All over the world, morning shows are conducted because the media of those countries use those morning shows as a way to educate their audience and the viewers who tune to such shows. In the rest of the world, these shows cater to all different age brackets & focus on different issues that different people face but when it comes to Pakistan, morning shows are a completely different story.
Morning shows in Pakistan have become famous for all the wrong reasons. If we look at the morning shows or talk shows of different countries, one thing that we all will find common between the hosts is the ‘education’, not only academic education but also an education based on the knowledge of the subject that they are conducting a show upon, but sadly, in Pakistan, the criteria to become a morning show host is completely different.
To become a morning show host in Pakistan, there are a few pre-requisites that you need to fulfill, which are:
– First, you need to be a woman.
– Second, you should be married, so that you can always wrap the entire show around marriage and its pros and cons, even in those shows where marriage is the last thing that is being discussed.
– Third, you need to have the ability to talk non-stop & nonsensical for hours & hours.
– Fourth, you don’t have to be educated, educated academically or even educated about the subject that you are going to conduct a show upon.
– Fifth, you need to have a body strength of an iron to wear heaviest of dresses in the wee hours of morning.
– Sixth, you need to be confidently stupid so that you can make blunders on a live show and still not care.
– Seventh, you need to have all the misapprehensions about yourself to believe that you are capable of conducting a morning show.
– Eighth, you need to be insensitive (badtameez) to insult general public on their faces, who come as an (paid or unpaid) audience on your show.
– Ninth, you need to have the energy to be able to dance on Bollywood songs in the morning as if it’s your chacha’s shadi.
– Tenth, you need to mistakenly believe in yourself that even after all this gibberish, people still love you!
Now, when the producers find these ‘qualities’, they hire those ladies & let them on the loose thinking they are capable of running a show. No one checks the quality of their shows, no one checks the content of their shows, no one is bothered about what the host is saying or doing, but all that they care about are the ratings that their shows are chipping in. If there is one thing that makes my belief stronger about the fact that the rating system of our country is flawed, it is these morning shows, who rejoice at the ratings they get, because honestly, no one has the patience or the courage to tune to this noise pollution in the early hours of the morning, so not sure what makes them believe they are getting the highest TRP’s.
Now that we have covered the ‘qualities’ that the producers search for in a morning show host, I will now speak about the lessons that the morning shows taught in the year of 2016 because even though it was just in passing that I caught the glimpse of these shows, all these hosts were on the loop about more or less the same topics as if they actually had nothing else to talk about!
1. Every Pakistani woman irrespective of her age should be Size 0:
I don’t remember how many times I have seen the same subject being discussed over & over again. In stead of ‘informing’ people about how they should lead a healthy lifestyle, our morning show hosts along with a handful of dietitians & nutritionists literally shove the idea of being thin down people’s throats as if those who are not size 0 are a lesser human beings. Also, God forbid if a host like Nida Yasir spots someone thickly built in her audience, she won’t stop making fun of their chubby cheeks or eating habits with an insulting tone to prove a point that the woman’s life if basically finished & she has no right to live!
2. Every Pakistani woman needs to go to parlors/clinics:
In every other show, we see a robot named Aliya Farooq with her machines who comes to every single show to flaunt the new machinery she has installed in her parlor/clinic, telling women that their only motive in life should be to visit her & get a facial treatment otherwise their life is doomed. Almost in every other morning show, we see different people showing different procedures on randomly picked ladies from the audience, without even considering if those procedures will be suitable for their skin type or not. Then they flaunt the before & after shots & I tell you, the difference is equal to a difference you see in your hands after a single hand-wash, ahem!!!
3. Every Pakistani woman needs a porcelain skin:
Another fixation our morning show hosts have is with a crystal clear skin where they show different todkas underlining the importance of having a spotless skin, where the host doesn’t forget to emphasize on the fact that every girl needs to have a clear skin especially before her family is expecting some guests for her rishta, yep, seriously! Every other host endorses the idea that if you are not blessed with a clean & spotless skin, you have no right to be alive because hey, who is going to look at your inner beauty, as everyone will be as shallow as these morning show hosts to judge you on the basis of your outer covering!
4. Every Pakistani woman should be fair:
While the entire goras of the world are investing so much of money on a daily basis on self-tanners or spray tans, our morning show hosts are instilling the idea in the viewers heads that they have to have a lighter skin tone by hook or by crook otherwise they won’t be deemed as beautiful. From procedures to lighter foundations to desi todkas, each & every aspect is conveyed with an intent of teaching women how they should look fair because that’s the only complexion that will earn them a bucket load of respect!
5. Every Pakistani woman needs Botox & fillers in her life & then should know how to deny the rumors:
In every other morning show, we see celebrities whose faces have changed considerably over the years, like Fizza Ali, Sadia Imam, Mishi Khan, Nadia Hussain etc, but some blame their pregnancy & some point-blank refuse that they got their faces botched up in a pursuit of looking beautiful. In some of the shows, lip augmentation is showcased which the hosts promote saying so what if Allah has created you like that, you can always improve by being discontent with Allah’s creation & by letting your insecurities get the better of you!
6. Every Pakistani woman needs Oriental Foundation Stick in her life:
Yes, the importance of makeup is also very much emphasized on our morning shows, where in the beginning they show you some ladies from their audience, literally implying that they are looking like clowns with a bad makeup later to introduce their celebrity makeup artist guest, with Oriental Foundation Stick in his/her hands, trying to show that this is ‘har marz ki dawa’ & every single Pakistani woman should run & grab it ASAP! In stead of telling people that makeup is just an expression of yourself, it is just an art, they actually force you to believe that this is what you need in your life, otherwise you won’t score yourself a good rishta!!!
7. Every Pakistani woman needs hair extensions in her life:
The focus on outer beauty is being so emphasized upon in our morning shows that it feels that their only motive in life is to turn everyone into a clone & make them look artificial. Different sorts of tablets are promoted, different sorts of medicated products are promoted which ensure the hair growth, while completely hiding the fact that these sort of supplements affect a human body in worse way possible too. Hair extensions are so highly spoken about as if they are as necessary as having food in your life!
8. Playing hideous games is an expression of happiness & entertainment:
Yes, we all are well aware of the ‘games’ that the guests or even the audience are made to play to fill up the time of the show, which may as well include blowing a chewing gum while answering questions, adorning the bakras in Eid shows, putting a lipstick on each other or like shown below, brushing someone’s teeth!
9. Every woman belonging to the Media is a Super-Woman:
There won’t be a day when you won’t see either Ambar, Kiran, Nadia Hussain, Javeria, Binita & a dozen more who have all the time in their lives to be on the morning shows every single day, speaking about how super-womanly they are, where they won’t stop praising themselves for all the wonders they do & how the entire Pakistan is only running because of them being a part of it!
10. Every Pakistani woman should spy on her husband:
Yes, there won’t go a few days without a show where marital problems will be discussed or marriage on its own will be made fun of. A few hosts won’t stop discussing how oh-so amazing their married life is whereas the others won’t stop telling how they check their husband’s cellphones because they are insecure beings!
11. How exemplary newly wedded Media couples are:
Every couple in the media is the best couple on the face of the earth, while the others were just created by fluke & do not contribute towards the society. They make sure these ‘actors’ put up an act about how oh-so in love they are & how oh-so perfect their life is, fooling people to believe that things won’t be different when the cameras turn off!!!
12. How all the Media couples pro-create:
Every other day, they would invite the couples from the media who have had a child recently & then the details they will push them to discuss will be gruesome starting from their cravings to their hormones. Then they get another content idea that right after some time when those kids will turn 1 or 2, they will celebrate their birthdays.
Yes, these are the topics that you will only see being discussed & dissected time & again on our morning shows as if there is nothing more to life than this. Women already are so hard on themselves, to a point where every woman, every single day of her life feels insecure about herself, her body or her overall personality & then come these morning show hosts who are shallow to the core, who push these insecurities & complexes more & rub these non-issues or first world problems on everyone’s faces. It’s been such a long time that I have not seen a morning show which focused on empowering women. I have not seen a show which focused on telling woman that irrespective of any color, shape or size, no matter what, they are beautiful. I have not seen any show where the morning show host has taught women to be confident. I have not seen a show where a morning show host has told women that they need to be comfortable in their own skin. Woman are always so hard on themselves, they constantly judge their own-self, they constantly feel the need to improve, then we see these morning show hosts who have no personality whatsoever, take a seat in the morning & brain-feed women into believing that they will only be respected if they will look a certain way. In stead of breaking the standards & the norms that the society has set for women, our morning show hosts endorse those ideas because for them ‘looking good’ should be the only motive of a woman’s life.
I have time & again seen how these morning show hosts bring in the celebrities as an example & then tell the the regular women in their audience from all walks of life that they need to look like these celebrities, while completely missing the point that their job is to look good because they make a living out of it. Celebrities also make sure to announce how much they take care of themselves because let’s face it, they only have one particular thing to focus on in their lives. It is sickening, it is absolutely sickening how these morning show hosts put Celebrities & Regular women on the same pedestal & think they are being fair in their judgement. One fine day, I happened to watch a show in which Sadia Imam was invited to share her ‘beauty tips’ & she ended up saying ‘hum log apni skin aur baal bechtay hain, to hamain iska khayal rakhna zaroori hai’, yes, no exaggerations there, she said it, she herself endorsed the fact that Celebrities need to look good because they make money out of it, so what makes these morning show hosts believe that regular women can compete & should look up to celebrities as their role models & follow their footsteps as if they have nothing else or better for that matter, to do, in their lives?
We have time & again spoken against these morning shows & it is absolutely sad that even after getting the feedback from the social media, in stead of improving their content these morning show hosts continue to commit the same mistakes over & over again. They choose not to educate themselves to improve the standards of their show. It is ironic that where these hosts put women under scrutiny for not following the basic standards that have been set by the society for them, they do not put “””themselves””” under scrutiny to see if they are doing good or not? They do not reflect upon themselves if they are doing justice to the platform that they have or not? They do not think selflessly about the people they are so called ‘teaching’ the importance of these things in life. It is actually quite sad to see the constant reminders to the women that if they are not striving to look a certain way, they are failing miserably in their lives. I wish one fine day, I get to see a complete change in the format of these shows where every host talks about woman empowerment based on real deals & not superficial things like skin, hair, weight or fairness. These morning show hosts should live in their bubbles & leave their female audience alone because everyone has better things to do, everyone has different priorities in their lives & last but definitely not the least, each & every single woman is beautiful in her own beautiful way!!!