Critic Rating

Written by: Sophia Khurram

Directed by: Mohsin Mirza

Produced by: iDreams Productions

Beti continues the thrilling drama in episode 2 without missing a beat and brings us back to Mariam’s in-laws’ house where she finds herself clashing with their ignorance. The horrifying thought process of Mariam’s in-laws is further revealed when Taimoor, Azhar’s older brother, finds himself the father of an unexpected daughter. Under pressure from his grandmother, his wife is tearfully forced to kill her own daughter. However, the turmoil does not end there. Mariam (Saheefa Jabbar) who is pregnant herself, visits the hospital to find the gender of her own baby and discovers that she too is going to be the mother of a daughter.

There is never a banal moment in this drama, with more to explore with each second. Firstly, Sonia having to recite the azaan into her daughter’s ear before taking her off the ventilator was such a well-handled scene, and of all that Beti has offered, it was the most heartbreaking (which is saying a lot). The tragedy was not overplayed, rather was tactfully portrayed.  Secondly, now that Sonia lost the battle against the vile in-laws, we cannot help but root for Mariam who does not stand even a single moment of misogyny exhibited by them. Not only does the character speak up for what is right even if it means going against her own husband, she also displays patience and bravery in the face of the ignorance thrown her way, essentially being a rather well-written character as a whole. Within this, Saheefa Jabbar really catches the viewer’s attention since she portrays the fearful determination of her character very well.

 

Saheefa Jabbar in Drama Beti

 

The writing continues its heavy themes of social commentary, especially when Azhar himself shows how blatantly in denial he is. While the ignorance of the grandmother is pretty direct and in the audience’s faces, Azhar’s ignorance is far more realistic since he simply cannot gauge the possibility of having a daughter. His masculinity is somehow threatened by the very thought, and although he seems to accept Mariam’s argument that “there’s nothing wrong with daughters’, he repeats over and over that his child will be a boy constantly. While there are many who openly express ideas similar to the grandmother’s, Azhar’s reasoning is a result of childhood conditioning which many of us can relate to. Although we might not intend on fostering such notions, they still exist within us despite everything. To overcome such deeply-rooted beliefs is a hard thing to do, and Azhar’s refusal to see the problem within himself shows this very thing.

 

Fahad Mirza as Azhar

 

Even at a more perfunctory glace, characters like the grandmother play a strategic role in developing not just the plot but the protagonist as well. Asma Abbas plays the role of the villain meticulously and the placing of the character’s scenes are also not overdone. It has a good balance of social criticism and an entertaining drama.

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