Marmadesam

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Marmadesam
Vidathukaruppu dvd.jpg
DVD cover for Vidathu Karuppu
FormatIndian soap opera
Created byMinbimbangal
Written byIndra Soundar Rajan
Directed byNaga
Country of originIndia
Language(s)Tamil
Production
Producer(s)K. Balachander
Running time30 minutes
Broadcast
Original channelSUN TV, Raj TV
Picture format576i (SDTV)
Original run1997 – 2001
 
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Marmadesam
Vidathukaruppu dvd.jpg
DVD cover for Vidathu Karuppu
FormatIndian soap opera
Created byMinbimbangal
Written byIndra Soundar Rajan
Directed byNaga
Country of originIndia
Language(s)Tamil
Production
Producer(s)K. Balachander
Running time30 minutes
Broadcast
Original channelSUN TV, Raj TV
Picture format576i (SDTV)
Original run1997 – 2001


Marmadesam (Tamil: மர்மதேசம்), meaning "Land of Mystery" in Tamil, is a television series directed by Naga. The series was telecasted between 1997 and 2001 and was a huge success.

Contents

Principal Cast

Stories

The television series consisted of successive episodes of short stories dealing with supernatural occurrences. While the stories are purely fictitious, they explore some extant beliefs and real-life traditions.

The main stories are:

Plot

Vidaathu Karuppu

Vidaathu Karuppu is the second and most successful of the Marmadesam series. The story examines the psychological underpinnings of the concept of split personalities even while exploring in detail the rural cult of Karuppu Sami prevalent in the southern part of Tamil Nadu. Starring Chetan, Devadarshini, Master Lokesh, Mohan V. Ram, Poovilangu Mohan, Ponvannan, Muthusubramanian and Sivakavitha, the series was a huge commercial success and triggered imitations and supernatural thrillers by other television directors.

Each episode was made of two parts - the first ten minutes of each 30-minute episode were set in the year 1977; the second part of each episode was set in 1997 and related to the events shown in the first part. While the first part revolved around the events of the Anaimudi Naicker household as seen through the eyes of the young Rajendran (played by Master Lokesh), the second part was mainly concerned with the customs, beliefs and traditions of the village and events unfolding in the Anaimudi Naicker household as seen through the eyes of the skeptical medical student Reena (Devadarshini) and her superstitious mentor (Mohan V. Ram). The story begins with Reena's arrival in the village in the company of her colleague, Ratna, daughter of the village headman, Anaimudi Naicker, who seeks sanction from her village's guardian deity Karuppu Sami to marry her lover Arvind.

In Ratna's village, Reena and her boss learn about the cult of Karuppu Sami, the guardian deity and how Karuppu Sami punishes people who transgress his rules. While Reena's boss instantly believes in the legend, Reena, herself is skeptical about it. Eventually, they witness some mysterious and gruesome deaths. Simultaneously, the story of the Anaimudi Naicker's mother, the evil moneylender Pechi who indulges in usury is told in flashback through the eyes of Naicker's son and Ratna's older brother, the extremely soft and timid Rajendran who is obsessed with legends of Karuppu Sami. Pechi murders one of her opponents and is eventually killed herself, the first in a string of mysterious deaths attributed to Karuppu Sami. A few days later, strange events and sightings take place in the Anaimudi Naicker household, prompting Anaimudi Naicker's family to conclude that the house was haunted by Pechi's ghost and move out.

Reena, anxious to know the identity of Karuppu Sami, investigates the murders and discovers that the haunting was a sham perpetuated by the village schoolteacher (played by Poovilangu Mohan) who held a grudge against the Naicker's family and orchestrated the haunting to drive them out of the house. But the schoolteacher vehemently denies that he had anything to do with the mysterious murders. Reena, then suspects the priest of the Karuppu Sami shrine in the village who frequently enters a state of trance during which he is possessed by Karuppu Sami and pronounces judgements. But Reena discovers that though the priest is genuinely possessed by the spirit of Karuppu Sami on occasions, he was not the killer. In her investigations, Reena is assisted by Rajendran who acts as her guide. Rajendran, gradually, falls in love with Reena who, though in love with Rajendran, pretends not to.

Eventually, Rajendran proposes to Reena who rebuffs him questioning his masculinity. Shamed, Rajendran rapes Reena. The next morning, the spirit of Karuppu Sami enters the body of the priest and condemns Rajendran to death on an appointed day. On the day, Rajendran stabs himself to death in full view of a gathered assembly of villagers leading its inhabitants to believe that the killing was actually committed by the spirit of Karuppu Sami who had entered the Rajendran's body. However, Reena rubbishes such beliefs as mere superstition and claims that the introvert Rajendran, exposed to legends of Karuppu Sami right from his childhood had actually developed a split personality imagining himself to be Karuppu Sami.

Popularity

Marmadesam was an extremely successful tele-serial. It was ranked first in viewership among the television programmes telecasted from Chennai in 1998.[1]

Merchandise

DVD

The first part of the serial, Ragasiyam, has been released on DVD as a 5-disc region-free set in 2011 by Swathi Soft Solutions, Chennai.

References

  1. ^ Amos Owen Thomas (2005). Imagi-nations and borderless television: media, culture and politics across Asia. SAGE. pp. 115. ISBN 0761933956, ISBN 978-0-7619-3395-3.