Vanitha Vijayakumar: I stopped trusting Bigg Boss after Cheran anna's eviction
The most controversial Bigg Boss housemate talks to us about her second innings in the show
Just three weeks into the third season of Bigg Boss, Vanitha Vijayakumar, arguably the most controversial housemate, got evicted. For the next few weeks, social media was rife with suggestions to bring back Vanitha into the house to enliven proceedings. Voila! Vanitha was back. "Many say the show is scripted by Vijay TV. I thoroughly disagree. The editors of the show might seem like the showrunners, but the true scriptwriters of the show are the Bigg Boss fans, especially on social media. They can even influence the way the show is edited," says Vanitha in this freewheeling, as always no-holds-barred, chat.
First Innings vs Second Innings
"After getting evicted the first time, I thought there might be a chance to make a comeback into the house. At the end of the day, Bigg Boss is a show, and it is about giving the audience what they want, and social media is clear about what it wants. Towards the end of my second stint inside the house, I noticed positive vibes surrounding my participation. It is not like I was always shouting or fighting. Even Kamal Haasan sir, during the second eviction, told me that I shouldn't be known only for my boldness. But I want to say it is up to the show's editors to show that side of me too. This time, probably, they decided to showcase other facets of Vanitha. But I understand the reasoning behind such decisions. Bigg Boss, after all... is a game show."
Is bold not so beautiful?
"Everyone is in the show for themselves. Everyone has a way of expressing their opinion. I have mine. I was confrontational right from Day 1. I'm not someone who shies away from expressing opinions. Ironically, it is this boldness that in a twisted way, brought down the interest in the show. So when I got evicted, people who were headstrong and opinionated got on the defensive thinking this kind of behaviour was not encouraged by the audience. That is why when I re-entered, I questioned people like Madhumitha and Cheran anna on their silence over various issues inside the house. Being some of the more sensible minds, they should not have allowed it to become what we see today."
"After I left, there wasn't anyone standing up for others' causes and arguing for what's right. Even Madhumitha and Cheran anna felt my eviction created a vacuum of sorts. Everything became about the relationship triangle between Kavin, Losliya and Sakshi. It is not enough to be a supporting actor in an individual game like Bigg Boss. What was unfortunate was how my return was seen by some housemates and audience too. Why would I come back to the show if I wasn't wanted? It was not against the format of the show, but when it was brought out constantly by the other housemates, I lost it. I constantly asked Bigg Boss to clarify about my return because such a thought can be in the minds of the people too. They might think, 'Naama dhaane vote pottom, thirumba edhuku anuppirkaanga?' These thoughts affect my chances inside the house. That is why I constantly asked Bigg Boss to clarify their stand. Even if Kamal Haasan had taken the stage to address this, it would have made a great deal of difference. However, that never happened. But again, winning is not just about winning the title, it is also about winning the hearts of the audience. I believe I have."
Saving Private Affairs
"No one has control over what is going to be aired, so invariably, everyone inside the house only share things they know are suitable for going on air. We know the difference between public and private. Moreover, being a friend doesn't mean just giving them a morale boost or saying positive things. It also lies in pointing out the flaws. When this issue came between me and Sherin, I was being a friend when I said what I said. I felt disturbed when she shared something with me and later contradicted it in public. The idea I have about Sherin and Tharshan in my mind is from what I've seen. What people see outside is the condensed version. Now people are coming up to me and saying I did the right thing confronting Sherin and Tharshan. But what is the use?"
The friendship-sacrifice conundrum
"After being evicted the first time, I created a WhatsApp group and added every evicted housemate in that group. Irrespective of what we did or said inside the house, there is a lot of love between us, and hopefully, will continue to be so. But I do believe it is not possible to have that deep a friendship inside the house when everyone is so guarded. That's why this whole shenanigan of 'thyaagam' seems so superficial. It is just a stunt. It is just a strategy to remain inside the house, and I felt the need to call it out. It is not right to influence voters that way."
Cry me a river
Among the housemates, I knew Cheran anna even before entering the Bigg boss house. While initially, we weren't on so good terms, things changed this time around. We are both mature adults, and took time to reach the level of comfort that we have now. The people who probably kept us apart for a variety of reasons weren't there this time around. That brought us closer. That's why during the open nomination, I questioned Sandy and Kavin for crying. Why is Kavin, who referred to Cheran's arguments with Losliya as a 'drama', shedding tears after being nominated? Is this drama too? Why did Sandy try to portray Kavin to be a victim? Why were they influencing voters so much? It was such a volatile week, and at the end, when Cheran anna was evicted, I got very emotional. A lot of questions came up. 'Are the public really voting?' 'What made the public go against Cheran this time?' Everyone who was evicted the past few weeks, be it Madhumitha or Kasthuri, had only good things to say about Cheran anna. I lost my belief in the show, and for the first time, I cried. When he got evicted, I felt like I was backstabbed."
"Being a wild card, I never imagined I'll go all the way. However, every time I got nominated, the reasons were actually disappointing. They call me a strong contestant, which itself is a valid enough reason. But they paint a negative picture. That's what was disappointing about the eviction process. And after Cheran anna's exit, I didn't want the immunity, captaincy, etc... I thought if the voting was really true, and the people really wanted me to stay in the house, they would vote for me. Over the past three seasons of Bigg boss, it is clear that not everybody got the opportunity to leave the house with their head held high or with a positive opinion about them. I am happy that towards the end of my stay, the show was edited in such a way that people got to see a different Vanitha. I also learnt a very important lesson. I have never ever been asked to listen more, and speak less. Bigg Boss helped me realise that is imperative to let the other person speak what they want, even if, sometimes, they don't make any sense. I will keep it in mind for the rest of my life."
Under the microscope
"Unlike many housemates, my personal life is an open book. It won't be possible for Cheran anna or me to spin stories, and paint a different picture about us. However, Bigg Boss not only has newbies fighting for a place under the limelight but also features forgotten artistes, who have returned to the spotlight. So, when they tell their stories, share incidents about the past, explain their relationship status, you tend to believe their version of their story without verifying. It is very easy for them to create something temporarily. Sections of the public have started questioning the authenticity. To be very honest, I don't want to comment and spoil their winning chances. Let's wait for the show to end."