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Udaari Episode 4 & 5

Udaari

 

Udaari is shaping up to be one of those rare serials that unite art and commercial viability. Outstanding performances from Ahsan Khan and Bushra Ansari combined with masterful  direction from Ehtashamuddin, coupled with Farhat Ishtiaq’s signature story writing skills make this a must watch every week .This serial cuts a deep slice out of our society , exposing each layer of our attitudes and weaknesses with  a quiet precision.Urwa-Hocane-Dramas

One of this serials greatest strengths is the way it subtly challenges the audience without preaching. If we examine the story most of the elements  are very familiar: a single mother struggling to survive, a girl from a poverty stricken family trying to marry ‘above’ her class, a manipulating villain and the usual elite class disconnect. Farhat Ishtiaq has written about actual human beings that manage to be likable despite their flaws. Even her villain, played with such skilled menace by Ahsan Khan is the embodiment of the phrase “the banality of evil “. Imtiaz is just an ordinary man, in fact people swear by his goodness. He is a master manipulator and contains all the evil we do not see. Such men often prey on vulnerable women in need of  support and are very clever at winning people’s confidence by playing a long strategic game.

Ahsan Khan excels in this role, one moment he is the handsome, good natured man who marries a single mother instead of a young girl, the next we see the evil cast of his intentions on in his face. In episode 4  Pa Imtiaz’s true nature is revealed. Director Ehtashamuddin is to be congratulated for managing to illustrate Imtiaz’s evil actions aesthetically without losing  the impact of his behavior. The buzzing fly landing on Imtiaz’s face as he convinces Zaibu to keep quiet was both chilling and effective.280x157-4kK

One of the most fascinating aspects is our society’s attitudes to music. Imtiaz is stirred  to wickedness by some music he listens to.  Elyas’s family enjoys a good song and dance but look down on those who perform even though Meeran and her family use music to earn a living, celebrate happy occasions or even distribute blessings and prayers. There is a similar comparison with Arsh and his band who express themselves through music; they relax, they connect and bring others joy but Farwa’s mother views this same activity as waste of time and a distraction. The take away is that music and dancing like most things only exposes whatever already lies within us. Sadly for some it will always be a beast while for others it will be joy.Udaari (1)

Zaibu is not Imtiaz’s only victim .The highlight of episode 5 was the way Sheedan stood up for her daughter Meeran. Sheedan is shocked and disappointed at finding out about Meera’s relationship with Elyas but she doesn’t do the usual crazy drama mother routine when Meeran runs away from Imtiaz’s attack. Usually the formula is for the mother to blame her own child or even make friends with the rapist. I love the way Sheedan stands up for her daughter and isn’t cowed by her poverty or the money she owes to Sajjo. I especially like the way she doesn’t  suffocate her daughter under the banner of “log kiya Kahenge”, she even stands up to Elyas’s nasty mother and won’t let her daughter be denigrated. I fully understand that not every mother can be like this but surely in the privacy of their homes and in between themselves a mother can support her daughter rather than blaming and castigating her child as we are shown. I keep thinking of the dreadful mothers from Chup Raho, Sangat, and Pehchan and of course the latest queen of all mothers in Bay Qasoor who poisons her child.Poor Meera has got to learn the hard way about men like Elyas.WFFdV

Bushra Ansari is outstanding in every episode and is the star of the show. Each episode is packed with great performances from Urwa Hocain to Sammiya Mumtaz and even the child stars make their mark. The biggest surprise is again Urwa who has really impressed with a dedicated performance. My one caveat with her though is the shiny make up; either it’s an overdose of shimmer or its sunblock, either way it distracts for the character’s authenticity.

One of the saddest parts of this story is Sammiya Mumtaz’s character Sajjo. She is a good woman, struggling to live a respectable life but she has no help. Her sister is wealthy and seems to lack for nothing yet she cannot help Sajjo making her easy prey for the likes of Imtiaz. If we actually supported people like Sajjo , perhaps they wouldn’t be such easy marks ? Sadly ,Our society is full of people like Appa Hamidas. I also found the way Imtiaz’s friend undermined any good Imtiaz might have in him by putting Sajjo down.udaari appa This is a common practice in our society, criticizing and undermining couples as mismatched , comparing people’s heights , weights , colour , wealth …in fact anything that doesn’t fit into their preconceived notions about life . This kind of behavior undermines marriages, the building block of society . From next week’s promo it is clear that Imtiaz is on to the next stage of his campaign of destruction . A common factor abusers use to control those around them is to destroy their victims overconfidence by mocking and belittling them . So Imtiaz calls Sajjo a Budhi ghori la Lagaam , or an overdressed old woman … even though Sammiya Mumtaz looks lovely .

My apologies for the long review but this is a double and this is such a good serial that it deserves every word of praise. I just have my fingers crossed that team Udaari can keep it up

PS  I love the cool band characters 🙂

 Sadaf Haider

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

10 Comments »

  1. Sadaf, thank you for reviewing this drama. and so beautifully. I ran through so many emotions when I watched these five episodes. Fantastic, fantastic series, this. Bushra Ansari does not need my or anyone’s compliments or kudos for being the great actress that she is, but I will still venture to offer some. I cant begin to describe how fabulous she is – if you happen to interview her or talk to her for some feature/write up, please pass on total respect and love from this across the border person from halfway across the globe.The lioness that she turned into when she found that her daughter was mistreated or displaying hurt at being told off by the person who used her…she reminded me of my own mother- I dont think it can get more personal or special than this. I watched these 5 episodes with tears rolling down my eyes – I dont know why. Everyone blurred out and nothing mattered to me when BA was on screen.Total RESPECT.

    The terrific cast( including the little kids )is just knocking this out of the park….and after having watched a bit of FI scripts, I can easily say that , come what may – this will be one emotional rollercoaster, feel good, happy positive story where a woman will be intelligent and strong, notwithstanding plot twists and holes and what have you. Urwa has such beautiful expressive eyes and an easy effortless charm about her. I hope she goes places. I can see what is coming in the next episode, and I cant wait for it to unfold on screen. Two things I wanted to check with you –
    1. What is this language they speak – it sounds like a delightful mix of Urdu, Punjabi and a bit of our Haryanvi and Rajasthani…I can see and hear a lot of Haryanvi things ( customs, clothing style)…does this dialect have a name? (And BA is hitting them all away for sixers….Ahsan khan also comes across very powerfully…superb performances. Hope he doesnt get branded in to a villian permanently…)
    2. These singers…are they like Gypsies or is it a community which just sings at weddings and other occasions ?

    The modern family is shown to be such a cliche but I guess they will all fade away, hence the lesser known/seen faces, I guess. I particularly loved the big curly haired guy who reminded me of the world famous karachikhatmal on Twitter. LoL.

    In all, a very very satisfying series. And if this one gets overlooked in anyway next year in favor of Mann Mayal or any other idiot things at your annual awards, it will be a ptiy.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Ok First of all Rads thank you for reading and giving me such wonderful comments to read . You always open my eyes ! AYes Bushra ansari is doing a fabulous job , that lady is a powerhouse of talent ! She can make you laugh , cry and think … she has total command of the audience . I am not always a big fan of Urwa’s , becuase she tends to play her “good girl’ roles a little too subdued and ice cold . This is the first time I have seen some actual depth and wrmth in her performance . she has given all three dimenions to Meera and yes she does have facinating eyes , not the sort we normally consider as classically beautiful but lovely none the less. Again I guess we are noticing becuase she is actually making the extra effort . Well amidst all this praise let us remeber director Ehtashamuddin who has managed to elicit these performances . Ahsan Khan who plays Imtiaz has said that ehtashamuddin puts a lot of effort into guiding his actors so this may explain some of it . either way Meeran is a great empathetic character .
      Lol Ahsan Khan is normally found playing the elite class ashiq so dont worry , this is temporary but very effective !
      Ok Mirasis are originally from Rajasthan so they do have a touch of those Indian or Hindustani dialects . I asked the writer Farhat ishtiaq and she said sraiki and Punjabi but I think Bushra Being the consumate proffessional may have added the rajasthani touches . Are there actual Haryanvi words that are used or just the inflection ? Becuase I have never heard this “meeko” word before and just supposed it was saraiki ( sindhi)
      I am sure there are Merasi people in India , they are the keepers of Meraas or heritage .. you know shajra nasibs … family trees etc and according to wiki there are a lot of different kinds . I heard that that their traditional job is to sing and dance at weddings and they used to help arrange marriages .
      Man do you and I think alike . I was thinking the same thing … the awards next year … what if MannMayal makes a clean sweep ? well something new to worry about now .bleh !

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      • Sadaf, your comment led to an hour long digging up of mirasis in India, their migration to Pakistan, the different dialects spoken, and the reach of the language itself…. While reading about Saraiki , I found out that there are flavors of it in both Haryana and Rajasthan. Not just specific words, but the whole language gives me so much Haryanvi feels…for example the use “seh”…in place of “hai”. Tonal Inflection ki baat hi na karein…that is a 100% match 🙂 And many other words- I am not sure if those words exist in Urdu. I am briefly transported and back from Bhiwani/Hirsa in Haryana when I hear Bushra speak. 🙂 And the wrapping of the dupatta over her head while working/relaxing -.so.
        much. Haryana 🙂

        While reading up on the migratory patterns of the Mirasis, i was surprised to find out that they have migrated to some parts of southern India as well . And it is amazing to see how certain words have seeped in effortlessly into the local languages – and these are completely unique Dravidian languages with no link whatsoever to Persian/Urdu have incorporated words such as miras, nashta, raabta, beimani, bezaar etc. You know why I like play this so much now, dont you?:)

        And the director – Fabulous, fabulous effort this. I hope he keeps the racy pace intact.

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        • well That Dupattah thing is just Punjabeeeeee no matter what side of the border !
          Well Languages are almost like living organisms they grow they incorporate and they shed and they eliminate . Becuase of Bollywood I know so many Hindi and dare I say sanskrit words ! I love the accents used and I want to thank Farhat Ishtiaq and the actors for using them to be authentic but not getting so caught up that we cannot catch the jist of what they are saying . That in itself is an achievment , I have to say the nafees Urdu in Mor Mahal is still a bit tough for me but slowly I am picking up on it .. So much farsi ! I am a big fan of studying languages and especially the history of words so as one etymology fan to another thank you for all that info . I have red that the language we speak shapes our attitude and I think the IndoPak subcontinenet is especially interesting becuase most of us speak at lest two and usually three languages … so when Ameeran learns the language Mili and her friends speak she will find out the meaning of respect and define herself .
          I really think Udaari is going to be one of those classic serials that we remember and keep wanting to watch . Yes because the message is strong but also becuase the characters are catching us in their web . we feel for them and that is always a sign of good writing . Lol at Nashta slowly becoming part of certain languages .. yeh Wali ka influence tho nahii?

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          • LOL…..nashta has been in use way before OKB (not just Wali) was even born 🙂 words like shuru, hadd, takrar, tukda…are all part of south indian languages….but transformed and incorporated seamlessly….

            Liked by 1 person

  2. Hi, I know I am late but I just watched the two episodes and like you said, they were outstanding.

    This is the only one serial worth watching on Hum Tv right now, they have done a fabulous job with this one. Bushra Ansari and Aihsan Khan are amazing, honestly I was so tired of Aihsan Khan’s well dressed, well educated, elite class, nakaam aishaq roles that I had almost given up on him but after watching him as Shams and now Imtiaz, I am so glad he decided to try something different.

    I am also glad the writer and director are being sensitive while discussing child abuse, that scene between Imtiaz and Zebo … It said it all without going into too many disturbing details, that was master craftsmanship. The message is clear and it was watchable at the same time.

    Most importantly like you said, it’s the earthy characters that make this drama so relatable.

    Thank you for a wonderful review. You said it was long, I didn’t even notice, I was having so much fun reading it 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you for reading Kiran . Lol at the nakaam ashique comment …that is a stock figure in the drama universe though isnt it ? yes Ahsan Khan is doing a fabulous job . I was lucky enough to interview him on air today .. I will try to post it soon . If memory serves me right the hsaid that there really isnt mucuh variety in dramas roles and it can get tiresome even for the actors playing the roles of flawed but basically good guy wooing mazloom heroine etc etc… I really liked Preet Na karyo koi that was a very different kind of hero … not really a hero at all and now this pa Imtiaz . Bushra ansari is a national treasure but I just wish she would stay away from those posessive mother roles as in Tum mere pass raho . We need her and Saba hamid to play womderful interesting chracater like Sheedn and Zuleikha from Dillagi .
      And thanks for reading the LOOOONg review . I actually love reading a long review myself but I knoe most people dont have that much time and they start skimming and so miss points … so I try and keep it short … mostly

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Thank you for a great review. You’ve said it all. Love the show and all the performances but Bushra Ansari is just fab! Her punjabi is to die for. My girls and I really enjoy her scenes.
    As you mention, it is so refreshing to see a mother who reprimands her daughter when the need arises but also believes her word. Bravo!
    Looking forward to more 🙂

    Like

    • Yes not the usual at all . I have to admit I am confused I was expecting Sheedan to adopt Imtiaz as her son or something ….. Sarcasm alert because someone will miss the point

      Like

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