Every weeknight at 10 pm, Neal Caffrey comes into my bedroom. I’m in my pjs by then, and not really dressed to receive visitors. But being the uber-cool guy that he is, Neal doesn’t mind. In fact, he doesn’t even notice. Finally there’s something my daughter and I agree on. We both agree that Neal Caffrey is the most handsome con man on TV. No! strike that! Make that the most handsome man ever on TV. Period.
Those bluer than blue eyes, that chiselled face, that voice. I am, of course, talking about that dapper Adonis in a designer suit and hat who’s “attached” with the FBI’s White Collar Crimes Division for his very intimate knowledge of the modus operandi of white collar criminals, seeing that he used to be one himself. That is, until he’s offered a deal by the FBI to “lend” his considerable expertise in return for commutation of punishment.
It’s only recently that I was introduced by my daughter and niece to the charming, Mr Caffrey, played by Matt Bomer, in the serial “White Collar” which airs on Star World.
I used to pity the poor souls who couldn’t get through the day without their daily fix of soap operas. Yet, here I am now, another addict. This serial has me totally hooked. The storyline is fast-paced, there’s intrigue, there’s humour and there are the FBI agents in their cool suits and even cooler shades. What’s there not to like about that?
Some folks have their saas-bahu serials, others their 24x7 news channels. Though these days the food shows seem to be proliferating like barnacles on a sunken ship. These are hosted by photogenic chefs who seem to know their onions, though one must exclude the middle-aged, sweaty and balding Floyd of “Floyd’s India”, who tries to teach Indian cuisine to Indians. The cheek of the guy!
Honestly, though, I don’t know how many people actually try out the recipes shown on these shows. I know I haven’t, but then cooking is not my strongest suit. I do, however, envy the large and immaculate kitchens, especially since in my kitchen, more than one person would constitute a crowd.
There’s a quirky food show on BBC called “Come Dine with Me” where four strangers compete with each other to host the perfect dinner party and win a 1,000 pounds cash prize. The comment, mostly uncomplimentary of the contestants about their host’s culinary skills and the irreverent background commentary by Dave Lamb is what sets this show apart.
As for the movie channels, they’re quite hopeless, showing the same old re-runs week after week. They probably have a grand total of ten movies in their library, which they keep rotating. Here’s Angelina Jolie pouting at the camera. Quick change to another channel, and there she is again, pout and all. Enough already! There’s only so much one can take of Angelina Jolie or her pout.
The news channels are no better – going on ad nauseam about one scam or the other, this scandal or that, and “breaking news” that’s rarely newsworthy. The anchors with their panel discussions where the panelists are barely allowed to put across their views— all that can be quite annoying. But to be fair to them, a 24x7 news channel is probably no picnic, especially if there’s nothing newsworthy to report. Which is why I prefer the newspapers. You can at least choose the news you want to read. Nothing like a fresh, crisp newspaper with your morning tea, that timeless ritual that plays out across all households.
TV is so much a part of our lives, its absence is unthinkable. It’s a lot of things to a lot of people, but mostly it’s a friend and companion. A vocal and opinionated friend, perhaps, but entertaining nevertheless, and one we couldn’t do without.