Rom-coms are certainly fun to watch, but their fairytale-themed stories are far from realistic. Aparna Sundaresan distills 10 maxims from romantic comedies and tells you why you shouldn’t believe any of them
Grand gestures = win!
Grand gestures of love will win you the love of your life, no matter how pissed or how not-interested he/she is in you. Stalking, sending texts constantly, performing songs/dance routines, etc – it’s all endearing and not at all creepy.
Why it’s bullsh!t: In the real world, people who exhibit such behaviours are psychopaths. Being a stalker is not romantic. And orchestrating massive dance routines is just embarrassing.
Worst offenders: 10 Things I Hate About You, Friends With Benefits, Jannat, R… Rajkumar
Lost but always found
Your lover is miffed with you and has gone huffing away some place for some me-time? Not to worry; you ALWAYS know where to find them in a bustling city of a few million. What is true love but a GPS tracker?
Why it’s bullsh!t: You might know where your loved one likes to hang out, but if they really want some me time, they’d go somewhere they won’t be found. That’s the point of me-time.
Worst offenders: Sleepless in Seattle, What’s Your Number, Friends With Benefits, Chalte Chalte
I’m in love ‘coz I just had sex
Who has sex just for the sake of it? No one! The easiest way to fall in love with anyone is to sleep with them. Sex is magic glue. Sex is the road to true love.
Why it’s bullsh!t: While sex does bring two people together and strengthen their bond, it is not THE only way to fall in love with someone. Love is more than just a physical act.
Worst offenders: No Strings Attached, This Means War, Band Baaja Baaraat, Anjaana Anjaani
Love over career, baby!
So your lover is a high-profile career person. Big deal. They’ll always choose love over their job.
Why it’s bullsh!t: Sometimes career is just more important than relationships, especially in this day and age of economic uncertainties. And it isn’t impossible to balance the two. Families wouldn’t exist otherwise.
Worst offenders: The Proposal, What Happens in Vegas, Aashiqui 2, Love Aaj Kal
Rich meets poor
You know this. Rich girl-poor boy. Rich boy-poor girl. Two people from different socio-economic strata. It’s all meant to be.
Why it’s bullsh!t: True, love transcends class, but one can’t deny that two people from completely different backgrounds will have starkly contrasting personalities. Will they still work as a couple? Maybe.
Worst offenders: Maid in Manhattan, The Nanny Diaries, Kaho Naa… Pyaar Hai, Devdas, Ishq
Children are the best counsellors
Any time you want advice on your life love, ask a kid below 12 years of age. Bonus points for asking a kid younger than 7.
Why it’s bullsh!t: Films love to reiterate that children are just as pure and innocent as the love between two people. We dare you to find a 12-yearold who knows all about dating. We dare you to find a 7-year-old who knows all about the complexities of a relationship.
Worst offenders: Love Actually, No Reservations, 500 Days of Summer, Kuch Kuch Hota Hai, Cheeni Kum
Love in a new place
If you’re new in town and meet an attractive stranger to show you around, you’ve just met the love of your life.
Why it’s bullsh!t: Too many assumptions at play here. Attractive + single + willing to spend time with you + exactly the person you want + you are exactly who they want + they want to be in a relationship. The odds of this happening are unlikely.
Worst offenders: The Holiday, New in Town, Wake Up Sid, Fanaa, Delhi 6
True love tames all
The bad boy, the shrew, the beast – they all become wonderful, loveable people by the power of love.
Why it’s bullsh!t: They say a leopard doesn’t change its spots for a reason. A playboy one day doesn’t become a monogamist the next. Neither does an emotionally unavailable man suddenly become marriage material.
Worst offenders: The Ugly Truth, Ghosts of Girlfriends Past, Bachna Ae Haseeno, Tere Naam
Love transcends time
Love knows no boundaries. Not even time. Star-crossed lovers time travel and/or are reborn in different forms, different eras to fulfil their destiny.
Why it’s bullsh!t: Love is timeless and all the blah might work in a certain context (poetry; only poetry), but time-travelling or being reborn just to be with your lover is one physics convulsing idea we just can’t get with.
Worst offenders: 17 Again, 13 Going on 30, Karz, Love Story 2050, Om Shanti Om
Love is right next to you
Love is always in the last place you look, with the least likely person. Like your best friend.
Why it’s bullsh!t: Okay, granted, a lot of couples do start off as best friends. But many best friends also stay just that – friends. Transitioning to ‘couple world’ just complicates things for them.
Worst offenders: Made of Honour, Just Friends, Keeping the Faith, Jaane Tu… Ya Jaane Na, Kuch Kuch Hota Hai