Numm Episode 10 – The Way To A Man’s Heart……

I must confess that after catching up with episode 08 and 09 earlier on today, I wasn’t exactly looking forward to tonight’s episode of Numm. Episode 08 in particular was badly conceived, poorly edited and there were some parts that were unforgivably cringe worthy. Watching Wali fall for Mahjabeen after so many years wasn’t exactly delightful, in fact I thought it was rather distasteful since I am not sure if Wali and Mahjabeen’s nikkah is actually valid and also because it was in no way the kind of sweet romance that you feel comfortable watching on screen. Add to that the most appalling flashback scene when Wali comes to Mahjabeen as a child to take refuge from the storm. Yes, this particular scene could have been interpreted in many different ways had the context been different and maybe the “romance” more subtle! Okay, enough of my rants about the previous episodes, lets talk about this one. First of all this play is not about the tradition of Vanni at all, no it is not about love and relationships either but its actual focus seems to be  ghardaari and how important it is for a woman to know how to run the house. I find the over emphasis on whether the nashta is being served on time or not, how well Mahjabeen is running the house and who hires and fires the servants rather off-putting.

The play is also about much more than the people we see in it; Mahjabeen’s pin is an entity in its own right, the floral tea set seems to be a vital part of the entire story and not to mention Mahjabeen’s hair! I really feel like the director is over emphasizing a few “things” which didn’t require that much attention. The pin keeps on moving from one place to another and the it is upto the viewers to make out what the “travelling pin” is signifying. Okay, sometimes you are in the mood to guess and ponder upon things but many other times you just want some thought provoking but at the same time light hearted entertainment.

numm7

Why could’t Neelam ask her mother the “weekly menu” before stepping out of the house? Neelam’s mother tells her to pay more attention the house but when she calls her she suggests that Neelam shouldn’t bother and let Mahjabeen take care of things! Neelam tried every trick in the book to win Wali over but it was quite apparent that Wali had Mahjabeen in his mind all the time. Neelam’s attempts to take over the house could actually have been innocent and cute if Kanza Wyne’s acting wasn’t over the top like always. The only time I couldn’t help but chuckle was when Neelam took out the burnt steak from the oven and asked Salima to taste it! Wali is stuck between two women who are completely opposite to each other; he has a long history with one and the other one just entered his life. Does that make an intriguing storyline? Well, maybe if the play was well directed and extremely well acted out but for now the direction and some of the performances have been very average.

Qasim’s relation with Mahjabeen is still a mystery. I was a little surprised to hear Mahjabeen saying to him “tum hamari majburi samjho”. What did she mean by hamari? Who else was she referring to? Qasim asks Mahjabeen to tell Wali about him but the viewer’s were given the impression in one of the previous episodes that Wali already knew who he was since he didn’t question Mahjabeen about him when she kept on asking for Qasim when she was sick.

Numm’s story definitely has an air of mystery about it but is it intriguing? Well, personally I don’t find it intriguing any more particularly because of the flawed direction, stagnant story and unimpressive editing. Also, this play should not have been sold as a play that focused on a social issue , “based on the unwise ritual of Vani” because there is very little of that in it. Fawad Khan has played the lover boy a million times; the guy who is stuck between two women. It is about time that he did something different.

 

Fatima Awan

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  • Sadaf

    Fabulous Review Fatima . I think your analysis is very good . This story is really not about Vani more about two wives and a guy . I too am sick of this housekeeping merit badge all women have to win…families like this who have so much power and wealth usually employ khansamas not just a single housemaid . Having said that I actually preferred this week’s episode to the last one . For once I actually gained some respect for Mahjabeen who was happy with her I am guessing son and it seems is not as interested in Wali as Wali is interested in her. I want to second the boy Qasim’s question as to why they cannot runaway and who exactly is forcing Mahjabeen to live such a degrading life . I liked Kanza’s acting in this episode if only she could pronounce her dialogues . In fact both women seemed to have normal reactions to their situations. Mahjabeen is for some reason trying to make the best of an incredibly bad situation and Neelam is trying to win over an uninterested husband . It is Wali who is abnormal ,if he is in love with Mahjabeen why not give her some respect , why not ask about her feelings and needs , perhaps she doesn’t want to be ‘AVAILABLE” to him when Neelam is not there …aaargggh Wali Bakht seems like a horrible character and at this point the villain .
    Mahjabeen could have said no in episode 8 or are they showing us she couldn’t ?can someone explain ?

    • Eashel

      agree wiD uh…but i m loving fawad’s acting….nd m not much fed up of this story line…infact i want everyone to enjoy…but i really hate when ost continuiusly plays in the bg

      • Anwar.suhail

        What acting?!

        • FatimaAwan

          Sooo true!

    • FatimaAwan

      Thank you Sadaf. They cannot run away because if Mahjabeen runs away with him tu Wali ko nashta etc kon day ga – Sadaf don’t you get it there are more important things in life than having a quality life with people you love. Mahjabeen’s dutiful nature won’t allow her to do that. I agree with you Wali bakht’s character is horrible and there isn’t much room for acting as Roh said. Fawad is relying too much on his looks. Mahjabeen Bechari is Vani she can only play the boss with the servants otherwise she is helpless;)

    • farah.S

      Agree Wali Bakht is a horrible character. No guts, no consistency, more of a thaali Kaa baingun.

  • anwar.suhail

    Fatima Awan,
    Thanks for pertinent, concise review on yet another non-episode and calling spade an spade.
    However you seem to have missed one vital gem here. That blooming big jug full of orange/tang that we have to bear in every episode. Is that some sort of fetich? Big house hold seems to be short of maids, teaser and crockery.
    Oblique story telling at it’s best….story of sexy Salima, hairpin, ugly jug and modest teaset.
    Honestly, you can’t take the story seriously. Coming to characterisation, well tops the charts. His character is gutless, directionless, without any ethics. I thought he was going to England for Masters. Changed his mind perhaps. Instead doing PhD in hypocrisy.

    • sadaf

      hahahah that PHD hahah

    • FatimaAwan

      lol so true, how could I forget the “jug’! hahaha sexy Salima is so right God the woman has such adayeen. I totally noticed that! Love your last line. What an awesome comment you summarized everything so well.

    • farah.S

      Well said wali doing PHD in hypocrisy. Hair pin, jug, tea set, plants, Mahjabeen’s hair that gets more air time than actual story. Sad.

  • Rashid Nazir Ali

    on nikah of wali and mahjabeen, dont know why there is misconception of its validity, nikah of childhood or “bachpan ka nikah” was a common practice even in literate families in urban centers some two decades ago. I am not a religious scholar but it was considered totally valid and the example givenas proof was nikah of “HAZRAT AYESHA SIDDIQA (RA)” who was six or nine years old at the time of nikah.

    Marriage (nikah) can be called as civil and religious. Civil marriage is enrollment of marriage with government. For civil marriage every country has rules, in Pakistan for civil marriage groom should be 18 and bride should be 16 year old else the marriage cannot be registered and this rule is applicable to all religions. Religious marriage is every religion has its own way of marriage, like in Islam three times consent of bride and groom is asked, in hinduism they have their own way. Every religion has its own rules for the age of marriage, as far i knew childhood marriage is practiced and it is considered totally valid as per religious rules. In such case childhood marriage was performed, and when bride and groom reach the legal age of civil marriage then marriage was legally registered with government.

    • Atif Ahmed

      I wish we could refrain from Khutba and lectures. How boring.There is absolutely no misconception on MJ’s nikah with Wai. Nikah between these two is invalid.
      “Common practice in literate families in urban centre” ddoesn’t prove the legality of these practices.
      And your English is atrocious.

      • Rashid Nazir Ali

        Atif boy, yes english is not my mother tongue, during my school times in 70’s most schools were urdu medium and so does mine, so english of me and my generation is bound to be atrocious. But still thanks for reading and also bearing this “lecture and khutba” and then also replying.

        I have just written, what i have observed and seen in my life. Boy this “childhood nikah” is considered totally right as per religion (atleast hanafi school of thought which i belong to) and it has been topic of many dramas, films and novels. Famous drama of PTV Lahore center in 90’s “Kiran” in which Savera Nadeem made her debut, was also on childhood marriage. A recent one episode drama of Tooba Sidiki and Faisal Qureshi (cant remember its name) was also on same topic both were urban based stories. Recent drama of HUM TV ‘Mohabbat Rooth jaye’ was also on this in which Syra Yousaf was married to Humayun Saeed in childhood. Had this thing be invalid as per religion do you think our religious parties can tolerate it they must have burnt the offices of these TV channels if something serious against religion is shown.

        But now this practice has almost disappeared from main cities but still practiced in villages. See like slavery is allowed and legal in our religion, though valid but it is not practiced commonly in pakistan. Same is the case of childhood marriage, it is allowed, but gradually it is decreasing.

        Lastly on a lighter note thanks in advance if you have read this piece of “khutba and lecture”
        Cheers

        • blue

          Nice hit

          • Maheen

            how can Vani be Halal when in Islam, marriage requires the consent of BOTH the man and the woman?

          • Aiman

            haan to jis bache ya bachi ki shadi hoti hai toh woh “kubool hai,kubool hai, kubool hai” kehte hain na…lolzz….dnt mind me saying i think aise ques scholars se pochne chahiye aise forums per aam logo se nahi….

        • farah.S

          Rashid Nazir Saheb, you have stooped down to the level of some “boy”, and that’s bad and sad.You could have acted in mature sagacious manner. Coming to the topic, well just because you have seen something in Rawalpindi and something has been portrayed in PTV play of 90s doesn’t really prove anything. Your argument is rather flimsy. I mean talking about nikah and religion, and using films and ptv dramas as reference reflects poorly.
          I won’t indulge in debate on validity of nikah. But we have to maintain decorum. We need to have manners specially as senior citizens. If you act like that inpertinent boy, then sorry to say what’s the difference between you two.
          Thanks in advance if you read this piece of sincere advice.

          • Rashid Nazir Ali

            farah. S., my sincere apology if you found my response inappropriate, your advice is always welcomed. I respect your point of view and your comments have always been very informative and insightful. Please stay in touch.
            Thanks.

    • Aiman

      Agree with u ..mujhe samaj nahi aata aaj kal har koi baghair ILM k Islam per behas kerne shoro ker deta hai keh “MERI RAI ya MERI nazar main”…aur phir kehte hain keh Scholars ghalat hain…Hellooooo..jo saari life Islam ko study kerte hain woh ghalat hain aur hum jinho ne aaj tak poora Quran tarjume se nahi perha ho..hum sahi hain…atleast banda koi research hi kerle deen per behas kerne se pehle…

    • FatimaAwan

      Well its good to know that the Nikkah is valid but the fact still remains that Wali was only 9 when it happened and Mahjabeen raised him like a son and he always saw her as a caretaker more than a wife. Well that is the way I look at it plus there was nothing sweet about the way the “romance” between the two was shown. It was cringeworthy all the way!

      • Rashid Nazir Ali

        Fatima its a common ritual in feudal society, for the fear of distribution of land, normally girls are married within family and sometimes to much younger boys too. One prime example is our former prime minister Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto, who also married in a young age to a family girl Shirin Ameer Begum which was elder then him. But later Bhutto married Nusrat Isfahani and Shirin Ameer Begum lived in Larkana, while Nusrat Bhutto was active wife of ZA Bhutto.

        • FatimaAwan

          I am not denying that:) Just sharing my personal dislike for the situation.

  • Silver Eyes

    Fatima u r great… !! Exceeeelleeent review !! totally agree with each n every point.. !! U r a very keen observer plus a good blogger as u now how to word ur thinking 🙂 ! in short i m fully impressed 😉
    This Drama really bored us… our expectations were very high when we saw the promos… but they went down as we watched the drama… Neelum really needs acting classes..!! Fawad disappointed us..!! tired of seeing mahjabeen’s hair :p there is always khana peena in the drama 😀 like they really dont have any other thing to do ! why servants r given so much importance by showing their long conversations…. !! watching this drama is like u r watching some depressed kind of people (i.e. mahjabeen , wali) having no other work but to wander in the house n to see eachother quietly… 😀 script is not that powerful… people r usually silent in the scenes :p Ajeeb sa environment bna hta hai.. khamoshi khamoshi mai scene khtm ho jata hai 😀

    • FatimaAwan

      Haye itni tareefin… you made my day:))) Thank you so so much. Mahjabeen is obsessed with her grey hair, I am glad she dyed it now maybe she will stop staring at herself in the mirror, reminds me of “mirror mirror on the wall….”! Yes the servants remind us all of Ajjo and Deenga from Ashk! They really need another tea set I really liked it before but now it is getting just as many close ups a Mahjabeen’s grey hair:) The script is very average, in fact the story is going nowhere really and the flawed direction doesn’t help. If i compare it to UBFN I wouldn’t even give it a 2 out of 5. Fawad is relying a little too much on his looks in this play, which is very sad considering that he is a very good actor.

      • Silver Eyes

        Hahaha u deserve these tareefain Fatima 🙂 Fawad is no doubt a brilliant actor but he is not good in accepting the right projects i guess… i hope next time he will make a sensible choice 😀 n yes !! they should waqai change the tea set …. 😀 they can afford afterall 😀

        • FatimaAwan

          Yes Fawad has really lost my vote after this one. He will have to work in a play like Dastaan or Hamsafar to win my trust and I am sure that many of his fans feel the same way. The strange thing is that he sounds so sensible in his interviews but actions speak louder than words!

  • Roh

    Brilliant review, Fatima. You have summarised the last 2 episodes and led into this one very nicely.
    This episode was a total “whatever” for me. Yes, it was better than the previous 2 which were absolutely disgusting. But only better compared to those 2 episodes. Because thankfully, here the discussions can move from who is sleeping with whom, to other irrelevant, but not disgusting issues.
    I am even more convinced about 2 things now. Kasim is most definitely MahJ’s illegitimate son. I felt that one dialogue of Bade Sahab, where he tells Wali that he (W) is the legal heir, was said to be proved Oh so wrong! as they will eventually reveal, that Wali has competition from Bade Sahab’s other grandson.
    The other thing I’m pretty convinced about is (and sorry to go back to the sleeping topic) that MahJ and Wali haven’t had a relationship.
    Not getting into explanations there, because that whole probability of this opinion v/s the other is too sickening to get into.
    I feel Wali is just about tolerating Neelam. He looks at her with so much scorn a few times. And Neelam? Someone please help her get her dialogue delivery in place. My ears pain when she opens her mouth.
    How could she get the steak burnt to that extent from the oven, and no one knew there was something being charred in there? Along with speech maybe even the sense of smell is also missing! I think she really needs Jaunty in her life.
    I don’t even want to spend any minutes trying to understand any supposedly “deep” meanings. To me, its so shallow, and not worth the time trying to figure out the so called complexities of the characters or the situation.
    Thankfully, they mentioned Amtul and Wali did a bit more than reading, driving, calling and roaming around. (talk to some villagers!)
    ****rolleyes**** Whatever!

    • FatimaAwan

      haha whatever is so right!! That was my reaction to almost everything that happened in this episode too. Totally agree with you episode 08 and 09 were Ashk all over again! Yes it does seem like Qasim is her son but then why doesn’t anyone know about him? I hope there is a good explanation for that.lol your comments about Neelam are spot on Roh and so hilarious;)

      • Roh

        Maybe no one knows about Kasim, because it was a taboo for an illegitimate child to be born, and MahJ wanted to have the child as the last nishaan of her love. So she possibly went away somewhere to deliver and gave to child to someone to look after him.
        That’s another reason why I feel that its not possible she had a marital relationship with Wali all of a sudden. She must have seen in him, her own child whom she was forced to abandon.
        I think the writer and the director are capitalizing on Fawad as an actor and the interest his story will generate, and leading the audience on to another track.
        It is disgusting to even think that a woman who once bathed a child, has a changed relation with him suddenly. No build up of the relation, nothing. It amounts to pure lust, and that is sickening, even more so in this case.
        I have a question. Maybe I missed a scene in the various versions that are uploaded on various websites. What was it that Wali asked Neelam if she and MahJ had spoken “the other night”? And then Neelam said she had asked MahJ to leave the house. What was that about? Have I missed something or is it a part of plain and simple bad production?

        • FatimaAwan

          Roh, that scene didn’t make any sense since Wali was listening to Neelam & Mej’s conversation in the kitchen the other day so he knew exactly what they talked about! I found that conversation irrelevant too.

  • sonia

    i think that the boy (qasim) is the son of mehjabeen’s brother.

    also Mehjabeen will die due to some disease like cancer or any other leaving behind her deep love in Wali’s heart
    or
    Wali will be shot because of feudal rivalry and then neelum and mehjabeen will live peacefully

  • fahad

    good review.yes i am also thinking the same that what is the story all about is it about the tradition of vani or a husband sandwiched between two wives.well somehow i find this episode better than the last two episodes and when neelam was cooking food for wali then i thought ke jitni kharab acting kerti hai kahin utna kharab khana na bana de yeh aur dekh lein steaks jal gaye saari aur beechari salima aalo gosht banaya us ne aur credit sara le gaye neelum.

    • FatimaAwan

      lol so true, Neelam took all the credit for Salima’s cooking.

  • blue

    What a full of intrigue this drama is,,
    Everybody gets bore watching this but is still hooked with the screen…

  • farah.S

    @fatima, wonderful review very apt. Their is too much emphasis on trivialities. Sadly I’ll watch it till last episode. That’s the reality and drama makers know this.

    • FatimaAwan

      I am glad we are on the same page:) Farah, why will you continue watching it till the end? Because of FK?

      • farah.S

        Yes. But looking at his body language, one feels he is ill sick or depressed. And there is nothing special about his acting here. You can’t do much with a weak story and poor direction. He should realise that he made. Wrong choice.

  • Maheen

    my guess is that Qasim is Mahjabeen’s son, conceived right before Jahangir was killed. Mahjabeen and Jehangir probably married secretly, and once her brother found out, he killed Jehangir, which means Qasim is the second heir of this feudal family and Wali’s first cousin. Once Qasim enters the story, things are likely to go beyond nashta and hair pins. It will be a fight over who is the rightful heir of Bare Sahib’s fortune. Maybe then Fawad will put down his orange tang and grab a gun to kill his rival. We can hope.

    • FatimaAwan

      Maheen they must have eloped then because you can’t have a kid without anyone finding out about it. Lets hope there is a good explanation for it & also if Wali doesn’t know about Qasim then why didn’t he ask Mahjabeen who he was when she was calling him when she got sick.

      • Maheen

        he’s a “bloody feudal”. He doesn’t really care what his “vani” feels or thinks about. as long as she is around to do his bidding and feed him.

  • Solutioneer

    ok I maybe going against the grain here. I realize that the constant pressure to be the domestic goddess is sexist and ridiculous. However, I am also tired to every female blogger hating on any sort of domesticity in dramas. I mean how many times do I have to hear that women don’t cook in order to win a man’s heart. I GET IT !!! i BOW TO TO FEMALE LIBERATION. Now can we get a move on.
    Also, for someone who is professing such feminist opinion, how is it unbelievable that the expression of feelings between Wali and MJ has changed. I mean in a society, when we can accept a 20-something man marrying a choti-bachi (ie Mastana Mahi) how is this any different. I realize that MJ was a caretake for Wali at beginning but a change in their expression of affection for one another basically still roots from MJ taking care of Wali, albeit in a different manner.

  • h

    Wait, Am I the only one that heard Qasim call her “Ma” when he grabs her shoulders when she is about to leave?? I swear he says it twice!!

  • Amina Raja

    MY FAV DRAMA

  • Ali

    Can Someone tell me that which is the next drama of Fawad Khan

  • MeMyself

    did anybody notice that salima congratulated Neelum when she threw up after smelling the burnt stake?