Well if we recall, Pakistani television gave us a lot of great comedy dramas where a few had no meaning & the others had some sort of a message to convey but in a light hearted way. I think in the time of distress people really love tuning into comic dramas I mean I would love to because at times it does get tedious to watch all the rona dhona.
For me the definition of entertainment also means to watch something away from the reality (at times) because everyone is so real in their own lives, so at times tuning into the harsh portrayal of realities doesn’t sound like a good idea. It is definitely a loss of ours to be lacking in the sitcoms or light hearted comedies because no matter what, if you do watch something hilarious, it does leave you with a good taste.
The amazing sitcoms or comic dramas I have seen & recall clearly are:
Teen Batta Teen:
Who doesn’t remember it? A 1990’s comedy directed by Jawad Bashir of 3 guys & 3 girls, neighbouring in two building blocks & trying to make ways into each others hearts but all they were capable of was committing blunders. It was aired in the PTV times where we only had one channel & it definitely was my favorite time of the week to watch it. I remember people anxiously waiting for the day it used to be aired because it definitely redefined comedy. No doubt their characterization was perfect making it a huge success because all the actors gave their 100%.
‘Azam app a gaye?’. It was another one of those dramas which I am sure people still remember. Again airing in 1990’s it was directed by Azam (Waseem Abbas) himself for PTV. It was actually an episode based drama & focused more on the museebatain the Azam family had to endure. It was like a new day everyday for that family & it was still amazing to see Azam maintaining his sanity while living with a bunch of smartly insane people. ‘Main bobby to nahi hoon’ showed the honesty of Bobby – Azam & Sumbal’s son who took his brains after his mother. I am glad it ran for a decent period of time, making people fall in love with the family.
It was a production of the students of National College of Arts – Lahore (NCA). Somewhere in the early 2000’s it was definitely something new back then because it focused more on how the college students are & how hilariously bizarre they can get. It also starred Ali Zafar because back in those days he was a model & being a student of NCA, he was also a part of the group. Ayesha Omar also made an appearance in some of the episodes because of her affiliation with the institute. I remember people raving about it because no doubt their one-liners & their situations were cleverly projected making it all comical because it for sure was one of it’s kind & being the first one to actually bring in the limelight the life of the university students. It was again an episode based drama showcased on PTV.
Production & direction of Surmed Khoosat where he played the role of Cheeku. It was aired in the mid 2000’s again for PTV where it was all about a bunch of friends who developed certain love triangles. Starring Nadia Afghan, they did do wonders & it ran for quite some time too. I remember it was again one of the funniest dramas of that time because during that period we saw a different sitcoms but this one clearly stood out.
Sab Set Hai:
Direction of Ali Azfar which starred his ex-wife Salma & his friend Mani along with some other actors, it was more or less based on the lines of Teen Bata Teen where they had 3 guys & some girls who always tried to began a relationship with their mohallay ki larkiyan. I remember it being aired on Indus Tv because back then Indus Tv just started & to get the viewership, they did suceed by airing Sab Set Hai.
Who doesn’t know about it? It is an amazing amazing attempt by Nabeel & his team to keep us all happy & luckily they all are succeeding. No doubt despite the time it has been running, it still has a viewership because all that we come across these days are dramas based on miseries of life, so yes Bulbulay is a breath of fresh air, surprisingly even though it is an episode based drama too, they are not running out of ideas, be it Ramadan or Eid, they always bring in some really interesting subjects.
This was aired on GEO back when it started. Produced & directed by Faisal Qureshi (funny wala), it wasn’t a drama but it was a compilation of funny skits – more like a comedy program which was extremely funny. It starred Mani along with Amna Khan & Ahsan Khan two amazing video directors who picturized some amazing songs perfectly. I remember they had a unique taste of comedy & it was always hilarious to tune into Ulta Seedha It had 2 seasons that aired on both GEO & AAG . It is still uploaded on YouTube under the channel name of GameOverProduction10.
Who doesn’t know about it either? A perfect blend of Punjabi loudness & Urdu speaking tameez o tamaddun. Airing in 2013 & making it probably the most memorable drama of the year, Aunn Zara had it both high & lows but I am placing it in the comical shows because even though it had a few lessons & few heart wrenching moments of it’s own, the main wow factor was the Punjabi family’s wawela on each & every thing. No doubt Nasreen Qureshi was the star of the show & the drama was directed by Haissam Hussain.
So, this was my list. If we look at the past, back in those PTV days they had certain centres from which the dramas used to be produced & aired. PTV Karachi Center, Lahore Center, Peshawar Center etc but if we look at it, Lahore Center has produced some amazing & most memorable sitcoms of all times starting from Teen Bata Teen till Shashlik, all these were the production of Lahore Center whereas the other three like Sab Set Hai, Bulbulay & Aunn Zara are obviously Karachi based because the main industry is in Karachi these days. I also found Akbari Asghari funny too & I think it should have a mention where we’re talking about comedy as well. With this list where I pay tribute to these masterpieces, I am also hopeful that we revive those amazing days of comedy dramas again that can be remembered for a long time!
Do share about which were your favorite sitcoms or comedy dramas & which ones did you enjoy the most! :)