Jab We Met released in 2007 – and Shahid Kapoor, who played the role of ‘Aditya’ in the movie since then became the hearthrob for thousands of Indian girls. Imitaz Ali’s movie which also featured Kareena Kapoor spun a different kind of magic in modern times: a chance encounter with someone who would go great lengths for you may be the more right fit for you, vs someone who you’ve known for a longer time, but wouldn’t put in the same effort for you. In the movie, Kareena Kapoor and Shahid Kapoor’s chemistry sold – it’s also what made Jab We Met an iconic film to watch, even over ten years later. Then 12 years later came Kabir Singh, with the protagonist role of the same name played by Shahid Kapoor himself. Kabir Singh also approached love, but it approached love in a movie where ‘love’ was depicted as someone who would put his anger and toxic masculinity over a young, impressionable girl. While Aditya from Jab We Met passed the vibe check, Kabir Singh definitely did not. And turns out, perhaps Shahid Kapoor too, did not.
During a Q&A session on Twitter on Monday, Shahid Kapoor took to answering fan questions. While some of them were responding to questions about his upcoming films, the people he has worked with and even fanart, one question asked him to choose between Jab We Met and Kabir Singh.
Shahid Kapoor picked Kabir Singh.
— Shahid Kapoor (@shahidkapoor) September 27, 2021
Nobody was impressed. Several pointed out that Kapoor’s choice was problematic, because the titular character, Kabir Singh was problematic. When the movie itself has released, it had faced wide criticism for its sexist and patriarchal ideas, and also its violent and abusive nature, with many pointing out that toxic relationships should not be glorified, especially in this day and age. To some fans, picking Kabir Singh made Kapoor the ‘Anushman’ in real life of his story. Anshuman in Jab We Met was someone who was the wrong choice for Kareena Kapoor’s Geet, and he had misled her, left her and finally went back crying to win her love back.
Sigma male rule #37 – Never praise your ex's movie even if you were a part of that movie
— Sagar (@sagarcasm) September 27, 2021
Be honest Did you guys notice how beautifully he portrait Aditya Kashyap and the depth of Aditya's character until now ? No. Right? It's only since last few years you guys realised that he was more relatable in jab we met than geet, etc. Mind you it's been 14 years since it
— Nimra❤SK (@shanatic_nimra1) September 27, 2021
And him constantly praising this movie made me get over Fangirling this guy, whom I adored for his choice of movies and acting – Vivah, Jab We Met, Dil Bole Hadippa, Kismat Connection, Waah Life Ho toh Aidi
Every movie others may have considered terrible! pic.twitter.com/mWFxOTu7Ii
— TRP wale Uncle-Aunty (@DramebaazCYa) September 27, 2021
blasphemy and ghalat fehmi both.
— pragya x inactive (@hassnachle) September 27, 2021
freaking disgrace https://t.co/3hrblu6Tjy
— Affan Syed (@ibabywhisperer) September 27, 2021
heart been broke so many times https://t.co/D5hi2MYJRO
— anushka is missing janvi (@pikubanerjee_) September 27, 2021
imagine picking kabir singh over the not so toxic masterpiece that jab we met is. this is what's wrong with society. https://t.co/Xjh6IcmVz0
— vibs | (@ivibhatweedy) September 27, 2021
— Bharatism (@Bharatism_) September 27, 2021
friendship over with shahid kapoor https://t.co/UPUrYsLeS9
— Baambi (@whiskeykichuski) September 27, 2021
Kabir Singh was the opposite of Aditya, who was a heartbroken business tycoon who aimlessly boards a train to escape his depressing life. He meets Geet, a bubbly Punjabi girl, and gets pulled into her crazy life – and goes to extreme lengths to make her happy. Aditya in many ways was the safe bet you could take home to your parents. Kabir Singh is the toxic ex you regret a relationship with, where you’ve missed seeing all the red flags in the relationship until much later. Shahid Kapoor’s answer, however, may have been based on the fact that while the film was regarded as very problematic in its depiction, the movie did go on to become a commercial success, and for Kapoor to play a negative character may have come as a challenge. Why he picked what he picked may be the subject of another question, which we’ll have to wait to get answered till his next Q&A.