Negativity Much – In Our Dramas?

Right now when we all know that the Pakistani drama industry is in all it’s glory, our industry is not only being appreciated in Pakistan but worldwide as well. I feel the content that our respected writers are exposing us to, is fictitious. I have seen so many weak story-lines coming into execution just because they were dealing with some sort of taboos of our society. I hate to say but even the rules of Islam are being ridiculed just because some writer somewhere thought that there wasn’t anything else left to write a story about so why not play with our very fragile concepts of Islam too?

Without taking any names of the dramas I’ll speak about so many negativity that the writers & then the whole production team has shown to us over the last few years. Divorce has now become a major part of our story line. If one or the other couple in any of our drama is NOT divorced then according to the writer, the drama won’t be a hit. It’s ohkay, divorce has gotten a lot more common but that is just because the society is moving away from the teachings of Islam & that doesn’t mean that they have to use these close to real-life incidents to actually bring it on our screens for their own revenue.

The term ‘Halala’ was taught to us by our parents as something which depicted a severe punishment set by Allah in response to the divorce. While surfing through some channels I actually started watching this so called comedy serial on one of our well-reputed channels & there the guy who jokingly told the girl that why don’t you get married to this guy & divorce him & ‘phir tum Halala kar lena’. I think these are the fine lines which should never be joked about consciously or unconsciously, because the media is our mind-controlling machine & it is set to program the viewers minds. We learn mostly what we see on the TV & this fact can not be doubted. Anyways, listening to this term actually made me cringe because I don’t think it gives a right to any of the content or dialogue writer to just blurt out anything in the name of a comedy?

Came across one of the drama serials about an year ago where a wife’s husband gets into a serious situation with wife’s sister & then the ‘satti savitri’ sister gets divorced just because her husband couldn’t hold his horses, after getting married to the younger sister he realizes that his ex-wife was better & then he comes back telling her that if she agrees for Halala, he’ll be fine with it. I mean what sort of a message was being conveyed through such a drama? That it’s the guy who was at fault & just because NOW he wants his wife back, he wants her to go through such a huge thing.

Ohkie, now all the sisters in the world according to our media are evil. This is the new trend set off after Maat. I didn’t dislike the story or the concept of Maat because yes for the whole audience it was something new to see. But ever since it seems like the writers limited their thinking prowess & got stuck in the Maat era, literally trashing every single relation that two sisters can experience in their life. Be it a sister’s husband, or sister’s fiance, nothing was spared & rather maligned just for the sake of entertainment. What we came to see in Maat was even based on reality that the husband or the wife does tend to grow out of each other in years & this is what the character of Saba Qamar did just because she had other standards in life, therefore choosing a more well-settled husband for herself. But after this serial so many other dramas came to surface with similar story line but with actually a lot more sickness that one couldn’t even think of.

I know so many of our writers are well respected for one writing of theirs or the other, but in this matter I do appreciate Umera Ahmed because she does highlight all the negatives of our societies but every time she has a lesson to be conveyed through them, to which most of us in fact all of us can relate to, but her caliber is different. The wavelength of her stories is far beyond than many of the writers out there, who later try to make stories by picking up a few bits & bobs from her original stories. I saw so many dramas which were always similar to Umera Ahmed’s writings but the level was completely different or in simple terms a bit more commercial with some ‘tarka’.

A whole new campaign I would say prevalent on our screen these days is the marriage of a girl & then her ordeals. Her saas, her nand, her irresponsible husband & what not. The one who stands up for herself becomes the negative character & the one who works like a ‘massi’ & doesn’t demand anything in return becomes the best example of a ‘bahu’. Every girl knows that marriage comes with a lot of happiness but with certain baggage attached so why only focus on the bad side of the picture in stead of maintaining a balance?

Another interesting in fact disgusting thing that I noticed was that every younger one of the sister’s duo is a gold-digger. Each & every drama told the story of a younger sister being the evil & the materialistic one, to such a point that she is ready to take her sister’s place. These days this drama is on-air in which some Nikkah got wrong (a whole new level of ignorance shown) but just because the youngest sister has seen where her eldest is going to be married, she now is having thoughts of staying in the Nikkah with her jeeja. Another, in fact so many of the dramas have been been on-air showing that the younger sisters are the evil ones & the elders are better than the saints which actually is completely false. In real lives, I have seen so many of the younger sisters actually a bit more mature than the elder ones.

For once I want to see ONE such drama in which the sisters bonding is shown nicely. I think Khoya Khoya Chand is the currently on-air drama which shows that the two sisters have a good relationship (though I didn’t see but could figure out from some of the glimpses). & a few months ago Tanhaiyan Naye Silsilay showed some refreshing bonding of two sisters, though I was not a fan but because it walked on the lines set by the original Tanhaiyaan, it showed some nice bonding between the sisters & apart from these I just can not recall any other drama? Extra-marital affair is another spicy aspect of one’s married life that our drama writers are resorting too. Every other guy in the drama these days is shown having an extra marital affair & when exposed he gives such insane arguments that we just can’t help nodding our heads in disbelief. The current on-air & much hyped drama has taken such a sick turn which I would definitely wouldn’t want to see where a girl is framing her own father with some evil schemes & taking a help of her own friend. I think this was the last thing which I ever even thought of seeing on Pakistani Television??? The same girl goes around proposing her step-brother, I think we have now taken liberalism to a whole new level!

I feel there are so many aspects of our life which can be represented through our dramas & in such a time of distress I don’t think anyone would want to switch on the TV to actually get hold of a bit more of a negativity around. A few dramas do touch some norms but in such a way that tackling them doesn’t become difficult & we actually want to see what happens more but I feel all the time focusing on the similar story lines again & again makes it a lot more tiresome & nothing to be amazed about.

I do see dramas of other ethnicity in which they also speak about their social standards & even the love stories but I feel they are more decent in approach towards their social norms than we are. We always tend to cross just so many lines even when we see a love story, sadly! It is interesting that even those countries are known for their negativeness but the way they portray their lifestyle is commendable. Speaking of India & about their lifestyle – which I know on a personal level too, strategically what we see on their TV screen is completely opposite. All those glamorous ladies with extravagant lavish homes, even to the point where it looks unreal (in fact it is unreal obviously) but this is what we call as image management. They show things which only represents a certain class of India but in Pakistan where the lifestyle & standards are so much better than so many countries, sadly our drama writers are trying to spoil everything – be it our image, our relations, our culture & so much more.

Every-time I have a discussion with any of the people around me & even whenever I read the comments, it is quite satisfying to know that people think on all these lines & never hold back in labeling them as cheapness. I, then fail to understand that which percentage of Pakistanis are these who approve of all this on coming on to our TV screens??? I hope that we see some reality based dramas in a whole different light & the aspect which makes our norms & life look more real without any such ‘mirch masala’ or any such tag lines which may scream that Pakistan is a depressed country with depressed people.

Keep Supporting,
Zahra Mirza.

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  • CanadianGurl

    where well written article. the dramas have become so disgusting now..esp the one where u mentioned the nikkah with the wrong sister. i mean where has dat ever happened in the human history.
    also here i would say the only positive drama i know on tv right now is probably Aun Zara, great with humour and shows respect for the always negative relationship of Saas Bahu.

    • Zahra Mirza

      Thank you CG for your say & agreeing to my points. Yes, I never heard of such an abrupt & unplanned Nikkah where the Molvi Sahab or the father didn’t even bother to check who the bride was. I mean it’s a general feeling that no matter how strict a father is, he always congratulates his daughter when she signs the Nikkah nama. LOL! But here it’s just so so wrongly depicted.

      I am glad that you like Aunn Zara, it’s my favorite show too & I am reviewing it as well. Would love to hear your bit on it sometime. 🙂

  • Amna Salam

    You did great by writing this article. Reflects my feelings to 100% extent.
    I always have this point that our society is bad, corrupted, centre of wrong customs. But is it necessary that all of this has to showcased on our screens? do our producers realize what they are feeding into our minds, may it be kids or even teenagers..

    People might argue that so what, you can read the same stuff in the books. Well, yes but they are poles apart. While reading, you imagine up the situation to just that extent where it can help you to read forward. Our “made up” situation might also be wrong. But in the dramas, they show everything perfectly. And when I say perfectly, i mean to the last detail. Hint: Your point of the dughter/father drama

    I have come across many people who suffer from the situations depicted in our dramas. And believe it or not, they find themselves in those characters. And are hooked to the story just so that they know what would the end be. And then think it would be same as theirs. Seriously? I mean they are ready to follow whatever the drama shows them?

    Divorce has become a child’splay. Yahan kuch masla hua and yahan larkay nai talaq dau di. Whereas in Islam it is the last stage when nothing can reunite the couples..

    The sister rivalry. Yes, Islam allows the sister to marry her brother in law incase there is a divorce or her sister dies. But it doesn’t mean that now every sister has to get herself married to her jeeja. I mean by showing these kind of dramas, those girls out there who never thought about thier “behnoi” in such way are having “‘thoughts”.. Is this what our industry wants?

    And I’m fed up with the Molvis of our dramas. Why can’t theyever show a good Molvi both from inside and outside? Willit hurt them, I guess because the usual “tarkas” have become the recipe of a good drama nowadays..

    • Zahra Mirza

      Thank you so much Amna. So glad to know & like I said, there are people still with these values intact. I know, no one’s life is perfect & everyone has something or the other going on in their lives but this just doesn’t mean that every reality has to make it to our screens with salt shaker so that we can be reminded of our miseries. (using word OUR in a general context) 😉

      I swear the whole jeeja/sali & now the step sister/brother scene is the yuckiest one of all. Sadly our drama writers think that they can put up any sort of a trash on the piece of a paper & it will make the drama a hit. I am actually hating Kadurat & the promos these days. Didn’t bother watching it after the very first episode because the whole background music & the scheming plotting manhoosiyat was intolerable for me.

      IF we actually look into the divorce prescribed in Islam, it takes a time span of 6 months to actually reach to the finality. You give first talaq as a warning & then wait for 3 months, then the 2nd one if you don’t find things getting better then again there’s another ultimatum for 3 months & then in the end if nothing works right, the divorce is finalized. But I guess we’re just an inch away from being shown that the Talaq can actually happen on a Ufone Free SMS Package or Whatsapp. LOL!

      & oh yeah, thank you for raising such an important point which I forgot to mention but had it in my mind. They always show the wrong & all those Jalali molvis who are depicting the wrong Islam along with those peers & fakirs who are selling amulets. I mean this is the limit.

      You know our Media is actually a representative of what our country, our culture & our identity is but sadly in the game of commercialism, all that is left far behind.

      • Amna Salam

        Don’t watch Kadurat. Just read the reviews. And never moved me to watch it. The step brother scenario is to some extent right. Since he is not his biological bro. But still, just to use him is nothing ideal. And the doctor/patient relation is yuck as well. I mean what are they brain washing into us? That we visit our doctors and fall for them regardless of their age or the relation we have with him/her.. To those who would do that, my advice “An apple a day keeps the doctor away”, stick to that!

        Lol at the whatsapp and ufone.. I believe that they show points that are so controversial already that should be left aside on purpose. Just so that they can generate user comments.. My hint, the Nikah issue between two sisters.. Who would have thought about this other than our “so -called writers”

        • Zahra Mirza

          LOL @ an apple a day keeps the doctor away. I know nothing’s wrong in getting into a commitment to someone who’s not your bio-bro. But the context in which that thing is being highlighted is completely sickening. Nai?

          • Amna Salam

            Yup.. And I don’t know if you’ve seen the promo of meri Zndagi hai tu.. They are showing a more sickening situation. What was sister-sister relation in the book is now khala-bhanji in the drama. And the promos might be misleading but the bhanji appears to be foalling for her khaloo… Allah hamai bachai!!

          • Zahra Mirza

            Accha, which channel? I am actually not much into the TV, just know that in Oman at 7PM we get to see our prime-time shows, so I just watch that without surfing much & the TV goes on mute when we hit the adverts, lol!

            I am about to throw up at these sickening ideas that the writers are coming up with. I don’t quite get who these value-less producers are who have so much amount to waste in these sick dramas? I think there won’t be a single relation left in the near future which they would’nt spoil for us. CHEE!

          • Amna Salam

            Geo ,, surprise na??!! 😛 It comes on fridays prime time..

            Ya, one would now see his/her relations in a completely new light, thanks to these producers, writers..

            PS: You would be sad to hear thisbut Faiza iftikhar is the writer of MZHT 🙁

          • Zahra Mirza

            Ahaan. LOL @ Geo. Thank god we don’t have Geo Entertainment here on our satellite & nor do we wish to have it. I think the only good drama Geo produced was Meri Zaat Zarra e Benishaan.

            Accha, well trust me it’s not always the days of our writers. Sometimes they make blunders too. I loved Faiza Iftikhaar’s Manchalay because of the situations & the comedy but the end was totally taken from the Hindi Blockbuster ‘Hum Appke Hain Kaun’ where in the end when Jethani dies & Sanam Baloch is about to get married to the eldest, Farhan Agha jumps in & says k Sanam (Mithu in Manchalay) can take care of my baby by becoming his Chachi as well. That was exactly like the ending of Hum Appke Hain Kaun, if you have seen the movie. So you know, even though the name sells but that doesn’t mean the ideas are always original. 😉

          • Amna Salam

            Hmm.. started watching dramas due to Humsafar (b/c of the fame trust me on that)..
            Ya saw the movie.. Rememebr you used to say same about Kahi un kahi? That it shared some ideas from a Salman Khan movie if I’m not wrong…
            I read the novel when I heard its been dramatized and I liked it.. But the changes that have been made aren’t just acceptable..

            You wait for Farhat Ishtiaq’s Bin Roe Ansoo.. It’s another sister drama!!

          • Zahra Mirza

            Yes, Kahi Unkahi took some ideas from another Hindi classic ‘Meinne Pyaar Kiya’ but the ending of Manchalay didn’t take some, but the whole ending of ‘Hum Appke Hain Kaun’.

            Yep, so many dramas on the way with me being so much picky about what to see & what not. Hehe! Will look out for it for sure. 😉

  • fahad

    well you did very right by writing this article.sahi mein kuch dramas to bohat disgusting ho gaye hain ke un mein rishton ka mazaaq bana diya gaya hai like in parchaaiyaan jahaan zavya ki olad nahi hoti hai to woh apni choti behen ko adopt ker leti hai aur us ki choti behen usay maa aur apnay behnoi ko papa kehti hai haalake us ki maa bhi zinda hoti hai aur viraasat ke 2 ya 3 episodes main ne shuru mein dekhe baad mein woh drama phir kabhi nahi dekha kyunki us mein faisal qureishi ki biwi apni suteli saas per shak ker rahi hoti hai ke kahi woh apne sotelay betay ke saath affair mein involve na hojaye i said what the hell is this aur kadurat ke is week ke promo ne to saari kasar poori ker di ke aik beti apnay baap ke saath aisa ker sakti hai.aur ab to kuch dramas mein yeh bhi dikhaya jata hai ke maalik apni maids ke saath affair mein involve ho jate hain.some of our dramas are good but some are so bad ke un mein ghair islami cheezein dikhai jaati hain like aap ko yaad to hoga drama ek tamannah lahasil si aur us ka peer baba wala part and i think usi episode ke baad se aap ne us ka review kerna chor diya tha.but you wrote a very good article and i hope ke drama makers bhi aap ka yeh article parhein aur ainda is tarah ki cheezein humare dramon mein na dikhaye jo humari society ko negativity ki taraf le ker jaarahe hain.

    • Zahra Mirza

      Thank you so much Fahad & mai ziyada amazed appki memory pe hoon kyunki app sahi keh rahay hain, meinne tab hi Ek Tamanna Lahasil Si ka review chora tha kyunki us mai kuch aisa tha nahi k review kiya jata, jabke us mai hamari aj kal ki typical mentality hi batai gai thi k zara kuch hota nahi k ladies in peeron fakiron k pass pohanch jati hain, but to see it on the TV screen, it was getting burdensome for me to follow.

      Jo jo dramas appne point out kiye hain, meinne wo dekhe nahi but jo appne kaha hai I am sure dekhne mai is se bhi ziyada over hoga. Mere khiyaal se ye last rishta reh gaya tha jo Kadurat ne kharab kar diya aur wo tha Baap Beti ka. Bhalay hi aulaad kaisi bhi kyu na ho aur beshak walidain kaisay bhi kyu na hon, dono ko aik dusre ki izzat karne ka koi bahana nahi chahiye hota, ye dil se ati hai aur naturally ati hai. Thank you once again for sharing your thoughts. 🙂

      • fahad

        well dekhlijye ke mujhe ab tak yaad hai ke aap ne etlhs ka review kiya tha well mujhe aur bhi kuch dramas yaad hain jin mein rishton ka mazaaq uraya gaya lakin list kuch ziada lambi ho jayegi well meri ammi ne jab perchaiyaan ki 1 episode dekhi to unhon ne kaha ke yeh kya illogical story hai aur rishtey kuch adhoore se ke us episode ko dekh ker unhon ne kaha ke bas ab yahi dekhnareh gaya tha ke kis tarah se nikaah jaisi ek paak cheez writers aur directors ne mazaaq banaya aur woh drama hai bhi ek indian dramay ki copy i dont know ke indians mein is tarah se shaadi hoti hai ya nahi but humara islam is cheez ki ijazat nahi deta hai.meray jo elder brother hain unhon ne jitne bhi dramas dekhe hain un sab mein unhein kahi ankahi pasand aya hai jo aap ka bhi kafi favourite hai kyunki un ka kehna hai ke woh drama baaki dramas se thora hat ker tha yaani koi saas ka zulm aur bahu ki mazloomiat ya sister rivalry nahi thi us mein jo ke aaj kal humare har dramay mein hoti hai.well i like zgh although it also has some flaws in its story but us mein rishton ka mazaaq to nahi banaya gaya.

        • fahad

          well zgh mein jab kashaf ALLAH se shikway ker rahi thi to mujhe kaafi gussa aaya tha lakin agle din khud fb per umera ahmed ne apologize kiya lakin dramay mein rishton ka mazaaq nahi banaya gaya and the best one now a days is kanker which is a very different topic.i have not watched aunn zara per us ki taarifein bohat suni hain kyunki mere ghar a plus nahi aata hai can u please tell me what it’s real story is.well acha huwa ke aap ne yeh article likha mein kaafi dinon se yehi soch raha tha ke is topic per koi article likhe ke jo humaray dramas mein aaj kal dikhaya jaaraha hai.

          • Zahra Mirza

            Yes, Kahi Unkahi was my favorite because even though it was a love story, no such un-necessary encounters between the lead actors was shown. It was rather a very decently executed but cute love story with two people who suffered because they fell in love, back then people may have not liked it but abb recent dramas aur unki boldness dekh k wo drama bohat MASOOM sa lagta hai.

            Even my mother is all the time speaking about all these dramas & their promos in rage because she hates to see all this. It’s sad that these days the people in authority just say ‘if you don’t like something, change the channel’ because they know there’s a rat-race between the channels so to grab the TRP’s they are sacrificing our values & culture.

            There was a time that I was a huge fan of HUM TV’s dramas but lately what I have seen leaves me not a fan anymore. & yes about Aunn Zara, even though (JUST MY PERSONAL OPINION) it has some un-necessary touching between the lead couple but the story on the whole is really different. If you want to get a hold of a little more of the plot, you can read the review of the very first episode. I am actually reviewing the drama because it suits my taste, so now you know you won’t be disappointed. You must give it a try because the comic factor is just brilliant. & if you’re a Punjabi, you’re going to enjoy it like anything.

  • Ali Ahmad

    I TOTALLY AGREE WITH THE WRITER…SOME OF THE TV SHOWS ARE SO cheap that you can’t even watch them with family….Secondly this brother duo or sister duo thing is so much lamely portrayed on tv…..almost 4 dramas on a tv channel has this same boring story line with even the cast and writers are same….. from the last few years our industry is going by leaps and bounds..i think now this is the time to take care of this repute…with such lame topics and bold masala spoiling the family life with illegal and stupid relation…we will gonna loss our this shining image….

    • Zahra Mirza

      Thank you so much Ali for your say. I agree that the writers have confined their horizons to the miseries of family relations. The only focal point of every single drama on-air these days is a family & the ruined relations, irrespective of the sensitivity & the nature of the relation, every single one of our family ties are being trashed by our reputed writers. I feel there’s so much more than family misery in our lives that we can come up with so many nicest dramas!