Over the last decade (2010-2019), the internet has churned out the kind of quirky, bold, unusual, and intelligent content that has made binge-watching our favourite millennial activity. So here’s our pick of the best Hindi-language Indian web series from the last decade:
1. Made in Heaven
Undoubtedly one of the best Indian web series to have been produced in recent times, Made in Heaven chronicles the lives, lies, and mistakes of two wedding planners and friends, Tara and Karan. What set the show apart was the nuanced portrayal of issues such as adultery, Section 377, wealth gap, and sexual abuse; along with a very realistic, entertaining and thought-provoking representation of the Indian wedding circus.
2. Kota Factory
India’s first black-and-white web series presented a hilariously honest story of the infamous coaching institutes of Kota, and the rat race to clear engineering examinations. With refreshing characters (Jeetu Bhaiya FTW!) and relatable dialogues, the series was a reminder of our school friendships and the fear of entrance examinations.
3. The Family Man
Despite a deluge of ‘spy thriller movies’, Manoj Bajpayee starrer The Family Man had us hooked. And the primary reason for that was a well-scripted plot and an amazing array of characters (lead and supporting). And of course, Manoj Bajpayee’s stellar performance.
Based on a real-life story, Kaafir was a mature and bold take on the volatile, heartbreaking Kashmir situation – shared through the lens of a civilian mistakenly held across the border. The Indian web series Kaafir is not just a beautifully woven story, but considering the current socio-political situation, an extremely important one as well – and one that greatly benefits from powerful performances by Dia Mirza and Mohit Raina.
5. Delhi Crime
Inspired by the aftermath of the horrific 2012 Delhi gang-rape case, Delhi Crime is not an easy show to watch, but one that is both, important and relevant. While some people thought it presented a story skewed to favor the authorities, what can’t be denied is Shefali Shah’s powerful performance.
As far as Indian family comedy-dramas, Gullak was refreshingly hilarious and undoubtedly nostalgic. This five-episodes-long show was like peeking through your childhood album and revisiting the incidents that made up our childhood.
7. Sacred Games
When its first season aired, Sacred Games became the subject of memes, the source of iconic dialogues, and a lesson in all things ‘unsanskaari’ and the audience loved every bit of it. This was perhaps the first Indian web series that convinced the audience to develop theories and analyze everything – including the show titles. Season 2 may not have been as engrossing, but our faith theshow is still strong
It’s very rare that an Indian horror series leaves you with moral questions – but Ghoul did exactly that. From a reverse character arc to an ambiguous future period, the show used extremely clever elements, and a fair share of folklore, to weave a story where the lines between redemption andrevenge were effectively blurred.
Most of us believe that when push comes to shove, we’d pick the right thing to do – until the time we’re actually facing a dire situation. With an extremely intriguing narrative, thriller Breathe explores exactly one such moral dilemma.
In the first season, F.L.A.M.E.S. took us back to the school life series and feelings of first rush of love, the charm of old songs, and the antics that only came alive at tuition classes. With its second season, the show focused on the problems that most of us experienced in our first relationship – while also battling teenage hormones and parents’ expectations.