OTT platforms and web series brought back so many of my favourite stars from my growing up years, that I ended up watching half the shows just to watch the stars in action.
But, despite hours of binge-watching, one actor still remained largely missing - the adorable, absolutely swoon-worthy Rahul Khanna.
Yes, my 90s and early 2000s fam, you remember Rahul Khanna, don't you? He's the guy jiske rang rang mein rangne ko main bilkul taiyaar thi, hun, aur humesha rahungi.
But the *only* (yeah yeah, I know it's not the only, indulge my fantasies, won't you?) problem is, where is Mr. Khanna?
I mean thanks to social media, I know, he's whipping up desserts like a pro.
And lounging around on the beach, seemingly without a care in the world.
All the while serving us oh-so-debonair looks!
But whatever happened to lighting up
my cinematic universe with a surprise cameo or dare I dream, a well-developed role?
Because he certainly has the magnetic screen-presence for it.
Hell, his charming screen presence was established back in the 90s itself, when he first appeared as a VJ for MTV, before debuting in the movies with the 1999 period romance drama, Earth.
Since then, he's only appeared in a handful of movies over the years, with the last being the 2014 drama Fireflies.
Though in 2013, Khanna did return to TV with 24 and later, Americans.
And in 2019, he even had a brief role in the Netflix web series, Leila.
Of course, in all of these brief and not-so-brief appearances, one of his most popular roles remains from Wake Up Sid, as Aisha's jazz-loving, workaholic editor/crush Kabir. (Only fictional writers really have luck!).
Perhaps because Mr. Khanna imbued some of his own wit and style in his character.
Yes, Rahul Khanna is quite the writer, who has been writing a personal blog since 2005.
*Hums "likhe jo khat tumhein"*
Apart from his personal blog, he has also written for publications like Harper's Bazaar India, Vogue India, Cosmopolitan (magazine) India, Elle (India), GQ India, etc. Currently, he has a regular column with HT Brunch.
The only thing he doesn't have is a regular presence on my laptop screen...unless I play Bollywood/Hollywood for the 500th time and watch him woo Lisa Ray with that shy smile.
Now, since there are more online petitions than the number of movies Mr. Khanna appeared in, my only hope is to put this thought out into the universe: let's bring back Rahul Khanna.
And not for blink-and-miss appearances like Bollywood did with Jimmy Sheirgill but with full-length roles, as web series did with Sushmita Sen and Dimple Kapadia (Yay women!).
Till that time, I'll hope Mr. Khanna does not judge my writing skills like he judged Aisha's but rather values my ardent, one-sided, 22-years-strong admiration for him. I'd even listen to jazz, for real.
All images from Instagram account of Rahul Khanna, unless specified otherwise.