By now, we’ve run out of superlatives to measure the hellishness of the week that was. By now, nothing seems all that bad, it just stings a little. Makes us breathe sharply – momentarily inducing the fear that we’ve possibly contracted the virus. We go into auto-mode, brew ourselves a cup of tea as we get sucked into a vortex of worries, lounge back into our bed, take a sip, and only when we burn the tip of our tongue a little bit, do we scnap out of the stupor. That’s all.
This week, Soorma Bhopali breathed his last. Jagdeep or Syed Ishtiaq Ahmed Jafri, you may call him either, but to a generation, he was Sholay’s Soorma Bhopali. And how does one mourn the death of a man who only ever wanted to make us laugh? Can we shed a tear or are we to smile remembering his on-screen antics? Do let us know if you manage to decode that one.
We’re moving on to a different dilemma – how is dil bechara supposed to react when you see Sushant Singh Rajput leap off the stage and into the audience, dancing, smiling, one last time? When the title track of Sushant Singh Rajput’s last film Dil Bechara released today – his last film, his last film ever – we were caught in a similar strange predicament. Can we shed a tear or are we to smile remembering his on-screen antics?
Not that there’s much respite elsewhere. With a Paatal Lok-esque encounter of Vikas Dubey, the lines between reel and real constantly blurring.
But, breathe, and Breathe: Into The Shadows, if you please, with Abhishek Bachchan’s digital debut. The 12-episode psychological thriller is now streaming on Amazon Prime Video. Yes, it did make us miss R Madhavan terribly, but then there are several intricate and intriguing elements in the show, our review will tell you all about it.
Although, perhaps breathe with a mask on, now that WHO somewhat accepts the possibility of the novel coronavirus being air-bourne. Sigh!
Over to what’s trending now.
Forget coronavirus for about ten seconds at the moment till we get to that part of the story because Vikas Dubey is the bigger virus of the week. Nahi pehechante inko? This is a total filmy affair as the dreaded gangster was arrested on Thursday in Kanpur after the police navigated through three states – Uttar Pradesh, Haryana and Madhya Pradesh – for one darshan of Dubey ji. The climax of the episode was also dramatic as Vikas Dubey was nabbed on his way to the Mahakal temple in Ujjain, where he wanted a darshan of the Lord. But the plot twist (or not) came on Friday as Vikas Dubey was shot dead in an encounter while he tried to flee from custody, the UP Police have claimed.
Dubey ji has a long list of criminal charges including murder of a BJP leader and UP minister inside a police station in 2001 to his credit. And of course, the latest, where he killed eight policemen before making UP cops chase him all over the state and beyond.
Cut to coronavirus because such is life. Pretty much cruel. India, now at the third spot on the global index after the US and Brazil, has recorded over 7.5 lakh cases. Health Minister Harsh Vardhan, however, has said that there is no community transmission in the country. Death toll in India has crossed the 21,000-mark.
There was some amount of debate over whether coronavirus is air-borne after a group of over 230 scientists from 32 countries claimed they have evidence to suggest so, and requested the World Health Organisation (WHO) to update its guidelines. Is it true? WHO’s chief scientist Dr Soumya Swaminathan elaborates.
In the meantime, the government has removed masks and sanitisers from the essential commodities list against manufacturers’ advice.
So, that’s the story. Are we sinking on the coronavirus front? That is not the question that should bother you because all you need to hold on to is faith. Remember where there is a will, there is a way. Learn from Former Miss Colombia. Three weeks after she had to get her leg amputated, Daniella Alvarez danced in full spirit with her brother and made the most of every moment.
So, there is hope but humanity? In St. Paul, Minnesota in the United States, a Muslim woman was “humiliated” after she ordered a coffee for herself at a Starbucks and received her cup with ‘ISIS’ written on it instead of her name. She is suing them. The flipside of faith here.
Let’s just leave humanity aside after this update and focus on wildlife. Pictures of a black panther roaming around the jungles of Karnataka surfaced on the internet earlier this week and the internet is thrilled.
A black panther roaming in the jungles of Kabini, India. pic.twitter.com/UT8zodvv0m
— Earth (@earth) July 4, 2020
Bob-cut Sengamalam, the elephant, also made the internet smile with her trendy haircut. There, there. We have set the mood for you and it only gets better from here. Just head to our next section and you’ll know why.
She is famously known as “Bob-cut Sengamalam” who has a huge fan club just for her hair style. You can see her at Sri Rajagopalaswamy Temple, Mannargudi, Tamilnadu.
Pics from Internet. pic.twitter.com/KINN8FHOV3
— Sudha Ramen IFS (@SudhaRamenIFS) July 5, 2020
Oh, one second. Did we tell you that Kanye West is running for president in 2020? Not sure if that made you smile as well, but nevertheless, go on.
SOMETHING TO MAKE YOU SMILE
Nothing better than wildlife videos, especially if the clips feature baby animals. This video of a baby elephant drinking milk from a feeding bottle is so sweet.
The bottle might be empty but Roho won’t let go until he knows he’s drunk every last drop. He is flourishing at our Nursery where our Keepers are making sure all his needs are met after his mother sadly died. Through your support, we’re making sure he’s not lost for love. pic.twitter.com/jix3FaStWT
— Sheldrick Wildlife (@SheldrickTrust) July 5, 2020
So is this clip of a foster mother. A chimpanzee bottle-fed a lion cub. We guarantee you will watch this on loop. The internet did.
The kiss of the foster mother at the end pic.twitter.com/ewFesNU1AY
— Susanta Nanda IFS (@susantananda3) July 7, 2020
Also, this clip of a little girl making every attempt to distract her mom during her yoga session is just so cute. Aren’t you missing your mother already?
ARE YOU WORKING OUT?
No two ways about the fact that workout is necessary. At least, if you intend to be as fit as Milind Soman’s mother Usha Soman. At 81, she does push-ups even better than her son. In fact, exercise was part of her birthday party on Sunday as well apart from a jaggery vanilla almond cake.
Bipasha Basu did squats – it was all intense for her this week. As for Jacqueline Fernandez, she practised yoga and shared a snippet of her session on Instagram. Yoga also helped her deal with anxiety, so take a cue from her post here.
In line with Usha Soman, Anil Kapoor, at 63, also exercises regularly. “Fitter and stronger.”
KHAANE MEIN KYA HAI?
Summer is all about refreshing drinks and dishes that include fresh vegetables. This week, we have two incredible recipes for you that absolutely fulfil the criteria. From this week’s Soul Kitchen series, here are recipes of a nutritious bowl of Farro Salad and Wood Apple, Mint and Lime Cooler.
WHAT TO READ?
And the Mountains Echoed by Khaled Hosseini
This weekend, pick up Khaled Hosseini’s heart-wrenching tale of Abdullah and his sister Pari – And the Mountains Echoed. It is a story of love and sacrifice, of separation and the bittersweet feeling of reunion. In the book, the author writes about the relationships that define and shape our lives, and how the choices that we make resonate through history. Hosseini’s skills of creating a vivid tale that pulls the strings of your heart shine in this story.
FASHION KI DUNIYA SE
Anushka Shetty, Tamannaah and Ramya Krishnan in stills from Baahubali.
It is all about royalty and grandeur in our Fashion Friday section, this week. As SS Rajamouli’s Baahubali completes five years on July 10, we revisit costumes that the women – Anushka Shetty, Ramya Krishnan and Tamannaah – stunned in. From striking sarees to dreamy blouses and statement jewellery, designers Rama Rajamouli and Prashanti Tipirneni ensured that the characters dazzled in every attire in the film. Here you go.
MOVIES, MAGIC AND MORE
On late Thursday evening, the news of Jagdeep’s death tricked in. He was 81 and had died of age-related ailments. And his shrill voice and his unique dialogue-delivery style – as if chewing on a pan – came flashing back. A persona that would instantly induce laughter suddenly plunged us into a heart of darkness. Soorma Bhopali was no more.
Yes, he has left behind a plethora of work for us to enjoy. We must re-watch them, mourn the loss, and break into a peal of laughter, inadvertently even. For perhaps that’s the best way to pay respect to the man who dedicated his entire life to that. We must bid him goodbye, and we must do so with a smile.
But even as we preach this, we miserably failed to practice it when Sushant Singh Rajput’s Dil Bechara trailer dropped. How many of us wept, how many of us bawled like a baby looking at that big, bright smile, knowing it will never shine again? The trailer received more views on YouTube than Avengers: Endgame did in 24 hours. And we cried buckets.
From the last trailer, we moved on to Sushant Singh Rajput’s last dance – with Farah Khan taking us through the steps – and then onto The Last Leaf with Lootera. The Ranveer Singh-Sonakshi Sinha film completed seven years, and in this week’s Monday Masala, we remembered the lootera who stole our hearts.
Stories of outsiders making it in the big bad world of Bollywood are few, but Shah Rukh Khan’s remains an inspiration, In Tuesday Trivia, therefore, we tell you how he bagged Fauji, his big break on the small screen. But even with all the talent, you’re bound to stumble sometimes. Anubhav Sinha’s Cash is one example. The maverick director did films like Cash and Ra.One before he found his groove with Mulk, Article 15 and Thappad. We must remember the lows even when we celebrate the highs. Catch our exclusive interview with Anubhav Sinha here.
FROM THE WORLD OF OTT
WHAT’S ON NETFLIX?
What to watch: Down to Earth with Zac Efron
You will like it if you liked: Tom Daley Goes Global
A reason to rejoice for all travel enthusiasts in the time of the pandemic as Zac Efron’s travel documentary Down to Earth with Zac Efron started streaming on Netflix from July 10. In the show, Zac Efron journeys around the world with wellness expert Darin Olien in search of healthy, sustainable ways to live.
What to watch: The Old Guard
You will like it if you liked: Extraction
Directed by Gina Prince-Bythewood, The Old Guard is an action thriller starring Charlize Theron. It narrates a story of a covert team of immortal mercenaries, who are suddenly exposed and must now fight to keep their identity a secret. If you loved Chris Hemsworth’s ExtractioN, you cannot miss The Old Guard, which started streaming on Netflix on July 10.
What to watch: Mucho Mucho Amor: The Legend of the Walter Mercado
You will like it if you liked: Return of the Magi: A Documentary of Authentic Astrology
Are you among those who check their zodiac prediction every morning? If yes, Mucho Mucho Amor: The Legend of the Walter Mercado will surely interest you. The delightful documentary is based on the life of astrologer Walter Mercado, who beamed his vibes of love and positivity into millions of Latinx and Hispanic homes in the 1970s and 1980s, and then, vanished at the peak of his fame. The documentary started streaming from July 8.
WHAT’S ON AMAZON PRIME?
What to watch: Breathe: Into The Shadows
You will like it if you liked: Taken
Abhishek Bachchan is making his digital debut with Breathe: Into The Shadows, the second season of the series. Amit Sadh, who was also a part of the first season, is reprising his role in this one. Saiyami Kher and Nithiya Menon play supporting roles. The story of the new series revolves around a couple who will go to any length to find their kidnapped daughter. Breathe: Into The Shadows will start steaming from July 10. In an exclusive chat with IndiaToday.in, Abhishek discussed his role in the series and more.
But before you go into the new season, check out our Throwback Thursday special about Season 1. Did Abhishek Bachchan outdo Madhavan or did he remain in his shadows? You be the judge.
WHAT’S ON ZEE5?
What to watch: Mafia
You will like it if you liked: Breathe
If you are a fan of psychological thrillers, ZEE5 has a treat for you this week. Mafia, starring Namit Das, Tanmay Dhanania, Anindita Bose and Isha M Saha, begins streaming on the OTT platform from July 10. The show tells the story of six friends, who reunite after five years for a bachelorette party in the forest of Madhupur.
What to watch: Cocktail
You will like it if you liked: Naaigal Jaakirathai
Cocktail is a comedy entertainer that will be available for streaming on ZEE5 from July 10. The film stars Yogi Babu in the lead role and is directed by RA Vijaya Murugan.
WHAT’S ON SonyLiv?
What to watch: Undekhi
You’ll like if you liked: Jamtara
Undekhi premiered on the OTT platform on July 10. The series, starring Dibyendu Bhattacharya and Harsh Chhaya, is based on true incidents in the backdrop of a wedding. On account of a murder of a policeman in the Sunderbans, two tribal girls are on the run, with DSP Barun Ghosh on their trail. However, when he reached Manali to look for them, he finds out about another murder, which happened amid a large crowd with no witnesses to speak up. Read our review here.
Films that are releasing on OTT: Fantasy Island (July 12), Richard Jewell (July 6) on Amazon Prime. A Star is Born (July 11) on Netflix.
WHAT’S ON TV?
What to watch: Yeh Rishta Kya Kehlata Hai
Where to watch: Star Plus, Monday to Friday at 9.30pm
DOUBLE the fun
DOUBLE the mischief
DOUBLE the golmaal
Ummm..did we mention DOUBLE? 😀
Don’t miss exciting new episodes of #YehRishtaKyaKehlataHai, 13th July onwards at 9:30pm on StarPlus and Disney+ Hotstar.@shivangijoshi10 @momo_mohsin pic.twitter.com/59Op1wV6kD
— StarPlus (@StarPlus) June 30, 2020
Yeh Rishta Kya Kehlata Hai, starring Shivangi Joshi and Mohsin Khan, will be back on television with fresh episodes from July 13. The makers have introduced a new track where Naira (Shivangi) will be seen in a double role. Alka Shukla has joined the cast and her character will be creating trouble in Kaira’s life.
What to watch: Ishq Mein Marjawan 2
Where to watch: Colors TV, Monday to Friday at 7pm (from July 13)
— COLORS (@ColorsTV) July 10, 2020
Romantic thriller Ishq Mein Marjawan is returning with its second season on July 13. The show stars Helly Shah, Vishal Vashishtha and Rahul Sudhir in the lead. Vishal plays a cop, Kabir, who asks his girlfriend Riddhima (Helly) to marry and trap Vansh Raisinghania, who is running illegal businesses but has managed to not get caught.
What to watch: Kumkum Bhagya
Where to watch: Zee TV, Monday to Friday at 9pm
Did you watch Ranbir’s love confession to Prachi?? Dekhiye aage kya hota hai #KumkumBhagya ke #LockdownKeKisse aaj raat 9 baje. Kijiye #NayeKalKiSunehriShuruwaat , 13 July se naye episodes ke saath, sirf #ZeeTV par. #comingsoon #Abhigya #episodic@Mugdha024 #KrishnaKaul pic.twitter.com/SpXnK1IclC
— ZeeTV (@ZeeTV) July 7, 2020
Ekta Kapoor’s Kumkum Bhagya will be back with new episodes from July 13. The show will have some new faces as Shikha Singh, who played Aliya and Naina Singh, who played Riya have quit the show. The show stars Shabir Ahluwalia and Sriti Jha in the lead roles.
Have a good weekend!
(Compiled by Ananya Bhattacharya, Nairita Mukherjee, Raya Ghosh, Krishna Priya Pallavi, Vibha Maru, Jyoti Kanyal, Medha Chawla, Janani K, Divyanshi Sharma, Shweta Keshri, Nishtha Grover, Logesh Balachandran)
ALSO WATCH: Gangster Vikas Dubey killed in encounter