Rasm-e duniya bhi hai, mauqa bhi hai, dastoor bhi hai ….
For the past one week my FB news feed has been flooded with year-end surveys, awards, best-of and worst-of lists, the best-looking, the best-dressed, kaun in raha aur kaun out …. matlab ke sab kuch. Since ’tis the season and a round up of the year past is pretty much de rigueur, here’s my take on the good, the bad and the ugly of that which is now behind us …
When thinking of 2013 the first word that comes to mind is chaapa.. as in reiteration, as in recycling to the nth degree. We saw so many versions of same old same old that it was enough to make the mind boggle.
To begin with something very basic – the title. I have no clue why producers thought Daagh to be such an attractive name that we got not one but three serials with similar titles: Daagh, Daagh-e Dil and Daagh-e Nadaamat!
Along with the variants, 2013 was memorable for giving us serials with some of the most depressing titles. Don’t know about you all, but I for one did not get enticed by these dukhi names. Is it too much to ask for serials with happier names?
It was not just the title comer-uppers, even poster designers appeared to have settled in a comfortable rut. After all, why should they have bothered to come up with new ideas when nobody else was. The trend began with the Humsafar poster and since then creative juices seemed to have pretty much dried up.
Going green, another big trend, was the producers’ mantra not just in terms of plot lines, titles and poster designs, but equally applicable when it came to wardrobe selections. How many of you remember this particular caftan?
It was not just clothes, we saw houses, furniture and offices being repeated as well. Aur tau aur even dialogues/pet causes were reiterated in several serials. How many of you remember conversations about the bejaa asraaf on fancy shaadi cards? From Shehr-e Zaat to Mirat-ul Uroos to Zindagi Gulzar Hai, we were continually chastised to curb expenditure.
Of course, while were being lectured about bejaa asraaf, directors and producers had zero qualms about spending money on tons of glycerin, required for heroines’ tears, and wasting gallons upon gallons of water to manufacture rain. If Khirad and Ashar could frolic in the rain then why couldn’t other characters … after all unkey bhi kuch armaan they!
It was not just writers, directors and producers who went green and recycled stuff in 2013. Fawad Khan, arguably the most popular actor of 2013, also decided to chip in with his bit for saving the ozone layer. While a noble sentiment in and of its own merit, methinks its about time Mr. Khan went shopping in 2014. Aap ka kya khayal hai?
While the vast majority of what we saw was eminently forgettable, we did get a few gems here and there. Talkhiyan, to my mind, was the one serial that stood tall this year, and by tall I mean Burj Khalifa tall. The producers, Seema Razi and Razi Uddin Ahmed, deserve a huge round of applause for backing this very hat ke project. Bee Gul and Khalid Ahmed were brilliant in their story telling. I don’t think any of us who savored Talkhiyan are going to forget the crazy Silverwood gang in a hurry.
Apart from Talkhiyan, we also had Amna Mufti and Kashif Nisar’s Ullu Baraey Farokht Nahin, Mohammed Ahmed/Yasir Rana and Mehreen Jabbar’s Coke Kahani, Mohammed Ahmed and Marina Khan’s Tanhaiyan Naye Silsilay, Faiza Iftikhar and Haissam Husain’s Aik Nayee Cinderella and Aunn Zara. Alongside these serials, Mohammed Ahmed and Mehreen Jabbar’s Ghoonghat was a telefilm that more than held its own. In short, producers and channel heads please note these are the kinds of stories we would like to see more of in 2014.
Looking forward to 2014, my biggest request would be that could we please, please be done with the goody-two shoes, bechari, mazloom heroine?
And get more of these spunky, colorful girls?
This then, my friends, was my retrospective on the year that was… chaapas, formulas, recycling, reiteration and what not, there were aggravations galore. But then just when it seemed like all was lost we got those moments of brilliance, humor and charm that made it all seem almost worthwhile.
What were your memorable moments? Were there stories that spoke to you? Which were the characters that moved you, those that you identified with? Looking forward to reading your take on the dramas you loved and those that you loved to hate…
Written by SZ~