Happy Birthday Sunehri, No We’re Not Checking You Out

Humour

Happy Birthday Sunehri, No We’re Not Checking You Out

Illustration: Palak Bansal

“A

re you like… checking me out?”

The year was 2006. The film was Dhoom 2. The actress scorching the screen, and uttering these six iconic words that completely revolutionised question formats in the country, was Aishwarya Rai, a little before she became Aishwarya Rai Bachchan.

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The newest entrant to the comic-crime caper franchise, Ash’s self-loving Sunehri, the “Golden Girl” was smashing the patriarchy by self-inviting herself to the boys’ club in the Dhoom universe. In the film, the completely bronzed, crop-top wearing, wild, brown-curls connoisseur Sunehri, who was also #MakingLegsGreatAgain was executing important projects. Like being in a race with herself for the game called “Who Can Add More Likes In A Sentence?”

“Sunehri fan hai tumhari, like forever,” she tells a speechless Hrithik, who probably wondered what her problem was with talking in first person. But, our Sunehri continued perfecting her “golden” personality by using the word “like” in her sentences more times than Narendra Modi uses mitron in his. In fact, her all-round brilliance was also heightened by the fact that she possessed a killer sense of humour. In their introductory scene, when Hrithik Roshan declines her offer of teaming up, she immediately counters him by dropping the most meta joke ever, that cemented her golden girlness.

She tells him being “partner like” with her is a golden chance. “Sunehra chance. Su-neh-ra. Get it?!”

Aishwarya Rai Bachchan

In Dhoom 2, the completely bronzed, crop-top wearing, wild, brown-curls connoisseur Sunehri, who was also #MakingLegsGreatAgain was executing important projects.

Image credit: Yash Raj Films

Apart from egging other young girls residing in the black hole of Andheri to dream of planning heists in “Amsterdam, Australia, and America even”, Sunehri also stood out for immortalising the OG “main apni favourite hoon” vibe, a full year before Kareena Kapoor’s Geet was to enter our lives. The no-fucks-giving Sunehri — whose waist size was proof that she was indeed a human version of the Barbie doll — was like actually the woman who taught us how to like love ourselves.

Aishwarya Rai Bachchan has since given up playing characters like Sunehri and moved on to playing equally believable characters like Saba, a tortured Urdu poetess who lives in a palace in Budapest, wear boots to breakfast, and has a profound one word on her CV: shayra.

But, today, 11 years after she enlightened our lives with her sunehri words of wisdom, it’s time we celebrate Sunehri’s unabashed personality on the occasion of Aishwarya Rai Bachchan’s 44th birthday. It’s also time we give her the answer she’s been looking for all these years: You might be the Golden Girl, but like, no, Sunehri, we’re like not checking you out.

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