My Love-Hate relationship with Chhota Bheem


Ever since I have been restricted to work from my home town due to an injury, all I have been hearing and seeing from 9 am to 9 pm is Chhota Bheem. My nieces aged 4 and 2 (my brother’s kids) are a die hard fan of Chhota Bheem. It is as if Chhota Bheem and his entourage is a constant fixation in our family now. So much so that I have to remember the names of his entourage. Let me recall them : Chutki, Indumati, Dholu, Bholu, Kalia, Raju and Jaggu. Yay!!! My first niece goes to school for half of the day, but as soon as she comes back, she needs to have her fix of Chhota Bheem along with her snacks at 3 pm. But the second one is at home all through the day (not yet old enough for play school) and she is the super hyper kid of the lot. She is the one who treats Chhota Bheem as her hero, brother and guardian. When I am sitting in my room working, she would come running, all upset that some villain took away Raju or that Chutki is in danger and would ask me to come and help Chhota Bheem to find them. ‘Athai vaa athai…bheee…raju..acho!!! kaanoam..kaapaathu’ (translation: Aunt, come, Bheem ,Raju, Oh God!!!, missing, help) The first few days, I could do nothing but stare at her for sometime trying to understand her language (she is in the stage where it is very cute to hear their words and sentences) and once I started to get the hang of it, I was left speech less because I had no clue how to respond to her plea. She used to pull me to the TV room and I would go limping with my crutch and by the time I go there Bheem would have succeeded in rescuing them. Thank Bheem!!! and I come back to my work. After a week, I worked out a strategy to handle the crisis. Whenever she would come to me with the plea, I would give her all the exclamatory phrases (is it? Oh My God!!!, so sad ..come baby..dont worry Bheem will take care, you go ahead I will get something to help the rescue and be right back etc…) and she would go away after listening to me as if she understood every single word I said. And she doesn’t stop there. She tries to imitate him in every way possible. She would eat the laddu (imaginary) and get strength and go and lift the sofa or she would eat laddu and go and hit her dad or mom (whoever is available at home when her mood strikes) just like Bheem hits the villain and she doesn’t do it lightly. She does it with all her force. Both these nieces need Bheem if they have to go through their ritual of eating. No Bheem, no easy way to make them eat their food. It is a daily struggle.IMG_0802

After almost 2.5 weeks of my interaction with Bheem and his entourage, I don’t know if I should love him or hate him or if I should feign indifference. While growing up, I never had any fantasy or cartoon characters to hold on to for my imagination to grow. Those were the times when TV was a luxury and we had only one channel to watch (in early 80’s) and my parents did not place much importance to the habit of reading, so that left us void of any imaginative powers. With such a background I am perplexed how kids get attached to these kind of characters. My nephew (sister’s son) is hooked to Lightning McQueen and Mater (He has (mis)used the Cars DVD that I got him to the extent that it doesn’t play anymore). My friend’s daughter is a huge fan of Dora (she plays every game which has Dora in it in her iPad). My first niece was a fan of Mickey Mouse for some time until Bheem came along. I am glad that these characters gives them so vivid imaginations.

My first niece tells us stories with Bheem and herself before she goes to sleep. She has also learnt a lot of words both in English and Tamil because of this show. She forms pure Tamil sentences which I am surprised to hear from her because she is not taught that yet and we don’t speak that style at home (not in any home as far as I is restricted for text books). Her growing up is aided by these imaginary friends with whom she is able to relate because they are also kids like her even though they do all heroic stuff and save the world (their world being Dholakpur) from the evil forces of nature. I am glad that it is helping her in these ways. It is also helping her mom to give her enough time to do her house hold work where she wont be disturbed as long as Bheem is on TV. So I guess I would have to love him for that 🙂

My second niece is the rowdy of the two. I have already told you how she idolizes Bheem. I hate him because he taught her to fight and she is not in an age where she knows if he is fighting for good or bad. She likes the way he hits and she gets pleasure by hitting people and she thinks it is always right. She thinks eating laddu will give her strength. Laddu is just an Indian sweet which doesn’t have any great health value to it. I am not sure why they chose laddu, but now she is misled by that information. Her mom feeds her food by making it look like a laddu and telling her that if she eats she will gain strength like Bheem and pooofff the food goes to her stomach. She tries to do kung-fu style steps and fights with her sister when she gets bored. I guess I should hate him for turning an already tough kid to a violent one 🙂IMG_0809

All said and done, I know they will outgrow this phase if they are left to their own devices and will find something else to hold on to their fantasy. But my worry is that everyone apart from these kids are also promoting Bheem to earn their money. You see Bheem stickers, note books and what not everywhere (Bubble gum… really?). Even Schools are promoting it by having Chhota Bheem paintings in their class rooms. That is what is worrying me. There are a boat load of cartoon characters to play with. Mickey and his entourage, Disney’s Fairies, Krishna, Dora …lots apart from Bheem. All of them need to be encouraged. Concentrating on one character turns into idol worship which I don’t encourage. I try my best to indulge them in Mickey mouse using the Club house series in my iPad. But then I won’t be here for long. And the amount of TV they watch is another thing to worry. As long as they are awake, they need Bheem to be heard somewhere in the house, not to mention the amount of electricity used. I see this as a sort of addiction, while others in my home see it as a sort of game or distraction. I am not sure why and I don’t know if I am being paranoid. But I realized one thing, it is not Bheem I need to love or hate. It is everyone else, who for their convenience promote him for their own comfort-ability (be it peace of mind, or money or TRPs). Just one question to end this post. Do the producers, directors and writers of this series allow their kids to watch it knowing that they do promote violence even if it is meant to fight against evil? Shouldn’t there be any indication on the age of the children who can watch these kinds of programmes?

6 thoughts on “My Love-Hate relationship with Chhota Bheem”

  1. Enjoyed your observations very much. When we were children, the 3 Stooges, Roadrunner and Popeye ruled and violence was spliced with laughs. That is true with Disney (poison apple) and the Wizard of Oz (wicked witches, monkeys). This is so that parents and aunts can intervene!


    1. Thank you very much 🙂
      I used to love Popeye. I wonder why we never see it anymore. At least we could make the kids eat some spinach using him.


  2. You should definitely hate the despicable character that is chota bheem. Pokemon, Digimon, Naruto, Dragon Ball Z, One Piece, Bleach and Beyblade.
    These are just some of the shows that are so far better than Chota Bheem, its immesurable.
    The fact that some kids aged 8-9 yrs old watch the garbage show that is Chota Bheem just shows that our new generation is getting retarded.
    Bring back the old Cartoon Network of 2003-08. Thats the real deal.


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