Simply put, almost everything. The show has gotten almost everything wrong. We’ll get into it but let me give you a little bit of background. Lock Upp is a 24*7 captive reality show where contestants have to spend time in ‘jail’ and have to do what the jailor wants.
Now, catching every moment of a show like this, or any show in existence (but specifically a “show like this”) is practically impossible. However, you can find odd/offensive instances just a few seconds into it so here we go.
1. First of all, to select someone who has had her Twitter account suspended for her disturbing and dangerous tweets, and to make her the ‘owner of the jail’ – is very questionable in itself. Kangana mentions “Yahan who hoga jo main chahti hun” every chance she gets and it’s strange to me that people are not finding it scary.
To give her that power in a game, even symbolically, is overstepping the line.
2. It only gets worse because of the way she interacts with the contestants. For instance, Munawar Faruqui wanted to share that he does not come from money; so he said, “Everything I have learned, I have learned from the street” – and Kangana responds, “Yes, that is evident”.
This doesn’t work. I know they are going for the whole ‘mean jailor’ angle, but this absolutely does not land. Even if Faruqui is okay with being at the receiving end of such offensive comments. His participation in the show has rightly been questioned by the people, but you wouldn’t want him to be subjected to such nonsense because it would be tough for people from the same background as his to not associate these statements with their lives.
3. The makers of the show invited a bunch of journalists to question the contestants. This section is called a ‘media trial’. They are oblivious that the phrase has a negative meaning, or maybe they are not. At this point, it’s really tough to tell.
4. The not-so-subtle plugging of the government. Poonam Pandey was making a fairly decent point about erotica and India’s history as the nation of kamasutra before she said, “I don’t break any laws with my videos because I respect my government. It’s a very beautiful government”.
5. At one point, Kangana tells Swami Chakrapani Maharaj, a contestant, that while drinking gau mutra is fine, consuming it in shot glasses like tequila is disrespecting the Hindu religion.
6. And Chakrapani says he only did a “mutra party”, which is okay because it was not like he was partying with alcohol. Hmm.
7. Attacks on Bollywood by insinuating, well no, directly accusing people of consuming drugs because senseless hounding is not a problem this country is facing.
8. They invite a trans person. Saisha, and in the ‘media trial’ make her explain why her existence is ‘natural’. This is offensive on all levels, we have reached a point where any form of entertainment media should be taking a strong stand for the trans community. Putting them in a spot and making them answer such questions is not the way to go about it.
Again, Saisha may have been okay with answering this question, but it still should not be asked on a public platform.
So the list, basically, is endless. All these instances are from the first episode itself and I am afraid it may not be possible to cover everything in one article. But you get the idea.