Thursday, 28 April 2016

episodes 376/377 the son and the father


as the basketball progressed, two things became apparent. one was khushi's fuzzy, troubled state of mind. the other was an underscoring of a relationship between asr and aarav... aarav as the son, aarav for whom asr runs across and makes sure he scores a basket, aarav whom he lofts up so he may push a ball into the hoop and score. the little boy gets the most tender attention from the brusque man who is not known to be fond of children. and right after all is done, asr actually puts him on his shoulder and looks at him indulgently. 

i thought 376 was really focused on the son aspect of the quandary khushi is in. the entire thing is really from khushi's perspective. she notices every little interaction between the two and reacts to them. 

of course, along with that comes the mother of the "son" and all the worries she unleashes in khushi. when asr and sheetal play one on one, khushi almost flakes out. her entire concentration is on the two of them.


when sheetal suddenly shouts "khushi!" and throws the ball to her without waiting to see if she has khushi's attention or not, asr yells, "wwwatch out!" to his wife.

but does she notice?

she doesn't even notice that arnav ji is teasing her, wanting to include her in, bantering, trying to have a private little moment with her... nothing sinks in. 

she doesn't see him smiling at her antics...

the poor girl just keeps feeling more and more left out of the scene... and by the end of play it's almost as if asr, aarav, and sheetal are a unit, and khushi the outsider.

of course, all of this is to do with that fear of losing asr and an obsession regarding aarav's father, a conviction that asr must be the father... a conviction triggered by exactly what it's hard to pinpoint.

as i said earlier while writing 374/375, if this idea had been explored with depth and written well, would have been worth watching. even in this not well conceived imbroglio, sanaya takes me to the heart of her fear.

the fear of a lover. an unreasonable, suffocating fear. all it took was a handkerchief and a clever villain to get othello to a point of madness. here there's a whole child and a cagey mother who refuses to say who the father of the child is.

asr, however, seems to be a bit out of touch with khushi at this point, he doesn't notice her lost air, he doesn't miss her at the end of the game.
and anyway, asr an ace basketball player spending time on the court instead of the library is hard to imagine. i'll let it pass.


in the shot where khushi sat under an umbrella, trouble in caps written across her face, vulnerable and fey... looking in at a scene where she seems not to fit in, i was so reminded of 65 and the lovely girl with her umbrella. that time too, she was looking in, seeing asr's relationship with his sister, getting to see a side of him she never would have guessed existed. feeling the emotions of that bond. she the outsider. 


here too. now it's asr looking at a boy who could be his son. bonding with him, a circle of love that seems to include her life, her love and two strangers.

the writers forgot they had shown asr and sheetal as rivals on the court in the previous episode, suddenly, they were the two of them against the whole college, asr reminisces, and we come to further underscoring of this relationship between son, mother and asr... the awesome threesome.

at last asr, who now is into hi fiving (someone save me) asks, "khushi kahan hai?" where's khushi. and it's touching to see how happy it makes the tremulous girl with the jalebis. though i really did not get that ott nightmare of hers replete with khushi at asr's feet begging him not leave her. why oh why must this so called funny stuff be written. 

if 376 was about the son, 377 was all about the father.

right from sheetal looking longingly at asr's pictures to asr muttering about teaching aarav basketball, taking the day off in fact (no, asr would't do that but i'll let this pass too) and finally to the demand by aarav that he be introduced to his father just as his mother had promised she would once they were in delhi.

dad. father. pita ji. the whole episode reverberated with the word. aarav screamed for his father, threw a tantrum in the living room. it clearly impacted asr... this is a pain he understands... that of never having a father who did his duty, played the role he was meant to. in one single shot, frown deeply etched and yet a vulnerability on the face, barun sobti accentuated the theme of father, the one he never calls out to, because he wasn't there... the one he wants to be nothing like. yet father. always important to a child. hamesha.

khushi got caught in the turbulence of her emotions.

a sweet little scene in the bedroom with asr where she couldn't even bring herself to look calm and happy as she always tries to. she was rattled, irritated... not only was that sheetal ji looking at her husband's photographs and being secretive about it, asr and aarav both seemed to like each other. the girl was hassled beyond belief.

and a lovely boy girl moment. at least you're not in the cupboard he quipped. asked her if she was upset. she of course said, no. then promptly gave him her clothes to wear. that distracted, scatter brained girl. because someone else seems to be in the life of the boy.

a father, a son, a boy, a girl, and a problem that seems impossible to resolve. why did i get the feeling the sheetal story was meant to go in another direction? if indeed aarav is just a kid she'd picked up from nowhere and schooled cunningly to be like asr, then how come they are having mother son discussions by the poolside, where no one can hear them and aarav is still asking for his dad. there's no sign of him thinking asr is his father... yet later when sheetal's plans are revealed, aarav says sheetal had told him all along, asr was his father.

that old malaise of ipk, story changing every day.

at the end of 377, a triumphant smile from khushi... if aarav is going to meet his father somewhere outside, then it can't be asr. such relief.  her eyes rolled up to thank dm.

Ying Yang

i enjoyed the basketball game though, thought it was shot well.

asr, of course, looked rather dishy. but i am still struggling with character. he studied like a maniac in college and planned his revenge and grimaced and frowned and maybe took out a couple of girls... but basketball? i don't want to get tired "sochte sochte," someone's playing a game with me, i am happy to just go along.