂

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    • In a MARRIAGE, when there is NO CHOICE but to OBEY and FOLLOW for either of the partners, it implies the relationship is based on FEAR and TYRANNY not of Respect. When there is a choice then its a compromise where both parties are giving up something they want for a common good.

      Obey and follow works well in a Military or a Dictatorship but note that even there, Fear(of being attacked or dying or losing all that you have) is what rules the following, not respect. Doing things out of Fear and doing things out of Respect are two very different things. It would do us well to know the difference.

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    • Crap! Who said men are the one who earn money. I earn my own money, I bring my own food home, and I respect myself. It stands true for many of my friends too, even those living in patriarchal set ups. So wake up and smell the freshly baked bread brought home by the woman, dear lutfullah. Seriously, you sound like a dinosaur!

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    • LOL! I make more money than my husband does ! I run the complete household , my husband left his job to pursue his dreams for 1 year( taking care of our baby and being a good homemaker for sometime). I enjoyed every single moment. Get up and get real, I was bringing home money and food. Does that mean he should obey, follow what ever i say?Not really. Now I have taken the turn of taking a career break and he does these things for me. We respect each other, love each other at the same time disagree on and fight with one another and for each other.
      That’s how an household must be. a mix of both, driven by love.

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  31. that was a great comparison – which relationship seems more equal and enabling to both partners is unquestionable.
    There was this another ad that I have not been able to get a video link to – The complete man capsule – the wife tells the husband that she will lift stuff because he will not be able to do it and the husband is expectedly hurt and humiliated and hence he needs to take the complete man capsule!

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  32. awesome😀. unfortunately such mentality is endorsed by many of us and hence these ads are in demand. these admakers are supposed to be educated ppl with rational thoughts. and i never liked the second ad dunno why as i cudn’t find any logic behind my dislike for it and i usually change the channel whenever they show this ad. by the way i couldn’t figure out ur take on that.

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  33. just thought i ll add to that. i hate ranvijay and he did a pathetic job in this ad as well😀. and now everyone will hate me but thats ok. liked anushka sharma in couple of movies though. and i don’t like justifying anything that’s wrong, as in this ad he actually remembered his mom’s birthday but his mom will have the impression that her son doesn’t even remember her b’day. yeah i found my reason for hating this ad and i m happy now. i don’t think there is anything wrong with the way they converse with eachother. “tu” is a sweet way of calling ur husband/wife or boyfriend/girlfriend provided it’s reciprocal and not one person is doing that.

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    • Debjyoti, he would not have managed to call his mother with his network even after twelve – Anoushka had his mother’s number saved on her phone, and she called. She seems to be on good terms with his mother. The mother, I think would either understand the joke and teasing that is going on, also he must have told her what happened. Do you think she won’t believe him?
      Do take a look at this comment by AK, above, (click to reach the comment directly) https://indianhomemaker.wordpress.com/2011/12/02/do-you-find-this-romantic/#comment-58237

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      • absolutely agree with AK although i never paid attention to so many minute details as this ad is not one of my favorites😀. but yes if u r looking from romantic angle, thumbs up. and by the way i never visited ur site before but from now on i ll keep a tab on ur blog on indivine. just loved both ur posts which i found on indivine.

        me – Thank You Debajyoti🙂

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  34. In the first video I hated how she started talking in that child-like innocent baby voice. Ugh, I’ve seen it in bollywood movies too, its supposed to be seen as cute and lovable or something, I have no idea. But i think its kind of gross why a man would find that cute. She’s a grown woman and should act like an adult. Talking to your boyfriend or husband in a baby voice is so creepy.

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  35. Just my opinion : The first ad is quite unrealistic, for very few people can put up with illogical arguments, or even diffident behavior these days. Most couples today would end up arguing over this.
    While the second ad is dramatically the opposite of the first, I find it a bit sexist, too. If the roles were reversed, with the guy always having the last laugh, wouldn’t women find it a bit nauseating?

    Like

  36. Pingback: Chetan Bhagat’s Marriage Tips – Only for men. Just for fun, on a lighter note. | The Life and Times of an Indian Homemaker

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