THE TUBE

Published May 21, 2023

THE WEEK THAT WAS

Tere Bina Main Nahin | ARY, Tuesdays 8.00pm

Writer Maha Malik puts forward the theory that if a woman waits around long enough, without compl­aining too loudly about her husband’s extra-marital affair, she will get her man. Noor (Sonya Hussyn) put her impending marriage to Murtaza (Shehzad Shaikh) to one side before, but now she has a second chance to marry him and she again puts a career opportunity ahead of him.

The second rejection works, and Murtaza returns to his now pregnant wife Tehniyat (Aiza Awan). Rather than accept this as her own decision and move on with a successful life, Noor becomes a super villain intent on wreaking revenge. Shehzad Shaikh plays the standard, weak-minded persona he has perfected in every second drama: torn between family and ego, sleeping with his wife but obsessed with another woman. Aiza Awan is the standard issue bholi larki (naïve and innocent girl) while Sonya Hussyn successfully brings in the passion and melodrama as the selfish Noor. There is nothing new, interesting or nuanced about this basic potboiler, just a large cast with little to flex their acting skills on.

Tere Bin | Geo TV, Wed-Thurs 8.00pm

The unrequited passion and angst reach new heights for Tere Bin fans as Murtasim (Wahaj Ali) reaches the limits of patience with his reluctant bride Meerub (Yumna Zaidi). Pulled out of her comfortable urban lifestyle, Meerub is blackmailed into marrying the scion of the powerful feudal family she had no idea he belonged to. Superficially she tries to adjust but her rebellious nature and deep-seated anger lead her into one bad situation after another.

Author Nooran Makhdoom has written Meerub to be perpetually wrong: egotistical, self-centered and the kind of performative social justice warrior that refuses to consider historical and cultural context. Murtasim’s character, however, has been carefully sketched out as a traditional gentleman who is trying to make even this impossible situation work. When Meerub helps Murtasim’s sister Mariam escape a forced marriage she falls into an enemy trap, leaving the younger woman open to abuse and sexual assault. Can Murtasim ever forgive Meerab, and perhaps more importantly, will the author allow her character some growth and maturity?

Meri Mohabbat Gumshuda | Hum TV, Fridays 8.00pm

Saim (Khushhal Khan) and Zubia (Dananeer Mobeen) star in this story of young love. Neighbours and best friends, Zubia and Saim live in each other’s pockets, like school children but their families can see that they have grown up.

When a jealous friend tries to defame Zubia, Saim realises how strongly he feels about her, even ending up in a physical fight that leads him into trouble with the police. From the teasers and cast interviews, this looks like an angst-filled romance that will grow stronger with time. Superficially, there is nothing to keep pair apart but a few bad decisions and a turn of fate seem destined to bring a painful distance between them.

Khushhal Khan is great at bringing on the simmering intensity, some of this role requires but will he handle the lighter parts of his character as well? Dananeer is sweet as the insulated naïve young girl who has yet to go to college and understand the depth of her feelings. This is a nicely made romance with some wonderful songs that is sure to be entertaining.

What To Watch Out For (or not)

Siyaah | Green Entertainment, Coming soon

The makers of the horror movie Siyaah turn to television with a series that promises a terrifying new story each episode. Nineteen episodes, including performers such as Sami Khan, Adnan Siddiqui and Hareem Farooq are set to shock us on the small screen.

Published in Dawn, ICON, May 21st, 2023

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