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Wednesday, October 10, 2001

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A formula one serial


CHITTI, ON Sun TV, is one of the most popular mega television serials in recent times. It might be curtains in a while for this mega hit. What was its formula that made people abandon routine work to watch this melodrama?

There are twists and turns in the story. People, who are good, face difficult times and manage to overcome the challenges. Even those painted as evil have finer human qualities - showing affection towards their kin.

Of course, the whole story centres around a woman, who braves the worst of times with equanimity. The woman, Chitti (which, in this story, means step-mother), shoulders the burden of running her family and raises the girl child, which her husband had through his first wife, as her own. This is despite Chitti having three children herself. Also, she does not flinch from difficulty, if that will rescue her family members from trouble.

Radhika Sarathkumar, who plays the role of Chitti, is a picture of grace. Even in moments of severe stress, Chitti is controlled, composed, the emotions surfacing subtly.

In contrast is the style of Prabhavathi (played by Yuvarani Ravindra), whose hate towards Chitti is stark and visible.

The weaving of emotions both intense and deep has made Chitti a central part of TV viewing for thousands.

What is more is that viewers, over a period of time, try to predict the course of events of the story, often with success. And this sense of predictability creates a deep involvement, pitting their imagination with that of the serial director. For the viewer, it is a creative continuum. The viewers get a feeling of fulfillment when they find what they predict coming true.

In fact, the degree of curiosity among the viewers has risen of late as there have been reports that the serial would come to an end soon.

Now, with the death of three important characters, the viewers are on edge, as they are eager to know what final twists the story will take over the next few weeks.

By T. Ramakrishnan

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