So Bad, It’s Good - Indian Star Wars Calls Itself A Superhero Space Opera

Aryamaan – Brahmaand ka Yodha
Aryamaan – Brahmaand ka YodhaReliance Live

Most self-respecting sci-fi geeks have kept up with the various episodes of the Star Wars saga. However, few are familiar with the (self-described) ‘Indian superhero space opera’ that is Āryamān - Brahmāṇd Ka Yoddha (Aryamaan - The Warrior of the Universe). For the uninitiated, we must say it is pure gold.

Everything from obscenely, crap special effects to copycat lightsabers run rampant in this so-bad-it’s-good space epic. The 2002 TV series was aired on DD National, Doordarshan’s nation-wide network. Check out the clip below for a taste of this absurdly, wonderful series packed with slow motion lightsaber battles that eerily resemble two Grandpas dueling it out with their canes.

[Watch it here]

Mukesh Khanna, the producer and protagonist of Shaktimaan, also backed and took the lead role of this sci-fi drama. Despite the underwhelming special effects, Aryamaan was the most expensive Indian television series for a brief period, each episode averaging the cost of 15-20 lakhs.

Although the series is a self-confessed template of the original Star Wars series, it is not completely crass in it’s knockoff roots. A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away, Aryamaan, the newborn warrior Prince of the Thar Empire, brought rains to the drought-struck Aariyana Galaxy with his birth. However, the popularity of the Thar Empire’s rightful heir leads his Step-Mother Queen Nasa to try and kill the child, thus paving the way to the throne for her demon child birthed the same time as Aryamaan. Queen Rasa, Aryamaan’s mother, (yes, the names seem purposefully confusing) sends her baby Aryamaan off to the planet Gurukshetra for his safety. There the 750-year-old Hoshin, a combination of Yoda and Obi Wan Kenobi, teaches Aryamann how to be an intergalactic warrior.

Upon reaching adulthood Aryamaan sets out on his mission across the galaxy to find an almighty weapon known as Chandrahaas, which one can assume is an interpretation of ‘the force’, in order to free his royal parents doomed to work in a slave mine in Thar under the brutal rule of the demon child and his evil mother Queen Nasa. Most of the complete episodes are on Youtube, so if you are a Star Wars fan, you might want to go on an Aryamaan marathon. At the very least you will piss your pants laughing.

Any Aryamaan fans who are not too fond of what I have just written should be comforted by the fact that the show aired 89 episodes, beating Lucas by quite a few there.

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