How ‘Dear Zindagi’ Is a Replica of the TV Series ‘Being Erica’

Why we think Shah Rukh Khan and Alia Bhatt’s ‘Dear Zindagi’ is inspired by a popular Canadian TV series. 

4 min read
<i>Dear Zindagi </i>vs <i>Being Erica.&nbsp;</i>

With all the sardonic remarks that go around about adapting/replicating Hollywood plots/stories into Bollywood movies, Gauri Shinde’s Dear Zindagi made quite a brilliant move by adapting its plot from the Canadian TV series – Being Erica and is since then ruling the box office. While the storyline in the movie stays highly polished and edited, yet the remnants of the series aren’t that difficult to spot.

The Characters

Dr Jehangir Khan’s character is inspired by Dr Tom (played by Michael Ray) in the series who plays a therapist and helps Erica (played by Erin Karpluk) to cope with her life’s problems. Just like Kaira, Erica deals with a number of issues whether on the relationships front or the familial front. When she seeks out Dr Tom’s help, he makes her introspect, realise and take her problems at face value rather than running away from it. Sounds familiar? Scroll down.

The Looks

SRK pretty much sports almost the same bearded look that Dr Tom sports with his cool, calm and figured out attitude.

Dr Jehangir vs Dr Tom
Dr Jehangir vs Dr Tom

Alia is also somewhat a look alike of Erica’s character with her curls and girl-next-door vibe.

Kaira vs Erica
Kaira vs Erica

The Therapist’s Office

A screenshot from <i>Being Erica. </i>
A screenshot from Being Erica.

Dr. Jehangir’s office has the same peculiar decorative items that Dr. Tom’s office possesses. Remember that scene where Alia accidentally breaks a decorative piece? Did they look as eerie as these? (Don’t forget the wheels)

A part of Dr Tom’s room from <i>Being Erica.</i>
A part of Dr Tom’s room from Being Erica.

The Dialogues

Since Dr Tom makes it a point to utter a quote or two in every episode, a lot of his famous quotes have been used by Khan here as well. He says to Kaira on their last day of therapy that his ways and methods of therapy are quite different from others. He also uses the dialogue, “har tooti hui cheez ko joda ja sakta hai” aka (every broken thing can be fixed) indicating that she too can be fixed. All of this pretty much sums up from a dialogue that Dr Tom said to Erica whose excerpt was found on a site.

How ‘Dear Zindagi’ Is a Replica of the TV Series ‘Being Erica’

The Scenes

The scene when Kaira attends her last therapy session and says goodbye to Khan is also a replica of the last episode of Being Erica where they bid their adieus. The only difference is that Kaira ends up liking Khan in a romantic way whereas Erica develops a deeper bond with her therapist in a more of a father-daughter relationship kinda way. Nevertheless, it is difficult for both of them to let go of their mentors, making the scene emotionally painful.

How ‘Dear Zindagi’ Is a Replica of the TV Series ‘Being Erica’

Also that part where SRK asks Alia to not judge her family members and look at their perspectives as humans and not parents, giving her a talk about how every human is the same and is entitled to mistakes, pretty much familiarises with this one talk that Dr Tom had with Erica:

Kaira’s Relationships

Ali Zafar is introduced as a musician into Kaira’s life just as Kai is introduced into Erica’s. They both woo the leading lady by singing for them in front of tons of people and later on end up kissing them. Have a look at Kai and Erica here:

Alia’s relationship with Angad Bedi is also similar to Erica’s relationship with the character Ethan where Ethan played the part of an ideal boyfriend who was extra sweet and extra nice, and didn’t deserved to be dumped or cheated on.

So basically, the only aspect of the TV series that wasn’t adapted into the movie was the concept of time travel that Dr Tom uses as a method to let Erica see through her mistakes. Well, surely the audience is glad to see a tinge of originality in the script of the movie. Dear Zindagi seems to have hit the box office quite successfully, albeit the replications from the famous Canadian TV series go unnoticed.

(Meehika Barua is a freelance writer, editor, lifestyle and entertainment blogger, who’s been published in various digital magazines online.)

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