The recently launched Tamil web series, As I’m Suffering From Kadhal, is an entertaining romantic-comedy that boldly explores the many pitfalls of contemporary urban relationships. Depicting the progressive, modern Chennai lifestyle and lingo like never before, the series makes full use of the online platform to circumvent the censorship that comes with regular television and films. Created, written and directed by young filmmaker Balaji Mohan (who also stars as one of the protagonists), the show is a unique and revolutionary accomplishment in the regional language.
As I’m Suffering From Kadhal focusses on the various challenges faced by young couples before and after they tie the knot, live-in couples who simply don’t believe in the concept of marriage, and the complicated lives of divorced single parents. Light and breezy in its tone, the series deserves much praise for its unfiltered and genuine portrayal of modern relationships. The dialogues include a wide array of the colorful Tamil swear words, while the actors do well to capture the essence of how young Chennai adults behave and speak amongst themselves.
The series begins on a slower note, as viewers are introduced to the main characters in the first couple of episodes. The comedy gradually increases in intensity as the audience becomes familiar with the characters’ quirks and eccentricities. Of the four separate relationships depicted, the most memorable is perhaps that of Santhosh and Meera, who are played by director Balaji and actress Dhanya Balakrishna. They are the ‘married and angry at each other’ couple, who have both been unfaithful and now share a hilarious on-screen ‘anti-chemistry’, in which they are both tangibly irritated by their spouse. The more experienced actor Sunder Ramu is brilliant in his role as a divorced single father of a young girl. The rest of the cast too fit their characters perfectly, delivering seemingly effortless performances in both comedic and serious scenes. There are also several entertaining cameos from actors such as Robo Shankar, Andrea Geremia, VJ Ramya and YouTube stars RJ Vignesh and Vijay Varadharaj.
Balaji Mohan’s background in short films and experience making his romantic-comedy feature Kadhalil Sodhapuvadu Eppadi (How to Screw up when in Love) make him well equipped to deal with the writing and directorial responsibilities on a web series such as this. A Hotstar original, As I’m Suffering From Kadhal has 10 episodes in its first season, each running for a duration of about 20 minutes or less. There is also a Telugu dubbed version available, as well as english subtitles which increase the show’s accessibility. The finale ends in an absorbing cliffhanger, which suggests that viewers can look forward to at least another season of their favorite characters suffering from Kadhal!
Talking about the new web series in an exclusive interview with The News Minute, Director Balaji Mohan said, “The whole audience that watches a feature film won’t watch this web series. The people watching this series are also people who watch films… but I’m not targeting this for the whole of Tamil Nadu or all age groups. This is for people who’ve seen all this happening around them, and they understand that this is what happens today. A certain section of society might not have seen it in reality and they might feel that this is outlandish and unreal…but it actually happens. That’s the difference between making a feature film and content like this which is for a specific platform. The series is for an 18-plus audience, for people who are happy to see something like this which doesn’t hold back from showing their reality.”
Photo credits – Hotstar / Balaji Mohan