Natakame Ulakam is a popular Malayalam political satire television show which airs on one of the leading and popular Malayalam entertainment channel Amrita TV on every Saturdays from 10:30 pm onwards in the evening as per the Indian Standard Time (IST). Amrita TV's Natakame Ulakam is Kerala's pioneering political satire show and the longest running since 2006. A wryly sarcastic commentary on the political scenario of the State, Natakame Ulakam tears away the virtuous masks worn by the politicians, to lay bare the deceitfulness and duplicity of the self-serving public men.
The programme consists of a wittily cynical monologue which introduces the issues, comments on it and sometimes adds a tongue-in-cheek epilogue; this is interspersed with clippings of the major political actors involved and sound bites that are of relevance to the issue. Quick cuts and repeated replays of certain appropriate 'bits of action', along with caricatures of people caught up in the controversy, provides hilarious conformation or amusing contradictions to what has been stated in the monologue. Natakame Ulakam's commentary leans more towards a verse narrative recited in a distinctive rhythmic chant than the usual prose description; the anchor tries to convey the meaning through facial expressions, hand gestures and tonal variations as well.
Searching for the droll angle in every problem, the anchor uses the vehicle of deprecating humor to drive home his point. He exploits every shade of satire from exaggeration to sarcasm and though the programme occasionally slips into the savage depths of scorn and derision, the monologue sticks to mild, ironic humor most of the time. Employing the devices of comparison, analogy, double entendre etc. the show brings to light the cunning ploys, the slick subterfuges and crafty ruses of politicians, thereby exposing the hypocrisy and phoniness of those who masquerade as exemplary men of integrity. Natakame Ulakam, the programme that baptized the political satire genre into the Malayalam television, has lampooned its way into the history books.