When we picture a hit Indian TV series, we automatically think of super dramatic shows that chronicle the lives of the Indian family in various situations, with different premises. But all these stories have one thing in common — the way they depict women. More often than not, women are shown as subservient, with unrealistic and regressive ideals. In some cases they are even pitted against other women. But now that we’re stepping into the New Year, a new era of content has dawned, where the audience is demanding more honest and real female centric stories. A great example of this is the newly released Amazon’s Prime Original series — Four More Shots Please!
The show chronicles the lives of four women in Mumbai and how they deal with relationships, work, and everything in between. Not only is the show super fun, it is also relatable to most urban women, because it’s a show about them and their stories. No longer do we have to settle to watch narratives told through the male gaze, because this is a show written by women and is about the modern Indian millennial women – a voice we haven’t heard often before. All the four women have different personalities and lifestyles, which is refreshing to watch as the writers have made sure that there is something for everyone in the show.
Damini, played by Sayani Gupta, is the celebrated journalist is driven and ambitious, and fights for what she believes in. Umang, played by Bani J, is a small-town girl who discovers herself in the big city and grows into a strong, confident woman of her own. Anjana, portrayed by Kirti Kulhari, is a divorcee and single mother, with a successful career in law and is constantly dealing with the way society perceives a single mom in her own, badass way. Lastly, we have Siddhi, a role played by Maanvi Gagroo, who is constantly fat-shamed and criticized by her controlling mother, yet is brave enough to conquer her insecurities and maintain a super positive outlook on life. These characters are inspirational, not because they dress well and have great one-liners that we all wish we could use, but because they have flaws. These women aren’t perfect and they know it — and they don’t apologies for them.
Another major positive of this show is the manner in which they have portrayed the sex lives of the women. It does form a large part of the narrative, but that is a good thing. Why? Because female sexuality has barely been talked about in mainstream entertainment, and this is a big step forward. Even two years ago, the Indian audience would not have accepted the fact that there is an entire show that portrays Indian women the way they actually are and should be -- fearless and confident about owning their sexuality and desires. And since it is written by women, we see sex and sexuality through the female lens, giving us a rare and refreshing perspective. And it not just a heteronormative narrative either, with Umang’s bisexuality written seamlessly into the plot.
What the show is being most talked about is its feminist script and storyline. This is not to say that women are the sole focus and men are secondary characters, no. Feminism is about equality, and men have an equally prominent role in the story. Some are the personification of the patriarchal mindset, while others are pure liberals and the four protagonists deal with them in an authentic manner. The fleshed out character arcs also ensure that all the characters get sufficient attention and that they don’t end up being caricatures or stereotypes. The real, grey, and imperfect characters is what makes Four More Shots Please! a breakthrough for Indian entertainment. Available to binge-watch exclusively on Amazon Prime Video, Four More Shots Please!, is India’s Sex and the City for the urban millennial woman. Get your girl-gang together this weekend and watch this show, if you haven’t already! You will need some popcorn and of course four more shots!