From acting in a web series to performing at stand-up comedy shows, there’s no stopping this Malayali viner

From acting in web series to performing at stand-up comedy shows, there’s no stopping this Malayali viner
Vine avatars of The Machan
Vine avatars of The Machan

A few years ago, original content on every Keralite’s social media feed meant movie reviews and tech features. Apologies to troll clip editors, gameplay streamers, and Dubsmash users for the omission! Now, egged on by an era of ‘new-wave’ filmmakers who value quality storytelling over topics that cater to the lowest common denominator, a fresh crop of digital content creators has emerged in the Malayali cyberspace. Leading the charge is 23-year-old Neil Sunil, better known by his moniker @the.machan, touted to be one of the first independent viners from Kerala.

Unlike many others, who struggled for a while when the Vine app vanished, this Kayamkulam-based youngster shifted his focus to multiple platforms including Facebook, stand-up comedy, YouTube, Snapchat, podcasts, and so on to stay ahead of the game. 

Digital wunderkind

Neil Sunil
Neil Sunil

“Besides creating a team of my own to continue crafting relevant sketch videos, I have also just signed up for some online collaborations. The biggest one is with @colloquialspace, which is the brand-new digital wing of the iconic Kerala-based media distribution company, Saina Video Vision,” explains Neil, whose viral videos including ‘Road Man Shaq during Diwali’ have helped him amass close to 23,000 followers on Instagram alone.

A professionally-certified VFX editor, who still occasionally hustles freelance video/photo editing gigs, Sunil carved a niche by staying original and not hopping on trends. This ranges from hilarious anti-drug vines to perfectly sound-synced videos of dinosaurs singing songs from the ’90s. “Nowadays, there are hundreds of Viners, TikTok users, and YouTubers in Kerala, most of whom consider it to be a gateway medium into content creation. I’m certain that by 2020, all these individuals will find their footing and we’ll witness a new media revolution,” he concludes.

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