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Dramas Review

Visaal Episode 1 Review – A Convincing Start!

Ohkay so, production of Big Bang Entertainment, direction of Ali Hassan & writing of Hashim Nadeem; Visaal is a new prime time drama that has started airing on ARY Digital. I must say, the OST & the promo of this drama definitely gave me Khuda Aur Mohabbat & Dhaani vibes & when I saw that it has been written by Hashim Nadeem, I knew exactly why I felt that way. However, I will say that despite the similarities, I feel may be it is going to be a happier version of Khuda Aur Mohabbat where two people in love will have their happy ending after a lot of hardships, because I could see a lot of tweaking that Hashim Nadeem has done this time around, so let’s see how things roll. First episode of Visaal did set the base for what is yet to come & introduced the characters in detail & though I had a feeling that I knew all these characters from before, I thoroughly enjoyed watching it.

Akram (Zahid Ahmed) is an imposter who believes in short cuts. He has had a colorful past where he has resorted to a lot such tactics which have landed him in trouble a lot of times but because Akram is like a free bird, he doesn’t take anything seriously as he knows that he can manipulate his way out of every problematic situation. Akram has no family to go to, no parents, no siblings, that is why it feels it is one of the reasons why he has lost direction in life.

Shabbir (Touqeer Nasir) happens to be the only parent of Pari (Hania Amir) & they both share a beautiful relationship with each other. As Shabbir has lost his wife, that is the reason why he feels he needs to be extra attentive & cautious in taking care of Pari because she’s all that he has. It was really nice seeing their friendly relationship where Pari respected her father’s approach of upbringing but also didn’t shy away in sharing whatever was in her heart. Jumman Bua (Ismat Zaidi) happens to be Shabbir’s neighbor & because Shabbir trusts her so much, she comes to keep a check on Pari whenever her father goes for work. Shabbir is the union leader at Railways & earns a decent living for himself & his daughter.

Molana Ghufran (Firdous Jamal) happens to be a Muazzin & care taker of the local Masjid of that area & upon a little inquiry, Akram gets to know about him. Molana Ghufran has a wife Naikbakht (Tahira Iman) & a daughter Naheed (Saboor Ali), who happens to be Pari’s best friend.

Akram has definitely come in contact with Molana Ghufran due to an ulterior motive. He is intelligently manipulative & he is also quite smart to know how he can attain his goals. The way Akram caught Molana Ghufran’s attention was quite amusing & interesting because he knew exactly what he had to say in order to make an impression on him. Akram’s interactions with Dilbar (Saife Hassan), the Paan shop owner as well as his new found friend Doodh Patti were nicely done as they were basically used to give Akram’s character a proper introduction to let the viewers know what sort of a person he is.

Akram couldn’t take the thought of Pari out of his mind & that is why he decided to pay a visit to Molana Ghufran’s house once again. The way Akram found a way in Ghufran’s place went to show how simple & optimistic Ghufran was because of which he easily got tricked into believing that Akram was everything that he said he was & ended up giving him an access to his house.

Overall, this episode was quite intereresting & the drama has had a great start. All the actors seemed to be in their element & the direction was spot on too. Zahid Ahmed seemed to overplay Akram a bit but I feel it was needed especially in the introductory episodes to make a longlasting impression about his character. Hania Aamir was perfect as Pari & every other actor did a perfect job too. I am definitely looking forward to the next episode. Please share your thoughts about the very first episode of Visaal.

Dramas Review

Noor ul Ain Episode 7 – Saathiya Remake

Ohkay so, I am not sure what made the writer think that the viewers would choose to invest 20+ weeks in a drama when they’d be having an option of watching the same story in a span of a 2 & a half hours, yes I am talking about Saathiya. It is unfortunate that such a dream team came together to give the viewers a good drama but the writer couldn’t create or let’s say be original enough to write something magical which could blow the viewers away!

At least in Saathiya, Suhani’s character got away for being the way she was because in a film, no one cares for the depth but when you are watching a weekly drama, you really want the characters to have a personality. At first I thought that Khizar didn’t have any personality, he was just a rich kid with no direction in life, trying to break free from his mother’s golden cage but as the episodes passed, despite a strong first impression, Noor’s character has fallen flat on its face. Honestly speaking, Noor is not only plain & flat she is downright annoying because of her cluelessness. I remember when the drama began, Noor actually had a personality & we all could see why the drama was based on her character but as the episodes have passed, she has zero personality. I am sure if the stylists had tied 2 high ponytails for Noor, made her wear a frock, had given a lollipop in 1 hand & a teddy bear in another, no one would’ve bat an eyelid because that entire image would’ve gone perfectly with the clueless character that is sporting – a girl who has absolutely no idea what is happening in her life & most importantly why!

To be honest, when this episode began, I decided to catch up with my sisters & best friend on Whatsapp because at the back of my mind, I knew where the story was headed as I have seen Saathiya plenty of times to remember the story. To be honest, I was blown away by writer’s originality when he threw in that scenario where Sofie’s Devar showed his interest in getting married to Noor. How original yaar because Saathiya mai to aisa hua nahi tha!

Well, to be honest, after watching this episode, I could totally see why Ghazala was added in this story as a negative character. Usually in our dramas it is really hard for the writers to make the female leads look negative, therefore they add such characters who can take the blame & justify the wrongdoings of the heroines & this is exactly what the role of Ghazala is but you know what? I don’t find her negative at all, despite such a hard try from the writer, I will not hold her responsible for Noor’s meesna-pan. Noor is responsible for every single decision that she is taking. At least in Saathiya, Suhani owned her decision of going against her parents & getting married to Aadi but here, Noor is shown like that clueless toddler standing in the confectionary aisle unable to make up her mind as to which toffee she should pick but then again, I totally see Noor as the culprit & not Ghazala. Ghazala is just helping her but in reality, this is what Noor herself wants. Noor has decided to get married to Khizar by ignoring her parents’ wishes but the writer just wants Ghazala to take the blame for her. Ghazala might be persuading Noor but this is what she wants too. I found Noor annoying again that she has closed all the doors on her when it comes to communicating with her parents. Ever since Khizar’s mom visited her place, she has cooked khichri with Ghazala but has not even bothered talking to her parents about how she feels. Whatever she is doing especially with her parents is wrong because yes, they trusted her & there she is, shattering it just like that, why? Because she is clueless. It was funny how the writer tried to make her look all naik parveen where she was like ‘mera dil nahi maan raha, Ammi Abbu mere pe trust karte hain’ haan to dheet boring larki, ghar jao aur so jao, Nikkah na karo!

Anyways, I am sure those who will see this drama for what it is won’t have a hard time watching it, but while watching this episode especially, I couldn’t help comparing it to Saathiya, oh I think comparing is not the right word here, I was just reminded of the original story while watching this copy. Anyways, I will try that I don’t see Saathiya in Noor ul Ain next week but I am sure it won’t be easy. To be honest, I am not a fan of Noor’s character at this stage of the drama, hope that might change in the future when she will take charge of her life after getting married to a directionless, lost person like Khizar but right now, sorry not sorry, I ain’t a fan. Please share your thoughts!

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Dramas Review

Shayyad Last Episode Review – Beautiful!

I have to admit that sitting through this episode was tough because I wanted to skip everything else and move to the part where Hani and Saad were finally together! This last episode of Shayyad was emotional just like this drama as a whole and it was good to see Sadia Khan sporting a look which went well with Hani’s situation and her acting too was right on point tonight. The only thing missing from this episode was a scene in which Saad’s mother formally apologized to Hani and the background score at times was so loud that the dialogues were barely audible. Also, the last scene of this episode would have been even better if Saad thanked Tania before she left. The scene covering how Saad finally met Hani and the meeting itself was covered perfectly. The way Tania stood by Saad all these years was truly endearing and the best part of this last episode.

A love story which was poignant, inspiring and meaningful, Shayyad was one of those very few dramas in recent times which didn’t drag at all. Although few of the episodes didn’t work for me because of the choppy editing but overall I highly recommend this drama to all those viewers out there who would want to watch a different love story which has a filmy feel but at the same time is really convincing.

This wasn’t the first time that Faiza Iftikhar gave her viewers an unforgettable male protagonist. Saad wasn’t perfect but he was passionate about the woman he loved and he had quite a few personality traits which made his character appealing. In fact his flaws made him a compelling protagonist who always kept you guessing.  Saad’s role was played brilliantly by Uzair Jaswal. The character growth was also covered convincingly and this aspect of the story was especially important since the story started from the time when Saad was only a teenager. Although the odds were always against Saad but he was never shown as someone who was a victim of circumstances. Saad’s character and Uzair Jaswal’s solid performance throughout was the highlight of this drama.

Hani’s character itself didn’t have the same appeal as Saad’s character but it was Hani who decided which turn Saad’s track will take by rejecting his love for her and ultimately by getting married. Saad was however never turned into a bechara, the viewers weren’t “forced” to feel for him but it was something which came naturally. The on-screen chemistry between Sadia Khan and Uzair Jaswal along with the beautiful manner in which their track was penned down made this love story relatable. This drama also had some of the most beautiful dialogues to its credit.
The background score and the beautiful poetry was used effectively in most of the episodes and the director Syed Ali Raza (Usama) gave this drama the right treatment. Except for a few episodes, the flashback scenes, especially the ones covering Saad and Hani’s childhood were translated on screen superbly. The supporting characters and their tracks were just as interesting as that of the leading characters. Tania’s progressive character was like a breath of fresh air and even Mahpara’s track held my interest completely in the last few weeks. Nauman Ijaz was phenomenal as Salar and even though he didn’t get a lot of screen time but every scene covering Salar’s track was written and executed faultlessly. Mahpara’s happy ending and Salar and Hani’s love story showed that you can fall in love at any age and if you truly love someone then age most certainly is only just a number!!

Shayyad is one of the very few plays which ended at the right time which is why it is going to be missed and remembered for all the right reasons. The ending couldn’t have been more gratifying but the preview of this last episode gave this ending away which wasn’t fair with the viewers. Unlike many other writers, Faiza Iftikhar didn’t wait until the last episode to wrap up all the tracks but only left the main track to be wrapped up in the last episode which is always a great idea.

I would like to thank all those talented and creative individuals who worked hard to make this drama a success. A special thanks to all those wonderful viewers who read the reviews every week and gave their feedback. It wouldn’t have been the same without you guys. Shayyad will be missed but thankfully we have Woh Mera Dil Tha to look forward to every Saturday now!

Do share your thoughts about this last episode, I would love to hear from you.

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Dramas Review

Zun Mureed Episode 4 Review – Highlighting Double Standards

This episode highlighted the double standards which are so rampant in our society that most often even women accept them as a norm and women are considered rebellious if they question them. This drama has a solid script, the writer made sure that the viewers were well acquainted with the characters and their circumstances before introducing the most important development in the story.

Tabbasum’s character has been etched-out brilliantly and the situations which led to the phone call to the police were covered convincingly. Tabbasum was already shown struggling with daily routine because she was expected to carry more burden than she could handle therefore when she heard Sajjad crack a joke about wanting another wife like her, she wasn’t very “understanding” or amused!! It is common for men to joke this way, so common that many of the jokes about married life usually revolve around second marriages and girlfriends but the fact is that a woman gets just as offended by such jokes as a man would! The writer put forward this important message aptly.

When Tabbasum said exactly what her husband did, all of a sudden his “ghairat” was at stake and he felt that he needed to do something to feel like he had an upper hand in this relationship and ended up doing something which he never even imagined he would do. He also didn’t expect that Tabbasum will do something so extreme to punish him. Tabbasum’s bhabhi’s role in this entire situation and the reactions of the people witnessing everything played a major role in making things worse. Sajjad has been constantly pressurized in the past 3 episodes as well to do something extreme to set his wife straight and this time around because his ego was hurt he succumbed to the pressure. One thing which doesn’t make a lot of sense is that if Bi Jaan can write accurately with a pen then why can’t she dial a number on the telephone or type a message? It is ironic how Bi Jaan is using the marker and board brought by her bahu to harm her in whichever way she can. Tabbasum gave her this board so that she won’t feel so frustrated and would have a way to vent out but this new mode of communication has been constantly used by Bi Jaan to show hatred for her bahu who does whatever she can to take care of her. On the other hand, she feels unconditional love for her son who won’t even leave a game of cricket match or lose his sleep to attend to his mother. Tabbasum’s reaction made perfect sense, her dialogues about why she felt she needed protection from her own husband were also spot on but Nadia Khan’s performance wasn’t as powerful as it should have been. Had she given a more powerful performance, these scenes could have been even more impactful.

The reaction of the policeman who was incharge and the repercussions of this phone call were covered faultlessly. Since, this law is still new therefore every case is getting media attention, Tabbasum obviously didn’t see this coming, it remains to be seen what her course of action will be in the future. I think in the upcoming weeks we will see that passing a law in the parliament and making it work practically are two different things. Also, laws cannot change the way people think and at the end of the day any woman who goes to the police will eventually have to face a backlash from her family and the society. Omair Rana’s performance has been impressive throughout. Hina Bayat, Shamim Hilali, Aisha Gul and Khalid Anum’s realistic performances are the highlight of every episode. Nadia Khan however has failed to breathe life into her character. The only reason why Tabbasum’s character is easy to relate to is that it has been etched-out superbly and the director hasn’t over dramatized the important events.

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Dramas Review

Bela Pur Ki Dayan Episode 6 Review – Skillful Direction & Exceptional Performances

Many important questions were answered tonight and although the story overall is interesting, there were some developments in this episode which are difficult to relate to. The person incharge of choosing the cast did a splendid job since all the actors are well-suited for their roles but there are times when you feel like some of the characters haven’t been explored properly. The director Saife Hassan has executed every single horror scene perfectly which is why the horror element of this play never disappoints.

Rameez’s friend doesn’t only have knowledge about supernatural beings but is also very determined to solve this mystery – more determined than the residents of the house! This aspect of the story and Rameez’s attitude in particular tonight was the most unconvincing element of this track. Even after witnessing the terrible way in which his son was tortured by the spirit which had taken over Tasha, he remained unconvinced and still believed that Tasha had a mental illness! The identities of the spirits were revealed tonight and their back story was also shown. Neelo is Aziz Sahib’s step-sister who he always called a dayan and never got along with. Her mother Salima even after her death is still playing the role she was playing when she was alive – protecting her children. Although Neelo was Salima’s step daughter but she always loved her like her own which is why even now she listens to her. The back story gave a logical reason why Neelo came back to disrupt the peace in Aziz’s life and why she wants him to leave the house. The actor who played young Aziz’s role had a striking resemblance with the present day character which was truly brilliant.

The dayan and everything she does is scary without a doubt but after watching her as a living, breathing human tonight, you can’t help feeling for her. Until now, I always thought that Aziz was the victim in the story but it turns out that was not the case. I must say that for now the story of the supernatural beings is more interesting than that of the actual family because there are plenty of times when it isn’t easy relating to their reactions. After Aziz’s encounter with Neelo’s spirit tonight, he should be able to make a decision based on facts. So far, the women in the house are the only ones who are convinced that Tasha needs help from someone who can get rid of this spirit but the men have always been shown trying to find a more “logical” reason for everything even after everything they have seen.

The best part of this drama so far is the way it has been directed and acted out; the horror scenes in particular are always right on point. If this drama aired twice a week, it would have been even more enticing. All the scenes which covered how Tasha behaved when she was possessed by Neelo’s spirit was the highlight of this episode. Neelo and Salima’s story is heart warming and I am certain that there is more to it! The script has a few loopholes but it holds your interest and keeps you coming back for more.

How many of you watched tonight’s episode? Do share your thoughts about it.

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