Mira Sethi was the best part in Silvatein

Channel: ARY Digital

First broadcast on: February 7, 2013

Cast: Aamina Sheikh as Zeb, Adeel Hussain as Rayyan, Mira Sethi as Natasha, Daniyal Raheel as Bilal or Chotu, Rabia Noreen as Ammi, Mohammed Ahmed as Abbu, Vasay Chaudhry as Meekal, Maheen Rizvi as Muneeze

Writer: Samira Fazal

Director: Shehrezad Sheikh


Sameera Fazal’s last offering Bari Aapa was about the tense relationship between two sisters Zubaida (Savera Nadeem) and Firdous (Arjumand Raheem). Both sisters are married and have grown children yet they never outgrow their sibling rivalry of childhood and it turns into full-blown adult rivalry leading to serious consequences for their families.

Silvatein, is Sameera Fazal’s latest drama serial touching upon the same theme about two sisters whose childhood sibling rivalry turns into adult rivalry except the only difference here is they both end up marrying two brothers and now as bhabhi devrani they both have to negotiate their identity and space in their new household with the younger one Natasha being the more insecure and paranoid for she is married to the less financially off brother Bilal. The older sister Zeb is married to Rayan, a divorcee with a son, who has a flourishing business in the US and as the older brother is regarded highly by his family. Inadvertently Zeb’s position is relatively stronger.

In Bari Aapa Firdous’s son is interested in marrying her older sister Zubaida’s daughter but Firdous will have none of it and this leads to confrontation between the two sisters. The narrative also delved into the roles of their husbands and their part in the rivalries which made the viewing of the drama gripping along with outstanding acting by Savera, Arjumand Raheem, Nouman Ejaz.

In Silvatein the conflict between the two sisters draw their husbands with each having to back their wives to maintain peace in their household.

Even though the theme was familiar, the treatment of the drama serial was fresh in terms of subtlety, complexity of characters and natural performances. More importantly, it steered clear from stereotypes, The couples had good chemistry especially Zeb and Rayan but that is also because Adeel and Aamina Sheikh have previously worked together in Daam as brother-sister duo and in Mora Piya as a couple. Mira Sethi, daughter of journalist and Aapas Ki Baat host Najam Sethi and Jugnu Mohsin, editor of Friday times and GT, as Natasha is a revelation. As a neurotic, insecure, reckless sister she completely owned her character and for a debut this was one hell of a confident performance.

Silavatein raised interesting questions. For instance should a person change completely after marriage. This torments Rayan who feels that his wife Zeb has changed way beyond recognition that he wants the old Zeb, the one he met before marriage who according to him was lively, loud and talkative. He feels that this new person is doing things for him that is not genuine and hence feels cheated. Zeb counteracts by saying that it is normal for people to change after marriage and one couldn’t help but agree with this myth or notion or whatever you may call it as one has been conditioned especially a woman has been conditioned to believe that after marriage she has to change.

Even Bilal changes into a quiet, unquestioning husband to Natasha in order to maintain harmony in their relationship. However, this does not bother Natasha as she wants Bilal to be an unquestioning spouse.

Another point raised in the serial was not having children in order to save or prolong a marriage. This again is brought up between Rayan and Zeb who have a complicated relationship. This 24-episode which dragged out a little bit in the end, and had some interesting characters disappear suddenly (Muneeze, the phuppo and Mikaal), was otherwise a better offering.


Best romantic scenes in Pakistani dramas (with clips)

I don’t know about you guys but I found the romance between Aabi and Haniya in the recently concluded drama serial Mata-e-Jaan Hai Tu (Hum TV) unconvincing, cheesy and outrageously funny. If the scenes between the newly married couple are supposed to bring a smile to one’s face unfortunately all it brings is loud guffaws. For instance in episode 11, Aabi and Haniya buy each other T-shirts printed with “I’m crazy about you” and they looked ridiculous and childish. Adeel Hussain as Aabi was awkward in some of the scenes, it felt like he was romancing his little sister! And Sarwat Gilani as Haniya despite the passage of 11 episodes was still stunned by Aabi’s passionate love for her. One wanted to slap her and tell her yes he digs you very much and could you please now reciprocate. Chemistry, the key ingredient between the couple was simply missing.

Frankly, I have seen some truly terrific romantic scenes on Pakistani television. They have been subtle, not necessarily conventional and made some cynics like us root for the couple even if they are doomed. Here is a highly subjective pick of the 13 best romantic scenes from Pakistani dramas.


Many a real-life romance has been initiated in that underestimated vehicle-the chamakti-dhamakti Pakistani bus. And thus Balaj and Shahtaj’s first meeting takes place in that humble vehicle, when Balaj (Noman Ejaz) belonging to the rival tribe asks for a lift as he is stranded in the middle of a desert when his Pajero breaks down. Shahtaj (Atiqa Odho) and her female relatives are enroute to a wedding in the bus and Shahtaj convinces her grandmother to give a lift to Balaj even if he belongs to the rival tribe. With virtually no dialogue between the two, they just exchange quiet smoldering glances, Balaj watching her from the bus’s rearview mirror and Shahtaj looking on him from her seat through the curtain. Noman Ejaz looks regal with white turban and his handlebar mustache and Atiqa Odho also is a vision of loveliness attired mostly in Baloch fashion. The chemistry between the two was palpable during the entire serial. Throughout its broadcast, girls went berserk over Noman and guys just couldn’t stop gushing over Atiqa. Very similar to the frenzy the lead couple of Humsafar caused recently. The drama which proudly displayed Baloch traditions, was memorable in terms of its dialogues, plot twists, superb acting, cinematography and music.


Watch from 4th min onwards

Glad that Mora Piya highlights the death threats to investigative journalists

Cast: Adeel Hussain, Aamina Sheikh, Manzoor Qureshi, Firdous Jamal and 
Parveen Malik

Writer: Mohsin Ali 

Director: Anjum Shehzad

Broadcasting channel: Geo TV

Telecast times: Every Friday at 8 p.m.

First telecast: December 2, 2011


The ‘brother-sister’duo of Daam, Aamina Sheikh as Maleeha and Adeel Hussain as Junaid in drama serial Daam re-emerge as a romantic lead in Mora Piya directed by Anjum Shehzad of Khuda aur Mohabbat and Dil-e-Nadaan fame. While some may appreciate the romance of the couple and some may tear their hair out for so much touchy-feely between the passionate pair (relax people! this is what couples do when they are in love and btw do much more in the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, if only we were not such big hypocrites!), to me it is Faisal’s character essayed by the talented new find Adeel Hussain that caught my eyeballs. Am glad that the writer and director of Mora Piya have weaved in a contemporary character of a journalist although the bit about the girl’s father being hesitant in accepting the proposal is far-fetched since in real life most such journalists whether in print or electronic are happily married, regardless of the risks.


Playing the role of an investigative broadcast journalist who is threatened by land mafia Faisal is dismissive of these threats and thinks he is invincible. However if one has followed the story of Saleem Shehzad of Asia Times, who was allegedly killed by the ISI for exposing the links of the intelligence agency with the militants and Wali Khan Babar, Geo reporter, who was allegedly killed by the drug mafia or the MQM while covering the operation against them in Pehalwan Goth in Karachi, and the bizarre murder of a young journalist by the name of Faisal Qureshi who was political editor of news website The London Post. His body was found by his brother at 2 am at his home in Lahore, will know that Faisal in Mora Piya is being juvenile and irresponsible.

In fact according to the Blog on Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) nine journalists have received death threats via smses (http://www.cpj.org/blog/2011/08/quantifying-the-threat-to-journalists-in-pakistan.php). “Pakistan was the deadliest country in the world in 2010, according to CPJ data. The country also ranked 10th on CPJ’s Global Impunity Index, which spotlights countries where journalists are regularly slain and authorities fail to solve the crimes.”


Journalists when not receiving threats from all kinds of mafias than while covering crime and terrorism, especially TV reporters and camerapersons risk their precious lives, to get us live footage. If they are lucky to survive then their organizations abandon them and if they die then there is nobody to look after them. You can read all about this by clicking on the following link: http://herald.dawn.com/2011/08/16/work-at-your-own-risk.html


Journalism/Journalists in Movies

  • Absence of Malice
  • Shattered Glass
  • The Insider
  • Meet John Doe
  • Frost vs Nixon
  • The Paper
  • A Mighty Heart
  • Citizen Kane
  • All the President’s Men
  • Good night and Good Luck
  • State of Play
  • Thank you for Smoking
  • Broadcast News
  • His Girl Friday


Journalism/Journalists in Television

  • The Hour-BBC
  • Murphy Brown
  • Lowdown-ABC
  • Drop the Dead Donkey
  • Frontline
  • Just Shoot Me


Journalists in Pakistani Dramas

  • Karwaan
  • Loose Talk-Moin Akhtar as sahafi
  • Aangan Tedha
  • Band Khirkiyon Kay Peechay
  • Pehchaan
  • Kaash Tu Mera Baap Na Hota