Critic Rating

Written by: Samira Fazal

Directed by: Ilyas Kashmiri

Produced by: Momina Duraid Productions

Episode 13 starts off on a lighter note as Arsal and Hareem’s marriage brings out the joy in everyone, even Arsal’s father. But the gloom of Asher and Neha’s absence casts a dark shadow on marriage celebrations. In an attempt to remove this gloom and have his brother and sister-in-law become a part of his happiness, Arsal goes to Karachi and surprises Neha. At first, Asher and Neha pretend they are still together to placate Arsal but by the time the episode ends, Arsal finally figures out the news of their splitting.

 

 

The episode was pretty lackluster until the very end when we finally see a twist. It seems as if the drama is sticking to a tried-and-tested formula instead of venturing into more innovative story development. Despite this, Tajdeed e Wafa still manages to grasp our interest more than other dramas. The main reason for that is because it is not wholly dependent on just the storyline. The acting, the dialogues, the directing, the camera angles… each stands out in its own right and in places where the story falls short, these aspects manage to pull the drama away from utter failure. A lot of its interest lies in the younger cast members who manage to represent a newer generation of acting and television excellently. Ahmed Ali Akbar, who has the longest scenes of all, truly reflects the youthful naivety of his character almost naturally, a feat for a first acting debut. So even in parts where the story itself does not capture the audience’s interest, these young and talented actors certainly do their utmost.

 

 

Another thing that worked in favor of this drama is the selected light moments that give relief from the heavy nature of the rest of the drama. Specially between Neha and Asher this helps make them more endurable, since majority of the times they are shown fighting. By adding a sense of humor to their bickering, the writer makes the separation sadder since we see a shadow of what they had once been. Plus, it’s nice to see a drama not take itself too seriously by focusing on the tragic element only. And the juxtaposition of Arsal poking fun at a serious Asher is another sad moment since the former is unaware of the gravity of Asher and Neha’s separation. The light moments are very strategically placed as well, and build up tension for the final revelation when Arsal finds out the truth and his world comes crashing down.

This episode did not have much in terms of substance but nevertheless made up in other ways. But the ending of this episode is sure to cause a storm in the lives of everyone involved, most of all Arsal. Suffice to say, it can easily be predicted that there certainly won’t be as many happy instances in the lives of the characters after this.

 

Umaima Munir is a film and theatre nerd who is extremely passionate about well-written scripts. Her love for television stems from days of watching old PTV dramas such as Andhera Ujala.

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