FC WEB WATCH – Ladies Room

Writers Ratnabali Bhattacharjee and Neha Kaul Mehra have together crafted a show that promises a laugh a minute

Cast: Saba Azad, Shreya Dhanwanthary

Director: Ashima Chibber

Studio: Y Films

Rating: 4.5 stars


THE BEST OF TOILET HUMOUR


Friends take each other’s crap. Sometimes they land themselves in a whole lot of shit. In the case of Y Films’ new web series, Ladies Room, these scatological references can be taken literally. Two friends, Dingo (Saba Azad) and Khanna (Shreya Dhanwanthary), often find themselves in the washroom together, and the show’s six episodes will see them bring down the loo six times over.

In the two episodes that have been released, Ladies Room has banked on a toilet humour that is unapologetic and hilarious. Dingo and Khanna discuss menstrual cycles. Khanna bemoans her growing breasts. Dingo rushes to fix a clogged WC with a sanitary napkin, and when her hands get dirty, Khanna sprays perfume on them to make it all better. Bawdy and bodily, Ladies Room is a riot.

Everything that can possibly go wrong does go wrong in the show. The first episode starts with Khanna’s boss asking her why there isn’t any sunlight in his room. She reminds him from over the phone that his room has no windows. The third person in Ladies Room is almost always a voice, and as Khanna takes a drag on the joint Dingo has rolled, a police officer stands outside their train’s toilet, demanding they come out instantly.

There’s much to laugh at as Khanna channels Sunny Deol and Daniel Craig, and Dingo channels the universe. Both Saba Azad and Shreya Dhanwanthary play their parts with an effortless lightness. As the hippie and fancy-free Dingo, Azad is memorably endearing. Khanna, for her part, is the quintessential damsel-in-distress with a period that’s delayed.

Writers Ratnabali Bhattacharjee and Neha Kaul Mehra have together crafted a show that promises a laugh a minute. When two of Khanna’s pregnancy tests show two different results – one positive, one negative – Dingo looks at her and says, “Ek hi paon bhari. Wow!” In another moment, Dingo explains why she doesn’t have a job. After an interview, she meant to send her prospective employer a message that read “looking forward to meeting you soon”, but she instead typed, “Looking forward to meeting your son.” The real ‘ROFL’ moment comes when Khanna is trying to find signal on her phone and compares 3G to the G-spot. You might try hard, but you cannot find it.

Director Ashima Chibber is a talent to follow. She knows how to bring together authentic and funny. Something about the humour in Ladies Room seems reminiscent of the kind of quirky comedy you’d expect from Tina Fey. Like in 30 Rock, the jokes and situations here are equally feministic and irreverent.

A web format allows it to get away with the kind of language your mother and the censors wouldn’t approve of, but never does the use of F- and C-words seem needlessly provocative. This, in the end, is how a generation speaks, and it’s a treat to see two young women be themselves.

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