Wednesday, 26 August 2015

episode 193 story of gussa

a woman alone and a man who had a story that seethed in his eyes, and never quite got told.

it is the morning after. the hangover is heavy and thick and tearing through every member of the family. its expression strange and scraping and grating on the nerves as such things tend to be. a girl will be excluded, perhaps only mami ji's usual barbed comments will give phatti sari a sense of normalcy. that hasn't changed. even if di looks at her with a vacant unsmiling stare, jiji doesn't make eye contact, looks away, refuses to give her prashad.

she is badi bahu as mami archly points out, the elder daughter in law. to her this is a role that must be fulfilled with a sense of responsibility, duty. she had not asked for this role, it was thrust upon her... it had to be accepted, played. khushi is no deserter. she enters the game and plays the best she can.

this morning she seeks to find some calm if possible, within and in the home. but she will be denied by all. even nani ji, her staunchest ally will turn away, then viciously berate her. i thought of the nani ji of the early episodes, tougher, harsher when crossed. shades of asr.

it was a painful episode to view but if one had an upheaval at home, possibly people would react in bizarre ways, just trying to cope with it.

even shyam is in disarray, in the middle of the hall, he speaks to khushi of his pyaar. that stopping of sanaya when called by shyam was beautiful; all her angst, her tension in that sudden halting, the rigid back. a girl alone.

shyam was plaintive, how wronged he was, how could she treat him thus he moaned. the man has truly lost it. he spoke of the "kissi aur", the other she has married.

there was the sound of a door off frame. and kissi aur entered.

how did barun get that majestic dark air as if on call.

i noticed he was in the clothes he wore the night before. so was she. a telling note there, everyone has changed and woken up to  anew day, but them. tired, frazzled, emotionally drained, the two of them are still the bride and the bridegroom, one mad moment having completely changed both their lives.

he saw khushi running up and shyam below. he would have clobbered him... but then someone screamed "nani... ma" and he had to instantly focus on that.

he was always real... good bad nasty raging whatever, but real. he ran up the stairs two at a time and reached nani's room. nani had locked herself in, everyone was panicking, in that state anjali immediately spoke to him...

he solved the problem... his way. with force.

nani was there, forlorn and wretched on her bed. and with high fever. he offered to call the doctor and suddenly he was given the cold shoulder by the same di. he had erred. yes, he was the one everyone needed when things collapsed, and when things seemed better... he could be ignored.

i found his and his sister's relationship always interesting. funny power play in it. he always let her win... ultimately. and she knew how badly he needed her so she played her games, maybe not consciously, it just happened that way.

"yeh sab tumhari vajah se hua hai, chhotey!" all this has happened because of you, chhotey. anjali had something believable about her.

perhaps her anger really was rooted in the fact that she felt totally excluded from his life at that moment. he had married khushi without even bothering to tell her. and afterward too, not a word. "tumne toh hume ek pal mein paraya kar diya, chhotey." you've disowned me in just a moment, my bad translation of a line loaded with sentimentality.

even as he tried to handle this attitude from di and the tension grew all around, came the accusation that had a man's story in it, a story that never really got well told. pity, because it was essential to the evolution of arnav singh raizada, the man who descended from a helicopter and looked up at an old mansion with a dark relentless storm in his eyes. 

"kal raat toh unhone sabit kar diya ki woh apan baap ke hi bete hain!"  last night he proved he is his father's son truly, said nani.

instant cut to chhotey and his reaction. crack! went something in me. the doleful melody signalling a mother never forgotten, always missed and longed for, played. he was not in a good place and no one could feel him, sense him... this was not just anger, something else there. that anger, attributed to the father, which has been mentioned by nani ji before and riled him for he believes there's nothing in him like his father, that anger and these statements were a window to a key story that made him him. perhaps a deeper exploration of his relationship with pita ji, the specifics; and the inability of arnav singh to walk away unscathed from it all, his character took a hit, he inherited his father's gussa... or pethaps, what seemed like an inherited thing was not that at all,.. his gussa was his own, and its colour and shape came from the innate nature of the man, with its power and yet its cleanness. there are many things you can do with that gussa that gets noticed and mentioned again and gain.

but that did not happen.

i do understand that when writing a daily soap with the demands of indian tv, which often means changes at the last minute and fairly unsympathetic channel directions, all a writer can do is leave little gaps and openings in the narrative through which one can walk into a tale or if the chance presents itself... somewhere along the way, the opportunity to walk in through the door left ajar tagged, asr gussa pitaji, was lost.

a silence.

he walked out of the room.

anjali sat weeping over her mother's letter, caressing the kangans. again a story half told. interestingly the writer could not leave asr's parents out of the wedding... they seemed to come and attend via these mentions and emotions

he strode into his sister's room. you could feel him bristling. a sense of enough said in a short sharp exclamation.

"di, yeh drama aur kitne din chalega..." how long will this drama go on. he does what he does... he will not be questioned... and all this moping and blaming, just getting to him.

di is incensed. drama?

too bad, he retorts, the sooner you all accept this, the better.

the sister for whom he as done all this is of course completely unaware and is the most angry with him.

very endearing the next stern words from the angry young man: di, main apni galati maant hoon, i accept i've done wrong but still you have to accept that khsuhi and i are already married. aapke gussa hone se ya na manne se yeh baat badal nahin jaaygi... your being angry or not won't alter that.

when he can't take it any more, he hollers... enough di!
he is not going to talk about it any more.. if they don't accept...

anjali shoots back, then what, what would he do.

and that old threat of his, made when he is driven beyond a point. toh main (gritted teeth) aur khushi yeh ghar chhorkar chale jaayenge. then khushi and i will leave this house.

absolutely hot, on the point, smashing delivery.

i am again missing this drama... i know what happens, i know the story as it got told and with incalculable damage.


it feels almost like the first time. and the many possibilities of what might have happened in ipk call again. thrilling. the aftershock of that threat still in me.

and he leaves. anjali's eyes show the threat has hit home. he knows what works and yet at one level he means it.

anjali can't handle this tension, she cracks under the fear of break ups.. she was such a well drawn character up to a point. and soon she is in nani's room to get to the next point in this difficult situation.

nani was shaken and said this time chhotey had crossed the line of maryada, a family's self respect and regard...

anjali agreed but said a rather lovely thing, he has done wrong,
lekin nani woh humare chhotey hain, ye parivar ka hissa.

but he is our chhotey, a part of our family.

the whole sense of family, of the dynamics, of the give and take that transpires to keep families together, the ability to weather situations big and small, and many signs of getting family dynamics, its complexities, made ipk a more valuable and endearing love story somehow. i cannot imagine asr and kkg romancing without mami's hello hi bye bye or di's slow gentle talk and stroking of cheek, or akash's goofiness, or nani's tough love and innate grace... even lavanya became part of this family.

most tv stories harp about parivar parampara and have heroines railing about how they will or won't do this that or the other for the sake of humara parivar, usually with self righteous stern face, rousing melodramatic music and elongated vowels. devis out to slay evil.

didn't ever happen in ipk. only maybe when kkg brought back shyam there was a hint of it, otherwise, nothing. yet, ipk's fam is the most fam like to me. i have aunts and cousins and uncles who have notes of these characters. yes, bua ji lives and so does mami ji, perhaps with exactly those holes cut into her blouse sleeves.

khushi remained shunned till the end. there was no contact or confrontation with asr even. anjali swore she too will not forgive chhotey, obviously we were meant to get tense as hell. we did... but then that "enough!" rang out in the mind and one had to smile.

a note:
found nani's bedroom decor, that charpai like cot, the matka with water, the ubiquitous pickle jar, that rattan and basic wood furniture interesting. a rural look and feel. as if no matter how much wealth had been made, and how metro their lives, nani ji could never quite disconnect with her upbringing, her earth. not just her language, her personal space remains rooted there. nice. people are at times like that indeed, especially as they age.


a song from way back. where do you go to, my lovely, when you're alone in bed, oh won't you tell me the thoughts that surround you, i want to look inside your head, yes i do. peter sarstedt, 1969. for reasons not exactly the same, but compelling nonetheless, i'd really like to look inside asr's head. 

credit: uploader 

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