Had it been anybody other than Farhat Ishtiaq, Haseeb Hasan, Abid Ali, Sanam Saeed and Osman Khalid Butt I would’ve given up on this serial a long while ago, but because it was these people and because of the respect I have for their work that I kept up with Diyar-e Dil. But after fifteen weeks and particularly after this latest episode, I don’t think I am capable of handling any more of this melodrama.
This is not to say that I will not return to this serial, I will, but after a few weeks. Right now this never-ending tear-fest, the one too many deaths, heavy-handed black and white characterization, and sappy lines, all are a proving to be too much for me and my migraine-d head to handle. I am happy for all those who are enjoying this return to the circa ’70’s Lollywood, but for me when I watch a TV drama I want to watch just that, a drama not a film.
Last week was all about Behroze’s death, and this week it was the aftermath. Since we all knew what was coming, more so since Suhaib’s death had followed a similar ilhami pattern, these two weeks were a washout. Apart from painting Ruhi in an even darker shade of black and establishing that Fara too now blamed Agha jan for all the tragedy in her family, there was nothing new that happened, and we most certainly did not need two episodes devoted to Ruhi’s evilness. Thanks to all the shouting and screaming that’s been going on for the past few episodes we knew that already.
Many of us here had been rooting for Ruhi’s character, rich as it was with possibilities, but instead of nuance or layered characterization, all we got was a consistent darkening of all possible grey areas. Perhaps Ruhi was not crazy, perhaps she did have a point when she resisted the nikah, perhaps she was right to expect Behroze to confide in her about his plans to wind up things and move to the haveli, perhaps Behroze was rash, perhaps he needed to pause and consider…. there were so many possibilities here that went unexplored. All we got was another hysterical widow and her dead husband. Mitti pao on the could’ves and should’ves.
Back at the haveli, or rather at the hospital, where he seems to be in permanent residence what with two sons upping and dying in quick succession, Agha jan is the only one who’s seemed to have anything worthwhile to say in the past few weeks, be it chastising Behroze for his aaj aur abhi, or his very elegantly done apology to Ruhi. His is the only character that has made any sense so far in the serial, with some logic or rationale behind his words and actions.
Early on he’d made decisions on his children’s behalf because that’s what was done then, but with changing times and changing circumstances he changed too. He apologized to Ruhi something that would’ve been unthinkable a few months ago .. but he adapted. Now if only he could’ve taught that art to his children as well. Needless to say Abid Ali is fabulous as Agha jan!
With both the sons gone, its now up to Wali to take care of not only his ailing grandfather, mother and sister, but his extended family as well, Fara and her mother. In the best scene of this latest episode we actually got to see an animated, almost normal if you will, Wali, as he tried to cheer up his grandfather with silly stories about his younger sister. The bonding between the two makes for some very sweet moments. Their scenes were the only bright spots in an otherwise very dark, drag-fest of an episode. Osman Khalid Butt is very good and continues to impress with his subtle and underplayed take on Wali.
Apart from this one little bright moment, everything else was washed out in the never ending flow of tears, and everybody contributed their two cents, even Wali coudn’t resist anymore and broke down. His better (?) half Fara seems to have permanently regressed to being 8 instead of an 18 year old. I get that she was overwrought and distressed but surely there was no reason for Maya to play Fara like a child. Thank the lord for Ahmed Zeb’s Moiz, who provided a much needed shot of gravity to all the scenes with Ruhi and Fara.
Sanam Saeed who had so far impressed with her underplayed expressions and body language disappointed today with her theatrical take on the grieving Ruhi. And as if an OTT Ruhi is not enough own her own, we get a very cliched bhabhi in Zohra! Just when Ruhi seems to be coming around, Zohra and her editorial comments muddy the waters again. I really like Tara Mehmood and can’t help but feel for her as she deals with her totally flatlined character.
And finally on Behroze, overall this has been a very solid performance from Mikaal, I just wish it wasn’t so filled with emotional atyachar, complete with full on filmi dialogues, accompanied with a lot of lambi thandi saansein in the previous episode. I am still not sure how both of these brothers timed their deaths so perfectly and so neatly at that, but jo bhi tha, I’m just glad its all over and done with. The one scene last week that I thought was done well was that phone call scene whereby Wali got to know of his uncle’s death.
So with the two deaths now out of the way and the grieving father getting the ishara that all is well with the two brothers up there, can we please get on with it? If HUM expects and wants to keep viewers on board for another 15+ weeks then they have to find a new tack to keep us interested and engaged … yeh death wali twist has literally been done to death by now!
Written by SZ~