No one can argue with the fact that Pakistani dramas are a notch above the rest. There was a time when there was only one television channel but the quality of the dramas even at that time was phenomenal. PTV produced exceptional dramas with innovative storylines and unparalleled direction. That is the reason why these dramas are still considered classics. Things have changed to a large extent since the 90s in particular; there are innumerable private channels now and many new production houses providing the viewers with quality entertainment that keeps them hooked to Pakistani plays. If we compare Pakistani plays to the plays that are being aired in the neighboring country, there are some stark differences between the two. Even if we do not compare the two and look at Pakistani dramas alone one can clearly see that there are some solid reasons because of which Pakistan dramas have made their mark not just at home but also abroad. Following are the reasons because of which Pakistani dramas still stand tall and have a very bright future.
1. Storylines are relevant to our social conditions. The stories of Pakistani dramas are not figment of someone’s imagination or merely a work of art or fantasy but they are the stories of real people. When people see these stories unfold on screen they find themselves laughing and crying with the characters because it is like their own life unfolding on screen or maybe that of a relative or a friend. The fact that the viewers can relate to what they see on screen makes everything more real for them and they find it easier to empathize with the characters. Watching dramas then is not just an escape for them but can also be a source of catharsis. Sometimes, knowing that there are many other people who go through the same problems that may have gone through can be a source of consolation. This is especially true for those housewives who may not have any other channel to vent out their frustrations, these dramas build the gap between them and other people like them in the society.
2. There is less glamour and more substance. There was a time when Pakistani drama makers started copying the dramas from across the border. Our actresses would wear make-up that was over-the-top and would be seen clad in saris and heavy ornaments which seemed completely out of place. That was the time when Pakistani drama industry seemed to have taken a downward spiral but that is not the case any more. Pakistani dramas do not concentrate on such baseless glamour which has no real appeal for the audience anymore. This is another reason because of which the viewers can easily relate to the characters. Of course there is added glamour where it is needed which is why it does not seem out of place. This aspect of Pakistani dramas makes them look more real.
3. Pakistani dramas do not only focus on showing social problems but are equally focused on presenting the viewers with real solutions. Countless dramas currently deal with predicaments faced by married couples. Such dramas like Durr-e-Shehwar, Mera Yakeen, Hamsafar, Shehr-e-Zaat etc have very successfully dealt with marital issues and also helped married couples in some way or the other. There is excessive intolerance in our society, most often young people are not willing to sacrifice or compromise, teaching them to do so is the need of the hour. Recently we have plays like Rehaii on air which give definite guidelines for women who are alone and are left to look after themselves.
4. Outstanding direction, superlative production values and exceptional performances. Last but not the least a drama would be incomplete if it didn’t deliver as a whole. If the script alone is outstanding and the direction and production values are flawed it will fail to impress the viewers. Pakistani drama industry is lucky enough to have directors, actors and technicians who are very dedicated and hardworking. Directors like Mehreen Jabbar, Haissam Hussain, Sarmad Khoosat, Asim Raza and many others have breathed a new life into our drama industry. There are uncountable veteran actors who just get better with time and the newcomers are equally impressive. There are many new production houses in the country striving for the best, looking out for new talent, always willing to serve their country.
Pakistani dramas have come very far but still have a long way to go. We are proud of our drama industry and support it at every step of the way.