We’re at the halfway point with this serial and so far all episodes have been up to mark. Today, I loved the combination of levity and gravity, thori hansi thora gham – the quantity of these two very important spices of life, with the perfect tadka of budding romances thrown in for a good measure, blended in just the right way provided us with a dish that cannot be put away after tasting just one spoonful. In other words, Tanhaiyan Naye Silsilay continued its rocking journey… I laughed, I got misty-eyed and I was intrigued… excellent job by the writer, director and the whole team of actors. Yes, this was another fabulous episode!
The episode began on a slightly serious tone, with a heartbroken Qabacha begging Farhan Sir for forgiveness. This was such a lovely scene and Qazi Wajid was so brilliant. We barely see him for more than a couple of minutes in every episode, but each time he leaves such a mark. The world-weary and heartbroken Farhan has been brought to life so fabulously by Qazi sahab. But then again, with Qabacha around, how can you not smile? Even the cynical Farhan cannot help but fall for this man’s patented brand of clutzy charm. What a beautiful way to open this latest chapter.
From Qabacha Sr. to Qabacha Jr. I am thoroughly enjoying this father son duo, both equally charming; the dad already a superstar and the son on the fast track to becoming one. I had a silly smile throughout while watching Iltutmish’s scenes with the tez- tarrar, no-nonsense Serena. How cute are these two together?! Their scenes are written so well, and Shahroz and Syra bring this fictional couple alive with such vivacity that one cannot help but fall in love with this adorable duo. The zings of attraction between them were so strong that I could feel the effect all the way here – saat samandar paar. Serena was so cute in her gotay-wala dupatta and her chooris as she gave her impromptu audition for Iltutmish’s film. Please Kishmish – cast her!!!
Chandni is another one who’s looking to be cast in this film to be made by Pakistan ka sab se mashoor honey wala director! Her audition was hilarious to say the least. Kaif was simply brilliant here and had me laughing out loud throughout as she was channeling all of our film heroines of yore. If only Shabnam were to see herself parodied so beautifully! And yes, it’s a good thing that Naheed Akhtar and Runa Laila are done with their singing careers, warna to mushkil ho jaati – after all the multi-talented Chandni is entering the filmi maidan! Oh, and yes, while on Chandni, her scene earlier with Bibi was just comedy gold. Just one piece of advice: Chandni bibi, Fawad Khan ke saath kaam karne ke liye tau larkiyon ki ek bohot lambi qataar hai, infact hum bhi parey haain raahon mein, aap please koi aur dhoondh lijiye – meherbani!
From Serena to Zenia, what a contrast! Yahan par tau abhi tak wohi murghe ki ek taang – America waapas jaana hai… I fail to understand why this girl, who is seemingly so mature, is so stuck on this one point. This and the whole passport track – just seems overdone. Zenia, my friend, just build a bridge and get over it. But, overall, I really like the contrast in the two sisters’ personalities. Alishba’s doing a fabulous job of playing a very difficult character. It’s easy to play a likable character like Serena, but Zenia is tougher to convey. Clearly the girl has stories to tell, and there are things in her past that are affecting her behavior. Her relationship with Zain, her father, is a like watching a dancer in action, two steps forward and one step back.
Zenia is growing on me, sullenness and all, but her would-be-partner, Zarak Khan, has yet to impress me. Today too, his scenes were the only ones in the episode where my attention was continually wandering. Again, I think Shehryar is putting in his full effort, but he is getting lost amongst the supremely talented cast, their experience making his inexperience really stand out. While he might not be up for acting honors here, there is no doubt about Zarak Khan’s charm. His infectious smile is melting many a female hearts, Mona’s included. Salma Hasan was again very sweet in her blink-n-miss appearance.
Marina Khan and Asif Raza Mir, two great actors, and as always as I watched them today, I couldn’t help wishing we saw more of them on-screen. Marina was fabulous in her scene with Alishba, as Sania sat down Zenia and drew on her own experiences to help her niece open up and verbalize her feelings. This was really tender scene, very well-acted and one that I thoroughly enjoyed watching while my eyes moistened. Watching Marina, it was easy to imagine her as the perfect youth counselor. Like his older daughter, Zain too is fighting his inner demons. We don’t yet know about the nature of his relationship with Zara, but the hints that are coming more frequently now, are very intriguing. I love how the writer and director are reeling us in, one episode at a time; gradually peeling away the layers of mystery that surround Zara and her final few years of life away from her family.
I began with Qabacha so let me end with him – honestly, can we get enough of this character? I laugh at his facial contortions, his delightful jigs, and his salees Urdu, but what about the straight and serious Qabacha? We’ve rarely if ever seen that aspect of his personality before, so like Aani, I was completely taken aback when he answered the phone and handled the call in a professional manner. Behroze Sabzwari is just in a different league here. A beautifully written and lovingly executed character.
As I sign off on this week’s review, I need to commend the editors and director for the judicious placement of the haunting OST, beautifully sung by the supremely talented Zoe Viccaji. Also, we need to applaud the use of Pakistani filmi songs in the background while Serena and Chandni were auditioning. Thank you for sparing us the Munni badnaam hui and what nots … much appreciated!!
Written by SZ~