Meet Niharika, the comedian behind viral Instagram videos

Bengaluru’s funny girl Niharika NM talks to CE about her Netflix debut, life in California, and the muse behind her characters

Published: 30th November 2020 01:52 AM  |   Last Updated: 30th November 2020 01:52 AM   |  A+A-

Niharika NM

Niharika NM (Photo | Instagram screenshot)

Express News Service

BENGALURU : A South Indian aunty or a Californian girl – Niharika NM can imitate any with the same ease. Currently riding high on her latest stint in Netflix’s Behansplaining, featuring Srishti Dixit and Kusha Kapila, and her viral comic video strips on Instagram, Niharika has a lot to be beaming about these days. Getting into a show where comic artistes like Dixit and Kapila have made their niche might be a risk, but Niharika says she was ready to give it her best shot.

“It feels great to be a part of the Behensplaining universe. I was super stoked when Netflix reached out and wanted me to be a part of it. Kusha, Srishti and Aisha are super talented and I’m just trying my best to match their awesomeness,” says the Bengalurean, who is currently pursuing her MBA in Los Angeles.

Confessing that she started comedy with her ‘terrible dad jokes’, Niharika never knew it would go so far. “I did computer science engineering for my undergrad, and a year into it, I just knew that I’d be a useless engineer. I also knew that the only thing that made me tolerable to most people were my dad jokes, that were so bad they were almost good.

"So, I started a YouTube channel as a creative outlet. I started making comedy skits, sketches and rants about everything under the sun,” says Niharika. She initially started by creating characters from her childhood. “I’ve been trying to showcase my personality while creating content because it just feels more authentic to me right now and I’m getting slightly comfortable just being myself and dipping into my South Indian roots,” says the 23-year-old, who moved to LA in 2019.

“Life in the USA is different, but quite exciting. Quarantining by myself wasn’t the greatest feeling in the world especially as it was the first time I was ever away from my family. However, I did try my hand at cooking, which I very quickly realised I absolutely suck at,” jokes Niharika, who tried her hand on short format content for the first time during the lockdown.

“I think the Instagram rant that I made about the quote, ‘If you love someone, let them go’, has been a game changer for me. I did not expect it to get the type of response it got, but it definitely surprised me to see how many people could relate to it,” says Niharika, whose video was shared by South Indian actors like Khushbu Sundar.

“Every time a celebrity reposts my videos or tells me I’m funny, I can never digest it and I’m always excited about it,” says Niharika, who tries her best to stay calm while responding to them. “But Khushbu is such a legend that I could not even act calm about getting her attention,” she laughs.

Winning hearts

Earlier this month, Niharika NM posted a video on the popular saying – ‘If you love someone, let them go’. In it, she angrily rants to ask if she’s running a lodge, where one could come and go as they please. With heavy usage of Bengaluru street lingo, the video managed to reach, and crack up, all kind of audiences. The video has garnered close to 5.5 lakh views and has been shared by many. Actors Samyukta Hornad and Kavya Venkatesh left comments on it too.


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