OUTLOOK Monday 04 November, 2019
Hopping It? No!

What do they actually do in Bigg Boss—that synthetic morass of shape-­shifting loyalties, gro­up­­ings and couplings by people clinging on to the skirts of fame, dragg­ing along an endless stream of stragglers agape before their boxes? At least Boman Irani, Rajkummar Rao and Mouni are doing something specific—horsing around joyfully, canvassing for their film Made in China. Major domo Sal­man, of  course, is there at every step, falling in and out with practised difficulty.

Salutation For The Ranee

Such is the raw odour that accompanies Lady Gaga’s unabashed iconoclasm that her performance—fragile, sensitive and altogether human—in A Star Is Born gave us another plane to assess her. Now comes a single tweet—the shloka ‘lokah samastah sukhino bhavantu’, that hopes universal benediction for all. The result? A deluge of crazed bhakts shrieking ‘Jai Shri Ram’.

Not A Random Gift

It all collapsed into that most palatable of all piscine matters—Hilsa, or Ilish, the silvery perfection of which has its salty hold intact on Gaud. A rep­ort on Abhijit Banerjee’s love for Ilish, as exp­ressed by his mother...an eager offer to deliver the same from her constituency by Nusrat...a glad acceptance. The begun ilish awaits sir, do tuck in heartily.

Red Clay, Red Wine

She has been a fixture in all the major tournaments, looking on serenely as a rampaging Rafa grinds it to his own will—a picture of quiet emotional support born of love, as uncle Tony worked out the technical points. We have occasionally seen Mery Perello clinched in seashore ecstasy with Rafael. Ah, after 14 years, it surely is time. The two wed in an expensive property in Mallorca—the only grand slam that matters in Nadal’s life.


If you ever pondered on the model-like shortcomings of Bella Hadid’s loveliness (smallish eyes, imp­erfect nose...), know that those inc­orrigible theorisers, the ancient Greeks, have plotted your hubris. Read the ‘golden ratio of beauty phi’ by which Bella is the world’s most beautiful and scratch your heads at ancient anticipation of modernity.

This Too Happened

Facebook removed 93 accounts, 17 pages and four Instagram accounts for “coordinated inauthentic behaviour” on the two platforms. The accounts were from Iran and Russia and the social media giant says the accounts and pages have targeted the US, North Africa and Latin America.

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  • When elders were struggling to lift, let alone read, Vikram Seth’s A Suitable Boy, most of us were in shorts or babbling in the cradle, if we were there at all. Good for us that now Mira Nair is in charge of a BBC-backed series based on it, and that Tabu (seen here with Ishaan Khatter in this ‘first look’) will probably play Lata, bride of the titular boy. “...Epic tale of an unseen India,” says Nair. Unseen, eh? Let’s see.
  • Everyone who’s hurt those  sharply slanted eyes, spurned those ruby-red lips, has had cause to reg­ret. For over a decade now, Taylor Swift has turned all heartbreaks and slurs into award-winning lyrics—everything is grist to her songwriting mill. The result is 29  wins at the American Music Awards (six this year, and five more than Michael Jackson managed). Plus  fanatical fans would rejoice  at her being named both artist of the year and that of the decade. If these boys are asking her to ‘shake it off’,  they’ll have cause for regret.
  • Two women sitting on laps of men, glad, artificial grins plastered over their faces...you’d be forgiven to think such things are embarrassingly passe in the 21st century. It’s evidently not in Bollywood. And so, the comedy Good Newwz, starring Kiara Advani, Diljit Dosanjh, Akshay and Kareena, will possibly live up to its tagline: ‘the biggest goof-up of the year’. A comedy about IVF, did you say? We shudder in anticipation.
  • Bollywood must be dreading  the Calcutta International Film Festival—a stentorian call from the CM...the unenlightening prospect of a day full of drumbeats. However, there is no respite for Shahrukh (Amitabh fell ill at an opportune  period). Though flanked by filmmaker Goutam Ghosh, Mamata herself and Sourav, the stage-show was stopped by the bonhomie between Rakhee and SRK: singing along a pat­riotic Rabi­ndrasangeet and reminiscing  about the sets of Baazigar.