Not too long ago, Netflix had released their reality series called Indian Matchmaking, which soon became the show everyone in India was talking about. Although many found Sima Taparia’s way to be patriarchal and regressive, it made an extremely interesting watch. Soon people were hate-watching it, or cringe-watching it.
So, it was natural that when they announced their new show The Big Day, people were a little apprehensive. The biggest question on my mind was, ‘Why is Netflix so obsessed with Indian weddings?’ The fact remained that the show could possibly not say anything new.
Throughout the three episodes, we see six couples execute their dream weddings to perfection. We’ve already watched a bunch of content on the same lines, be it the film Band Baaja Baarat or the show Band Baaja Bride.
However, what The Big Day tries to do is to show their audience that an Indian wedding is not a homogenous entity. While pop-culture has made all Indian weddings look essentially the same, this show in particular celebrates the diversity in people. Before we bring out the ‘Band Baaja’ to celebrate this diversity, we need to remember that the only couple that brings the edge to the show is Tyrone and Daniel, who marry in a church wedding in Germany and a traditional Hindu wedding in India. Yes, the show walks the line between tokenism and inclusivity, but it is more than most shows of this genre has done till now.
Another impressive couple in the show is Pallavi and Rajat. They are the only couple that feels grounded. Pallavi is also that bride who questions why a meticulous, Type A woman is called a ‘Bridezilla.’ She is the one who actually gets push-back for suggesting that she doesn’t want a ‘kanyadaan’, because it is regressive. It is an accurate depiction of how normal weddings go, and how they happen mostly according to passive-aggressive relatives.
However, the show doesn’t stay grounded at all. The Big Day doesn’t hide that it is ‘bougie.’ The first episode has two couples, both from the upper echelons of the society. The first couple even gets the furniture customised. The caterer says that if guests took one bite of each food item on the menu, they will be full for two days. The other couple leaves everyone else on the show behind, from Alice in the Wonderland themes to Bollywood impersonators, it is obvious how grandeur weighs above everything else.