Punjabi stage show Stars hidden in Stereotypes. This label is not always gave through general vote, sometimes it is stumbled upon.
You may be thoughtful why anyone would respect stage show comedies as genius or legendary. But if you are aware with how a lump of rock becomes gold, you will comprehend where I am going with this.
Chip away the layers of vulgarity, the coarse language, the stereotypical (mis)representation, and you have on your hands a bundle of multi-layered comedies delivering unparalleled entertainment value.
So, the question is, how come Punjabi stage shows are not considered as one of the country’s biggest assets?
Well, the obvious answer is the aforementioned offensive perspective, vulgarity, etc. though some people have worked very hard to distance themselves from it.
Even from a production standpoint, there is no control over the format; no real immersion, brought on by a paper-thin fourth wall, broken at the slightest of breezes; messy characters, who could be interchanged without affecting the plot; and generally, a lack of appreciation for the true potential for what they have on their hands.
It starts with the paying customers. Punjabi stage shows appeal to a demographic that, though large in size, is only at the periphery of media attention.
Just hearing two characters riff one-liners at each other offers invaluable insight into the daily lives of the average Pakistani.
The cultural impact of Punjabi stage shows can be felt in all of our entertainment today. For example, TV’s rating behemoths like Hasb-e-Haal, Khabarnaak or Mazaaq Raat are offshoots of this medium.
You may or may not not like these shows, but you cannot deny their mass appeal. Our performers have taken their shows all around the globe to much fanfare.
They once presented a play that delved into the story of two blind brothers forced into begging (providing an affluent life for their family) and their attraction towards a girl they could obviously never get.
To sum it all up, in Punjabi stage comedies, we have a constantly evolving, constantly growing treasure chest of impeccable talent and a dedicated fan following.
To put it in perspective, British comedians have created entire franchises based on pseudo quiz shows with some zany theme or another, because they found it the perfect showcase for their knowledge and talents.