Gone are the days when Pakistan television produced the most sought after content that was lauded across all spheres. Shows like Bazm e Tariq Aziz that expertly blend the elements of information and entertainment have now become extinct. The new age of entertainment demands different kind of programs.
Today, in the name of modern-day entertainment we have been exposed to every degree of absurd content. For example, morning shows giving a huge complex of wearing designer lawn ke joray and teaching every kind of todka to get rid of dusky complexion have become a common norm on television. However, what is worse to see is that TV channels are now banking heavily on the popularity of Tik Tok stars to participate in the never-ending race of increasing TRP’s. Specifically, the BOL TV network is running out of content as it air’s a couple of prime time shows that seek support from Tik Tokers.
Commentary on TikTok videos
TikTok is inarguably one of the biggest social media platforms on the internet. It is used widely around the world. The easy to use features and the wide reach that it offers has made it a favorite among common folks who can make small videos of themselves, either lip-syncing to popular audios, performing stunts, or even making small cooking videos, and enjoy positive validation from the app-users.
And where there is a huge volume of content to consume, the commentary and criticism are quick to follow. And Bol TV has made an entire show out of it called The Tick Tock Show With Faheem Khan. The format of the show is simple: videos are taken from TikTok and then the host multitasks by both hosting the show and providing his critique on the videos. The people who have made the videos are rewarded with gifts if their video happens to win in the various categories the videos are divided in.
Another show that relies heavily on Tik Tok is The Insta Show With Mathira. Only here Instagram is also added in the mix. The show is in a talk show format where, in each episode, famous TikTokers or Instagrammers are invited on the show. Amidst light chitchat, various Instagram videos posted by our entertainment industry celebrities are also shown as a way of topic starters for the guests and the host to comment on.
Bizarre gimmicks by leading stars
However, what takes the reliance on the social media “stars” a step further are the game shows hosted by two of the popular actors of the Pakistani entertainment industry. The shows hosted by Faysal Qureshi (Khush Raho Pakistan) and Danish Taimoor (Game Show Aisay Chalay Ga) have these Tik Tokers as permanent members at their show. In fact, the recent Independence Day Special Episode of Faysal Qureshi’s show Khush Raho Pakistan was entirely shot with Tik Tokers along-with Instagramers.
Danish Taimoor’s show Game Show Aisay Chalay Ga goes the extra mile; the show based on a league format, which started during Ramazan this year, not just has Tik Tokers and Instagramers but Youtubers and former champions as well. The teams compete with each other in various mini-games for prizes and glory.
But what even is reality TV without some drama sprinkled in it? In between all the games and the healthy competition, there is no lack of unnecessary arguments (possibly scripted) between the teams. For example, contestants argue with the host, blaming him for giving easy questions and situations to the opponent team. There is little to no concern for how this kind of immature behavior is not cut out for shows being aired on national television. Of course, an argument with a star host sells faster than hot cakes and provides a healthy spike in TRP’s for the channel.
Tik Tok stars are already popular in their respective domain and earn a good fortune. The same goes for Instagrammers. What is bizarre is the question that why do TV channels have to rely on Tik Tok for content? Television is a stronger medium and the demand for it is massive. When it comes to making trends and choosing the direction of content that the audience gets to invest it, television has the bigger power and authority to do so.
Our country is full of talented people just waiting to be discovered. Channels should be more eager to give a platform to those people who can do wonders after getting the right kind of introduction to the audience. Instead, channels like Bol TV are lazily benefitting from the hard work of the content creators found on TikTok and Instagram. This kind of uninspired television is only further crippling the foundations of quality television in Pakistan.