Today, as Kapil Sharma turns a year older, fans just hope and wish that the comedian recovers from the ongoing bad phase of his life and reinvents himself for those who showered him with so much love and appreciation.
I remember Kapil Sharma as a man who brought together an entire family at the dinner table, a man who became the ice-breaker between people and made conversations among strangers easier. And, this is no exaggeration. Recently a friend narrated an incident when she and her Uber driver had a long discussion about the best sequences from Kapil’s shows. Her experience made me realise how despite not being there, India’s funny man brought smiles to a cab driver who otherwise sits quietly throughout his day while he takes people to their destination. Also, this takes me back to the times when Kapil Sharma entered the Indian comedy scene.
Eleven years ago, a 26-year-old boy from Amritsar came to the city of dreams Mumbai to test the waters of the world of comedy on Indian television. He auditioned for Great Indian Laughter Challenge, got rejected, tried again and emerged triumphant in the second attempt. Throw in some self-depreciating humour, add in the flavour of Punjab in the form of police inspector Shamsher Singh and it made for the most effortless, laughter-inducing part of Kapil’s comedy acts. He entered at a time when the standup comedy on television was at a nascent stage and seeing his career graph, one can rightfully say he was at the right place at the right time. His hilarious acts not only made him the winner of Great Indian Laughter Challenge in 2007 but also made him the undisputed King of Comedy with the title of winner of six seasons of Sony TV’s Comedy Circus judged by Archana Puran Singh.
However, his growing popularity made people dig deep into his life and this is when his videos from his small screen appearance (even before the Great Indian Laughter Challenge) were discovered on YouTube. Son of a police constable, Kapil was a known face on the small screen already, albeit on Punjabi TV. Punjabi show called Hasde Hasande Raho on MH One channel had Kapil in his elements. As the videos went viral, people got to watch Kapil of the times when he was raw, ungroomed and inexperienced. But what remained same between Kapil Sharma and ‘The’ Kapil Sharma was his wisecracks.
So, when did this comedy star of Punjabi TV decide to try his luck on national television? Well, it was “accidental” as Kapil puts it. His is a true rags-to-riches story. After losing his father to cancer in 2004, Kapil had the responsibility of getting his sister married. It was then that the comedian-turned-actor took his passion for theatre seriously. An Amritsar theatre group of which Kapil was an active member, brought him to Delhi for various shows. He did some serious plays for around 10 to 12 years in both Delhi and Amritsar. All the hard work paid off for after winning the Great Indian Laughter Challenge, Kapil had his hands full of opportunities to work on TV. Not just as a comedian, he was lauded for his skills as an anchor. The first time television audience was left rolling in aisles was when he shared the stage with Maniesh Paul as the host of Jhalak Dikhla Jaa.
But the man who gave people jokes in their own language lost his away after reaching the zenith of success too early in life. He fought with his co-actors Chandan Prabhakar and Sunil Grover, left the shoots cancelled and kept the celebrities waiting, leaving them and the audience disappointed alike. It became difficult for Kapil to match up to the expectations of his fans which brought a downfall in his ever-rising career graph. His second silver screen outing Firangi tanked at the box office and his new show Family Time With Kapil Sharma opened to negative reviews.Today, as Kapil turns a year older, fans just hope and wish that the comedian recovers from this ongoing bad phase of his life soon and reinvents himself for those who showered him with so much love and appreciation.