Voot’s season 15 of Bigg Boss this year took no time to warm up. By the first week itself, the fireworks had begun, unprecedented for the show. Even host Salman Khan, who is not one to be rattled easily, seemed shocked by the contestants’ hyper energy.
At the heart of it all is contestant Prateek Sehajpal, actor and MTV veteran from shows like Love School and Ace of Space. He is also fresh from Karan Johar’s Bigg Boss OTT. In the first week itself, Sehajpal shattered a glass wall during a skirmish, earned enemies by getting everybody nominated for his own bad behaviour, and even tried to break the locks of a bathroom door as a female contestant showered. Salman Khan admonished the young actor for his antics, saying he won’t be able to get into any other TV show if he continued like that.
Sehajpal is the crowd-puller
Like him or hate him, Sehajpal has become the lightning rod of Bigg Boss season 15. It is now a one versus fourteen battle. On Twitter, his fans are calling him the “Raja of Bigg Boss”. He is the reason viewers are glued to the show and look forward to the following week.
In other Bigg Boss seasons, such drama usually occurs only after the second week. This time, the contestants are not even catching their breath. Anger, abuse and aashiqui have already been written down. This week, former Splitsvilla contestant Miesha Iyer and actor Ieshaan Sehgal were part of ‘Kambal mein Fumble’, a tongue-in-cheek reference to making out inside a blanket. Contestants were also seen body-shaming each other, calling Sehajpal “dedh footiya” (short in height) while calling out each other’s age.
In his ‘Weekend Ka Vaar’ evaluation, Salman Khan assured viewers and critics that the energy level of the first week will not wane. However, he warned Sehajpal against damaging Bigg Boss property and while rebuking him for the attempted bathroom break-in, Khan thundered, “If my sister was inside the bathroom, I would have shown you what I can do to you.” It is only fitting that the theme of Bigg Boss season 15 is Jungle.
But Sehajpal has already proved Salman Khan right. At the beginning of the second week itself, he created a flutter by slapping himself in frustration because he couldn’t respond to the abuses hurled by another contestant.
Adding masala to the mix
Clashes aside, there are oodles of fun too. For starters, some male hunks are roaming around shirtless and getting called “Biscuit Boys”, while the other bunch with their shirts on are “Gluten Boys”. The women are busy with kitchen fights so far, and two contestants are posing as news anchors to stir interest.
Colors TV actor Tejaswi Prakash decided to address the Bigg Boss as her ‘baby’ when asking for her make-up box and clothes. In an amusing turn of events, ‘baby’ obliged. This is not the first time when female contestants have flirted with Bigg Boss. Rakhi Sawant used to call Bigg Boss her husband.
For a show built on schadenfreude and our urge to watch others expose their base instincts on TV, the inaugural week has done its job already. Sehajpal gave the audience a bang for their buck. For a pandemic-weary public, this was a treat. The challenge will now be to up the game every week without the cringe sliding into the crass. Like most masala movies of Bollywood, it was a power-packed first week at Bigg Boss’ house. Indian TV’s biggest addiction is back.
The author is an intern in ThePrint’s Opinion team.
(Edited by Humra Laeeq)