Aditi Mittal became the first Indian woman comedian to be signed by Netflix. It was a humorous revenge. Amazon Prime Video had signed 13 comedians from India for their specials earlier. Only difference? All 13 of them were men. That’s right. When they decided to do a show taking in comedians from India it looked as if they were gender specific about the comedy they wanted. All male. Well, you should be glad of the counter move by Netflix. A quick look at the way in which women comedians of India have been making jokes on all unholy things will make you understand why. Here are some for starters.
1. Sanitary Napkins
Aditi Mittal once took on the stigma attached to sanitary napkins like this ‘I realized that saying sanitary napkin in public is like standing in Hogwarts common room and saying Voldemort.’ It got even better when she made fun of people who while selling sanitary napkins try to hide that they are selling that. People, please, when women are not scared or ashamed of bleeding, why are you scared of the sight of a sanitary napkin? Why else would chemists pack them in newspapers and then put it in a black plastic bag and gift it to women who buy it? Aditi remarked about them ‘I have seen more careless cocaine smugglers.’ Before people could stop laughing came the next line. ‘By the time you get to the first pad you are like but I have already reached menopause.’
2. Discrimination of visually impaired
There are two ways you can deal with idiots who think that being visually impaired is something to be made fun of. One is to slap them and the second is to humiliate them by making jokes about them. Nidhi Goel is a visually impaired comedian who does the latter and has the effect of the former. Like how, when people, while referring to her being blind ask her, ‘Do you have a problem?’ she replies, ‘No, do you?’ Ah, the rhetorical slap. Watch the video here.
3. ‘Loose’ Women
Neeti Palta took on people who impose the stereotype that women who make the first move in a romantic relationship are ‘loose’. Err… if anything is loose it might be a screw in your otherwise empty head but why bother with explanation when Palta herself had the best answer to such idiocy. ‘To be loose, Mai koi motion hu kya? [Am I motion to be called loose?] Pajama’s elastic is what can be loose.’
4. Sexual Harassment
It is amazing how comedians always find a way to speak about serious issues by joking about it. Like this instance when our comedy champion Aditi Mittal spoke about breasts and bra shopping. Since it was breast cancer awareness month, she was asking women to take care of what happens to their breasts when she said ‘the time that a woman finds out that there is a lump in her breasts is when she’s spent 40 minutes on the train when after someone’s groped her for twenty minutes and would be like ‘maza aaya aa madam lekin there might be a lump. [that was great but there might be a lump]’ What a punch on the face way to speak about how common it is to get groped on public transport all the while talking about the serious issue of breast cancer.
5. The bra strap
Every woman knows how destructive a bra strap can be. If even a bit of it is exposed the whole bus/classroom/waiting room comes to your aid to point it out. You’d be like, yeah, it’s showing and it had better, I paid for it! But no. Not suitable for our culture. This is something which Neeti Palta made fun of. ‘A little piece of our bra strap shows and we get judged. But you men can wear your underwear on full display and still be called Superman. Breasts are always against Indian culture and that is why we are always covering them with a saree or a duppatta or a bachcha.’
So dear people, when you are back home after another tiring day of explaining to people how these things are normal and not ‘tch tch’, you know what to tune in to. These awesome women with an ever better sense of humour.