A lot of door but absolutely no darshan

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The Olympics are coming to an end, and thanks to Doordarshan, I’ve seen lots of nothing.

And talking about black holes, the logo for Doordarshan does resemble one.

And all meaningful live action is behind their event horizon.

Hyperbole aside, how bad was it really?

Legend (or quizzing trivia) has it that the Yogic Siddhi that provides the practitioner with the power to see distances afar, the power that Sanjaya used to report on the Kurukshetra war to Dhritarashtra, was called “Door Darshan”. It looks like a couple of millenia later, the power has waned a bit. I was like Dhritarashtra, sitting in Chennai, blind to the incredible action going on at the Bird’s Nest in Beijing, and I was entirely relying on the power of Doordarshan for my daily Olympic fix. Everyday for the last 2 weeks, I would come back home from work, and say

Dhritarashtra Uvaacha (said): O Sun O Jaya, take your soaps and go away. Come hither, Beijing! What bloody wars are the track and field athletes fighting right now?

Doordarshan Uvaacha : Patience O Blind king, let me first tell you about Micheal Phelps and his 8 gold medals, and why he is the “Complete Man”, and if only he did not spend 6 hours a day in the pool, he would be wearing Raymond suits.

Dhritarashtra Uvaacha : Ah fie upon my lifeless eyes. Has the Michael not returned to Sea World, back to his tank last week? Tell me something new, O Far seer. Tell me about the 4 x 400m. Can the Reggae dancers outwit the Stars and Stripes here too?

Doordarshan Uvaacha : In good time O Husband of the Lady from Kandahar. Let me first show you slow motion clips of Vijender’s bouts set to music from Lagaan.

Dhritarashtra Uvaacha : Aaaah come closer so I can hug you. The real war is in the Bird’s nest, and yet you continue to waste my time with retrospectives. Couldn’t that wait till after the games are over?

Doordarshan Uvaacha : Your wish, O blind king. Live action it is. Here is a full 70 minutes of the bronze medal Hockey match between Australia and Netherlands. And the medal ceremonies of all the Boxing finals. And ah, boxing reminds me – here’s Vijender in slow motion again, set to music from Lagaan. And after that, 30 minutes of the crack DD sports commentary team talking you through what’s happening right now

Dhritarahtra Uvaacha : Gaandhaari. Please open your eyes just for a bit, will you, and burn to ashes this Far seer. Oh Youtube, do you have anything useful to report on the games?

Youtube Uvaacha : Damnation O blind king! NBC keeps deleting all my videos related to the Olympics.

Dhritarashtra Uvaacha : Fie upon you, Ambika. Why did you get scared of Vyaasa? Sigh. Doordarshan, leave live action alone. Show me at least the highlights of the day after the sun sets.

Doordarshan Uvaacha : Certainly O blind king. Here are yesterday’s highlights, today.

Dhritarashtra Uvaacha : (Unprintable curses in Sanskrit)

And if this wasn’t enough, both BBC and CNN let me know politely that video clips were not available outside of their countries. That’ it. I’m off to London in 2012 to watch the next one live.

54 responses to “A lot of door but absolutely no darshan”

  1. Aparna Avatar

    wow, I get to comment first !! hehe

  2. Leela Avatar

    ..and it feels like I’ve read lots of nothing. 😛

  3. satts Avatar


    Tell me about it. Ashok you atleast have the pleasure of watching some action.

    My cable went bust and all I getting is the BSOTS{ Blue Screen of TV Static}

    Do u think NBC actually asks google to remove video via backdoor negotiations or there are NBC hired DRM evangelist who sit and report abuse.

  4. Chutney Avatar

    Atheeva uthamam post asthee. 🙂 Doordarshan made the Olympics seem like some kind of comedy programme. Sigh.

  5. Zanychild Avatar

    well i used to get annoyed most of the time wen they just talk, talk and more talk, instead of showing the games that happens!

  6. Dilip Muralidaran Avatar

    thank goodness for i dont watch tv!

  7. sangu Avatar

    i’ll just put in a quick word. you can watch all the clips in dailymotion.com… signing of with a schwarzeneggerish ” i’ll be back”.

  8. Adithya Avatar

    Lol avolo mosama na telecast ah?

    It’s different in the US. They are worse than India in the aspect of glorifying their players. You should watch NBC coverage. Apde they’ll glorify US like anything. At least India only glorifies its own players. They don’t pass slur on other nations or it’s players. Here the news readers simply don’t acknowledge the achievement of other countries.

    In fact Phelps is the new Chuck Norris. All Chuck Norris facts have been changed to Michael Phelps facts now. Worstu….

  9. pinastro Avatar

    I am speechless…..awesome again….
    really speaking , though i have never felt the excitement of olympics as i have seen olympic games only on doordarshan…even the cricket telecast on doordarshan are not that impressive..
    nice blog again…..

  10. Dinesh Babu Avatar

    Atleast we saw it in HD in US, so I have no complaints.

  11. vishwa Avatar

    You know what? Inge at least they r showing something live even if they r glorifying Phelps achievements. At least it encourages one to watch Olympics live. But India la just because of these comedy kinda telecasts for the olympics the AAM JUNTA doesnt give up on the mega soaps and cricket for live olympics…If this is the kinda telecast Doordarshan has I would rather prefer wotever megaserial on offer instead!

  12. Dia Avatar

    Nice blog.

  13. mosilager Avatar

    If it wasn’t for the internet, DD could have given Olympics coverage over to Ramanand Sagar or Ekta Kapoor… the ‘live telecast’ would have lasted at least a year and no one would have been the wiser.

  14. Priyank Avatar

    Lets hope you can see Commonwealth games. If you are interested in that 🙂

  15. jawaman Avatar

    I’ve been reading your posts for quite some time now and I think this one ranks in the Top 5 of your best ones.

  16. Ashwin Avatar

    I have read your blog so many times and I couldn’t recognize you, sitting next to me!

    The photoshopped pic didn;t help of course 😉

    The guy who sat next to you and wrote Bunny Hops and Pseud Pillayar
    Ashok: Perhaps I should carry those foldable sunglasses I wore when I took that snap so I can quickly whip ’em out to aid people with quick recognition 🙂

  17. Like That Only Avatar

    “O Sun, O Jaya” was nice. And DD coverage was indeed mind-numbing.

  18. sangu Avatar

    call it ESP or pure cold hard logic, but i saw this post coming a week before you wrote it. when i knew that u watched the olympics, i knew you would have SOMETHING to say about the coverage and those darned anchors.

    it is almost painful sad to watch how the anchors keep hoping with all their patriotic fervour that even lowly ranked indians can upstage higher ranked rivals and how they try to mask their disappointment with a plastic smile at the failure of the athletes.

    doordarshan is terrible, but i wouldn’t go overboard in blaming it as it does have its limitations. it would be better if the government privatizes the broadcast of such major events for the viewers’ sake and gives the rights to a south indian or an international channel. a north indian channel could be the only thing worse than doordarshan itself.

  19. Idling in Top Gear Avatar

    Sun, Jaya uvaacha: These Volympics are spoiling our ratings. Let’s play some special movie to attract viewers back.

    I love the parts abt Dhritarashtra’s hug and Gandhari’s laser eyes!

    BTW, is Ambika the Cable channels that are too cheap to cover the Olympics?

  20. philramble Avatar

    DD’s being more powerful than a blackhole was hilarious. True, and sad. Awesome post as usual.

  21. sangu Avatar

    and that sucking power litmus graph, u were inspired from douglas adams aah? cos i remember reading something very similar.

  22. Abinav Avatar

    Ha! I was juts wondering why I have ‘skipped’ the Doordarshan all my life. I was contemplating about starting to watch it, in the remote chance of it having gotten better – but uhn uhn – now I am wiser!

  23. sthitapragnya Avatar

    DD – Door from Darshan/ Don’t expect Darshan of anything worth watching! Much less an event like Olympics.

  24. prats Avatar

    accha drums baja raha hai…aur iske peeche aa rahe hai…..

    but wait who were they talking about…..they were the crack dd commentators giving a live commentary from thei rstudio…and they chose to show us their faces and not the aa rahe hai……


    I hope you’ll post the videos of the London games for us to see…and give us pure telecasts next..waiting for it with lots of patience

  25. NBAFan Avatar

    Looks like you did not watch the day they relayed a significant portion of the USA-Spain Intra group match. The entire half-time was relayed live in its full glory. Too bad the camera persons and the game commentators, did not think that the half time, which was being viewed by millions in India, was important enough. They chose to take a break too, during those thrilling 10 minutes. So unfortunately we got a long shot view of the arena from a stationary camera and the commentary-less background noise of an arena during halftime.

    But luckily for us there was a very alert DD staffer who noticed this just as play commenced during the second half and switched the action to the ever energetic studio team for the next 10 minutes.

    Such fun.

  26. Divya Avatar

    Good god! That is really high sucking power 😉

  27. Guru Avatar

    DD News was better (which I was forced to watch in between cable blackouts).. they were trying to show the Hockey bronze match after it was over. There was an empty stadium and host was rambling from the studio that it was full and the match was about to start 🙂
    Less said about the firangi accented anchors and the droning commentators, the better

  28. sreeja Avatar

    that was hilarious!!!

  29. Hariharan Avatar

    LOL. Can’t agree with you more. Especially the Vijender + Lagaan combo was deadly in the wrong sense.

    The good news though, is that ESPN Star have grabbed the rights for the next Olympics. So its time to uncork the champagne!

  30. scudie Avatar

    I agree that DD doesnt do very well on the Live front. But their contribution to our nation getting a much better medal tally cannot be refuted. Do refer to my post on this..

  31. Chethan Avatar

    Seriously DD sucks, especially the stupid commentary… i mean god help the audience! even the TG, that is the rural India would be cursing the commentators to hell… Thank god we have www and web2.0… and then your blog so that we can try and laugh out on our paralytic living…

  32. kbpm Avatar

    seriously, this was so outrageous. i am glad you have at least given me something to laugh about… by the way how about that big patch that said some Desh Ki Dhadkan or some crap every time one of our 1.5 medal hopefuls so much as sneezed?

  33. JKBalaji Avatar

    LOL! Let me share my experience – I am from Dubai and the only channels that are telecasting O!pics are Dubai sports and matters are worse than DD. Here there are two guys who talk Arabic and then talk Arabic followed by some more Arabic and then little bit of Arabic. So much so that even in places where the original feed has English commentary, they superimpose Arabic commentary on it and we get to hear combined gibberish of Arablish! Still to come – every 5 mins, they demonstrate their technological advancement in live telecase and break the TV screen into two portions – the right hand portion with a shot of the Anchor babbling in Arabic and the left hand portion split into 4 square screens and each of these screens has one sport in it. My eyes go nuts trying to catch the nano second finish if Usain Bolt in the left hand top corner and the cycling race in the cycledrome in the right hand bottom corner! I quit watching O’pics.

  34. Aniruddha Avatar

    Hi Krish,
    I half expected the title to be :
    “A lot of dour but absolutely no darshan” 😉


  35. Nandini Avatar

    LOL The US commentators leave you pulling your hair out!

  36. Arunk Avatar

    ROFL! Hats off for using bhagavat-gita backdrop for this!

    By the way, here with NBC uvachufyng again for all 18 chapters of the US version, the breakdown was
    * Michael Phelps for the first 10 chapters.
    * Nastia Luiken for the next 6 (with repeated references to Michael Phelps) – this chapter mainly enlightened us about the million ways of complaining about “others”.
    * Michael Phelps again for the last 2 -just in case we forgot.

    To be fair, there are some “side chapters”, notably
    * beach volleyball (every round)
    * basketball (yes, every round).

    Only relief was when Sanjaya went to relieve himself, and somebody else took over and you could watch Usain Bolt.

    The suck-o-meter I am guessing is logarithmic scale? In any case, the yellow arrow needs to extended down by for a few thousand pixels to find NBC on that scale.


  37. cntrlaltdel Avatar

    Too funny.
    Re telecast in the US, I could hardly believe they made the gymnasts and swimmers change their schedule around just so that viewers on the east coast and central time zones could watch it live. madness.

    @ Arun: small error. A couple of chapters on Shawn Johnson also happened; I think you missed out. I’d say 3 on Nastia Liukin and 3 on Shawn Johnson. Of course, both with repeated reference to Michael Phelps.

  38. Kris Bass Avatar

    First of all, I accuse you of plagarism! Didn’t you just rip off Mr. Maddox’s (from The Best Page of the Universe) the style of the graphics?

    Seriously LOLz!

    I hate DoorDarshan! And I hated their coverage!
    Ashok: Now that you remind me, very possible, because I have read every one of his articles, and some subliminal influences are hard to escape. I am also a fan of Douglas Adams and Terry Pratchett, although I’m not a good enough writer to even attempt to copy their style

  39. Gireesh Avatar

    “In good time O Husband of the Lady from Kandahar”–
    U must have watched the MahaBharatha Serial also on Doordharshan as well…Enna oru dialogue 🙂

  40. Kanishk Avatar


    You are a God! Your knowledge of the Mahabharata and their Facebook doings are now blog legend.

    The Jilpa must go on!

  41. revathi Avatar

    Reading this was great fun.

    I watched the french version of the olympics and everyone was sad they could play the Marseillaise only 6 times. The only time i got to see some indian action was when one of the kumars beat a french boxer. However, they did have a soft corner for pretty girls and so the great looking russian polevaulter had her space and so did Lolo jones.
    Door darshan still hasnt got its act together. The idea of superposing the lagaan music to vijendar’s boxing is simply too brilliant. It even beats mile sur mera tumhara- that made all the states want to seccede from india.

  42. Arvind Avatar

    ” O Sun O Jaya, take your soaps and go away ” ROFL awesome!

  43. […] A lot of door but absolutely no darshan […]

  44. soumya Avatar

    Every time I sat down to watch, DD would be telecasting live hand ball matches or the commentators would be indulging in wishful fantasies – expecting medals from every Indian player!

  45. Jaya Avatar

    Cmon…we shud feel proud…doordarshan ranks highest in sucking power!! 🙂

  46. narendra shenoy Avatar
    narendra shenoy

    That was great! The Sun and Jaya thing was simply brilliant, sir.

  47. desigirl Avatar

    LOLed and ROFLed as usual!

  48. parthi Avatar

    cool post! In SriLanka we had a national channel(eye) covering the whole thing with the original english commentary. (gloat..gloat)

  49. tangled Avatar

    Oooh, sir! I just saw this post in the Indian Express. Congratulations and all that!! How long have you been being published?

  50. Manasa Avatar

    rofl.. Unprintable curses in Sanskrit.. hehe..

  51. noon Avatar

    First time commenting…yours is one of the most unique blogs I have come across! Incredibly funny and creative!
    Boy – I would have been crying had they not relayed the 4×100 or 4×400 etc here. It was bad enough we knew the results before we got to see it.
    But of course we know every thing about Phelps – down to the tabs he had to take to how long it takes him to shed lactic acid build up! That’s our US – Olympics special commentary!
    Very very good, extremely very very good posts from you! 😉 Yet again this “Brilliante” blog has been “promoted”.
    And the other “Brilliante” blogs you had mentioned were also fun to read.

  52. Vivek Avatar

    second the notion, I found a 15 min lag on the internet but found a huge lag on DD and they play it LIVE.

  53. Vibushan Avatar

    Awesomely funny 😀 Well, actually speaking, Only when I tried to catch some of the olympic action, didI come to know of another personality in me. My Tyler Durden self. Next step, start fight club. Bash Doorsharshan up. Show it live with 15 mins delay.

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