Khan Episode 1
Khan (Noman Ejaz) is introduced to us as a friendly, rather sweet family man helping to cook dinner. He is a devoted husband, a caring father and brother and no one escapes his notice. Fridays are family days and he expects to see everyone at the table. It is only as the story progresses and the episode comes to an end that we see his real face and why so many in the political establishment rely on him as a powerbroker. Noman Ejaz is an expert at playing powerful men: whether it’s Gulistan Khan the patriarch of Swat or the feudal Mera Saeein, he knows how to project strength of will with just a change of expression.
Khan is aligned with the government and his mission this episode is to persuade an equally cunning politician played by Ejaz Aslam over to his side. As a drama lover it was a pleasure to see the confrontation between them. Both men negotiated who had what information on whom, in a high stakes game of one upmanship and it became crystal clear that Khan was a lot more than the doting father and husband. This becomes even more apparent as Khan deals with his wastrel son in law, who has been abusing his precious eldest daughter. No one but Noman Ejaz can infuse so much menace into such simple dialogues.
For those who love gangster sagas (like me), the Godfather is the gold standard and this week looked like the “Fredo moment”. Overtly Khan has reassured his eldest daughter played by Yamina Peerzada that he won’t touch her husband and she has decided that she will “deal” with situation and learn how to handle the mistake she has made in marrying him. I have a feeling that the way Khan has taken care of his son in law will come back and haunt his relationship with his eldest daughter. The rest of the family is what seems to be the kind of stock characters we see in every family saga: the cousins in love, the religious Appa, the young student and the obedient nephew. It remains to be seen if their narratives are equally as compelling. Seeing Saba Hamid and Atiqa Odho in a drama is usually a good sign that we might be getting some strong, female characters so fingers crossed.
For a first episode, Khan had a good introduction but for me it would have been better if Saba Hamid’s character had been given a little more time and focus. Noman Ejaz and Ejaz Aslam were excellent. Yamina Peerzada and Yasir Shah may have been the couple from hell in the story but they looked a lot more natural and at home on screen than the most of the younger cast. The weak links do seem to be the younger cast but I guess everyone has to learn somewhere. I hope that writer Syed Atif Ali can keep the momentum going without resorting to obvious plot turns. I enjoy serials where content is king and it makes a nice change from the usual star crossed lovers or sass Bahu dramas, however a lot depends on the execution. The promos for this drama certainly look exciting and promising, so I hope it lives up to expectations. Its simply fascinating how a violent man like Khan can seem like a victim one minute and perpetrator the next. It’s good to see Geo finally investing in good dramas with great actors and strong stories and I really hope it pays off.