Talkhiyan ~ Episode 18 Review

TalkhiyanJaaney kahan gaye woh din… the days when Bibi took Zoyee and Jugnu for impromptu picnics, the happy trio waving their colorful umbrellas, laughing and  singing merrily… the days when she professed to be both, a mother and a father to Zoyee and Jugnu …. the days when she loved her twins double …  jaaney kahan gaye ...

Today, that once strong-willed Bibi is a shell of her former take-no-prisoners self.  She who once gave it back as good she got it, she who had survived an abusive childhood, followed by an equally violent marriage, she who had managed to hold her own against the vicious Appo ji, and she who had promised a happy ever-after to her young children, a small house with bay windows and a badminton court – that same Bibi can now only look on helplessly as her lover’s thoroughly worked over body is dragged away in front of her eyes. She stares impassively as a stunned Jugnu is slapped by Margaret, and is like a zombie when their taxi reaches its destination. It is Jugnu who reaches over and hands the cabby his fare, opens the door, helps his mother out, and gestures to his twin to follow them. With nary a word he slips one hand in his mother’s and gives the other to his still traumatized sister. Offering silent support to the two women in his life – his mother and sister – a child, who just yesterday had been dreaming of building a boat and sailing all the way to Africa, Jugnu came of age the day Baloo was tortured to death and Lizzie was buried.


This very mature Jugnu is the same child who was the quieter one among the twins, who willingly followed his spunky sister’s lead. He always listened to her, nodded his head at all her harebrained schemes, and it was Zoyee in whom he had confided his deepest darkest secret. Magar, ab …

Jugnu kuch bhi nahin bol raha tha
Woh bohot khamosh tha…
Main us ki awaz sunna chahti thi
Jugnu jo meri zaat ka hissa tha
behad chup tha…
Us ke baad us ki zaat main aisa sannata utra
ke tamam umr us mein Baloo ki cheekhain goonjti raheen….

SW kidsAlone, without her father, mother and brother, all that Zoya can call her own are her memories of those precious days of childhood – a childhood abruptly interrupted by a shocking turn of events that nobody could’ve ever foreseen.

After Monty’s shocking betrayal, Bibi’s loneliness and frustrations outgrow her innate sense of propriety. A lifetime of instilled lessons of cultural and social superiority were all set aside, as she allowed a stray wave of unbridled passion override concern for her reputation, honor, children – all forgotten as she tried escape from it all, if even for a few stolen hours. Never in her wildest dreams did she ever think that it would lead to this … that she would be so lost in her own anguished world that that she would become blinded to Jugnu’s troubled frowns and Zoyee’s insecurities… that she would not see her daughter fret about the fragility of the bonds that tied children to their parents. Instead, all that Bibi could think of was ways of escaping from the suffocation that life was bent on forcing upon her. Her midnight trysts though, came with a very high price.

Screen Shot 2013-04-01 at 1.53.50 AM

Highlighting the hypocrisies of an innately patriarchal society, while Bibi and her lover are forced to pay the ultimate price, Janu baba is allowed a moment or two of relaxation to put together his shattered self. For Appo, this is a perfectly understandable and acceptable act; she is not shocked to see Ayee waltzing in to  her recently bereaved nephew’s room in the middle if the night.  Of course when it comes to Bibi, its a whole different matter.

Aptly dressed like an officer of the courts, the way Appo badgered the poor children to testify to Baloo’s crime was simply heartbreaking. It was only after the six odd minute scene ended that I realized that I had been holding my breath throughout as I watched the magnificent Hina Bayat at her finest. The way she went at those two children was unbelievable. Not to be outdone here, Sabina and Sagar were simply brilliant in their reactions – Mujrim kaun hotay hain?!?!

Screen Shot 2013-04-01 at 2.30.52 AMI have no doubt that Appo ji’s soul will rot in hell – yes, I’m done feeling sorry for her and rationalizing this woman’s behavior, she’s evil and that’s that – what she put Jugnu through was unbelievable. The shocked look on his face, when saw Baloo’s bloodied face, said it all. This child would not recover so easily. Couple that with the public humiliation he suffered when a doped up Margaret – yes, she lost the sympathy vote too – slapped him, and his earlier molestation, it was evident that Jugnu was beyond traumatized. That he could still pull himself together, and be a man for his mother and sister was gut-wrenching. And then came the final blow… Bibi – how could you, just how could you ???

Talkhiyan had started on a brighter, more optimistic note, relatively speaking. The serial opened with shots of a young brightly dressed Zoya coming in to town, full of hopes and expectations – reuniting with Jugnu, seeking answers and looking to put her past at rest. And now, in the penultimate episode, our final shots are again of a bus filled with passengers travelling to their far away destinations. Though ostensibly similar, the big difference is of course that in the the first episode the passenger was willing, whereas here no one could be unhappier. Hours later, I still shudder when I think of the helplessness – the links were irrevocably broken…

An ensemble cast in the truest sense, all actors are giving the performance of a lifetime. Sanam Saeed is particularly fabulous, her dead look in the last scene, as she announced that she was sending Jugnu away, was amazing. Her partner, Hassan Niazi, though has failed to impress. On the other hand, Adnan Jaffer is the perfect Jaanu baba. Sabina and Sagar are brilliant, and Nargis Rasheed is Aayee to the T. Mehak Khan, Zoya, is the soul of the serial, her narrative cohering the past and present just right. Bee Gul’s words are like poetry, and Khalid Ahmad and his actors bring them to life exquisitely. A huge round of applause to the entire Talkhiyan team, the producers, Pivot Productions, director, writer and the entire cast and crew – thank you for making our Sundays so special.

Finally, for those who have not yet caught on to the Talkhiyan bandwagon, do give this one a shot. We complain quite a bit about cliched story lines, and stereotyped characters, but then when something truly different does come along, we have a hard time giving an unknown entity a shot. That said, it is not all about the viewers, the channels also have to shoulder a bulk of the responsibility for promoting their product properly. In these times, when we are bombarded with publicity about upcoming and ongoing  serials on social media, banner ads, billboards, etc, how are the viewers expected to hear, learn about, and follow a serial being aired with zero publicity?

Perhaps we need to take another serious look at the TRP system, and rethink the whole hamari public yahi chahti hai paradigm. Is it the public that demands a certain kind of programming, or is it the channels who are actively pushing a certain kind of programming on the public? I don’t think any one at Express will read this, but if by chance they do, I have just one question: why take on a product you don’t seem to have faith in?

Written by SZ~

Talkhiyan ~ Episode 18

25 replies

  1. Excellent review, I am with you that Bibi is now a shell of her former self when bibi was just crying over Balu’s dead body and could not even cover the eyes of Jugnoo and Zoyee it was just a conformation how much she has changed with time .the scene portrayed so much depth it left me a teary eyed,that how a whole family has fallen a victim of the circumstances and the kids are going to recover from this point forward. As a result as you have already pointed in these lines;
    Jugnu kuch bhi nahin bol raha tha
    Woh bohot khamosh tha…
    Jugnu just losing a major part of his innocence. The hypocritical behavior where bibi is going to be punished for the same thing and and when it comes to Janu baba it becomes a moment of ease for him just shows zindgi main kuch haqeqatin bohat talkh hoti hain.
    The direction is phenomenal the scene where jany baba is climbing on stairs to vent his frustration and later tears by the gate was done in such a realistic manner and he acted it so well.
    Talkhiyan is a different and a par above serial. And your reviews for it makes it all the more special.


      • Thanks Javeria! Glad to have you back in our Talkhiyan discussions 🙂 Yes, those scenes, with Jaanu baba, were amazingly done. Actually, I find it very hard to pick one scene over the other, there is so much meaning in each scene that one can only watch spellbound. Cant believe this beautiful journey ends next week! 😦


  2. Your reviews have always done justice to most beautiful episodes ever, be it Shehr-e-Zaat opening episode or last few episodes of SeZ and to include in list is This episode of Talkhiyan.. LOVED IT 🙂

    Appoji for sure cant get any more worse.. this is limit of cruelty, the way she molded those kids was breath taking, making them scare from living in ‘jail’ all alone with creepy insects and their bibi will be sent to jail too.. the terrible thought for any child..specially these kids who were already being effected in so many ways.. I was having the saddest feeling ever when Inspector took Jugnu for heart wrenching.. Hina Bayat was beyond excellence in the starting scene..

    why on earth Jugnu had to suffered this badly, from being molested to see baloo half-dead to actually see his dead body and to getting slapped more than once.. 😦 i was having shivers during those scenes brilliantly acted by Sagar.. no wonder he has to become quiet all way long… the scene where he gave money to taxi and taking bibi out and then holding hands of two ladies he loved most was wonderful..trying to support them with his tiny hands.. and that beautiful hug to his twin zoyee.. and Zoyee as innocent as ever with some little hope of baloo being still alive and seeking help to find out meaning of hard words…and her feelings were expressed so convincingly by Zoya…. specially the pain in her monologue about only man who loved them and cared for them.. Last but not the least Bibi..she didn’t thought for all this mess in her wildest nightmare even..but it was destructive step she took for jugnu..and for what, just because she gave up and became weak.. I so wish she could have gathered herself again only for her kids 😦

    This episode remained on my favorites this week too!!!


  3. Excellent review SZ. This is by far the most heart wrenching episode. Today, each and every member of Siverwood (yes even Zoe and Jugno) are guilt ridden, which left me completely dejected 😦 What a powerful episode and a spot on review.


    • Thanks Saima! what a lovely way of putting it – everybody at Silverwood was guilt ridden in this ep – hadnt thought of it that way, but yeah, totally!!


      • Hey, just went back to read the last paragraph of your review. I totally agree with you….oh that TRP politics!! The other day I was thinking would channels like HUM TV or GEO would even consider projects like Talkhiyan?!

        How can we expect our mainstream masses to be able to acquire taste for Belgian dark chocolates when we keep feeding them naz paan masala 😛


        • Belgium Choclate theek hai but yaar Naz Pan masala kee apni baat hai !! Lol .. Loved the way you put Naz and Belgium Choclate together !! Ha ha ha


  4. My fave, Jugnu; in each episode his childhood journey just worsens! How can Appo take the innocence away from the kids and make them bluntly lie about the entire Balloo scenario.
    Hina Bayat’s best role up to date. I hope she plans to quit her usual elite class, not raising her kids the right way roles and goes for something along this line.
    Did you (Appo) not feel bad manipulating the poor kids into lying about something so serious? Bibi is to blame in wrecking their childhood but Appo is just as bad if not worse, as their mother.

    The kids were so confused, they had no idea what was going on and what Appo was trying to pull with this lie, but he did it anyway and the expression on his face was priceless.

    Why did the police have to give them some sort of sleeping medicine ?

    For some reason i never felt bad for Margaret but when she slapped the poor kid, I started to hate her. How dare she slap him like that? And how dare Bibi just stare and not take any action.
    That woman has lost her mind. She is so selfish. I get it that life is not all fun n games for her but she has the cutest kids and has had a well OK past, i mean Paul was a love marriage wasn’t it. So at one point i am sure she did love life. so why has it become so hard for her to live for her kids now. She went ahead and had an affair with the sweeper class of her town and his death is what broke her heart? This woman is mad!
    Love love Sanam Saaed! She is an amazing actor. Watching her in ZGH on Fridays and then Talkhiyan on Sundays , both very different roles and she plays them both to perfection. really looking forward to her future projects! I hope you felt bad about being a horrible mother though! :@

    Looks like that was the last time Zoyee saw Jugnu was right before his mother decided to throw him on that bus to neverland! How can she have the heart to take away the one person Zoyee turned to , her best friend, her partner in crime. Wait nevermind, the woman does not have a heart at all.
    But if that was the case , if Jugnu had left Silverwood, then how come 14 years later Zoyee came back there to look for him? ? I mean i am sure after he left he probably didn’t come back nai?
    Mehak Khan, the pain on your face as Zoya is unbearable now… please jaldi se jugnu ko dhoondo and try to smile. Was your face in pain for keeping it so stiff and having that depressed expression the entire time?

    When talking about Talkhiyan it would be complete blasphemous if one does not praise your reviews! I don’t know you do it but you write so amazingly well! This drama’s experience would have been incomplete had it not been for your reviews!
    Thank you for writing so so well! Better then anything I’ve ever read before! 🙂


    • @Ash: Thank you!!
      LOL! Agree with you on Mehak, love love her here as Zoya, but yes, would be great to see her playing a happier character, one who actually smiles and has more than three/four shirts! 😉
      And yeah, I have similar questions abt Jugnu as well .. uff! can’t believe only one more to go! And we still need to know so much about Bibi, Jugnu, Zoya, Jaanu baba, Mamaji, and last but not the least our favorite Her Evilness, Appoji …


    • Enjoyed reading ur take! And yes Sanam Saeed is one fabulous n powerful actor..setting her standards way high:)


  5. A tragic episode….but oh so beautifully done. Your review also had me choking up …you wrote it with so much emotion:(
    Have to praise the ost also once again, it ls just so perfectly placed in each scene.
    Bibi, bibi how dare you just stand their and cry and not bother to think what jugnu and zoyee must be feeling looking at dead baloo being dragged across the floor!!As a mother I cannot comprehend her actions, my first thought was to get them the heck out of there!!
    First Appo tortures them and now she scars them for life….so sad:(
    All she could think about was her destroyed romance….hating bibi right now!! She started this whole damn mess, due to her selfishness. I hope people learn that just having children is not enough, you have to be selfless and commit to them …they are gods blessings for us…so sweet and innocent. Instead of protecting them from evil appo and clan , she threw them to the wayside. Disgustinfg!

    Oh and why isn’t anyone saying jugnoo is wrong?? I am so mad about that! Yes bibi was very wrong but jugnoos is doing something worse and its somehow ok*?? how come he is getting away with his hypocritical behaviour???
    Mama ji gives silent approval and evil appo goes one step further and defends his case!!

    As for the precap…poor poor jugnu seperated from his darling sister…my heart is breaking that they will be apart for so long….Is it really the last episode next week?? Anxiously waiting…


    • @SK: true yaar.. Bibi is one selfish mother anyone can monty betrayed her, she took first step towards being mean n careless… Remember how harshly she took jugnuu out of room when all family members were praising Lizzie and her obedience 😦


  6. Great review AGAIN. What am I going to do with my monday mornings (I am in sydney). I have to say in the last few years this has to be the best serial from Pakistan and hope the team go on and do something else. It is void of the clichés that seem to be present in other shows.

    Will anyone be reading the book now I am considering it.


    • @salma t: hey! I am definitely thinking to have a read , want to see how brilliantly they have depicted the novel:) and so agree with you, Talkhiyan was savior for Sundays


  7. Poor Jugnu and Zoey ,poor babies !
    did they have to see Balus body being dragged? and poor jugnu having to identify Balu as the kidnapper,that was so cruel !!!
    Jaanu is such an ass, how dare he tell Bibi to leave as if hes a saint.
    Aapu is so wicked and mean ,i wish someone would slap her and tell her to shut up!
    mama ji is so useless,shes half blind but it seems shes deaf and dumb too!
    i read the book many years ago so i vaguely remember the story but i think ill read it again.


  8. Waqt ne kiya, kya haseen situm
    Tum rahe na tum, Hum rahe na hum…

    Beautiful review SZ of a very sad turn of events in Silverwood. Eventually the kids have had to pay the price of all the messed up adults in their lives. Hard to imagine how one last episode will bring closure to Zoyee and Jugnoo’s story, coz it does seem like a long struggle. Can’t wait to see it…


  9. excellent excellent to see it again and again and review is great.this drama open our mind to think and think from a different view.


  10. Hey ! I was looking for SOMETHING on Talkhiyan . Then i remember try Fb and here i am , I must say I agree with you whole heartily ! I am totally confused with the way express TV , for how they are promoting this show , completely opposite to what it actually is , the tag lines are awful , making it look like some cheesy serial ” kiya Bibi aur Baalo .. Blah blah blah ”
    Coming to the serial , I feel like standing up every now and then … In respect for the actors especially Sanam and the children … I have read the novel and never thought that it could be done in a serial like this , the director and the writer did a fabulous job as not to try to copy and paste everything , as the novel left me confused at so many places !
    I watch it on YT as there is no express TV in UK ..( I didn’t even know that there is such a channel ) it was brave of them to do it but they should own it with pride as its a master piece for what it is and how it is done in this day and age where the audiences get all sorts of c*** ….. I don’t watch all the Pakistani dramas as I mostly don’t agree with there story lines but must say landed on Talkhiyan because of Sanam as I am head over heels for this young talent , love the way she is doing Bibi , although at the same time doing Kashaf but I never saw Kashaf in Bibi or Bibi in Kashaf ! Unlike many actors both female and male who do things the same way again and again , Hina for the first time is doing a DIFFERENT role which is truly different and deserves a huge applause as she is so believable as Appo.
    I could go on and on … I think this serial is truly among the top or shall I say giving a tough time to me to decide between ZGH or this ! Thankfully both are poles apart when it comes to content …. Love your reviews and can you recommend any KAAM KA DRAMA !! As most are AIWAIN !!


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