Everything Wrong About Coldplay’s Newest Music Video

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Coldplay’s newest video “Hymn For The Weekend” basically proves that you can be a clichephile (yup, just coined that word) despite achieving superstar status, worldwide fame, countless fans and a vast amount of money.
So they come to India to shoot this video and end up showing almost every single stereotype about India that the world has been exposed to since India has had the misfortune of being discovered by the West.
Slumdog Returns

Slumdog Returns

Here is a list of India-stereotyping objects in their very cliched video:
1. A Peacock
2. Hermits wearing saffron and carrying tridents
3. A man playing with fire
4. An unusually colorful taxi (driven by a Sardarji)
5. A street magician (the flying man trick)
6. Three men on a bike with Gulaal on their faces
7. A baby Shiva (painted blue and carrying a trident)
8. Kids looking into a kaleidoscope
9. A man doing a Rajasthani puppet show (in Mumbai!)
10. Topless boys jumping into a pond
11. Classical dances (Bharatnatyam & Kathakali)
12. Three Hanuman impersonators
There could be more.
The Average Indian Kid This

The Average Indian Kid This

Now, the video itself does not show India negatively, but it does show an India that has already been etched deep in the brains of the West. I would have made this video in the fifteenth century, had I been around.
India has changed, even though it has also remained the same. To portray India in a manner that is unrealistically exotic is inane. It also reinforces the stereotypes, many wrong, that the West has about India.
By the way, did anyone else notice that a fair Sonam Kapoor has been ‘suitably’ darkened and a darker Beyonce has been given the bulk of the screen presence? After all, how could Indians be anything but dark?
Yo Beyonce, So Indian

Yo Beyonce, So Indian

Point is, there are cliches about the West too. While Coldplay is not American, I could create a video about the USA, and show fat people stuffing burgers and guzzling cola, white men shooting children inside schools, white cops murdering black citizens, people getting divorced, etc. But I won’t.
Sonam, Fifty Shades Darker

Sonam, Fifty Shades Darker

I don’t like cliches. Not as much as Coldplay seems to.
PS. This is not a commentary on their music, but on the video alone.
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