Chris Rock joke is familiar territory for Indians; Bollywood, pop culture have long ridiculed hair loss-Entertainment News , Firstpost

Chris Rock joke is familiar territory for Indians; Bollywood, pop culture have long ridiculed hair loss-Entertainment News , Firstpost

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From Kulbhushan Kharbanda’s Shakaal in Shaan to Sanjay Dutt’s Kancha Cheena in Agneepath, Bollywood has all the time mocked or demonised baldness.

A joke about balding landed a comedian a punch on the Oscars. Chris Rock was an iconic vessel for his technology’s shtick however he did, in that second of awkward discomforting readability on the Academy’s stage, look dated.

Individuals have already related related jokes Rock made about Jada Pinkett Smith six years in the past to retribution that had virtually develop into due. It’s in fact simpler now within the aftermath of that surprising collection of occasions to have a look at it by way of the lens of morality and righteousness. It was much more soothing to survey social media later, realizing we had been on the correct facet of historical past calling each crass humour and reactive violence out. However as quickly as you might be accomplished patting your self on the again, you’d do effectively to look again and possibly round your self at how Indians have culturally considered and responded to baldness. It’s as ugly a sight as we’ve got made baldness appear for many years. 

From shut pals to acquaintances, baldness is taken into account a character handicap in a rustic extra obsessive about genetic qualities reasonably than ethical even-handedness. Now we have all been there the place we’ve got made a cocky joke about male sample baldness, that in some households, is handed over generations. Balding males are thought of unmarriageable, as if the absence of hair on the cranium recuses them from a stay well-lived. The richest man on this planet, Jeff Bezos, is bald however right here in India, aspiration is so conspicuously tied with the concept of the visible that from wanting honest children to tall brides, exterior magnificence has transitioned from being purposeful to being central to how we take into consideration folks, their personalities, and all the pieces else about them. Ladies have it even worse for they stay beneath the fixed concern of shedding their hair cowl, and by consequence, one thing they’ve been instructed is an extension of their character.

Popular culture and cinema, in the case of sensitivity, have solely contributed to strengthen this discriminatory concept. In Shaan (1980), Kulbhushan Kharbanda performs the villain Shakaal, a bald man who rubs his cranium each time he pronounces a brutal plan or a philosophical oversight. His baldness is a part of his character, summoned to make him look a sure kind within the comparative presence of heroes who sport wavy locks and a thick mane.

For many years, Bollywood assigned merciless, brutalising characterisations to the bald, lowering them to caricatures also known as ‘taklu’ and so on. Bob Christo performed the villain numerous occasions as a purposeful output of his masculine exterior that possibly complemented the color of his pores and skin within the worst approach potential approach – the white man. Most not too long ago, in Agneepath, Sanjay Dutt, who had carried a reasonably eclectic bunch of hairstyles all through his profession, bared his cranium as gritty excuse to recreate the paranormal evil of Marlon Brando from Apocalypse Now

Bollywood has clearly tried to handle this social massacring of an uncontrollable phenomenon by making movies like Gone Kesh, Bala, and Ujda Chaman however the invocation of sensitivity alone is unlikely to undo what generations on this nation have accomplished – deal with baldness as a type of social deprivation, or worse, a illness. The rise of worldwide stars like Dwayne Johnson, Vin Diesel, and Jason Statham has considerably realigned the view of baldness, even motivating males to go bald by alternative.

However within the case of ladies, because the Oscars supplied due proof, it’s nonetheless thought of a supply of ridicule. Jada Pinkett Smith had been vocal about her wrestle with Alopecia, but it surely couldn’t fairly elevate her above the low bar of body-shaming comedy.

To suppose that an individual of her repute and pedigree might be belittled on a worldwide stage, one can solely shudder at considered reticent introverts with receding hairlines experiencing the rougher edges of the road, in what can really feel like a life-altering burden. Although it doesn’t should be so.

Bollywood and cinema can’t particularly be accused of making this cultural abomination. Be it our mythology or our folks tales, baldness has not often made an look. You might ensure there was baldness within the center ages, however it’s one thing of a clue to see it make so little of the trendy incarnations of age previous tales. Naturally, the primary bald man we ever noticed in our lives got here throughout as an oddity, whose unnatural existence had already been coached by cinema and popular culture to be interpreted a sure approach. The Bond villain, for instance, has to nonetheless carry scars as proof of his vice and villainy.

Baldness will not be thought of the affliction it was many years in the past, however in actual life, it’s nonetheless the form of barrier you’d reasonably not face or should develop up with. Due to Chris Rock, we all know it’s even more durable, or possibly inconceivable, for girls.  

Manik Sharma writes on artwork and tradition, cinema, books, and all the pieces in between.

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