Catch-22 doesn’t even begin to describe the fix that the protagonists, in Sony TV’s latest blockbuster show, Zindagi Ke Crossroads, find themselves in. Faced with a situation that has no solution that can be deemed ‘right’ on all parameters, the protagonists of each episode find themselves standing at such a crossroad in life where you’re damned if you do and damned if you don’t.
Ironically, the crossroad isn’t a road at all. It is a dark alley they must enter, after carefully weighing all the pros and cons of that, which awaits them at the other end of the alley.
That means that every possible choice of action available before them has negative connotations. There is no course of action that does not have a drawback. What do they do when faced with such a situation?
Huh, if that isn’t edge-of-the-seat, then what is?
Zindagi Ke Crossroads keeps you on tenterhooks, with the vastly confusing situations before its characters, and through them, before us, the audiences, too. It makes us experience a gamut of emotions– from horror, to sadness, to despondency and finally, bleak helplessness– through the situation at hand.
Most desi TV shows have very clear cut plots– you’re either right or wrong; there is no space for grey, as real life is.
In this scenario, Sony TV’s new show, Zindagi Ke Crossroads, is a whiff of fresh air, as the characters in the episodic show face situations that are not very clearly etched out along moral lines. Producer Shabina Khan throws up a series of situations where the fictional story is stopped, and the topic is thrown open for discussion for the studio audience by host, Ram Kapoor.
TV and film actor, Ayaz Khan, who was part of the first story, centered on a couple contemplating aborting their unborn child, says, “Just being part of a realistic storyline gives a fillip to the actor within. Luckily, you and I might have not encountered such happenings, but they have surely happened to friends or family.”
“It is not easy to take care of children with special needs; it requires lots of patience. The real challenge happens when husband and wife are not on the same page.”
“Further, since the portrayal is very realistic, we actors are in a better position to emote and express ourselves, which also helps the audience to grasp the dilemma in a non-dramatic fashion,” he adds.
“The whole essence of the show is to make you wonder what you would have done, had you been in the characters’ shoes. We don’t want to judge you. The toughest thing is to come to a solution that you can live with. There is no sense in carrying a burden of guilt for the rest of your life,” Ayaz states.
“I sure hope this works, for audiences themselves have been crying out for change. So, this is just what the doctor ordered. The next story, about a family who will need to choose between its father’s health and child’s education, is another Hobson’s choice. You love both, so what do you do? Some might say that a father’s life is more important, but then you waste a year of your child’s academics, which is not cool either,” he opines.
Here Ayaz, last seen in Kaisi Yeh Yaariyan, says, “Such formats, like Zindagi Ke Crossroads, are, in a way, trying to change the TV grammar by trying to offer content that is not purely GEC material. Agreed, ratings are important, but they are not the be-all and end-all. Guess the advent of web is heralding the above change, as, there, creative freedom still rests with the makers and not the market.”
Couldn’t the makers have shown two alternative endings? “Well, that is the creative call of the makers. I am no one to question their intent. Maybe, in the future, such a concept might come around.”
Zindagi Ke Crossroads is a show that makes you think– really hard– about the crossroads, nay, the paradoxes of life. And you’re glad life hasn’t thrown one of its mighty curveballs at you…..yet.