The TV ratings of Zee TVs Aladin and Ravan hover at 2-3, exceptionally good for an historical/fantasy show, according to the channel. Prithviraj Chauhan, Sai Baba and Jai Maa Durga have been among the top grossers on Star TV, with the first show routinely crossing a TVR of 4.
Its not as if mythos are new to television, says Nandini Dias, COO, Lodestar Universal, its just that they are on prime time now, alluding to NDTV Imagines Ramayan. Its not really overkill because every channel has just a couple of such programmes on air at any given time, she adds.
Agrees a senior programming head at a general entertainment channel. You can say there was an overkill of humour and family soaps and in that scenario, newcomer NDTV Imagine packaged its Ramayan as a channel-driver show. And thank God, its working.
He says while from the consumer point of view such shows have a strong pull, from the broadcasters point of view, these shows provide a platform to showcase technological prowess and post-production capabilities.
Given the high outdoor and post-production inputs, the costs of producing such shows do tend to be high. According to a Delhi-based media analyst, while an average family show may require an investment of Rs 5-8 lakh an episode, a mythological/period drama takes up to Rs 20 lakh.