Shows based on a certain fraternity (read profession) have been few and far between on mainline channels. In the endless list of family dramas and twisted love sagas, a viewer may chance upon a medical show such as Sanjivani on STAR Plus or Dhadkan on Sony Entertainment Television or maybe a Mission Fateh, which deals with the lives of army men, on Sahara Manoranjan or a Saara Akash on STAR Plus again, which focuses on air force officers. However, a show concentrating on the lives of teachers, precisely, college professors, is a concept relatively untapped on Indian television.
Youth shows in the past have looked at college life, albeit from the point of view of the student. Jeet, a show launched last month by STAR Plus and telecast on Fridays at 9.30 pm, puts the spotlight squarely on the teacher. Vikram Mall, played by Ankur Nayyar, who starred in Kashmeer along with Gul Panag earlier this year, is a dashing young professor, who finds himself in a college where discipline and obedience are qualities not exactly respected by the students. The college staff is a conservative bunch with the principal, Dr Venugopal (played by veteran actor Arun Govil) struggling to bring some order in the system.
Mall has some radical views on initiating discipline among the students and is subjected to widespread criticism with frequent scraps with Janaki Sehgal (played by Aparnaa Tilak), who teaches English literature at the college.
The show is peopled with allied characters such as the scheming vice-principal, Dr Rekhari (played by the talented Pawan Malhotra), the social studies teacher played by Mrinal Kulkarni, who also features in Sonpari on STAR Plus, and the college patroness, played by veteran actress Kruttika Desai.
Popular elements such as a relationship between Mall and Sehgal have been explored in keeping with the current trend of a romantic liaison between the lead characters on television. Indeed, most fraternity shows on STAR Plus, be it Sanjivani or Saara Akash, have the element of 'love' thrown in for good measure.
Despite the effort to move up the ratings chart, the show, produced by Rose Movies, which is promoted by the brother-sister team of Goldie Behl and Shristi Arya, has had a mediocre run with the first episode opening with a TVR of 3.7 on October 10, followed by 3.9 on October 17 and 3.1 on October 24.
Though early days yet with the show barely a month old and viewers still warming up to the concept, it is to be seen whether Vikram Mall and Janaki Sehgal can score with the audiences after all. © 2003 agencyfaqs!
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