With every genre of art, be it Dance, Theatre or Music; there exists a set of people who revolutionize the art form itself. Change the face of the whole industry, make it fresh and appealing for the younger generation!
Undoubtedly, in the field of comedy, this kind of success is credited to All India Bakchod (AIB), India’s most honest comedy group.
Everybody knows AIB by now. Gursimran Khamba, Tanmay Bhat, Rohan Joshi and Ashish Sakhya are household names. But where did these guys come from, what made them so famous and how did they do it?
Gursimran Khamba was an anti-reservation activist from Delhi University who contracted tuberculosis, while pursuing his Master’s in England. To keep himself entertained he watched a lot of stand-up comedy on YouTube. He soon started a blog and tried some podcasts with mixed levels of success. During this time, Tanmay was writing for Farhan Akhtar’s show ‘Oye! It’s Friday’, Rohan, was a journalist with CNBC and Ashish was a co-writer on ‘The Week that wasn’t with Cyrus Broacha.’ They were each foraying into stand-up comedy in their own little way.
Until Khamba moved to Mumbai, and started AIB with Tanmay Bhat. They were soon joined by Rohan and Ashish. Apart from creating podcasts which were slowly garnering popularity, the four did stand-up gigs as well.
The podcasts were largely about everyday things, stuff Indians do, funny, hypothetical situations, etc. These podcasts paved the way for their first live show, The Royal Turds where they presented mock awards to the worst actors, directors, advertisements and their like.
And then entered Only Much Louder (OML)- the artist management company that officially manages AIB. OML not only help set up, The Royal Turds but also provided the required push to develop fresh content. It paved way for several viral videos including A Tribute to Classic Indian Ads and Alia Bhatt starrer- Genius of the Year!
But the video which probably changed their fate, was, ‘Shit Indians do in Theatres’. What followed was a landslide of super hits and major collaborations, especially their ‘Honest’ series- Honest Diwali, Honest Indian Flights, Honest Indian Weddings etc.
Next came the most talked about event on AIB’s timeline of success- The Roast. Hosted by Karan Johar, this official roast of Ranveer Singh and Arjun Kapoor, was performed lived and released on YouTube, all in good humour. However, things went awry. Multiple FIRs were lodged against them for abusive language and inappropriate content. Eventually, the video was banned and taken off.
But that didn’t stop them. AIB moved on to do an online TV show- ‘On Air with AIB’ followed by some more funny videos with the likes of Irrfan Khan and podcasts with Johny Lever and Kunal Nayyar. Most recently, they concluded another YouTube series (starring Kanan Gill and Sumukhi Suresh) called ‘The Better Life Foundation.’
AIB also cater’s to brands and develops promotional content via their agency- ‘Vigyapanti’. They have churned out some popular videos for Truly Madly Deeply, Quikr and Microsoft.
They have often used their popularity and reach to over 1.6 million subscribers to talk about sensitive subjects such as Rape, Homophobia, Saving the Internet and celebrating Diwali responsibly.
AIB has definitely carved a strong niche for themselves. It is no surprise that they rank 84th on the Money Rank category and 51st on the Fame Rank category, ahead of even Rajnikanth (Yeah, its true!) in Forbes India’s list of top 100 celebrities. Fans cant get enough of them and eagerly wait for their new releases. Much like their latest offering:
What do you think of AIB’s success story? Which of their videos is your favourite? Do share your thoughts in the comment section.