Ya Allah! South Park points & laughs at our Gods

April 22, 2010 Leave a comment

& only few care…

Rohit Sharma

In one of the most daring moves in American television, channel Comedy Central has taken a giant jab at religious beliefs of people across the world. Much worse, the makers have put their lives at stake by messing with Islamic community.

South Park, an animation-adult series, somewhat on the lines of The Simpsons, commemorates its 200th anniversary by burlesquing religious figures from around the world- Buddha, Krishna, Jesus, Moses, Joseph Smith, Lao Tzu and Muhammad.

Super Best Friends. Pic source- southparkstudios.com

In the episode titled ‘The Super Best Friends’, Kyle and Stan revisit the group of superheroes ‘Super Best Friends’ to try to get Muhammad to come to South Park, because Tom Cruise demands to meet the Prophet so he can steal his “impervious to being made fun of” goo.

Buddha is shown snorting coke, Krishna snaps and turns into a badger, Tom Cruise is a “candy packer in a fudge factory” (a hint at the rumors circulating around Cruise’s sexual orientation), Jesus is called ‘Jesus f****** Christ’ and Muhammad cannot be “presented to the township because violence can not be risked from the Muslim people”. 

It’s not new though. In an article by Erik Childress in cinematical.com, he says, “ In 2006, South Park aired the two-part episode, “Cartoon Wars”, which featured Eric Cartman on a crusade to get Family Guy canceled after Muhammad is slated for a guest appearance on one of their episodes. Fearing a terrorist attack, the town buried their heads in sand in a show of solidarity to Islamists that their eyes would not feast on this unholiest of acts. Ultimately, the Family Guy episode airs but the moment of Muhammad’s appearance is cut away from with a message that read “In this shot, Mohammed hands a football helmet to Family Guy. Comedy Central has refused to broadcast an image of Mohammed on their network.” Strangely, unlike this time, there was no raging criticism or protests over the episode then

Revolutionmuslim.com has given a serious death threat to the makers of South Park ‘reminding’ them of the Van Gogh incident. Film Director Theo Van Gogh was shot 8 times by Mohammed Bouyeri. The assassin proceeded to slice his throat practically decapitating the filmmaker, stabbed him in the chest and then left two knives in his torso with a 5 page letter attached.

Watch the rare scenes (backwards, due to copyrights issue) from the controversial episode. (Note Muhammad’s image in the video has been censored)

Introducing, foursquare

April 6, 2010 Leave a comment

Rohit Sharma

For the Indian social media fandom, a fun new game might just be in the offing. foursquare, which is rapidly gaining popularity abroad, is a social media application for your phones and a location based game. International press have received this game positively and even gone ahead and labeled it as “the next Twitter”.  

For starters, fourquare is a Location Based Service that helps you not only connect with your friends but also help you and your friends find new ways to explore cities. Users can ‘check-in’ to a location, such as a hotel, restaurant or office to earn ‘badges’ and become the ‘mayor’ of a certain place. Social networking accounts on Twitter and Facebook also help the user widen the profile and reach of foursquare.

Foursquare is best suited for mobile phones like I-phone and Blackberry, whereas phones with web connectivity can also log in to the website. It’ an almost a year old company that has more than half a million users, 1.4 million venues and 15.5 million check-ins, and it’s still growing.

Interestingly, one of the founders of Foursquare Naveen Selvadurai is of Indian origin.

With top 3G players jostling to enter, emerging market for gizmos like I-pad, growing public interests in Blackberry and I-phones along with the success of social media games like Farmville, India seems to the perfect venue for foursquare to extend its reach. 

Who da thunk it?

March 22, 2010 Leave a comment

Rohit Sharma

The world isn’t perfect without Prahlad Kakkar…

Or is it?

Post IPL snub, Mandira Bedi sets a feminist statement – protests through a ‘clothes burning movement’. In case you missed it, the brand is called Shree Ganesh.

JK Cement reported huge profit recently and we reveal their secret. The ad is pretty much self-explanatory.

Delete that Tweet!

March 12, 2010 Leave a comment

Emanuel Joute

A simple status update of Tweet might seem harmless. But With the growing popularity of social media, the chances of leakages and defamatory information coming out from employees are quite high.

 Read more.

Good, Bad & SRK

March 8, 2010 Leave a comment

Rohit Sharma

Sandra Bullock. Pic source: oscar.com

Watching Filmfare awards and then Academy awards just a few hours later was a cultural shock of sorts. Academy awards hosted by Alec Baldwin and Steve Martin were a sheer sense of relief from the ridiculous shenanigans Shahrukh Khan and Saif Ali Khan indulged in at Filmfare awards last night. Although, Hugh Jackman last year, was tad bit better in his “musicals are back” act, but the 82nd Oscars at least reach upto the level of those compered by Whoopi Goldberg, Jon Stewart and Ellen DeGeneres. Academy’s choice of Martin and Baldwin comes from their tremendous one show act in 30 rock season 3. The banter between themselves, mocking Meryl Streep, George Clooney and other Hollywood stars was hilarious. Neil Patrick Harris’ opening act didn’t seem Academisque-grandiose but Ben Stiller’s Avatar act was his best amongst all his Oscars presentations so far. The winners were upto everyone’s expectations (read Sandra Bullock, Monique and Christopher Waltz) but Hurt Locker’s 6 wins seem surprising as its over movie like Up in The Air which was ignored. Sad one of Hurt Locker’s producers was banned from attending the event.

Slapstick and burlesque, I would say are equally serious and tough genres to adapt especially for Indian awards ceremony. It’s very much out that Filmfare awards are rigged but what’s worse for then is that they are not doing a good job covering the fact up. No nomination for Abhay Deol, Ranbir being nominated for Ajab Prem, putting Sushmita Sen on the jury was one of the many mistakes… biggest of all- repeating “SRK” and “SAK” as hosts for the third time. The only person laughing to their jokes was Gauri Khan (who for once seemed a bit zonked about their “security check” act). Shahrukh seemed exhausted and Saif seemed uncomfortable, Neil Nitin Mukesh’s argument was clearly staged and the entire ceremony was way too long. The Lifetime Achievement awards to Shashi Kapoor and Khayyam and Katrina Kaif’s performance were the only saviors for Bollywood lovers as rest of the event was a giant snore.

Where’s our Breakfast?

March 5, 2010 Leave a comment
Team Communicatingpr

Pic source: indiajournal.com

Economic Times’ post Budget event with Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee as the key guest ended on an embarrassing note.

Actually, it didn’t even begin.

The event titled “Breakfast with FM” , which had 200 invitees waiting, was cancelled as the FM backed off at the last moment. The reason why Mukherjee didn’t make it was not disclosed but we can tell you that it was a giant snub.

On March 1st, ET’s front page boasted of Mukherjee’s quote – “I can’t think of a day without ET” along with a picture of him reading the paper. A seasoned politician like Pranab Mukherjee is not too publicity savvy and may have not liked his association with ET as was displayed by the paper. Another version doing rounds is that Pranab babu did not like the fact that ET decided to telecast the interaction Live on ET Now. Considering the fact that Opposition has turned the heat on the UPA government in the Parliament ton the price rise issue, hobnobbing with corporate class would have send wrong signal to the masses.

In the ad published in the paper, ET mentioned that Chanda Kochhar and Azim Premji would be ‘interlocutors’ for FM. Seeing his colleague Shashi Tharoor embroiled into a controversy over the use of this tongue twister, Mukherjee would have developed cold feet, perhaps!

Budget Poll

February 26, 2010 Leave a comment

These deadly recalls‎

February 25, 2010 1 comment

Geetanjali Kalra

Toyota CEO Akio Toyoda. Pic source: nydailynews.com

2010, the beginning of a promising decade, did not begin on a very good note for major car manufacturers across the globe. The year saw several car manufactures resorting to the most unprecedented thing in the past two months by recalling their highest selling brands. What began with Japanese auto major Honda recalling 8,532 units of its sedan ‘City’ in India due to defective power window switch, as part of a global recall initiative, was then followed by Volkswagen recalling 193,620 vehicles in Brazil because of a lubrication problem with the rear wheels. It was Toyota motors then recalling 4,36,000 hybrid vehicles worldwide, including the newly launched 2010 Prius model. The latest to join the recalling bandwagon is the country’s largest carmaker Maruti Suzuki which is recalling about one lakh units of its flagship export model ‘A-Star’ to replace a faulty fuel pump part, in cars manufactured before August 2009.

What can this really be attributed to? In a bid to maintain their leadership position and to take competition head on, companies are hastily launching models in each product category. This in turn leads to specifics being ignored and the quality of ‘quality control’ taking a hit. Not to say that harried customers too are looking in the opposite direction for their next car purchase.

Also read Total Recall.

Like only blondes aren’t dumb!

February 23, 2010 1 comment

Rohit Sharma

Pic source: Ibnlive.in.com

Amongst HT City’s creative line of front page columnists introduced recently, one is a Ms Lara Dutta (Ex- Miss Universe and an “actress”). Her entire column speaks about her three New Year resolutions that she wants us to be aware of. First- awareness about her body and what she eats (not to forget Dutta’s a United Nations Goodwill Ambassador). “Like when I have stuffed another spoonful of low fat yogurt with a chocolate sprinkles into my mouth, I can hear voice in my head say ‘what are you doing’?”

After she finishes conversations with her own head, Dutta tells us that she needs to be committed to learning to drive. But the word commitment scares her, “I hate committing to anything if I know there is possibility that I might abandon it before completion… I guess this is the military background in me.” Somewhere Kelly Dorjee is guzzling down Smirnoff and crying himself to sleep.

Third, Dutta wants to concentrate on writing for the HT supplement for the next 10 months, “But it’s opened a Pandora Box”… for her or us, she doesn’t clear.

The article is titled ‘A New Start’ and subtitle reads ‘New Columnist Lara Dutta promises to bare her soul’ and below it is a life-size picture of Dutta… with her bare legs. You know what’s in store for next 10 months!

Quote of the week

February 19, 2010 1 comment

pic: outlookindia.com

“There would be some security lapse here and there but everybody would be safe.”

-IOA chief Suresh Kalmadi at Commonwealth Shooting Championships

 For more hilarious gaffes at the event read this.