Column | The Netflix series Class shows that our imagination fails us when it comes to portraying crazy rich Indians.

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A still from 'Class' adapted by Ashim Ahluwalia from the Spanish series 'Elite'.
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A still from ‘Class’ adapted by Ashim Ahluwalia from the Spanish series ‘Elite’.

is the latest OTT sizzler. the class From Netflix – a heady cocktail of hot teens, hot sex and hot-button social issues.

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It is a fairly faithful remake of the hit Spanish series. Eliot. And this is where it sometimes stumbles. At one point, the rich young man takes his poor lover, a bit of a scoundrel, home at night after a party. His brother smuggles in his classmates for an after-midnight swim at the pool.

What is absolutely amazing is that no one sees them. The house is luxurious but there seems to be hardly any staff. This is the problem with remakes, said my colleague who relies on all kinds of OTT series. In Spain, it is believed that even the wealthy have fewer full-time staff. In a ___ Delhi This type of house will have 24×7 security guards. Someone must have gotten up to open the front door. They would have to step on a couple of people sleeping in the room. Later, Ashiq leaves the young man sleeping on the bed and tries to break into the safe. He wanders from room to room and yet never runs into a soul.

I remember a friend who visited a very rich business family. Kolkata. He said there was a person whose job was only to answer the landline. ‘Landline Answer- The one‘ über became our code word for privilege. It’s a detail that I would never have been able to dream up as a writer if I hadn’t heard about it first hand.

The main problem is that we have a much easier time writing realistic accounts of the lives of the poor and the lower middle class. They are already the subject of academic studies and award-winning non-fiction books. Also, they have less choice when it comes to being placed under the sociological microscope. But the ultra-rich have no incentive to tell us how many layers of security envelop their everyday existence. They live on a world so far away from most of us that we might even imagine life on the moon.

A still from 'class'.

A still from ‘class’.

So we come up with caricatures like the class Where a school-going youth is suddenly appointed as a director in his father’s company. A friend from Delhi rolled his eyes and said that even the most duffer business is sent abroad first to get an MBA ticket. The botox-ed mom only drinks cocktails from the moment she wakes up because that’s what we imagine the rich and poor do all day. When a schoolboy arrives at his friend’s house in the morning, that too on a school day, he is served whiskey just as other families serve Coca-Cola.

As Indian markets opened up, attitudes about wealth changed. It is no longer something to keep in a khaki sheet. It’s okay to make fun of it. But most of us get a glimpse of the rarefied world of this kind of wealth when some industrial tycoon has a very big, very fat Indian wedding.

A wedding planner told me about a wedding she had organized in a palatial palace, where the mandap was made of 80,000 roses and every tenth rose was studded with a Swarovski crystal. The entire event was captured by 15 cameras and later shown in a movie theater for family and friends. But this is only a special occasion. the class Considered to be about the daily life of the very rich. This is where our imagination fails us.

The British historical drama series 'Downton Abbey' (2010–2015) depicts an early 20th century aristocratic family living in a country estate with servants.

The British historical drama series ‘Downton Abbey’ (2010–2015) depicts an early 20th century aristocratic family living in a country estate with servants.

In the episode where the poor student visits the rich girl’s house, he wonders if only four people live in this big mansion. She says yes. This would have been the perfect moment to show off the house to the army of maids and cooks and security guards, staff who live there and yet are never considered residents. But nothing like that happens. It’s not by Robert Altman. Gosford Parka murder mystery set in the top-down world of masters and servants, or Downton Abbey. The staff continues to run these mansions but here the staff also gets in the way of the plot.

Despite all this, the class It’s a fun thing. Performance is good. The cast is eye-candy – clearly there are no overweight rich people in this corner of Delhi. Hodnett’s story is amusing. It tackles many issues, many of them tailored to the Indian context: Hindu-Muslim relations, hijab, homosexuality, caste, caste, Kashmir, toxic social media, drugs, teenage pregnancy, police brutality. .

But the class It goes to show that when it comes to portraying crazy rich Indians, Houston, we have a problem.

The author is the author of ‘Don’t Let Me Know’ and likes to give everyone his opinion whether asked or not.

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