Tuesday, January 24, 2012

All Extended Families Are Psychotic: Adapting the Hunt-Sharples Indices for Harridanry



I’m struggling here to fully convey the nature of the drudgery and pettiness of the domestic crises and the central protagonists. You really have to watch to fully appreciate the histrionics. Entire episodes can revolve around a family confrontation over a poorly cooked meal. For years I endured the unfailing wholesomeness of the ‘betis’ when faced with torment after torment at the hands of seething womenfolk. Each new soap would degenerate into more extreme harridanry that it became exasperating watching hooked relatives splutter with indignation at the new levels of persecution being unleashed on each new martyr. “They are all mistaken! She is plotting and has manipulated the situation!!!!!! Someone must SAVE her!!” It was only when the most vicious iterations started sprouting that it finally dawned on me: I was rooting for the wrong characters.

To fully convey this, then, I have adapted the SI Unit for Soaps, the Hunt-Sharples Index to illustrate the toxicity levels involved in each soap, or continuing drama as they like to delude themselves. IMDB barely covers these programmes so for most background info I have used Sky EPG, programme websites and Wiki.


Pavitra Rishta (Zee TV)

Sky EPG:
The story of Archana, a girl who is not highly educated but handles the whole house work impeccably. This is her journey to find a life partner.


Harridan: Savita Damodar Deshmukh () Hunt-Sharples rating: 10. Supposedly the most horrendous Mother-in-law in Zee’s pantheon. Must try harder. Just looks slightly mardy most the time. Probably The Change.

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