Put Chutney’s web series Ctrl Alt Del is a look at young professionals and their views on marriage and relationships
So, what follows after school, college and other educational aspirations? It’s usually the travails of seeking employment. And when bagging a steady job is done and dusted, the next and often most immediate step, at least in most Indian households, is marriage.
Enter the millennials
The matrimonial landscape today, though, does appear to be in a state of flux. What with a new generation of young urban adults looking to take their time in acquainting themselves with at least some of the “plenty of fish in the sea”. Add to the mix are the match-making websites and dating apps, and mindsets that are constantly changing.
In this scenario comes the YouTube channel Put Chutney’s web series, Ctrl Alt Del . Centred around four IT professionals — played by Rakendu Mouli, Darshana Rajendran, Abdool and Abhirami Iyer — the series narrates the stories of their everyday lives in a crisp and engaging style. Director Hari Haran says, “I relate to the lead, Gautam [Rakendu], on a personal level, because my folks started pushing me to get married soon after I finished college. The conflicts and dynamics of the group are those that anyone who is 20-something can identify with and understand.”
The quirky characters, sticky, feel-good music by White Octaves and high production quality makes for an engaging show.
Haran says, “Even though this script is one that could be adapted to film or television, the advantage with the Internet is that you can directly reach out to your audience, interact with them and gauge their response. Also, you can be honest to your script. However, unlike with big production houses, here the budgets are smaller, and hence, the work is a lot more fast-paced.” While Put Chutney has built its name as a channel for comedy content, this series, though sprinkled with humour, is more a breezy urban romantic drama.
A diverse audience
“We were a little anxious about the series before it went out, but it appeals to a diverse audience: from college students to my own parents. And that has been the biggest compliment: getting 60-somethings to tune into YouTube,” says Haran.
With a large part of the urban television-viewing audience moving to the Internet, the expectations from web content are going to shoot up, is Haran’s assessment. And given that there is an explosion of web series in the recent months, with some of South India’s first ones making a mark on the Internet, this is proving to be a platform that’s going to move from strength to strength. “It’s going to be the entertainment of the future. The biggest advantage is that we get to experiment with genres, and anything new will grab eyeballs. Which explains why many mainstream directors are getting into this fray as well.”
Ctrl Alt Del is an original series in Tamil and English by Culture Machine’s YouTube channel Put Chutney