They say you can't recreate magic because it's a once-in-a-lifetime thing. So even if you copy a blockbuster formula that's worked once and hope for an encore, the rules of Indian telly soaps say that fictional shows seldom find a connect with even their faithful followers in the second season. In the west, TV soaps have successful track record of running into several seasons and viewers have lapped them up. In India, fractured TV viewership means, audiences are often a fickle lot and don't find any connect with a fiction series once the show's off air.
Hindi GECs have tried to cash in on successful franchises and turn them into new seasons ' in the past Kitani Mohabbat Hai 2, Baa Bahoo Aur Baby 2, Na Bole Tum Na Maine Kuchh Kaha: Season 2, Instant Khichdi, The Buddy Project season 2, Chhoti Bahu 2, Sanjivani season 2 (Dill Mill Gayye), Dill Mill Gayye 2
and Punar Vivah - Ek Nayi Umeed
but none of them have managed to live up to the standards set by the first season of most shows. Reportedly Ekta Kapoor also had plans to introduce a second season of Saas Bhi Kabhi Bahu Thi... but she wisened up and gave up on the idea. Goldie Behl and Siddharth Malhotra have also reportedly toyed with the idea of fresh seasons of Remix and DMG due to request from fans, but gave up on them eventually.
The year 2013 is already abuzz with news of fresh seasonal reruns ofIss Pyaar Ko Kya Naam Doon? -Ek Baar Phir, while in the pipeline are Mann Kee Awaaz...Pratigya, Dil Se Di Dua... Saubhagyavati Bhava?, Saas Bina Sasural, Kuch Toh Log Kahenge.
In almost all the second seasons, most of the cast and crew have been replaced by fresh set of actors, in some cases like IPKKND 2 even the storyline and the lead couple are new.
Actor-producer-director J D Majethia
who has done seasons of Khichdi
and Baa Bahoo Aur Baby says, "When one introduces a second season with a difference, the character growth has to be correct. While introducing a new flavour, it is important to retain the original flavour and the way the audience have perceived the character in their minds. A gradual growth of characters is important and if that is missed then everything goes for a toss. Across the globe audiences love the characters and not the story line. At the same time we also do leaps in the first season so much that nothing is left for the second season. Seasons are a new concept here, and in India we do a season when our show graph is declining, while in the west everything is pre-planned and it happens when they are at a high point."Ask the actors who have done seasonal shows and Avinash Sachdev who was seen in Chhoti Bahu 1 & 2 and will now do IPKKND 2
, says, "The main difference between the west and us is that the west audience stick to the concept and story line while in India instead of concept and story, audience get attached to the actors. If you change the lead couple, Indian audiences are just not ready to accept the show."
Boredom in first season of a TV show is also one factor that plays an important role for audiences to get de-addicted from shows. Broadcasters run the show for as long as possible and that is when the audiences generally get bored in the first season only because they are dragged to a saturation point. It is prudent to end a show when it's popular and can have a logical closure, so that the audiences will naturally wait for the second season. Channels need to brush up on this, do their homework well and understand all this instead of bowing down to fan pressure and hurrying up to cash in on a show franchise's popularity. Producer Sudhir Sharma says, "We've not been able to do a proper season 2 of fiction shows in India yet. When it was pre-decided that Na Bole.. would have a season 2, we decided to end season 1 at a particular point and then reintroduce it again. Showmakers sit to launch a new show and then suddenly decide to do a second season of a successful show. In India when a show's fortunes fluctuate, we come up with a new season, we need to plan things properly." Barun Sobti who catapulted to superstardom as Arnav in IPKKND
, says, "I was lucky to be a part of Iss Pyaar Ko Kya Naam Doon? and have very fond memories of the year and a half that I shot for it. I always believed that it's the storyline that was the biggest plus, it'd be interesting to see the second season, I hope it does well and everyone likes it."
What about the millions of fans who crave to have a seasons of their favourite shows with their favourite actors and Majethia says, "Indian viewers are not loyal. They like to watch shows which are airing at that moment." Sudhir says, "Viewing habits are different in India. We need our TV time from 7-11 pm, while in west people watch their show on any medium ' computer, mobile, laptops. A recent study mentioned that the sale of TV sets in increasing tremendously in India while in the west it is decreasing."
In showbiz however, every show is as good as the TVT it gets and if seasonal returns can promise that to a fiction show then, expect more to follow suit. Baa Bahoo Aur Baby
Season 1: August 5, 2005 to March 28, 2009 Season 2: August 29, 2009 - February 21, 2010 Characters: Most of them were retained The second season couldn't impress the audiences much and so had to be off air in few months. Chotti Bahu - Sindoor Bin Suhagan
Season 1: December 8, 2008 - September 17, 2010 Chhoti Bahu - Sawar Ke Rang Rachi Season 2: February 15, 2011- May 18, 2012 Characters: Most of them were retained The second season failed to strike a chord with the audience (unlike the first season) because of change in backdrops and overall feel. Dill Mill Gayye
Season 1: August 20, 2007 - 2009 Season 2: 2009- October, 29, 2010 Characters: Characters were completely changed. Only Mohnish Behl who played the role of Dr. Shashank Gupta and Iravati Harshe, who played Dr. Smriti Malhotra/Gupta were retained. l The second season didn't worked as (Karan Singh Grover and Shilpa Anand) weren't a part of the second season, and with the leap and introduction of more characters the show had a major down fall. Kitani Mohabbat Hai
Season 1: August 20, 2007 - October 29, 2010 Season 2: November 1, 2010 - May 26, 2011 Characters: The lead couple (Karan Kundra and Kritika Kamra) were retained. The entire story line and plot were completely changed and that is why it didn't click with the audiences at all. Khichdi
Season 1: September 10, 2002 - 2004 Instant Khichdi Season 2: September 10, 2002 - 2004 Characters: Most of them were retained After the second season (Instant Khichdi), a film was released on the concept of this TV show, Khichdi The Movie. But the movie did not do well at the Box Office. Sometimes, being 'small' helps. Na Bole Tum...Na Maine Kuch Kaha
Season 1: January 9, 2012 - October 5, 2012 Season 2: January 14, 2013 - ongoing Characters: Lead couple Kunal Karan Kapoor (Mohan) and Aakanksha Singh (Megha) were retained. A leap took place in the second season and lots of new and young characters were introduced in this season to add more flavour to the show. But it failed to recreate the magic and now there are talks of a third season.