We’re the best. Jaan lo, baat ye maanlo! Millennials are the most colourful, the most dynamic generation of all time. We were the coolest bunch of kids. Do you know why? Because we saw how little inventions can change the world. We saw the spread of the internet, the shift to smartphones, the rise of Facebook, and the growth of Amazon. We welcomed the 21st century. We lived through it all.
And to speak of our childhood, I’d run out of words to describe how immensely beautiful, how utterly enjoyable it was. We had the best television shows for our entertainment. And we vibed with literally everybody from all generations. We tolerated the typical saas-bahu drama while enjoying the funniest reality shows and consuming some gut-wrenching horror content, and who can forget our superhero - Shaktimaan!
Now, if your claim to fame is being a true millennial, then you’ll definitely remember these iconic Indian TV Shows.
1. Karishma Kaa Karishma
Only if we had a Karishma for everything, our lives would have been pretty sorted. I honestly hated that Sweety. I found her incredibly annoying. And her family, unnecessarily intrusive. But I loved the show. Did you love it too?
Vikram wanted to create human-like-robot and he succeeded. We all were smitten by her. Karishma is unforgettable. And who knew that it was the adapted from Small Wonders (1985)? We all miss Karishma and Rahul and their family.
2. Shararat - Thoda Jaadu, Thodi Nazaakat
"Shring bring sarvaling, bhoot bhavishya vartamaan badling!" Imagine if you had woken up on your 18th birthday to find out that you're actually a fairy. A life like Jia's was goals, even with all the troubles that came with it. And not to forget, Nani was the coolest and Dhruv was so dreamy.
PS - I hated how Rani Devi behaved with Nani.
3. Sarabhai v/s Sarabhai
How can you love all characters at once? While I pitied Sahil, I absolutely enjoyed Monisha's "Mummy ji" and Maya's "its so middle class." And didn't we all love Indu's jabs on Rosesh's poetry? We all are grateful to Sarabhai's for giving us the best comedy drama.
Oh Momma, oh momma! Tumne muhe janam dia. Oh momma, oh momma! Sabse acha karam kia. Oh momma, Oh momma!
- Rosesh Sarabhai
4. Dill Mill Gayye
Can we all declare Dr. Armaan to be the crush of our generation? He made us have these unrealistic expectations in boys. And God! Armaan-Riddhima love story was all we could think of back then. The show was beautiful and it gave us the best music and our favourite celebrities.
Also, didn't shows like Sanjeevani and Dill Mill Gayye romanticised the idea of hospitals for us?
Remix defined the idea of cool for us. This show is The Student of The Year we would have liked to watch. When school days had just begun to be hectic, this cute, romantic teenage drama coupled with some great music was just the respite we needed.
PS - I miss Ashi, Yuvi, Tia, and Ranveer.
Cross your heart and tell me that you loved Hansa. Praful and Hansa's chemistry was the highlight of the show. And it was hysterical how Babuji was constantly pissed with Praful. Jayshree was the only sane person in the house. And I don't know why, but I just couldn't get myself to like Himanshu. What about you?
7. Hum Paanch
Basically, Hum Paanch was our answer to Friends back then. The troubled Anand Mathur, his interfering dead wife, and their dynamic five daughters became our extended family. Without really demanding any sort of brainy involvement from us, this show was a relief from stress. It remains unforgettable and connotes all the happy memories of childhood.
And also, this show gave us Vidya Balan; Who could have imagined?
Hatim was undoubtedly the best childhood fantasy show we could have asked for back then. The one-hour show was the ideal headstart for a weekend. The chemistry and love that Hatim shared with Hobo and Jasmine was just so adorable. And Dajjal and Najumi were everything that was wrong with the world. The worst of all the villains!
9. Shaka Laka Boom Boom
Let’s be hones, our hearts broke when we realised magic pencils didn’t exist in real life. Nonetheless, Sanju and his friends were our pals. Their lives filled our childhood with thrill and adventure. We miss them all. I loved Tito. Who was your favourite?
10. Son Pari
Fruity was the luckiest. Can you imagine navigating childhood with a fairy as your sidekick? Can life get any better? You’ll never land in any trouble. You just need to rub a magic ball against your hand and all your problems would dissolve.
Also, I hated that cruel Cruella (just realised the pun on the name) and Kali Pari. But wasn’t Altu the cutest? And do you remember the catchphrase? Ittu pittu Jim Patuta.
We didn’t need any Superman, Spider-Man, or Batman. We had our Shaktimaan. The light against all that was dark and evil. Be honest, did you try spinning on the ground just to see whether you could fly like Shaktimaan? And how many 'prans' did you take to let your mom watch this show?
Also, I honestly believe I would still be in chills if anybody said “Andhera Kayam Rahe!”
Let’s get to some blood curdling horror shows now. Remember, how you couldn’t watch Aahat alone. You needed a partner to let you through the entire episode. More often than not, that partner was our beloved sibling. Each story was freaky. And if you think in hindsight, Aahat could be why most of us were afraid of being alone in the dark.
13. Ssshhh Koi Hai
The show was spooky. Even today, its background music would give shivers to literally anybody. Scary as it was, it never failed to entertain us. We all loved Vikral-Gabroo duo. And do you remember how watching the show while hugging the pillow in our dark bedrooms was our idea of a perfect weekend thrill?
14. Takeshi's Castle
Hands down, the best reality show ever. More than the contestants and General Lee, it was Javed Jaffrey whose comical commentary drew us all to the show every single time. And to speak of crazy challenges, my favourite was skipping rollers. What was yours?
15. Indian Idol - Season 1
Without a doubt, season 1 was the best. Remember, how our weekend dinner plans were sorted? We just had to switch on Sony TV and hear our favorite singers with family. Do you miss Prajakta Shukre, Ravinder Ravi, Amit Sana, Rahul Vaidya, Abhijeet Sawant? Who was your favorite singer?
PS - I still listen to 'Mohabbatein Lutaaunga.'
16. The Great Indian Laughter Challenge Season 1
This show laid down the seeds of standup comedy in India. It was everything a family comedy show should have been. Raju Srivastav, Sunil Pal were hilarious. Sidhu's Paji laugh was infectious. Ahsaan Qureshi's poetic comedy and Naveen Prabhakar's 'pehchaan kaun?' cracked us all up.
It was our favourite show. And also, it gave us Kapil Sharma bruh!
M.A.D. was a treat. The show was super fascinating. Rob essentially made our childhood artistic and creative. We all wanted to be inside his studio. His DIYs were an Artist's dream. He was the one who showed us that life doesn't end in books. And you've got to be interested in music, and art, and dance. You've got to have some fun.
Also, do you remember when Rob interviewed Harry Potter cast? It was surreal.
Can we all now unanimously agree that millennials had the best childhood? We saw the world changing. We had the best possible shows on our television screens. We went out and played all sorts of games only to come back home and enjoy Rasna with Maggi. We had the best time. Where are those days now?