KWK S8: Sidharth Malhotra is the outsider no longer bewitched by Bollywood | Bollywood


When Varun Dhawan was asked on Koffee with Karan Season 8 who gives the most fake answers among him, Alia Bhatt, and Sidharth Malhotra, he chose Sid, much to his Student of the Year co-star’s surprise. Little did he know, Sidharth would prove him wrong minutes later in his Rapid Fire round. (Also Read: Varun Dhawan says a producer told him to stay out of trouble on KWK after Deepika Padukone-Ranveer Singh fiasco)

Sidharth Malhotra appeared alongside Varun Dhawan on Koffee with Karan Season 8
Sidharth Malhotra appeared alongside Varun Dhawan on Koffee with Karan Season 8

Not the most diplomatic of them all

Attribute it to his long-awaited success with Shershaah or marriage with Kiara Advani, Sidharth has acquired an unassuming ease that’s impossible to rival. He pulled what Ranbir Kapoor did on Ranveer Singh in Season 4: staying cool and composed because the other one is most likely to come across as overenthusiastic.

But that doesn’t imply that Sidharth was too laid-back to not give it a good fight. Or that he was guilty of being diplomatic, as Varun charged him to be. He was just, for the lack of a better word, sorted. He didn’t drop truth bombs, but was strategically economical about his responses.

For instance, when his ex-girlfriend Alia was summoned to speak about her first two co-stars on the episode, Sidharth was only seen smiling, as if he could see through a facade. When Alia said she is grateful to Sidharth, she cheekily said, “For the first love of my life, Edward (her cat),” Sid, initially taken aback by “the first love bit,” is then seen nodding and smiling at the Edward bit. Moments later, when Alia said she’s being so wise and speaking so well, Sidharth said, “Too good,” as if implying that unlike him, Alia has learnt well how to measure her words.

Samajhdar ko ishara kafi

Sidharth surely didn’t measure his words. It felt like he actually meant what he said. Because he was selective about the thoughts he put words to. For instance, in the Rapid Fire round, when he was asked which actor he’d go to for relationship advice, he smiled, shook his head, and said, “None.” That is a massive statement on the state of infidelity in Bollywood by an outsider, but he comes from a space that’s divorced from the place he works at. His idea of love doesn’t stem from Bollywood’s power couples. He’s observed them too closely to know he doesn’t want to be like them.

His faith in love comes from outside the Bollywood or Mumbai ecosystem, possibly from his family back home in Delhi. Sure, he’s married to an actor, but as he mentioned, even Kiara is very family-oriented. Hers is a family with ties to Ashok Kumar and Juhi Chawla, but they live in South Mumbai, far away from the trappings of Bandra, the informal hub of Bollywood. Sidharth could’ve picked his mentor Karan Johar for relationship advice, but he’s too secure in his skin on that front to seek help on something that’s not broken.

Also, as much respect he has for his seniors like Shah Rukh Khan, Akshay Kumar or Salman Khan, he didn’t pick any of them for relationship advice either. In fact, when he was asked if abs can be made via VFX, he pointed out that only the previous generation needed that crutch, perhaps referring to Salman Khan’s digitally baked abs. Again, Sidharth is no longer the bhai-bhai pleaser that one can see a Varun to be. While Varun’s venous effort to remain diplomatic came from a PR-imposed diktat to remain out of trouble, Sidharth’s restraint felt fairly organic. He may have gotten the same platform as two nepo babies, but Sidharth has proved to be the outsider who couldn’t be bewitched by Bollywood.

‘Before the Koffee gets Cold’ is a weekly column that goes beyond the froth to study the storm inside the Koffee cup.

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