The new Tanishq bride

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By Progressive and poignant, the new Tanishq ad is a smash-hit
  • Published 31.10.13

So proud 2 hav lived to see a time in advertisement where caramel skin & remarriage r celebrated unbashedly by a leading brand. #tanishq #love,” read a tweet from designer Masaba Gupta.

India — online and offline — is going ga-ga over the new Tanishq ad that celebrates remarriage and takes on social norms — subtly, but very, very effectively.

The 150-second ad, conceptualised by LOWE Lintas and directed by English Vinglish maker Gauri Shinde, shows a young bride (Shunyo Awnko actress Priyanka Bose) getting ready for her big day, when a six-year-old in a sari runs in to show her the flowers in her hair. Yes, that’s her daughter!

As the mom adjusts the little one’s maangtika, she in turn makes it a point to ensure that the bride’s neckpiece is visible from beneath the folds of her sari. The mother-daughter then walk hand in hand to the wedding mandap where the groom (Kavi Shastri) is waiting for them. As the couple take the marriage pheras, the excited kid, sitting with her grandparents, screams out: “Mumma, I also want to go round, round”… only to be shushed down by her mom.

Seeing her sad face, the groom picks her up and completes the pheras with mom and daughter. The sign-off line from the kid to her new dad: “Aaj se daddy bulaun?”

The ad, hailed as “path-breaking”, “courageous” and “unique” has become a talking point of Twitter and Facebook and already has in excess of three lakh hits on YouTube.

“The brief from Tanishq was that they wanted to launch a new wedding collection and the design inspiration was that it would be new-age and contemporary. So, we felt that if that’s the kind of inspiration for design, then we must let it show in the communication as well. That’s when we thought of remarriage as a contemporary way of looking at marriage and knew that the idea would appeal to the consumers who form our target group,” Arun Iyer, national creative director, LOWE Lintas India and the man behind the ad, told t2.

While the ad talks about a new India and touches an emotional chord, its makers had to be careful not to cross the thin line between progressive and pity. “We were very clear that it had to come across as an ad that celebrated the marriage of equals and could never degenerate into pity or anything else. She’s a confident woman of today who has chosen to get married again. It’s not that the guy, out of sympathy or a sense of responsibility, is marrying her. Her confidence is revealed in her body language in the way she walks into the shaadi mandap, she’s smiling, she’s happy, she’s moving on in life,” said Iyer.

While its theme is being lauded, the decision to opt for a dusky bride in the ad world of fair-and-lovely women is also being appreciated. “It wasn’t intentional at all. The only criterion for the actress in the ad was that she had to be someone who could perform well and Priyanka Bose was chosen on the basis of that. We didn’t, at any time, think that we had to choose a woman who was dusky just to break a stereotype,” said Iyer.

Also, despite the wedding theme, note the subtle colour palette in the ad: beiges and browns instead of reds and maroons.

Even as the ad is getting its fair share of bouquets, some brickbats have also come its way. Like the allegation that an ad for a women’s magazine nearly a decade ago had a similar theme. “I’ve seen that ad and it’s a good piece of work. But we never said that we are doing something that’s a first-of-its kind. I think it’s generated so much talk because remarriage is much more prevalent today in our society,” signed off Iyer.

Take a bow, Arun and Gauri!

Priyanka Roy

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