Dazzling Television from India

 

It’s a strong statement to make, but Stories by Rabindranath Tagore (SRT to keep my spell checker from having an aneurism) may be the best series I’ve ever seen on television.

Spectacularly filmed in a kaleidoscope of colors and textures, SRT uses a palette of rich but calm images that come straight out of the conflicts of the heart, but never losing a playful feel.

Set in Bengal in the early part of the 20th century, the growing pains of an emerging educated Indian middle and upper class get twisted up in old Indian traditions. Tagore, ever the master story teller, unrolls tales with rich and fallbile characters thrust into responsible positions but often exhibiting almost adolescent immaturity and inability to cope.

Lots of dancing outdoor light on a pre-electronic, pre-frantic but prosperous Bengal landscape.

Rabindranath Tagore was the first non-Euro/American to win the Nobel prize for literature. Without going aerobic, he runs an astounding emotional range from suicidal to childish/quirky. None of his characters resemble other characters. Far from being a one trick pony, Tagore gives us a whole emotional zoo.

You can catch the series on Netflix. 26 episodes.