Eternally Confused & Eager For Love (Netflix, 8 Episodes)
Starring Vihaan Samat, Ankur Rathi, Rahul Bose, Suchitra Pillai
Written & Directed by Rahul Nair
After a long while, here is something to make you smile and chuckle. Eternally Confused & Eager For Love is an awkward title for what is customarily called the coming-of-age saga. But when you see how socially awkward our 20-something protagonist is, and how often he ends up putting his foot in his mouth rather than his dick in a never-mind, you would realize the importance of a title as gauche as Ray, played with a liberating transparency by Vihaan Samat who has done some negligible parts in the past.
Eternally Confused and what-not is Samat’s actual beginning as an actor. He is a natural born choice to play the muddled boy-child with parents , played with lip smacking relish by Suchitra Krishnamoorthy and Rahul Bose , who are refreshingly non-interfering, although they do want him to at least shed his virginity.
In one of the less amusing episodes of this otherwise-hilarious wannafuck-fest Ray goes looking for condoms in his parents’ wardrobe and is embarrassed to see they are Size Large.
“Oooh daddy has a big dick,” Ray’s alter-ego cooes teasingly.
That brings me to the writing’s most disarming USP. Ray’s alter-ego is played by Jim Sarbh. We never see him in anywhere in the series. But his voice is a constant irrepressible presence ,like Rebecca in Daphne du Maurier’s novel, only far more horny and aggressive. Sarbh’s voice performance is bang-on.Even if this was just a radio-play Sarbh would have made it work swimmingly.
Eternally Confused & Eager For Love is a little marvel of creation. It is a plotless wonder, almost as aimless as its protagonist, but somehow always getting to the crux of the given situation without having to negotiate too closely the inner spaces of Ray’s vacuous life .
The writing by debutant Rahul Nair is largely inspired. In English, the verbal exchanges are relevant and urbane, how youngsters speak to their parents and their friends,girlfriends and boyfriends.Nair is a striking new talent and a welcome addition to the swiftly stagnating bastion of OTT writers and directors.
The veneer of urbanity is never allowed to peel off . Nair is on solid ground when his young hero speaks to his parents and to his sturdy and dependable househelp Umesh(played by Brij Bhushan Shukla) whose frowns fuel Ray’s growing sense of self-doubt.
The various encounters with different dates are not always as interesting as we , or Ray would want them to be. But that’s life. Every day cannot be Sunday.And just because Ray has got them it doesn’t mean he can use those condoms at will.
Eternally Confused & Eager For Love allows Ray to be eternally confused eager for love and not afraid to let it all hang out. In its wholehearted embrace of its protagonist’s pelvic vulnerability, this is a the most winsome streamer in a while.