1. Moms in TV ads have only two hair styles to choose from:
A low bun or lower bun. No short hair, perm, or highlights, or even a dramatic blunt. Mrs. Nirupa Roy has done more than 475 movies in the same hairstyle. So you know it works. What’s the fuss, right?
2. Arms that rock the cradle can rock the world. But a mommy on TV can never bare her arms.
They aren’t allowed to wear sleeveless blouses or kurta . Jalti tapti garmi ho ya kamina pasina!
3. In ad-land, all moms get married by 17 or in very special cases by 18.
Mothers of 8 year olds are always in the 24-26 age band. Now you do the math (Vidya Balan was a mother of an 8 year old at 19, ask me, I cast her).
4. Mothers here are always happily married.
Because in this part of the boardroom, freedom means absence of choice. So no single mom, no innocent divorcee, no ‘I’m taking a break from my marriage mom.’ Yahan jaisa bhi hai mera pati mera devta hai …
5. Moms in ads can’t worry about their own hairfall or pimples because they can only worry about kitanu…kids nutrition and husband’s stress.
Exception being the medicare mom who has worry about lice nits and khujli.
6. Matashrees in ads hardly ever travel… if they aren’t in the kitchen then it’s the lab.
You will never find her in a café with friends or at the parlour. The only me time she has is when she is sleeping.
7. TV moms all live in nice big houses with open kitchen and parka floor… but they NEVER EVER have a maid or a cook.
Yahan everything is not just home made but hand made. Handmade cleaning, handmade cooking, handmade stain removing from collars. Handmade, never maid-made.
8. It’s true moms in ads are very competitive. Anything can spark it off: next door kid, aroma from downstairs.
But the only game she plays is 20 Questions With The Scientist. Kya badte bachcho ke poshan mein kami aa sakti hein? Kya mera floor cleaner sach much chipey hua kitano ko maar sakta hai? Kya mera cooking oil pace maker ka kharch mita sakta hai?
9. Moms on TV have no single fun friends.
She hangs out most of the time with her son’s classmate’s mother. Someone who is even more lost than her and often has to be educated on why diaper is better than cloth. And why calcium without Vitamin D is like gajar ka halwa without gajar.
10. Her clothes will always have to match the brand colours.
Even if she has just got out of bed to give her son a bath. If you look carefully her kameez is the same colour as her bar of soap.
So you see, being a 100% shudh desi mummy on TV is almost as much fun as puberty in Afghanistan.
Swati Bhattacharya until recently was the National Creative Director of JWT India. After a 21 year stint at JWT, she now works with Dentsu’s Mama Labs as Principal Partner.