“Comedy Nights” is not an entirely new concept for TV. Hugely popular on American TV, the genre has been adapted in the past for desi TV with shows like Movers and Shakers . However Kapil Sharma has taken this genre to a completely new level by infusing an amount of hilarious audacity that only a performer of his caliber could have carried off. As a result CN with Kapil has already garnered attention from all sections of TV viewers which is very well deserved.
Good standup comedians are difficult to find and even if they are found, people tend to not take them seriously, given their job. They make some jokes, you laugh and then you forget about it and get on with more serious matters of life. With the exception of Raju Srivastava, who has set a real benchmark in the genre of standup comedy, there are not even a handful of these performers that you would remember by name. In this regard, Kapil Sharma promises bright things for this genre.
While CNWK, is a conceptualized production with considerable amounts of fiction, reality , guest performers and invited celebrities thrown in together, the biggest strength of this production is , without doubt , Kapil. This guy has such a natural stage presence that it’s flabbergasting. And that’s the factor which makes him get away with almost anything.
Earlier, the jokes were recited in a formal get up, standing at a place and the hosts relied on the timely injection of the music from the band at the corner to signal different moods. Kapil Sharma has, most audaciously, changed all that. He comes dressed in red pants, laughs his ass off at his invited guests and keeps them standing while he does that. I think the sole reason he gets away with things normally people could get offended at, is his ability to make you laugh with abandon. His readiness towards making as much fun of himself as others is what gives him the edge.
Some people are simply natural at what they do. Kapil Sharma makes you realize he is born to do what he is doing. His rebuttals are instant and hilarious. His dialogues sound extempore which makes you suspect that he might have abandoned following the script in the middle of the show ( that rocks). The guy is good looking, pulls off cute expressions, and can sing! You even love the way he speaks the deliberately broken English or the fake Russian!
But beneath all the mocking and the punch lines, the strength of the guy also lies in the fact that he gets his guests to be as natural and off guard as himself on his stage. I have seen him with celebrities of varied kinds, from a serious looking Irfaan Khan to the motherly Kiran Kher, from the charming SRK to controversial Mika. The minute they step on Kapil’s stage, they seem to lose their personalities of the outside world, ready to shake a leg, get laughed at, crack jokes and do pretty much anything with sweet abandon. Now that is no mean feat. Viewers want to see the celebrities for real and that reality slips through the cracks between all the joking and the fun. That is what differentiates Comedy Nights with Kapil from other comedy nights. That is his biggest achievement.
Coming to the other performers who help Kapil set up his fictional house, while the performances are very well done, I sometimes don’t agree with the scripting. The philandering Dadi or the clingy Bua seem funny initially but with time, their acts seem jaded , predictable and sometimes, even annoying. The challenge for this brilliant production is to keep the quality of the content innovative funny and classy on a constant basis. The strength is that it is genuinely funny and keeps everyone, from the audience to the guests completely involved and makes them feel completely at home.