Sons of the Soil: Jaipur Pink Panthers is a documentary series directed by Alex Gale and Omkar Potdar and follows the struggles of the Jaipur Pink Panthers kabaddi team as they compete against others in the 2019 Pro Kabaddi League.
Kabaddi is a sport not a lot of people know about. Well, they know about it, but it doesn’t really have the fanfare that comes with cricket or football. One of India’s oldest sports, kabaddi has come into the limelight in the past few years, and with the start of the Pro Kabaddi League, the sport has shot to fame because of the fun and challenging way in which it is played.
Sons of the Soil is a nifty little docuseries about one such kabaddi team known as the Jaipur Pink Panthers. Spearheaded by Abhishek Bachchan, the team saw success in the first instalment of the Pro Kabaddi League itself but did not see many victories after. However, that does not stop everyone in the team from looking at the cup to win the following year.
Sons of the Soil is probably very aptly named – not only because the series features a sport that it very inherently Indian, but because the players in said sport and team all come from humble backgrounds that define India. All of them are from rural villages of Haryana, Rajasthan or other places and their need to be the best and do something for the team comes as a result of that belonging.
The docuseries looks at not only Abhishek Bachchan’s need for this team to shine, but also individual players, the coach and everyone associated with the Jaipur Pink Panthers and their aspirations and motivations. It gives an in-depth exploration of the psyche of the players and the members and what goes on behind the sport.
Sons of the Soil starts off with Abhishek Bachchan describing himself and one thing is very clear from all of that – he likes to win. Bachchan spearheads a lot of the conversation in this series and its actually a very interesting experience to watch and hear him talking about kabaddi with so much passion. He has confidence and expectations from the team, and even though they have not performed as well as everyone would have expected, Bachchan has faith that they’ll turn it around this year. Other than having confidence in the team members, he also has great confidence in the coach and is all about second chances.
We also get a glimpse into the lives and characters of the team’s players. Every member, of course, has their own unique personalities which together make the team click. Sons of the Soil makes it a point to bring forth all of their own unique quirks while giving us a rundown of their personal lives and what goes on during training. It’s always high energy and the docuseries is directed such that there are no dull moments. It’s also very emotional, and considering it’s not all glitz and glam for these people – it makes for a very compelling watch.
The show gives as much focus on the members who make the team as does it to Bachchan. Never does it feel like one is overshadowing the other, and conversations usually flow from one to the other very organically. It’s a show that pastes a smile on your face for the most part and gives you a glimpse into a sport and the lives of its players, their passions and things that are at stake to make it a compelling and feel-good watch.
Summing up: Sons of the Soil: Jaipur Pink Panthers
Sons of the Soil is an unscripted docuseries that looks and feels very real and close to home. It focuses on the Bollywood star and the Jaipur Pink Panthers players and is a feel-good show about sport, passions and sacrifices. Definitely worth a watch, this one.
Sons of the Soil: Jaipur Pink Panthers is streaming on Amazon Prime Video.
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