Somewhere during this hour of television, Fawad Afzal Khan became our Asher. What exact moment did that happen: perhaps it was the coffee shop scene where he forces a still slightly formal Khirad to eat ice cream with him, was it the chess scene where his mind is not on chess but his beautiful wife sitting across the room, or was it that bedroom conversation where he cannot believe Khirad is “that old “? No. no, no it was none of those unforgettable moments, the pivotal scene had to be when he says “ everything was fine “ after Sara wants to know if Khirad let him down at the party last night. His distaste at her digs , his calm , coolly spoken defense of Khirad and the dawning realization that his ‘best friend Sara ‘ could actually be biased against his new bride made me a fan forever.
I could almost say" poor Sara" but her attention seeking and manipulations leave little room for sympathy. Last episode we were all impressed with Naveen Waqar’s acting abilities despite being a novice but this week I found her a little over the top. All those faces she was making while calling Khirad made her seem like a ten year old rather than the Machiavellian vixen she was trying to be. Especially as Mahirah’s Khirad did her best to ignore her clever words tamping down any extrapolation to be made from them. I remember Khirad wiping the dust of the window after this conversation as if Sara’s words had about the same value. Refreshingly neither Asher nor Khirad are interested in the slightest in Sara’s mind games, in fact her ‘best friend’ Asher seems thoroughly annoyed with her by the end of the episode. The contrast between Sara’s attitude and Khirad’s is plain to Asher who almost says something when Khirad innocently says she likes the latter.
There are again a lot of favourite iconic scenes this episode and again how can I resist not going scene by scene? The coffee shop scene where Asher notices she is wearing the bangles he gave her and how much he seems to be enjoying her discomfort at his scrutiny. How simply beautiful they both looked. I think I have watched that scene over a thousand times and still want to know why Khirad got chocolate instead of Strawberry ice cream. The chess scene shows how Asher is drawing Khirad out of her shell by connecting with her in every situation; it seemed such a happy family scene. My favourite had to be the conversation in the bedroom. When Khirad answer’s the math question, the surprised look on Asher’s face and their whole conversation about her studies means that they are finally getting to know each other. Asher really was completely ignorant about Khirad, when she tells him her degree is in Math and physics he is impressed. So much that he suggests she pursue her masters.
I think in the novel Asher is supposed to be a lot older than Khirad but Fawad seemed to make Asher a lot younger in attitude and in share physical presence: the smartly cut suites , the laptop bag hung on one shoulder and (not across the body)and how he always takes the stairs or is seen jogging all point to a very modern man. Similarly I think Mahirah brought a little polish to Khirad’s character making her little more confident and somehow stronger. This episode shows how naïve Khirad is returning Sara’s friendship, never questioning her Mother in law’s seemingly easy acceptance and of course falling head over heels for Asher. I cannot help but remember the final scene when she says “ mein uss Khirad ko kahan sey laaoon jo khud ko aap pey nichawer karney leeye karee ho jaatee thi …”. So enjoy this Khirad because we will never see her again.
Before ending I have to mention the juxtaposition of the two scenes of Sara metaphorically swallowing broken glass while she pretended to be happy with Asher’s new life and Farida’s carefully worded acceptance of Asher’s happiness. When I watched it the first time I thought, how similar these two women were but I was wrong. Sara was rule by her emotions and had no self-control, Farida however was much smarter and a lot deeper it turned out .
written by Sadaf