‘Virgin Woman Diaries’: The Story of Virginity Without the Shame
Finally, a short, sweet and non-judgemental take on a girl wanting to lose her virginity... Ah, refreshing! Who would’ve thought a web series with that brief would be made for an oh-so-sanskari Indian audience. But Kabir Sadanand’s Virgin Women Diaries hits the nail on its head, despite stumbling over the usual culprits – over-the-top drama, a convoluted ending and in your face brand promotion.
Kiara (Archita Agarwal) is about to turn 18 and she’s itching to lose her virginity. She’s got everything- good looks, a trusting dad and a loving boyfriend named Amit (Dhiraj Totlani). But getting laid turns out to be harder than she thought. While her painfully dramatic Gujju mom (Delnaz Irani) can’t bear the thought of her daughter losing her laaj aka hymen, her dad (Amit Behl) trusts her completely.
So all Kiara wants for her 18th birthday, is for her geeky boyfriend Amit to conquer her prusht bhoomi. You guessed well, the show is full of sexual metaphors, but the fact that they’re in shudh Hindi works surprisingly well.
Over the next eleven episodes, everything that could possibly go wrong in Kiara’s life, does. She gets kicked out of her hostel, repeated attempts at sex fail and finally her father lands up on the night she decides to finally do it.
But here’s what’s applause worthy about Virgin Woman Diaries-
When a Girl Gets Horny
Kiara is 18, curious and horny. She has no time for judgement. In fact, after her hostel warden catches Amit in her room, she even gets tagged as the ‘college slut’, while he sheds his geeky image and turns ‘dude’. The show comments quite strongly on how ridiculously sexist that it. Why can’t a girl want to have sex just as much as a boy, without being shamed for it? But Kiara couldn’t care less. She remains focused on her agenda and rightly so.
Say CONDOMS Bindaas
I’m glad that someone finally said ‘condoms’ out loud! In fact, by the end of the show, no one’s talking about them in a hushed voice. So much so, they’ve discussed everything from the super thin variety to the ingenious ‘melt-in-your-mouth’ kind. Virginity and sex are never mentioned without the use of protection and the message couldn’t be clearer to be honest.
Before CONdoms Comes CONsent
You’ll warm up to Amit and Kiara in no time. They’re real and goofy. But most importantly, they’re not interested in playing mind games. All they want to do is have a good time in bed, and there’s no ill-intention at play here. What’s really refreshing to see is that ‘no’ means ‘no’, whether she’s saying it or he is. We’re so used to talking about consent in terms oh respecting what a woman wants, that we completely forget about the man. Virgin Woman Diaries does justice to both.
A Question of Trust
Now here’s a really cool father, who might be protective as hell about his daughter, but trusts her completely. When he walks in on a rather crazy sexed-up night, neither does he judge, nor does he turn it all into a question of his own pride. Nope, this isn’t about him. This is about Kiara and what she wants as an adult. He talks to her about sex, love and relationships. Believe me, you’ll want a dad-friend just like Sahni ji. Wouldn’t it be wonderful if Indian dads could just talk to their daughters about virginity without squirming or even uttering the ‘M’ word?
Virgin Woman Diaries gives in to some over-the-top Gujju stereotypes but steers clear from the sexist ones. Kiara’s mother and warden come and go as the shrill voice of a conservative society, but they don’t get much bhaav in terms of screen time. But Kiara and her friend Shalini, the main female protagonists, are nothing like the stereotypical teenagers most shows settle for. They’re informed, driven, mad and very very real. Sure, you won’t ever spot a book in their hands. But when it comes to virginity, they know exactly who to lose it to.
They’re not sleeping around just for the heck of adventure and experimentation. They’re curious but sensitive and loyal. Oh, and they love their alcohol too. Amit on the other hand, still drinks milk and isn’t the sharpest tool in the shed. He’s a mama’s boy, but by the end of it, comes into his own.
By the way, I love the fact that when he’s asked to choose between Kiara and his best friend Sam, he’s clear about the fact that it’s an unfair choice and he won’t give in to a situation where he has to choose. That’s quite an evolved statement, a long way from the usual television narrative around love and friendship.
The only thing that irks a bit is Kiara’s desperate virginity countdown. But Kiara, Shalini, Amit and Sameer surprise you with their real portrayals. Frankly, a fun watch that ends with the much awaited boom-boom-bang-bang night, and isn’t stretched for the heck of it.
It’s actually pretty amazing that Virgin Woman Diaries comes from the digital arm of same channel that was airing Pehredaar Piya Ki, till it was taken down for its regressive content.
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