INDIA: Shaktimaan was an Indian action superhero TV show created by Mukesh Khanna and Dinker Jani that aired on DD National from 1997 to 2005, which captured the craze of the younger generation at that time, especially it was a widely celebrated phenomenon among the 90’s kids.
The show’s ensemble cast included: Mukesh Khanna as Shaktimaan and Gangadhar Vidhyadhar Mayadhar Omkarnath Shashtri, Kitu Gidwani, and Vaishnavi Mahant as Geeta Vishwas, Surendar Pal as Tamraj Kilvish and Guru Sarvagya, Lalit Parimoo as Dr. Jackal.
Genesis of Shaktimaan
In the Kaliyuga, greed, and malice had devoured every living entity, and it was necessary to exterminate such tainted beings. Therefore, Suryawanshi Sadhus chooses on a man, that individual was taught how to energize the seven chakras in the human body. This phenomenon bestowed upon him an enormous amount of superpower and complete mastery of the five elements of nature: Earth, Fire, Water, Wind, and Life. This resulted in the formation of Shaktimaan.
He intends to eliminate all corruption and injustice in the universe, which forms the ethics of his superhero persona. He assumes the identity of Gangadhar to conceal his superhero identity. Gangadhar, the polar opposite of his true identity, is a reporter with the eccentricities of a Clown Protagonist. He speaks a pure Hindi dialect, which reflects the sincerity of his nature. He also collaborates with Geeta Vishwas, who gives his superhero identity the name “Shaktimaan.”
Every powerful superhero, for instance, requires entirely other characters that violate the protagonist’s ethics. The infamous Tamraj Kilvish fills this void by feeding on society’s corrupt and evil notions. Only Shaktimaan can defeat him, resulting in the most prominent Indian superhero rivalry ever. Aside from Kilvish, the rogue’s gallery of this Indian superhero includes Dr. Jackal, Plastica, and Kapala.
Is Shaktimaan a copy of Superman?
Although the personas of Shaktimaan and Superman and their alter egos share many similarities, Shaktimaan differs in many ways. The first and most significant distinction is that Superman is an extra-terrestrial superhero. At the same time, Shaktimaan is created from individuals’ consciousness by unlocking the seven chakras via Kundalini Yoga.
Mukesh Khanna also stated in one of his videos posted on the Bheeshm International YouTube channel, “Many people consider Shaktimaan to be a copy of Superman, because Shaktimaan can fly and Superman can also fly,” but what if I told you that Superman is a copy of Bhagwan Hanuman, our country’s first superhero? There are many superheroes in our mythology.
He went on to say, “the power that Shaktimaan has that Superman doesn’t, Shaktimaan has abilities like invisibility, time travel, telepathy, phasing. With his skills, he can bring someone back to life if they die. That is why I believe he is more talented than any other superhero.” And Shaktimaan, in my opinion, is our country’s first superhero; he is mightier and more magnificent than the other superheroes.”
Why Shaktimaan is different from other heroes?
In a discussion video on his YouTube channel, ‘The mythology, Mukesh Khanna said that the storyline that Shaktimaan possesses other heroes lacks that story. We have an ancient culture that predates many countries’ civilizations, and it has many stories to tell; similarly, Shaktimaan has a story to tell, and its lore dates back 6000 years, during the Mahabharata period.”
Shaktimaan’s trilogy announcement is an essential element for Indian superhero community
Shaktimaan’s trilogy announcement provides a fan moment. It sends a signal to other Indian superheroes, including Raj Comics, that it can compete with the Marvel and DC cinematic universes. This will increase the popularity of Indian comics and their creators, who are currently underappreciated.