Real life stories in place of reality to strengthen 9-10 pm band on Colors

By Mitra Joshi , afaqs!, Mumbai | In Media Publishing | December 21, 2009
The channel plans to launch two new prime time fiction shows from December 28m, which will also be based on social issues

Colors is preparing to launch two new prime time fiction shows, which will replace Bigg Boss 3 from December 28. The shows are titled Yeh Pyaar Na Hoga Kam and Laagi Tujhse Lagan and will occupy the time slot from 9-10 pm, one after the other.

The channel, which is known for popularising social issue based programming in the general entertainment space, has this time touched upon two new causes, inter-caste relationships and the plight of slum dwellers.

& #BANNER1 & #Ashwini Yardi, programming head, Colors, says, "These two new shows have the ability to entertain as well as communicate a significant message to the viewers." Yeh Pyaar Na Hoga Kam is a love story set in Lucknow, implicating India's obsession with the caste system and discrimination, whereas Laagi Tujhse Lagan talks about a girl with uncommon looks called Nakusha, who dwells in a slum and works as a housemaid and yet never loses her optimism.

Yardi is sure that the subject and storylines will draw interest from viewers.

The 9-10 pm time band is a crucial one in the Hindi GEC space. The competitive channels, STAR Plus and Zee TV, have their long running fiction offerings during that slot. STAR Plus has Bidaai at 9 pm and Yeh Rishta Kya Kehlata Hai at 9:30 pm, which garnered average TVRs of 4.7 and 5.7 respectively (Week 45-50; TAM, C&S 4+, HSM).

Meanwhile, Zee TV has Pavitra Rishta, slated at 9 pm, which drew an average TVR of 5.1 during the same period; and Agle Janam Mohe Bitiya Hi Kijo, slotted at 9:30 pm and raking in an average TVR of 4.8.

In comparison, Colors attracts an average viewership of 2.6 from Bigg Boss 3 (Nov1-Dec 12).

Manas Mishra, head, Mudra Connext believes that the two shows will strike an emotional chord with the viewers. "Colors started reality shows from September onwards with Khatron Ke Khiladi Season 2, followed by Bigg Boss Season 3 during the 9-10 pm slot. Now, with the festive season coming to an end, women audiences will be able to enjoy their daily dose of fiction," he says.

He adds that relatable storylines are the order of the day. "A lot of programmes currently on air are successful because one can easily relate to the story and knows that such harsh realities are not mythical but have facts attached," he observes. Most of the top rated shows, be it Bidaai, Balika Vadhu, Uttaran or Agle Janam Mohe Bitiya Hi Kijo, deal with social issues.

However, Basabdutta Chowdhury, chief executive officer, Platinum Media has a different view. While she applauds Colors' impressive fiction line up, she says that the 9-10 pm time band has been a rough spot for Colors. "The 9-10 pm slots never belonged to Colors per se. STAR Plus and Zee TV have been more dominating during that time band.

"Colors' old shows such as Jeevan Saathi, which aired at 9 pm and Mohe Rang De, which was replaced by Mere Ghar Aayi Ek Nanhi Pari in the 9:30 pm slot, did not receive overwhelming responses from the viewers," she adds.

Colors plans to bring in new shows in the first half of 2010. In addition, it also plans to create a new afternoon band.