Alphabet Soup ~ The ABCs of Pakistani Dramas IV

Alphabet Soup HeaderIts been a while since I’ve posted in this series; aaj socha bohot din hogay hain isliye naye saal ki nayi post banti hai boss – magar with a new twist, zara hat ke.  After all new years are all about new beginnings, leaving behind the boseeda baggage of the year gone by and starting afresh.

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Kehne ko tau yeh aik clichéd si baat hai magar ab what to do. Hamarey dramon ne hamein in clichés ke siwa kuch aur sikhaya hi nahin … in fact this is what a regular drama watcher’s brain (read my brain) looks like on the inside:

cliche (2)Shikayat tau hum bohot kartey hain clichés ki magar aaj lets talk about ke yeh hotay kiya hain? According to an online definition:

“Cliché refers to an expression that has been overused to the extent that it loses its original meaning or novelty. A clichecliché may also refer to actions and events which are predictable because of some previous events. All examples of cliché are expressions that were once new and fresh. They won popularity in public and hence have been used so extensively that such expressions now sound boring and at times irritable due to the fact that they have lost their original color. For instance, the phrase “as red as a rose” must have been a fresh and innovative expression at some point in time but today it is considered universally as a cliché and does not sound good to be used in everyday formal writing.”

Or as Faiz puts it ever so eloquently:  Kabhi hum khoobsurat they ….

Ok, music break over and….

images (4)Rather than inviting you all to share your alphabet based drama knowledge, this time around I ask you to list no more than two of your most hated drama clichés. To make this a bit more interesting, in addition to merely listing these, it would be fab if you could also talk about an earlier drama where these were considered interesting plot points, so much so that they not only garnered appreciation but are still remembered very fondly.

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Oho!! Why you getting so pareshan?! Itna mushkil nahin hai! 

Take for instance one of the most ghissa pitta cliché of them all: two sisters. The minute we see a drama featuring these beleaguered dau behenein we wanna switch off the TV right there and then. But yeh tau hui aaj ki baat. Remember the ’80’s? Remember Tanhaiyan? Remember Zara and Saniya? Remember how much we love them still?

Bas, itni si baat thi… ab clear hogaya?

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Tau bas ab lets see how creative you guys can get with clichés...  bas yeh yaad rakhye ga ke no more than two, baqi you can write as much as you want and as creatively as want about about your selections. Looking forward!! 

Written by SZ~

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38 replies

  1. SZ ap ke lye Taaliyan 👏👏.. You always come up with something so interesting and creative concepts.. Too good.. As much as i loved reading the post those pictures with caption you put were just super awesome.. Hahah .. Chaar Chaand laga dye un tasveeron ne 🌙🌙🌙🌙 🙂

    The one cliche idea that came to my mind was.. ‘Baitiyon ka paida hona and the drama that follows’ ufff I seriously hate that cliched concept and thanks to our so called ratings.. Un ki waja se the melo drama which then happens that annoy the heck out of me.. Like for example drama Me Bushra… Naam bushra rakho taake beta ho uske baad, ZGH.. Second wedding because no son from first wife.. And the most famous Daagh.. I loved that original concept in Aahat.. Staaring Sania Saeed.. How amazingly they showed the acceptance of girls.. No loud music.. Gharjna barasna, Cheekh pukar.. All done so subtly… I love to remember that 🙂

    Another one coming in next comment 😉

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    • I loved the concept of counselling mental illness or should i say Psycriatists doing their job very nicely and that we saw in Telefilm Meena.. Where HKB was at her best.. She showed how sessions could be done.. And not only the affected one but the family too have to do their part.. But this same thing ruined terribly in dramas like Kudurat, Firaaq and Sanaata.. Dont know whether to call this cliche or not.. But certainly the moment i see some psychologist on screen i am sure ye tou bera garak karega :/

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      • bulk mujhay yaad aya ek drama ishq gumshuda tha jo abhi zindagi channel per bhi chala hai jis mein samina peerzada nay ye character play kia tha aur main nay kai indian viewers ko kehtay dekha k ye kia hai?..writer ko kuch knowledge bhi hai k nahi?..iss tra k logon ko kis tra treat kia jana cahiay kia tra dikhanna chahiay ..ye wo..
        main soch rahi thi inhon nay humaray abhi k shahkar dekh liay like kadorat /sannata phir ye kia kahen gay 🙂 ..adsos koi ek aisa serial nahi bana aaj tak jahan poori research aur study ker k itnay sensitive aur important issue ko sahi tor per pesh kia gaya ho aur audience ko educate kernay ki koshish ki gai ho

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    • @rehmat oh haan betyan peda karna!! there were some other really bad ones like 4 chand jiss ne iss cliche ko char chand laga diye the.. ufffff!
      even Bari Aapa who supposedly married her hubby with her own consent only because she couldnt bare a him a son for him.. really? bari aapa who was the don! and everyone believed this!!! wah wah! thats how powerful a cliche this is! lol

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      • bari apa?…nai oon k husband nay chup ker shadi er li thi aur reason ye nahi tha..ab chahay baad mein nikal lia ho waisay hi..lekinasal main bari apa ki dominating nature hi thi jo oon k husband ko oon say door kernay ki waja thi I mean main reason ye hi tha

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        • @RJ yes ur right. But Bari Aapa told her family (to maintain her oonchi naak) ke mein ne khud shadi karwai hai , bete ke liye.. and then sone pe sohaga yeh tha family took that with a pinch of salt, sub yaqeen kar liya..
          kehne ka matlab yeh hai ke its such a cliche that even bari aapa’s family didnt question her reasons.. (for a person with such a dominating personality..)

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  2. Good oye jub humen kuch kuch samajh aa gai thi k iss soup article say kis tra naberd azma hona hai..SZ k pitaray say ek aur googly 🙂 …pehla khayal jo mujhay aya tha wo sister rivalry kaa hi aya tha jo pichlay kuch salon mein humaray drama makers kaa bohat hi fave mozoo tha..lekin oos per aap nay hath saaf ker lia 😉 main iss baray mein thori si baat aur karoon gi

    aap nay tanhaiyaan ki jo baat ki wo ptv k zamanay ki hai aur oos main 2 sisters ki story thi yani 2 alag tracks..lekin private channels nay ziada focus sister rivalry per kia jo meri nazer mein drama serial Maat say shuru hoa..actually oos k hit honay k baad ..wo poora saal hum her channel per iss tra k pta nahi kitnay dramas dekhtay rahay..

    lekin acha idea hai 🙂 ab dosra wala soch ker ati hoon

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    • @RJ Re Tanhaiyyan: I agree with u it was about the sisters, their love and support – how it should be! there was sitara and mehrunnisa (behnon jaisi cousins), and recently we got Daam, ZGH, UBFN with sisters who where looking out for each other, i guess that healthy relationship still works because that’s pretty natural. Where it didnt quite work was Ashk where one sister went overboard… but I cant say we can classify that as a cliche as such.
      I think Tanhaiyyan’s core was how Zara got too involved in her mission/ struggle ( paisa kamana/ getting the house back and all) that she lost track and got isolated.. If they were to make Tanhaiyyan today, that yateem larki would get the ‘bechari’ treatment that is a cliche’.

      Re sisters rivalry: Nowadays we get sister rivalry to no end! I never liked Maat even then. aur abb tou bas.. you mentioned Bari aapa.. We had a fair share of sister rivalry there too.. even sannata, silvatein, gar maan , ST, PA, … the list is endless!

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  3. Ok ab itna bhi kia sochna…Dosra cliché jo main ab kisi drama mein nai dekh sakti bulk usi waqt drama dekhna chor deti hoon wo hai SHUKK yaa SHUKKI MIZAJ SHOHAR”..haan humaray dramas mein ziada ter merdon ko shukk kertay dikhaya gaya hai

    dekha jye tou iss k ppechay jo msg hai wo bura nahi k marriage yaa koi bhi relation trust aur understanding ki bunyad per hi kamyabi say chal sakta hai lekin ab ye itni dafa ho gaya hai aur iss iss tra pesh kia gaya hai k apnay asli malab hi kho chukka hai

    ye trend mere khayal mein ek baar phir UA nay start kia tha with MZZBN…aur main abhi ki baat ker rahi hoon..ptv classics honestly mujhay koi ziada yaad nahi..ager kisi ko wahan say koi drama yaad tou zaroor share kren 🙂 ..inn main mera fave Humsafer hai baqi sub farigh like shukk qaid-e tanhai aur pta nahi kon kon say

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    • @RJ: how true Yaar.. The shuki shohar formula have been repeated to a limit… Or even the shukk factor is there either from wife or husband… Darmiyan was another where character of syra yousuf tried to create shukk between two..

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  4. Abhi main nay realize kia k main nay first comment mein tou actually aap hi baat ko agay berh-haya hai tou abhi mere paas ek aur chance hai 🙂 …Doosra cliché jis say mujhay almost nafrat hai aur main nay oos kaa complete boycott kia hoa hai wo hai DOOSRI SHADI/ BIWI

    mujhay yaad hai ptv classic AANCH mein itni khoobsurati say iss ko pesh kia gaya tha lekin ab tou ye ek mazaq hi ban ker reh gaya jo k bohat sanjeeda aur kisi had tak sangeen mozoo hai..mere khayal mein Aanch mein kafi hud tak iss mozoo k sath insaaf kia gaya aur oos mein depth bhi thi aur detail bhi..

    private channels mein mere khayal mein BARHI APA wo drama tha jo iss trend ko dobara shuru kernay kaa bais bana aur jahan kafi hud tak ye action justified bhi tha aur iis k hit honay per hi ye taza laher shuru hoi like iztarab / yahan piyaar nahi hai / shukk / humnasheen / sannata / dil-e muzter / firaq / mera yaqeen/ dagh/ numm/ virasat OMG main thak gai hoon lekin dramas khatem nahi ho rahay abhi kaa shahkar DOSRI BIWI…kahan tak suno gay kahan tak sunyn

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    • @RJ Aanch! kia yaad dila diya! I loved that drama when that was on. but I cant remember the doosri biwi aspect ..more like i cant remember the first wife lol.. hadn’t the first biwi died or left thats why he remarried? All i remember is the soteli maan / step relations. (which btw is a cliche on its own … izatrarab, solteli, rubaru, kadoorat.. yeh sub dekh ke tou Cindrerella and snow white must feel lucky!!)
      In PTV classics it was Uroosa who had a step sister and her mom was the doosri biwi.. but again the first one had died.
      speaking of soteli maan we also got dramas where the soteli maan was so flippin good ke she neglected her apna bachas and they turned bitter.. there was a FM SM drama called maan or something..
      To your Doosri biwi /shadi list let me zidd, tum me re hi rehna, mehram, ST, nikah (5 times a week on prime time slot on hum alone) .. and i have a feeling moday’s eik pal will also join the que… apart from that susral mera & zindagi tum ho on later slots again on hum tv also feature a doosri shadi…. thats rather pareshankun! oh & lets not forget AA… then there were also aseer zadi, mere qatil mere dildar, vasl, khoya khoya chand….

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      • Aanch main second wife Shugufta aijaz thin mera khayal hai debut tha…aur first wife koi unknown actress thin jin k sirf kuch scenes thay aur husband Shafi mohammad thay jin ki divorce hoi thi apni wife say reason mujhay yaad nahi lekin wo apnay bachay shafi k paas chor deti hai jo apnay father ki second wife ko accept nahi kertay etc

        mujhay jo chez achi lagi wo characters static nahi thay oon k actions k peechay koi reason tha phir ager oon main koi change tha oos ka bhi reason tha..jaisay shugufta bhi pehlay apnay aged husband with 3 kids ko accept nahi kerti lekin baad main change ho jati hai etc lekin tub husband aur bachay oos change ko accept nahi kertay jis k liay wo struggle kerti hai

        tou kafi detail k sath dikhay gaya..jo mujhay aaj kal dikhaiy gai dramas mein nazer nahi ata

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  5. Nikah.. The way they treat this sacred bond in our dramas these days…
    When we first got Yeh Zindagi it was such a novelty.. ( got MB and NI jori as hero heroine for the first time i think and yes we are seeing them as leads, thats a cliche on its own but ) This was the first time I came to know about Halala. (perhaps there was the film nikah before then, but i watched that much later on).. I was young and wasn’t aware of such complexities, so it was very intriguing for me.
    Abb tou nikah is treated like a game.. Its like playing dodgems.. lets bring out the wackiest aspect, and the craziest possibility of nikah on screen.. Aasmanon pe likha, mehram, do qadam door thay, ST, Numm… but the worst of the lot has gotta be Rishtay kuch adhooray say!!

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    • @FA: too good cliche u have come up with.. Nikkah.. Waqai mazaq bana k rakha hua he.. The one that just made me my eyes roll was Dil Nh Manta something like that.. Guy marrying two girls at a time..

      Ye Zindagi was my favourite drama.. I also liked Qaisar Khan Nizamani in that if im not wrong.. He was second husband n i used to root for this couple lol

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      • @Rehmat Yes Qaiser was there too, and the jori was great! but we havent seen much of him recently. The whole halala aspect alone was so novel at the time. Abb tou there are so many dramas with halala.. And these dramas r so off ke even though i remember saying ‘oh no, not again!’ so many times, yet I cant even recall a single name.. Anybody remembers any recent ones where we got the halala suggession?

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        • @FA the one i can remember though not in recent times..but that Dil he Chota Sa.. Written by Bushra Ansari.. Kuku was made to marry her devar.. With intention of halala as bare bhaisahab i think realized after giving divorce.. Not sure abt tht.. But anyway halala couldn’t happen as kuku fell in love with second hubby… But that was still bearable at that time… Ab tou bhayee tauba.. I just got to know in Rubaru.. The other couple went for halala and shohar sahab happily ditched second wife…

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          • @Rehmat and @FA: Re: Halala: there was also Khalid Sb’s track in Phir Youn Love Hua .. I dont know if you guys have seen this serial, but its a pretty good watch, specially when compared to the stuff thats on these days …

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  6. IDK if you would call this a Cliche but the following scenario makes me go Oh No Not Again
    * Girl feels nauseous and runs to the washroom to throw up …
    Mother/MIL/Nund immediately assume the ONLY symptom of a pregnancy is throwing up “MubarAk ho , Bahu Maa baney wali hai …..
    foran puri dunya ko bata do , mithai baato without even verifying with a doctor !!!!!

    * Why does the last episode always portray a complete 180 ° change in character.
    The dumb mazloom bahu who could never retaliate or confront her oppressors , all of a sudden she finds her tongue and confidence and lashes back ….
    The evil menacing mil or fill repent and beg for forgiveness and become nice …
    Alll is forgiven and everyone lives happily ever after !!!!
    I mean really , such drastic changes in personalities don’t happen!!!!

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    • @deeba ROFL @ girl feels nauseous and runs to the washroom to throw up = pregnancy
      haina! how many times have we seen that! #dejavu
      what i find even funnier is half the times even the doctor just looks and confirms on the spot (most of the times girl is lying down in her bedroom)… no tests no nothing! these farigh pshychic doctors are always ready for home visits.. pbbly chance to cash extra bucks with extra fees + chai pani with nothing much to do..

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    • @Deeba: The best take on this cliche was in Aunn Zara where an entire episode or two was spent on this “ghalat fehmi” ..although to be fair to them it was hilarious given the context of their unconsummated marriage ..

      And on this, i dont know when this issue, of consummated vs unconsummated marriages, became such an open topic of discussion ke 99% of primtetime dramas revolve around this core issue. I dont know what kind of a society these drama makers think they are living in, but nowhere have I seen this subject being discussed so crassly as is happening in our dramas .. The recent scream fest b/w the two wives in Dil Nahin Manta has shown us how low are drama makers are willing to go in order to go higher up the TRP charts .#disgusted!!

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      • True ,and the funny part is that the guy gets to have his fun with both while they r fighting over him !!! Although he is so bechara looking with zero personality , I don’t know what either see in him !!!

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    • @deeba. Agree with you. But point 2 is particularly a sort of let-down. After 19+ episodes of manipulative, mean, evil, vile stuff, in the last 15 minutes of the last episode there is a 180 turn and there is bliss and harmony!

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  7. Cliches which irritate me most r
    1. Stairs se paon phisla aur miscarriage ho gya
    2. Bahu pe bad-kirdaar honay ka ilzaam lga daina…
    Don think i ever liked first situation in any drama.. Second one is very obvious: Humsafar.. Although MZZB was older but i watched it later and then there were more like Qaid-e-tanhai…

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    • @Atty: I hate that one too, that paon phisalna one .. and tangentially related to that … khoon ki ulti aayi to TB/cancer .. and then my fave one aajkal .. gari se takraye aur behosh ho gaye.. kiya yaar! kidhar hota hai aisa!

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  8. Bhai wah bohat zaberdust 🙂 ..lekin comments dekh ker ek cheez mere zehen main aye k dramas sirf ek nahi ek sath kai clichés ko pesh ker rahay hotay hain jis say dekhnay walay ki halat aur kharab ho jati hai k kahan kahan ser phoren…2 sister story / rivalry angle / love tri angle / modern vs simple girl aur pta nahi kia kia ek hi serial mein..isi tra shuki shohar / dosri biwi / love triangle/ psycho lover etc ek hi serial mein..tou mere khayal mein ye mixture of clichés ziada na-qabil-e berdasht hota hai

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    • @RJ: absolutely, you got it! It was the predictability of our stories that inspired me to write this post .. and obviously predictability happens because of the number of times a certain gets repeated … and thats why I had brought up Tanhaiyan, I understand the focus of the story was om something else, but the way things are going now, it is almost impossible to have two sisters/cousins who are not rivals …. focus kuch bhi ho magar yeh angle zaroor hota hai 😦

      And yes put five six seven cliches together and tadaa story haazir hai ..

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  9. Oooh I was wondering why alphabet soup disappeared. Good to see the twist here. My peeves are with:

    1. Every girl who gets widowed/divorced will get married to her devar or jaith or someone related to her husband (best friend, cousin, and so on). I actually liked watching Dil Hai Chota Sa but honestly in recent times this has gone too far with Main Bushra, Khuda Na Karay, Mehram, ENMT, and many more

    2. Not a cliche but more of an annoying trend: A shadi which never ends – as in, spans over several episodes, starting from the first one. It was tolerable in Mehendi but after that this just took off with Safaid Posh, Khwaish, Tum mere hi rehna and the list goes on

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    • @DB: Hey! Yaar it was becoming too much of the same ole same ole so I decided to expand the meaning of ABCs and take it to include the nuts and bolts of dramas well … so lets see aur kiya kiya batein hoti hain us topic par… any suggestions from your side will be greatly welcomed!

      Re: never-ending shaadis: hahaha this reminds of your utter dislike for the Baraat series which was in sharp contrast with my love for these … And you forgot your very fave Shaadi Mubarak 😉

      Re: the bhabhi se shaadi, haina they’ve made into such a joke!! Bhabhi with the roti Suhaee Abro was the ultimate in terms of ensuring that I never even attempt to watch anything anymore with this theme. The one serial which stands out in this regard, for me, is MeJ, where even though the novel hinted pretty strongly at a shaadi between Haniysa and Aabi’s bff, thankfully MJ was able to steer clear of this stereotype and left their relationship very open ended.

      Also, when @FA brought up halala I wanted to know if you could think of other serials in recent times where this was taken very lightly … I seem to remember there being quite a few but can’t remember the exact names ..

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      • Aray haaan how can I forget SM – which I ditched after 5 or so eps. I didn’t even bother watching the last ep.

        I recently saw halala in Laadon Main Pali – when Laraib (Maya Ali) remarried Wahhaj (Affan Waheed) in the last episode.

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  10. Do do shaadiyoun wali kahaniyaan need to end now. Matlab, theek hai some men do get married twice lekin they do know how to balance between the two. Lekin nahi serials mein do mein se ek biwi ko vamp banana zaroori hota hai, like in Ahista Ahista. In this drama no one were chapaid deserving as much as Zawar was. Nope not even Sofia, bhui biwi hoti hi aisi makhlooq hai thats possessive. That can’t be (and shouldn’t have been) used against her. Zawar should have balanced. Idiot.
    Also, the mahaan and always rehem dil wali aurat, uska shohar usey maardey, zehni aur jismaani taur pe, phir bhi maaf kardengi, aur chup chaap zulm sehti rahengi. Kaunsi sadi mein hota tha yeh? This’s the reason why I didnt like Ahista Ahista’s ending. Also bashar momin ( please don’t judge me, i’d heard good stuff-.-) , inteha hogayi rehem dilli ki, yes you should be forgiving and all but itni mahaanta nahi hoti bhui ke maar khaao jootey khaao phir bhi maaf kardo. Nope not done at all.

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  11. One cliche is a line I have begun to choke on, “yeh sab naseeb ki baat hai…” letting go of all responsibility for human action, as in Roag when the 8 year old was raped.

    In terms of plot, the doosri biwi/shaadi. On the one hand there is a lack of creativity in the rehashing & regurgitating of this plot but on the other hand, I wish I had the time to count the innumerable ways in which stories are created around it – innovative in a sense.
    Thanks to the wealth of dramas online it’s easy to check out and find something else!

    SZ, thanks for letting us rant.

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    • @JR: totally agree with your mentioned cliche.. Bura ho tou naseeb ki baat.. Acha hou tou..ppl say thanks to us :/ .. Haan waqai credit must be given where its due 🙂

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  12. Well I can’t handle the two sisters’ drama. Do behenon ki khalai makhlook waali (other-wordly) mohabbat and janam janam ki dushmani dono mujh se hazam nahi hoti kyunke ab zarorat se kuch ziada hi hogaya hai ye roz roz ka aana jaana.
    These extremes of sibling rivalry and love might even be true to reality but it’s been done over too many times and with all the possibilities one could imagine. So I’ll just make a list:
    1. Farishta sifat bari behen, Shaitaani sazishi Choti behen
    2. Bholi ghar ghusni Bari behen, 420 Choti behen also very sazishi
    3. Gharelu Bari, Chalak Flirtatious Choti (cousin) Ehsaano ka bojh included. *Done twice!
    4. Aik aur gharelu seedhi saadhi housewife aur uski Choti sazishi behen.
    Note: In sab main Bari behen bas mohabbat nichawar karti rehti hai apni choti behen par, aur choti sirf zaban chalati hai, aur tane deti hai.
    5. Lekin is paanchwi kahani main kuch ajeeb Cocktail hai.
    Pehle Behenon main itna Pyaar, aur Choti apni Behen ki itni Aashiq ke usse shaq hota hai Bari ki shaadi ki asli wajah hai Waldein ki unse jealousy.
    Note how Bholi Choti is. The extreme bachpana. She even agrees, though unwillingly, to marry her Didi ka Dewar just so they can be together forever. (Her & Didi, bhaar main jaaye The Dewar)
    And then pata nahin kya qayamat agayi ke woh Bholi si Pyaari si Choti Dayan ban gayi, no not literally, but my point being she turns evil and to the core. Uske baad woh apni chari jaise ghumaye bas waise waise sab kuch hota jaye, exactly jaisa woh chahti hai. Najaane kaunsi geedar seenghi haath lagi uske.

    Did I mention there’s always a guy or two involved in this khoon ki pyaasi dushmani that the Choti fuels in her heart for Bari?! Yes, it’s always the Choti who’s evil. 😒 Not very flattering to have yourself stereotyped, might I add.

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