Sunday, 16 August 2015

episode 188 it's your moment

"tum mama banne wale ho."

and a moment arrived in a man's life that was really the beast. the play of life, the twist of fate, the trial by hell fire. till such a moment comes in one's life it's perhaps impossible to know the utter helplessness trapped in a tiny spec of time. sometimes in just one sentence of about five words. a sentence that once would have made you ecstatic. such is the irony of life. the writers crafted a perfect moment for things to fall apart.

arnav singh raizada is no fool. he hears his sister utter the words and he knows what it means. the tympani echo and sound plunges away. he says not a word, but his face says it all, the night reaches its darkest instant.

interestingly the writers get anjali to say the words that would have maximum impact on a personality like asr's, one that thrives on protecting those he loves, on taking responsibility. she does not say, "main maa banne wali hoon," i am going to be a mother... "chhotey, hamare yahan ek chhota sa nanha sa mehman aane wala hai," chhotey, we're going to have a small, tiny little guest... no, she says "you will be an uncle." being the man he is, the responsibility suggested in that statement will be grasped and owned... he will the child's uncle, he will protect.

on the day he thought he'd be happy, perhaps the happiest ever, he first thought his sister was dead and then found she'd had a bad accident, rattled by this, he decided not to waste time but go and tell khushi what he'd been meaning to tell her. and in that state of mind, fragile, tremulous, full of love and hope, he saw the woman he loved in another's arm... the arms of a man he trusted, and whom his sister loved to distraction. then he watched the girl who made his heart beat faster, tell his brother in law to leave his beloved sister. and finally as if that were not enough, a news that would have filled him with joy, the arrival at last of a new member in their family, the first birth after the death of his parents, di's first child, his first niece or nephew... that news came and the night closed in completely on him.

what is a man to do in a situation like this?

once upon a time i used to think such things don't happen, time has taught me they do. people do find themselves in the grapple of such moments. 
every situation comes with its specifics... beyond should have, ought to have, right, wrong, etc. our many loves and duties ask difficult and demanding questions of us, our world breaks into pieces, yet we have to make choices, even when we know not a single option would yield happiness or joy. even when we are betrayed and torn, and aching, and needing succour, we would have to do our duty and choose a path.

it was a geeta moment really in his life. he knew he'd have to wage war against his own, he perhaps collapsed and thought, i can't do this... but then he is the warrior, it is his duty to fight the war not ask questions, never give up. and so arjuna picked up his gandiva and took aim. at his own heart and the one he loved as his own. and such is the tyranny of the hour, even then he couldn't achieve what he hoped to.

shyam walked in... asr turned and looked at him and we knew he knew that there was nothing he could do about shyam any more, not if di's happiness and health had to be kept intact...

just a moment and its dynamics.

that was all.

with "tum mama banne wale ho" everything changed everything.

shyam fretted... not aware of the wondrous reprieve life had planned for me.


in a smartly written dialogue which seemed to be talking of his misdemeanours but was actually about di's longing for a child, he was told of the baby.

and shyam made the connection... he understood what this baby meant.

she said there's no one more important than these two people in her life, they were her mainstays. in asr's life too, two people were the most important. again the irony, he believed one of them was false and immoral which she wasn't. and di believed her husband was honest and loving and the best husband in the world, which he wasn't. that sense of reflections which we see all the time in ipk.

she called him her younger brother, yet his role was always that of the elder one. ever since 14... the protector of a challenged elder sister, he acted as the older one and made sure everything worked. people who have gone through turbulence at a young age and are of the responsible sort of mental makeup, they would have perhaps understood his state of mind, his thought process... his need to set things right.

years ago, like that snap of a pearl dori, there had been a gun shot... and their lives like those pearls had scattered... bikhar gaya.

a young boy has been trying ever since to put the pearls back on the string, bring life back to happiness, to order.

as his sister rested her head on his shoulder he let shyam know with a look this was not over... asr was not giving up. both his arms went around her cradling her, shyam mocked, not knowing to what extent his brother in law could go.

and when shyam showed his hypocritical love to anjali, asr couldn't bring himself to look at the scene.

he left.

a white suv in the night... his trusted steed, his space, his escape vehicle. asr had to go find his head again. his heart was not perhaps to be found tonight. the car sped down streets and skidded to a halt. screech of tyres, the night and its sounds... 

a low angle shot tilted up, red rimmed eyes, a loss of control on the face, hands gripping steering wheel, a voice in his head, arnav singh raizada struggled with the treachery of life.

"chhotey tum... mama... banne wale ho..." a fabulously conceived and crafted scene started. he saw his jija ji smiling, knowing the game had turned... a dangerous man
dominated his sister's life yet nothing could be done now.

"humey sabse zyada pyaar karne wale humare pati..." the husband who loves me the most, said his gullible sister.

"bataiye apni di ko..." tell your sister, the monster taunted.

a layered cascade of voices raced through his mind, building up the torment, the sense of impending doom. almost suffocating, he jerked out of the car. embers flew in the night. the surroundings, nature, machine, everything reflected his turmoil, a poetic rendition of  a state of mind.

the voices in his head went on, "aapki jagah humare payron mein nahin, yahan hai..." your place is not at my feet, it's by my heart, a snake cast a spell on his sister.

then came the voice that possibly hurt him the most... khushi's. "agar aap ke liye yeh rishta koi maine nahin rakhta toh aap yeh shadi tod kyon nahin dete?" if this relationship means nothing to you, then why don't you break this marriage?

memories flashed... all painful.  churning roiling crazy making.

khushi is in shyam's arms, "chhap gaya hai"... khushi ji is mine, my everything... he flinched as the words hit him hard again and again. each word a killer a lethal weapon...

yet he fought back, he had to, he had no choice.

a hundred memories and among them, the most poignant one, he buries his face in his sister's lap and weeps... don't leave me like maa, di.

and the nightmare returned at the thought of maa... everything always went back to her. sometimes it does.

he heard the scream of the 14 year old. maaa. and the scream bridged time and came out here rending the night...

a single solitary scream. actually, a majestic roar. by one who will not give in. perhaps he invoked his mother and asked her for strength... for stoic determination.


leaning against a heartless machine, possibly the only thing he could trust and hold onto now, he let his insides roar out against it all... the injustice, the pain...

and then maybe maa did send help, a reset button seemed to be pressed somewhere, and the memories that were new and so very precious and beautiful came.

he was hugging khushi in the rain... rabba vey in its most heart rending tones brought her back to him.

in a store room one hot sunday afternoon he was lying on her...

there was scarcely any anger now, only unbearable pain. he held his car and fell against it, as though seeking a place of comfort
to cry his heart out... (a while ago wiwy did a short sharp post on his relationship with the suv and how he held on to it as he broke down, made me look at this nuance and empathise.)

through the tears, the pictures flashed.

he was holding her as he took off the fairy lights.

he cried, he had felt his heart beat for a girl called khushi... happiness... his sunshine. in the dark of the night he began to lose her.

in a guest house where he'd called her name the first time, he held her, both angry, both so aware of the other.

she was turning back toward him after he said sorry.

he was putting on her payal...

in a lucid string came her thoughts. no screaming shouting turmoil nothing. just on a simple rabba vey, thoughts of the girl his heart did yearn for, who gave him sukoon, without whom he didn't want to live, his heartbeat told him that.

there was no confusion, just his emotion, full, overflowing, beautiful...

and he was going to kiss her, that memory of convulsive yearning which came again and again, to him and to her.

at last the fight left him, the sadness, the feeling of abandonment, of failure seemed to take over, he bagan to slide down toward the ground... earth.

mother earth.

memories of maa as he sat on firm firm earth, his world now completely without moorings. is earth a symbol for mother here? i feel it is. he is seeking a place that is rock solid, comforting that will make him feel safe.

how would he return to himself again, how would he cope? and true to character, what called out to him most... his immediate responsibility... the child... di... chhotey tum mama banne wale ho.

he put his head down on his arms as he heard shyam's rant about khushi...

that was asr on the ground, head down, bereft... but was he defeated?

again the cacophony, the many voices... the destructive moments.

at last on the sounds shyam and khushi's betrayal... he raised his had.

eyes red rimmed.

asr may have been tricked by the darkness, but the director and barun licked the night. apparently this whole sequence was shot in very little time. hardly any takes. maybe the constraints brought out the best in all who were involved. as for me the shot of asr crying helplessly, just did me in. body language, turn of head, the defiant flinching and pacing... all of it was asr, not just any man, in agony, in tears. and if this is what barun does with glycerine tears maybe it's a good thing he can't really cry.
episode ended crowded around happiness, while khushi and asr moved relentlessly toward a terrible decision. a highly dramatic episode structure: extreme happiness contrasted with destruction and a dying of spirit. khushi heard about the child. and decided yet again not to disclose anything about shyam. why she felt this might make things alright, even after knowing shyam for what he is. why she didn't anyway talk to arnav sigh raizada whom she loved and who loved her... will remain a mystery. but in the turbulence of emotions, we humans make mistakes. many would be made on this valentine's day. she looks lovely in her dress, a bit dramatic, but given what's on its way...

a thought:

there seems to be a pondering and a point of view on action and intention in ipk on two of the toughest situations presented.

first khushi. she is tested sorely by the question of shyam's duplicity. in a simpler situation, she could have just gone and revealed it to the raizadas, but here too the demands of many loves and what one owes to them and of duty came up. truth took a beating. khushi decided to keep quiet... not once or twice but again and again, including this very night. but did that hiding of the truth finally achieve what she had set out to achieve?

and asr. in the chaos of the hour, did he perhaps think of the fruit of his action more than the action, and maybe that's where he committed his error? he wanted to save his di's child, for which he took a step that was not just. did life tell him with the death of the unborn baby, that we humans ultimately are answerable for our actions?

what he had set out to do he failed to achieve. as did khushi. was this an indication of the philosophy of ipk? was there a moral: it doesn't matter what your intentions are... if the action is not right, you will pay a heavy price for it and not achieve what you'd set out to?

the killing of the baby was a thing i could never face or stomach in ipk. it filled me with rage. and this aspect of action and intention was not pondered, but it still comes up as a question in my mind, i just wanted to share.


the terrace episodes 

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