Finally! C’est fini! Fin. The End.
Join me for a bloc party people where we can all commiserate and pass the bubbly (non-alcoholic naturally) and Panadol between ourselves. Clearly the only ones laughing their way to the bank are the pharmaceutical companies and possibly psychiatrists whose ads were no doubt featured here.
Right, so to wrap up this mess, Sania was actually able to hobble to the sacrificial altar and make good on her word ki mein chali jaoingi. But wait, she didn’t make it too far. Just to the next gaali where she is eking out a living as an assistant professor and Rumi is unhappy with present digs, lack of a lawn and missing his Uncle/Baba and generally asking sensible questions of his mother.
Beta, didn’t they give you the memo about throwing sense out the window at episode 17?
See, let me explain – your nani thinks that your mother isn't divorced from your father – no jaan, the biological one. So in effect, along with abandoning her in her hour of need and making a comeback only to appease commenters, she is suggesting that the entire iddat period was your mom’s idea of a get-away and also insinuating that your mother is as seedhi as a jalebi.
Sania – please see a shrink, your mother is a piece of work.
Meanwhile – your Aunty and Uncle, Seherish and ‘Sham are wading through all this baggage of trying to make a go of it by being saccharine sweet (‘Sham) and waiting in the wings (Seherish). In true Sameera Fazal fashion, we see the first wife – a smart, independent and thinking person punished for her one mistake by running her over with the middle class morality of the good suffering saintly second wife. Been there, done that Sameera. Move on.
Seherish finally realizes that their relationship has changed and things will not be the same as much as she wills them to be, which is um, something she should have realized long ago and left. That would save her (and us) this sacrificial raga and I-have-learnt-my-lesson and have her leave on a much stronger note with her head held high instead of bowing to his nonsense.
Though perhaps Seherish realizes this which is why she says, and I concur, “…vahi jaana padega jahan se kahani kharaab ho gayi thi…”
And ‘Sham’s punishment you ask? He’s a man beta, they don’t get punished, they get rewarded – two of everything. Yaad nahin – chai, nashta, biwiain. Nice na? Dekhna, tum bhi har baar do-do ki farmaish karna ok? Also remember to drive your first wife crazy.
What started out as a strong story backed by stellar acting, nifty editing, mindful writing and controlled direction and odes of potential has been squandered for TRP ratings. ARY – we are looking at you.
This is how not to do it – perfect example of how to ruin a good drama. I promise you – even if you followed these characters independent of each other – say Sania as a single mother, the effect on ‘Sham and Sherish’s marriage- we would have stayed. Also audiences, next time if you don’t like something – don’t watch it. Note to self – me too.
The acting, excellent camera work, and direction held this perfectly pitched drama together – initially - until it was tragically struck by some degenerative disease that created so much wear and tear and deterioration that it was hard to watch. Characters did a 180 degree turn, had some serious psychological issues, and were used as pawns to promote regressive philosophies. Also personally, I would like this ending better.
Adeel Husain, who began as a likeable laid back guy managed to get under the skin of his character with nuance and believability. Next time please choose characters who think before they act. Oh. Well, next, next time.
Sanam Saeed started strong as a non-doormat-ish housewife to her working Kashaf avatar to slowly become mazloom aurat of the year who couldn’t so much as open an envelope without a man. Her acting has gotten better I must say and hoping to see more of her.
Gibran and Badar Khalil not given more than one note to play also did a commendable job. Shamim Hilai also held promise and is refreshing to see as always. Bilal Khan as Rumi still retains the crown for the best thing about this drama. Here’s looking at you kiddo!
Aisha Khan however, remains a cut above her co-stars. Her Sherish was independent minded thinking woman though impulsive and perhaps immature too. She handled being the wronged wife without histrionics and any over the top shrillness. Even her exit, though played in sacrifice mode – because I can’t live without love – worked because of her.
A lot of the control and suspenseful intrigue came from Yasir Nawaz’s strong directorial control. I think his perspective as an actor really serves him well – you delivered a hat trick and still kept it coming – till you stopped. We will keep an eye out – but only one eye, if you do a Shukk repeat – eyes closed. Promise.
Sameera Fazal, you can do better than this. We have seen it, we believe it. Your etching of these characters was a combination of their various situations and perspectives and really had a good mix. TRP pressure or your love for the domestic dynamics of women pitted against each other? Do tell.
And of course DOP Naeem Mustafa is brilliant. His aesthetic veers towards the realistic but he frames his shots in such a way that they never interfere with the narrative but add another layer to the story telling – the reflection of the swimming pool, the wonderful and not in your face use of mirrors and other reflective surfaces, the contrast of dark and light, the scene with Rumi under the bed – are just a few. I am enthralled and look forward to seeing much much more.
Team Shukk, you have the dubious distinction of reeling all of us in, taking us for a ride and then crashing and burning. For that we give you a nod to your brilliant moments, a sigh to your lost potential and a kick in the seat of your pants.
Join us for the bloc party right here in the comments section. *Passes out the Panadol*
MM (aka A musing Muslim)