TV Review: Aamir Khan on ‘Koffee With Karan’
For the discerning audience, Koffee With Karan is unlikely to whet any appetites. Therein perhaps lies the beauty of the show – its flippancy and cattiness is what keeps us watching season upon season, even if the show itself is a bit of a brown-nosing exercise or a shameless plug for the guests’ next big ticket release.
More of that was expected here, especially given that Aamir Khan has a big release to market (Thugs Of Hindostan) and given the shrewd businessman that he is, that’s the only time he’ll really make an exception and attend “these types of shows”.
After doing the needful and plugging the film though, the conversation took a somewhat welcome, and unexpected turn, where host Karan Johar, for once, talked about issues that had current relevance and even tried to scratch the surface of Aamir’s personal life, particularly his relationship with ex Reena. It was refreshing to see Aamir candidly talk about how traumatic his break up with her was and how he still had the utmost respect for her and his surprise at how his current wife was amicable with the former and that the respect between the two had almost nothing to do with him.
They then delved into the word of the decade ‘nepotism’ (leave it alone already!) and Aamir mentioned that he was in support of son Junaid joining the movies, but would be frank and honest if the latter didn’t have it in him.
And lo and behold host KJo finally addressed the growing awareness around the ‘Me Too’ movement and how an industry that’s been oblivious to it for years, is finally waking up to the storm its caused all round and exposed the predators that were in their midst. Aamir’s self-awareness was impressive, particularly when he pointed out that he’d been guilty of objectifying women in the past too even if it wasn’t directly. He cited the god awful lyrics of a song from his 90’s smash hit Dil and mentioned how he couldn’t have known better at the time, and I appreciated his candour and sensitivity during this portion of the episode.
Aamir fondly recalling his interactions with the Big B evoked nostalgia too, particularly when he mentioned Jo Jeeta Wohi Sikandar, and the round that followed which involved Aamir randomly calling up Karan’s ex friends and colleagues invoked a giggle even if the reactions from the callers themselves were a little flat.
The Rapid Fire as always, was where all the fun was, with sassy Malaika Arora taking the hot seat and especially fun was watching Karan himself get a taste of his own bitter medicine and squirm at some of the questions that were chucked at him. His discomfort at committing to some of the controversial answers was all the more obvious especially when it came to picking his favourites (Alia, Kareena, Deepika Katrina and gang). Needless to add, he lost the round to Aamir, who even if equally non-committal, at least tried to pepper his answers with some wit if nothing else.
Karan admitting that he stalks people on social media came as no surprise – what did however was that his onus was more on creating a grand masterpiece and that was more important to him than relying on friendships and goodwill.
The climax consisting of the ‘3 Things I Can’ was enjoyable, but didn’t have as much oomph as the Social Media rounds with previous guests, but then Aamir wouldn’t have necessarily warmed to that game, given that by his own admission, he was only coaxed to join social media at Mr Bachchan’s insistence.
This week’s episode was definitely a little more engaging than the past ones in the season – thanks to Aamir, more current topics were covered, but perhaps host Karan Johar needs to learn how to strike a balance between fun and content – it’s either too much of one or the other.
Still I get that the show is still trying to get its groove back, and a few of the promised guests on the couch might entice us to continue watching a show that’s format is quickly beginning to run out of ideas and steam.