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      Chutzpah Web Series Review: Best Skipped To Avoid Toxic Characters, Screenplay Degrades Actors' Hard Work


      Available On: SonyLiv
      Duration: 7 Episodes/ 40 Minutes
      Language: Hindi

      Story: Chutzpah follows characters exploring every aspect of the worldwide web, as they continue to face complexities of real-life through delusional online lives. Not only does the show give an insight into the good surviving on the internet, but also the bad influence it has on our lives.

      Tanya Maniktala, Varun Sharma, Manjot Singh, Gautam Mehra

      Review: Chutzpah, pronounced with a silent 'C', follows a few characters who are obsessed with the internet, and others who are at the mercy of the worldwide web. We meet a young YouTuber Kevin, who would do anything to go viral and befriends an influencer Deepali Shah. Meanwhile, his flatmate, Prateek is obsessed with the convenience internet brings to the world of dating. Rishi played by Manjot Singh is a reclusive young man taken by the dark web. He often wins money through online poker and spends it on a live porn site, after befriending Wild Butterfly, a girl who satisfies his desires while also serving as his life coach.

      On the other hand, Shikha and Vikas separated by distance try to maintain their relationship over constant video calls. Shikha is happy about Vikas' new job and success overseas but he wants to return to be closer to her. The two cook up a plan for him to return in six months, but it's enough for them to realise that life has more to offer.

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      While the show has plenty of relatable characters and also shows the good and the bad side of the internet, it lacks in perspective. Throughout the show, we get to see several good female characters, but we hardly get to spend time with them or see their side of the story. Deepali Shah is an influencer who struggles with body issues. Instead of giving a positive outlook, we get to see her being put down by the world. Granted, that's what society has become, but it's not something that needs to be promoted on an OTT platform that is easily available to everyone.

      If that's not enough, Wild Butterfly aka Sara Khan gets a typical family background of conservative Muslims, who are ready to kill her then let her achieve her dreams of becoming an actress. The worse plot of all is Parteek's obsession over comparing his dates with other guys in a chat called boys locker room. He then proceeds to explain how he baits women because 'they also want the same things' and then blocks them. Not only it was hard to watch but also unexplainable as to why the makers needed to add the ten minutes of the conversation.

      While there are some scenes worth mentioning for great direction and acting from the leading cast including Gautam Mehra, Tanya Maniktala, Varun Sharma, Manjot Singh, and Diksha Singh, the screenplay takes away their charm with cheap dialogues and glamourised toxic behaviour. Kshitij Chauhan has given his all as the bad guybut the character is so one dimensional that it doesn't give the audience a chance to appreciate his acting.

      In the end, makers have left several subplots unexplored, mainly of the good female characters like Deepali Shah and Shikha. The markers do deserve the credit for attempting to show that there are real consequences for bad behaviour but the damage is done by making the toxic behaviour relatable and common. On top of it, every episode starts with a disclaimer, "Please People Don't Get Offended, It's Just A Damn Fictional Show'. But everything that they have shown does happen in real life and while the characters will not face real consequences, real people will who are inspired by the show.

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      Overall, the maker's heart was in the right place, the storyline may have seemed feasible or even good on paper, but the execution has been disappointing. The makers didn't have to resort to degrading certain characters to prove their point.

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