In season two of this wildly popular series, Vaibhav (Mayur More) and his friends are back, preparing for the IIT JEE entrance exams. What’s different here is that Vaibhav is now with Maheshwari Classes and Jeetu Bhaiya (Jitendra Kumar) has quit Prodigy in pursuit of something else. The show shines the spotlight on the minds and hearts of young teenagers prepping for these high-pressure exams and the different ways in which each one deals with stress.
It’s back to school
Season two starts off in colour, but slowly fades back to black and white before the opening credits. Vaibhav is preparing for orientation day at Maheshwari Classes, accompanied by his new friend Sushrut (Vaibhav Thakkar). The orientation, held by Mr. Maheshwari (Sameer Saxena), is brutal on the students. “There are only successful men. The unsuccessful ones are not men,” Maheshwari says without so much as blinking an eye. He even goes on to say that how well a student performs in these classes will decide what kind of a house, car and even wife they will go on to have.
This entire ordeal upsets Vaibhav, who instantly thinks of Jeetu Bhaiya. The latter has quit Prodigy classes to set up his own institute called ‘Aimers’ – a place where students don’t dream about but aim for IIT. Jeetu Bhaiya also wants to hire women teachers, because he believes that female representation in IIT is seriously lacking. However, while the show highlights issues like these, we never really see the real perspective of the show’s female characters like Meenal (Urvi Singh), Shivangi (Ahsaas Channa) or Vartika (Revathi Pillai).
The show goes on to focus on Vaibhav and gang, who fall sick, get distracted, have their dreams dashed and even resurrected. It also spotlights the vast difference between coaching centres like Maheshwari Classes that function in a mechanical, cold-blooded manner and those like Aimers, which are more humane.
Jeetu Bhaiya to the rescue…again
Unlike season one, which had plenty of light, humorous moments, this season delves into more serious topics, from students questioning why IIT is so special to the unhealthy stress associated with result day.
However, when someone seems to be falling by the wayside, Jeetu Bhaiya always comes to the rescue. While his spiels are impactful, it’s hard to believe that an aspiring IITian struggling to cope with such immense pressure, would instantly feel better after listening to a few inspiring words. Having said that, the plight of the students is showcased effectively. So much so that viewers without an engineering background, will be able to empathise with each character.
WATCH OR NOT
‘Kota Factory’ season two offers an eye-opening glimpse into the lives of young students willing to put everything at stake to crack IIT. While the pace drops after two episodes, the sound performances delivered by the entire cast will keep you going.
Creator: Raghav Subbu
Cast: Mayur More, Ranjan Raj, Alam Khan, Jitendra Kumar, Ahsaas Channa, Rohit Sukhwani, Revathi Pillai, Urvi Singh
Seasons: 2 (2019, 2021)
Streaming on: Netflix