Melissa Pais, who is playing an important character in Star Plus satire, Har Shaakh Pe Ullu Baithaa Hai, is a tad disappointed. “Due to lack of ratings, we have deviated from our original political theme to the safer family sitcom route. May be the audiences are not yet ready for it. Satire per se is a virgin genre in India. Interestingly though, whoever has watched my current show had not got one bad thing to say about it.”
Can it be that politics is a hot potato to handle? “It is a bit confusing;while most Indians like to run down politicos on social media,yet, when shown the same, they don’t like it. People also don’t like us showing good netas; no wonder, Season 2 of 24 tanked.”
Talking about show lead, Rajeev Nigam, she says,“Although most stand-up artists are not good actors, Rajeev breaks the mould. He also pens a lot of the satire himself. He was satire king on Comedy Circus.”
Melissa, who has been doing comedy (Comedy Circus, Sajan Re Jhoot Mat Bolo, Chidiya Ghar, etc.) for the last many years, says,“One of the reasons why I survived for so long is that there is no competition in this specialized genre. Not many girls, although being good actors, can reallyget the required timing.”
“Indian comedy has always been slapstick, and sometimes does veer towards the vulgar side. I have got my fair share of flak for the same, courtesyComedy Circus,”she adds.
Looking ahead, she would now want to come out of this typecasting and do hardcore emotional stuff. “I began with negative (Karma, Parivaar, etc.), before moving to comedy; so I believe I have the goods to do all genres.”
Here Melissa, who always had a glam TV image, would not want to go all out in the same vein on the web. “Firstly, now being 35, I don’t have the body required for bikini as before. And secondly, I always had my own inhibitions. I turned down several movie offers for the same reason.”