Importance of the Idiot Box: Indian Edition #AtoZChallenge

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Stepping aside from larger existential issues, like the rise of nationalist borders, problems of home-schooling and financial worries, I’ve spoken about in my previous few posts; I’d like to address the change in priorities this lockdown has brought about.

Ever since the television aka the idiot box was introduced to the world, it became a reason for families to stay home. With time, TV gave way to other forms of technological entertainment like video games, VCR’s/ CD’s/ DVD’s and finally streaming services and our dependence on these technologies proportionately increased.

When lockdown was announced, it became clear that people, particularly those from the middle and upper classes, hungered for entertainment in addition to essential services. Everyone began watching more TV than they might have earlier- for news, entertainment, and to stay connected with the world outside.

  • Doordarshan, the dinosaur of TV channels, was resurrected from near extinction with the re-launch of cult favourite TV shows like “Mahabharata” and “Dekh Bhai Dekh”.
  • Streaming services scuttled to tie up with big production houses to be ahead of their competitors in the game, as with Hotstar + Disney.
  • Other streaming services began releasing oodles of new content every week, at a much faster pace than usual.
  • Movies that were set for national release across theatres resorted to direct digital releases, so as not to lose their money.
  • Digital content creators (like me!) began recommending endless binge-worthy TV shows to stay connected with their audience.

So yes, the idiot box and its connected services have seen an immense upsurge in their importance during lockdown. A funny video I recently watched, summed it aptly in one line- “As long as I have wi-fi, I know I will survive!” (sung to the tune of the famous Gloria Gaynor song!).

This excessive dependence on, and move towards a virtual world worries me a little. Last year, on a flight, I saw Steven Spielberg’s film “Ready Player One”, set in a dystopian future where life is lived on a virtual video game, because the real world is fraught with poverty, pollution and myriad other problems. People have jobs and earn money, meet people and even fall in love on this video game. Though the film was too sentimental to be alarming, its underlying message stood out. I fear that we are heading towards that strange situation where virtual will replace real, but let’s hope it doesn’t.


On that note, last night I watched Irrfan Khan’s comeback film “Angrezi Medium”, which was forced to have a digital release on Hotstar. It’s sad that this fabulous actor’s return to cinema, after battling cancer, coincided with the advent of coronavirus. I have reviewed the movie on my latest IGTV video, while I create a makeup look, and I hope you’ll watch the video for the makeup, or the review, or both!

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Hi everyone, today I’ve shared a glittery blue halo eye makeup look. Leave your thoughts and comments below and share this video with someone that may like it. What would you like to see from me next? Leave your requests below! – PRODUCTS USED: 1. Eye Primer: Tarte Shape Tape Concealer in shade Light Sand 2. Eyeshadow Palette: Urban Decay Naked Reloaded 3. Glittery Blue Eyeshadow: L. A. Colors Duo Tone Eyeshadow in shade Royalty 4. Kajal: Lakme Absolute Kohl 5. Mascara: L’Oreal Lash Paradise Voluminous + Benefit Bad Gal Bang! 6. Lipstick: Maybelline in Shade Pop of Pink – #nooranandchawla #theladylawyer #makeuptutorial #makeuplook #makeup #makeuplovers #makeuplover #makeupenthusiast #notsponsored #everydayglammakeup #haloeyemakeup #wearableglammakeup #bluehaloeyes #haloeyemakeup #blueeyemakeuplook #sardarni #delhi #angrezimedium #angrezimediumreview #angrezimediummovie

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My tip to beat the lockdown blues today would be to de-clutter your online streaming subscriptions. Remove the ones you don’t use frequently. Currently, I have 4 subscriptions, and here are my thoughts on each:

  • Netflix is great for high-quality content from around the world. It’s the most expensive subscription but it is far better than others in terms of quality.
  • Amazon Prime Video offers good Indian content, as well as a lot of new Bollywood and Hollywood releases. The shows are good but not of the same level as Netflix. Its subscription is affordable and gives you access to Prime for delivery of products as well.
  • Hotstar is great for mainstream programs and movies that are hard to find on other streaming services. Plus, their recent tie-up with Disney is wonderful if you have kids at home. It’s a reasonably priced subscription, though more expensive than Prime Video.
  • Zee5 produces regional content aimed at the masses and is the most affordable subscription of all. However, by charging less they compromise on the quality of the content.

Of these four, I plan to remove Zee5 once this month is over. I haven’t yet tried services like Voot- what do you think of them?

As for a TV show recommendation with the letter I:

“I Dream of Jeannie”, was an American sitcom similar to “Bewitched”, though not as good in my opinion. It chronicled the lives of a man and his female genie. Another funny old-school TV show was “I Love Lucy” starring the fabulous actress Lucille Ball. You can watch episodes from both these shows on Youtube.

If you prefer reading a good ol’ book instead of drowning yourself in virtual reality, here’s my recommendation for today:

“Interpreter of Maladies” written by Jhumpa Lahiri, won a Pulitzer Prize for its sensitive portrayal of Indians living abroad, attempting to preserve their native culture while adapting to a new one. A must-read set of short stories.

That’s all for today folks!

Do check out my daily update videos on Instagram Stories for #LockdownWithTheLadyLawyer and follow me there to stay better connected. Also tell me your favourite TV Shows/ movies/ books/ bloggers with the letter I?

I’ll see you tomorrow!


This post has been written for the #AtoZChallenge 2020. My theme this year is #LockdownWithTheLadyLawyer, where I’m journaling my thoughts during the coronavirus lockdown, and sharing numerous recommendations that will help keep your spirits up.


*This is not a sponsored post.

**Copyright in pictures and content belongs to and cannot be republished or repurposed without express permission of the author. As I am a copyright lawyer by profession, infringement of any kind will invite strict legal action. 


  1. The way the world watched TV has surely changed in the last few weeks. My in laws and parents are streaming more shows and movies than I have ever done. Amazon and Netflix are two ongoing subscriptions. Hotstar and Zee 5 i have taken on a monthly basis when we wanted to use. With Disney it might change, but Zee 5 is there for this month only. And you reminded of I dream of Jeannie. How i loved watching it 🙂

  2. We have been watching normal amount of television, nothing extraordinary. I am thankful to this blogging challenge, plus we read a lot of stuff online. I think once Covid ends, people will resume their old lifestyle. Maybe we will buy less stuff for some time, but who knows!

  3. Idiot box is giving us good company these days. I am sure it will be renamed pretty soon…:) I like Irfan Khan’s acting. Will surely check Ungezi Medium.

  4. Today’s post was again a great read Noor, and would love to highlight one point that I had read more than once. “Watch my vidoes for reviews, makeup ..” ha ha..I agree and would love to say that your make up skills and make up videos both are excellent and we all would love to watch more from your side. I had heard a lot about Angrezi medium..sounds like a great movie, will watch it for sure. irfan khan is one of the finest actor and its his comeback this is another to watch. great tips of clearing out unwanted subscription. I am watching amazon prime since last few days, but did not enjoying it much.

  5. I dream of Genie was such a favourite back in those days. I enjoyed Interpreter of Maladies just as much. But somehow over a few years I’ve quit TV. Not even Netflix on my cards. I somehow find it hard to sit through TV. Though I’m taking your recommendation and trying Angrezi medium today. Just for Irfan Khan. And in awe of your awesome eye make up. You are quite a catch Noor😀😀🌼🌼

    1. Awww thanks Sonia, you’ve made me blush 😁
      If that’s the first thing you’re watching after a long time, then I don’t recommend it. It’s an average film but Irrfan is good 😊

      1. Oh is it…Yes I haven’t watched anything for long but I’m taking a day off. So just relaxing today. Wanted to catch up on some movies too

      2. In that case “Maska” on Netflix is a better bet and if you’re up for a short TV show then “Panchayat” on Amazon Prime. Or better yet, watch an old favourite movie- that’s the best way to relax 😊

  6. I remember watching ‘I Love Luc’y when it was shown on Doordarshan a long time back. I was in my 12th grade then. And Lucille Ball as you say was fabulous. I think she is no more now. I am planning to watch Freud on Netflix next after Alias Grace. I subscribe only to Netflix. And as far as our television set is concerned it is under repair right now. I watch my netflix movies on my laptop. The TV has been under repair for the past 6 months and we have not bothered to get it repaired. We found our daughter was watching a lot of nonsense on TV. So now I allow her only to watch some select movies on Netflix and Youtube. on the laptop.

  7. I usually stay aloof of the idiot box but things have changed with the lockdown. Yesterday night I finally watched the movie Parasite and loved it. Last Friday I binge-watched the Panchayat series too. So yes,idiot box is gaining great importance.

  8. Wow Noor, This is such a refreshing post and reminded me of one of my favorite shows on tv during my childhood. ‘I dream of Jinie’ And I have to tell you that #LockDownwithLadyLawyer is turning out to be a lot of fun.

  9. I don’t use Zee5 and Voot. Once downloaded them but they always hang in my phone. So I skipped. Just started watching Mahabharat and Siya Ke Raam in star plus. I also think this time, this idiot box is a great escapade from the tension. Nice one Noor. Loved your make up too. You’re always beautiful! I mean, Noorful( does someone hear me? ,wink wink) . 🙂🙂

  10. True, we’re so dependent on the idiot box. We have got multiple streaming subscriptions so there’s more than enough content to watch. I’m not much into make up but I enjoyed watching your transformation! You’ve got lovely eye lashes.

  11. I liked the review. I will go to this movie. Doordarshan is back with its mythological and super popular shows and see the TRP.

  12. So right Noor, doordarshan has suddenly become so important. By the way I don’t have wifi dear but am still surviving. Irfan is my fav too so am heading to check your review right now:)

  13. I watched Panchayat on Amazon Prime, re-running Sarabhai vs Sarabhai on Hotstar and watching stand-up specials on Netflix. I am yet to feel the love of TV because Ekta Kapoor has single-handedly ruined idiot box for an entire generation. Hoping to catch some old shows like Byomkesh Bakshi there.

  14. I would watch a lot of TV earlier, but since I started working in 2012, I’ve hardly seen anything on TV with the exception of news at times. Nowadays Netflix and Prime are a new source of entertainment for me.

  15. I haven’t watched TV in eons. The last time was Beating Retreat. There are tons of streaming services out there, but none of the shows really want to me go binge-watch. I do know where to check for the latest in case that changes 🙂

  16. I’ve come to love the standards of Netflix with shows – so many high quality ones (not necessarily even English) and across all genres.

    Vis a vis Voot, I am watching my first show – ASUR featuring Arshad Warsi. Early days but after 2 episodes, I will say this – high production standards, good serial-killer thriller, decent acting.

  17. Digital world is making us very dependent on it, it’s true. I wish the same as you said, hope this virtual world does not replace the real one. Thappad is running on my playlist now, next would be angrezi medium, a great time killer for the day 😊 Have a beautiful day! 💐

  18. Hi Noor:
    I’ve discussed how the world could possibly change once we all move pass once this is done. The virus came on us so fast and so strong (even though certain “leaders” knew long before the populace did). If you’re an extrovert, the isolation hit them really hard. Introverts know how to spend the day indoors, with the odd venturing out. I’ve had to offer ideas of how my friends who are climbing the walls live through this. Yes, I’m an Introvert. Well, an Introverted/Extrovert. To me, this is just one more (scary) day.
    Changes that I am pretty sure we’ll see is the Working from Home aspect. Video conferencing systems will grow as they (try to) develop very secure platforms. Hackers are having a field day right now. Shopping online will become more entrenched in many lives, and Education is most likely going to see some shakeups.

    While we are cutting ourselves off from each other, there has been at least one major positive effect: air quality has improved, in some places vastly. Ecology is winning this one. I’ve heard that dolphins are returning to Italy, but I’ve also heard this was a hoax. My hope is that a number of animals on the verge of extinction will be able to rally with less humans around and the improvement of the environment. Hopefully, someone(s) is working on a real solution for removing all the plastic and garbage from the worlds water system.

    Sorry Off the soap box

    TV show: I Spy from the mid 1960s. Robert Culp & Bill Cosby. Opinions of the man aside, the show ran for a total of 82 episodes over three years. It is billed as a comedy drama. It was funny on top of Mission: Impossible spy action. Not the movies of Mission: Impossible. The TV series.

    Movie: Inception by Christopher Nolan, starring Leonardo DiCaprio. I don’t need every little detail explained, especially in any art form. If it makes me thing/ponder, create discourse with others, then it works for me. Subtlety is really becoming a lost art. I enjoy other’s interpretations on the same object, movie, book, art. It broadens the mind.

    Book: I Have No Mouth, And I Must Scream by Harlan Ellison. Seven stories: “I Have No Mouth & I Must Scream”,
    “Big Sam Was My Friend”, “Eyes of Dust”, “World of the Myth”, “Lonelyache”, “Delusion for Dragonslayer”,
    “Pretty Maggie Moneyeyes”. A brilliant collection of Ellison’s work.

    Stay healthy and safe

    1. Wow I think you’ve covered everything I’ve planned to say through my series in this comment 🤣
      Loved Inception… never heard of any of the others!
      Thanks for the time in reading and thinking about my post.. It really means a lot!

  19. Another wonderful post and recommendations Noor! These days my mom watches a new movie everyday and my grandmom is glued to you tube! She watches her Pakistani shows. I am yet to watch Angrezi Medium. Have heard so much about the movie.
    I remember I dream of Jeannie..what a fun show it was! Haven’t watched I love Lucy.. will put it in my ” To watch TV shows and Movie List” 😊

  20. Always great info on your posts Noor..I havent been watching much TV…now that the kiddos are here..even I use the four channels u mentioned….and yes ur makeup is always immaculate 🙂

  21. My hubby,father in law and me read Ram charit Manas daily . I ask my daughter to watch Ramayan because we know it but our kids are not aware of this beautiful mythology tale. Thanks for telling about Ready player one ,I want my hubby watch it . He live in virtual world more than real one

  22. That’s so true, the dependency on idiot box has upsurged due to lockdown. I am binge watching till wee hours and enjoying great content Netflix and Prime has. Lovely post Noor.

  23. Form DTH we have moved to OTT platforms. Yet with serials of our childhood getting maine again is fun. I dream of ginne was one of my favourites.

    Currently making my son watch Byomkesh Bakshi and chanakya.

  24. ” I dream of jennie” was my fav and you took me down the memory lane with the mention of it. Angrezi medium has been there in my list for long but don’t know when will I watch this. Loved your makeup tutorial.

  25. I’m not at all a TV person but yes can see this change with other family members for sure. Want to see Angrezi medium thanks for your review and feedback. Netflix and prime have some really great series and programs.

  26. Thanks to my work from home assignments and AtoZ, I have no time to watch TV or Netflix. But the husband is catching up on all the movies and series! I am hoping to catch up on Money Heist’s season 3 and then 4 which was released recently!

  27. Haha I am laughing continuously Noor just by reading Dinosaur of TV channels Doordarshan :- I watched angrezi medium few days ago, very strong message on the preservation of our Indian culture, sorry missed all your videos of last week will surely watch!

  28. I don’t have TV at Home. Though we do let Kids watch movies on the Laptop just for this lockdown time. Yes, I too feel scary about living in the virtual world.

  29. Indeed the TV Viewership has changed and lockdown made the change even faster. Earlier because of the work load, stress and many more, we spend time in TV to relax, now Streaming platform came into action. We were going with this, but now in 53 days of lockdown, we got addicted. We are getting addicted to series and many more.

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