Thursday, 29 September 2016

episode 82 nobody understands

"main chauda saal ka tha..." i was 14 years old. he always remembers that, as do those around him. that was the moment of tragedy. and as happens with such things somehow your own coordinates when devastation strikes take on a funny significance.  just like the caps we make from episodes and set them aside in time, a still from a moving frame, so do these details get frozen, caps within us, never to change, or add on the signs of time.

he was only 14, but she was only eight.

i began to see why the little girl was at the temple yesterday. the story design is really nifty. the device is a truly creative one. she is used beautifully to reveal a side of asr, and let khushi see it. of course, as you watched him engage with her and touch his face, you couldn't help but think was she there because his mother wanted to send someone to ease his pain (of course, you'd have to be as filmi as me to come to this thought and howl your guts out). she adds a lightness and innocence to the heavy emotional episode. but also, and very subtly she is there to allow us to empathise with khushi. khushi was about that age when she lost both her parents. as we see khushi suffering and pained by her own memories, our recent memory of a sweet chubby little girl sad in a temple wanting to make her father better is surely adding to our response. we have been shown how tender an age that is, and how devastated the little girl must have been.

despite khushi's stars, her devotion to dm, and her constant khushigiri, there is a part of her where that pain sits thick, dense, heavy, dark. she does her best not to look at it too often or moan and mope. but it isn't humanly possible to erase it completely.

another thing. when you are in such a state, the one who comes and gives you hope, makes you feel better you attach to them in a different way. asr went to the little girl, helped her, then sent her home. the girl will never forget this man. khushi's babuji came and held her in a time of shattering and took her home. can khushi ever forget this man? he was not related to her, she was the niece of his second wife, yet he embraced her, protected her, and became her father, more than that. her love and her gratitude and born of that, her right over him, all are complete and the purest feeling on earth.

in this episode, both these aspects of khushi's character come to light and continue the story poignantly. but everything had started climbing to the next level at the ajeeb stage really, and grown through all the games of khushi's-believe-it-or-not-gaming arcade, la la land, and the thief of lucknow. the lopsided smile, the long look exchanged while his girlfriend rubbed his cheek, the earring and the dupatta embroilment, the tum theek ho, an incredibly huge emotion had started spreading its roots and anchoring firmly through these tiny almost fleeting moments. in them seems rode hamesha.

so happened that all this happened just when the most tough time of the year for him was coming up. into the middle of that khushi charged her shaadi brigade. and all feelings went haywire. yet what had begun to grow, would not be denied. just that we'd see its most demanding and ugly face... as we did much later on a dark february night. but did anyone ever say that love had only a nice side? and isn't it true that we tend to take out our frustration on those we love and are closest to, while choosing to be polite and nice to people at a distance? it is strange, but then that's how it is. i have tried much to change this in my life, but really have failed. irritation in me means someone at home is going to get it, not the casual visitor. asr never showed his pain to anyone, not even di (how quickly he pulled back the evening before after giving in to his feelings for a few seconds), yet he let it all out in a nasty session to khushi. says something, doesn't it?

when having seen him with the child, having realised he is going through hell, and really wanting to reach out and help him,
khushi came and said his eyes were like his mother's, his pent up pain, sadness, helplessness, everything, everything that he could never talk to anyone about just crashed and shot up and fulminated like that flour from the box that khushi threw on the floor the day before in the kitchen. the force of it engulfed her and tossed violently her own agony within.

khushi would have left but for naniji. and of course, when he saw her with the platter filled with things meant for his parents' anniversary prayer, he grabbed it from her.

"i told you to go."

"woh nani ji ne..."

"shraddh ki taiyyaari sirf gharwale karte hain. aur maine tumse abhi kaha tha na, jhuti tassali dene wale log mujhe bilkul pasand nahin hai. aaj ka din mere liye bahut important hai aur aaj ke din mujhe tumhari shakal dekhni pade yeh mujhe bilkul pasand nahin hai." only family members are allowed to do these preparations, i told you i can't stand people who show false sympathy, today is an important day for me, and on this day to have to see your face isn't something i want.

how cruel can the tongue get.

"get out." she just couldn't take it any more, she hurried away, never saw him turning to look at her ... a pace to her walk, she has to get away. but di interrupted her, what about the tears on her face.

"kya hua?" what happened?

"kissine kuch kaha kya?" did anyone say anything?

anjali's pain is expressed in sharp contrast to her brother's. she becomes more tender, sensitive, concerned. "aapko apne amma aur bauji ki yaad aa rahi hai?" you're remembering your parents? anjali knows of khushi's background.

and khushi becomes an eight year old again before our eyes, like that little girl in the temple. the eager nod, trusting, wanting her parents back. they never do return. then the 18 year old spunky kid who has taken on this world in her own way returns and says what all those who have lost say to themselves and others all over the world:

"aur kar bhi kya sakte hain, anjali ji, jo guzar jaate hai, hum unhe kitna bhi bula lein, woh wapas nahin aate hain. sirf unki yaad aati hai."
what else can we do, anjali ji, those who pass on, however much we may call them, they don't return. only their memories come.

anjali completes the thought beautifully: their memories and their blessings on us.

unknown to both a young man watches and his devastated anew. what has he gone and done. his cruelty is at last noticed by him. "yeh maine kya kar diya... mujhe iss tarah baat nahin karne chahiye this." what have i gone and done, i shouldn't have spoken this way.
he must apologise. but jai prakash interrupts him about some call.
"main phone uthaunga ya pooja mein baithunga," always in character, brusque. he's looking for her, and she's gone.

khushi khushi... she's not there.

sanaya was outstanding in her scenes today. especially when she practically transforms into a little kid at anjali's question and then gives in to the offered hug, letting her tears flow. then she returns home to hear her babuji isn't well. why didn't anyone call me? she's frantic. frenetic chucking of bag and she rushes into the bedroom, to hug and hold close the man who made sure a girl of eight didn't lose her childhood. why do i get the feeling that what di is to asr, babuji is to khushi? someone who keeps it all steady. someone, looking at whom, they want to go to the next day, do something. live.

this story was as much about khushi as about asr. that's why we all keep coming back... for there was something real here and every character mattered. when we come to the episodes when that nature of ipk changes it will be difficult. but this episode? wonderful writing, direction, performance, screenplay design, dialogues, and of course, music, rabba vey around his harshness, in their tears and anger and inexpressible sadness. the music knows them better than they know themselves.

the shradh scene. in death also you remain family. mother daughter sister aunt. a grandson consoles his grandmother. he's getting his nightmare, hands clenched.


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