I have always maintained that we do not need superhero movies in Indian cinema. Not because we have screwed up the genre, with movies like Drona, Ra.One and A Flying Jatt. It’s because why do we need superheroes when our regular heroes can do superhero stuff. Iron Man may need his millions to make a suit that makes him fly, and fire missiles. Captain America need a serum to become super-strong and super agile. Bruce Banner needed an accidental overdose of gamma radiation to go green and turn Hulk. Thor is a Norse God, while Superman is an alien. Every superhero in the West needs something or the other to kick ass 100 times better than a normal man.
But not in Indian mainstream cinema. Here you have a Salman Khan tearing off his shirt with bulging muscles that Banner can only do when he Hulks out. Rajinikanth in Chandramukhi can create mini-hurricanes out of the air with his feet. Vijaykanth can hack a system with Windows Media Player. Shah Rukh Khan can chase a Scorpio in a horse cart, and he doesn’t need to be an android to do that. And Ajay Devgn in Singham is impervious to flying jeeps, bullets and every Newton’s law when he is intent on catching villains. See, we don’t really need superheroes. Because we already have our leading men as superheroes.
Now add to that list, one more magnanimous name – Prabhas as Baahubali. This man is something not of this world. Baahubali, both father and son, can give thenga to Jadoo if he ever offers to give them superpowers. They can effing lift a whole tree and threw it at their attacking enemies. Baahubali can run vertically, horizontally on any damn surface, every creature in the animal kingdom respects him even if he throws turmeric powder over their heads, kill them with arrows and light their horns with fire (Maneka Gandhi would have been wincing in those scenes). And yet they are careful not to trample him under their hooves. He is a real superhero.
Before I gush more over him, let’s compare Baahubali with two of our exclusive and somewhat original superheroes that we already have… G.One and Krrish. Let’s talk about the pros and cons of each of these superheroes and what makes Baahubali better than him.
Pros: Has SRK’s charm, can get inside a Virar local even in peak hours, nearly destroyed CST terminus that too with a Western Railway local train (don’t believe us? Check this video where he gets into the train in Bandra, crosses Vile Parle and ends up in CST), has cool shades and charm women even though he is supposed to be asexual, and he can make junk cars fly!
Cons: Can’t identify a real woman with an android, can’t do anything if his ‘heart’ is not in its right place, even a kid can create him, he actually can’t even defeat villains without the help of luck and a kid’s intelligence. Above all, everyone mistakes him by his nemesis’ name, Ra.One!
Pros: He can jump like a Kangaroo on dope. He can swim like a dolphin on testosterone. With his mask on, people can’t identify what race he belongs to. He can climb trees so fast that monkeys have committed suicide suffering from inferiority complex. He can land airplanes with an efficiency that Air India plans to hire him to make their services better. And in the sequel, he even learns to fly, because the script wanted him to. Actually, Krrish’s powers lie more in what the script wants him to do.
Cons: He needed the mercy of a purple Yoda, who himself couldn’t do anything that Krrish does on his own, to be a superhero. Krrish even can’t save a job, despite all his powers.
We won’t have a separate pros and cons sections because Baahubali doesn’t need one. Since both father and son share similar powers, In the first movie, he can climb waterfalls better than Donkey Kong. He makes a warrior girl get in touch with her ‘feminine’ side by disrobing her (that’s a special power; do that in Delhi, and you have a cell ready to land your ass!). He single-handedly defeats armies making me wonder why Mahishmati even needs an army of it own (imagine the labour cost saved). He can run through any solid surface no mater what geometric angle it lies based on the earth below. His blows can make huge gold statues fall down, and his archery skills will make Hawkeye go…
Baahubali is impervious to arrows, swords, maces and even gravity, and he can even train farmers and cattleherds within minutes to behave like proper soldiers and attack bigger armies. He can only be killed if Kattappa drives a sword through his back! Which itself led to an entire nation scratching their heads to find out, why, dear man why! Above all, he is neither an android nor an alien-blessed kid to display his unbelievable powers. The only thing we didn’t see him do was fly…oh wait…
So in short, Baahubali is the best superhero India has ever seen. Rest can shove their capes up their wardrobes!