Masaba Masaba, starring Masaba Gupta and Neena Gupta, is finally out on Netflix and it presents an endearing tale of two most successful women in their respective industries. As the name of the show suggests, Masaba Masaba presents to us a semi-fictionalized account of designer Masaba Gupta’s life. And as the casting list tells us, Masaba Gupta is playing herself alongside her real-life mother Neena Gupta in the show. The bright colours and the chirpy atmosphere of the show makes you feel happy, and as you watch on you realise that the show is actually a coming-of-age story welded together with a rom-com and presented as a light-hearted comedy. The narrative tone is confident, and even while dealing with sombre topics the show balances itself on the thin line of neither becoming too solemn nor too frivolous.
Masaba Masaba is directed by Sonam Nair, who is also the screenplay writer alongside Nandini Gupta and Anupama Ramachandran. The six-episode show is created and produced by Ashwini Yardi. The show stars Pooja Bedi, Rytasha Rathore, Neil Bhoopalam and Smaran Sahu in pivotal roles. It also features cameos by Farah Khan, Shibani Dandekar, Kiara Advani, Mithila Palkar and Gajraj Rao. Masaba Masaba follows the footsteps of famed television series like Seinfeld and Ramy, and presents real-life people playing fictionalised versions of themselves. The show is the acting debut of Masaba Gupta, and for those wondering, let’s just clear out this doubt for once and for all: the fashion designer inherits all those acting genes, and her acting is as excellent as her designs.
An Ode To A Mother-Daughter Relationship
The chemistry between the real-life mother-daughter duo panning out on the screen is stunningly relatable. There’s a scene where a teary-eyed Masaba ends up on the doorstep of her mother’s house, and Neena offers to make a paratha for her. Every person watching the scene, no matter which social class they might belong to, will feel the warmth oozing out of ‘maa ke haath ka khana’. And that is how the show grips you. What it presents is high-society with all its shenanigans: here are two people who have led largely public lives and are making it big in the film and fashion industry. But how it presents this is where Masaba Masaba scores, because the themes it goes ahead to tackle are largely universal.
Also Read: Neena And Masaba Gupta On Their Relationship And Experiences On The Set Of Masaba Masaba
It shows us the strong bond that two people have formed while living under the public radar. This mother-daughter duo fight, bicker and argue like any other, and often use passive-aggressive methods to showcase their feelings. There’s even a scene where Masaba stops talking to her mother due to an argument, but that doesn’t stop her from backing her mother’s social media post about seeking work. See! Totally relatable. The fresh bit is that the Masaba is not shown as some typically obedient daughter, and neither is Neena presented as some unfailing mother-goddess. The former faces her own sets of anxieties, while the latter is shown lacking self-confidence in certain arenas of her life. However, that’s not to deny that one did expect the script to go a little bit deeper into their lives, for the glimpses we get of their personalities barely scratch the surface.
An Empowering Tale
For a show to present such successful women, it was already given that it would be an empowering watch. And the show does live upto that expectation and more. The biggest cheerleader of these women is the show itself, which doesn’t want us to feel sorry for or be in awe of them, but instead guides us to applaud their determination to keep moving forward. It tries to tell us that women can make choices without regrets or apologies, and that having it all can also mean making the best of what one has.
Also Read: Director Sonam Nair And Producer Ashvini Yardi Give Us A Sneak-Peak Into The World Of Masaba Masaba
However the story has its shortcomings, with many scenes looking unmistakably scripted and some even lacking the raw honesty that should have been present, given that the actors are made to act under their own names. Don’t get me wrong, I know that the Masaba Masaba was never meant to be a reality entertainment show where a mother and daughter would sit down and mull over the past amidst all their other professional commitments. But when as a viewer I am told that these women are famous, I would have also liked to get an insight into what it takes to be as successful as they are. The show is fleeting in that sense, where everything feels as transitory as the next Instagram post (the social media, after all, plays a very important role in the show). Nevertheless, Masaba Masaba is a feel-good show that makes you laugh often, and God knows we need more of such shows at the present, and hence makes up for a delightful one-time watch.