“Aakhir Kab Tak” is one of those rare shows on television that not only tackles a serious topic like assault, mental trauma and the taboo surrounding it within families, but also gives viewers romance and even comedy within the same show – without diminishing the importance of the topic. “Aakhir Kab Tak” is one of the more underrated shows currently on Pakistani television. Starring Ushna Shah, Srha Asghar, Haroon Shahid, Adeel Hussain, Javeria Abbasi, Shahood Alvi, Gul E Rana and others, the story has been written by Radain Shah and directed by Syed Ali Raza Usman.
In episode 17, Neelo stands adamantly against her daughter-in-law, not only demanding Saim (Haroon Shahid) divorce Fajr (Srha Asghar), but also lining up a new bride before the fact. Fortunately, Saim stands strong with Fajr, refusing to divorce her, refusing to give in to his mother’s demands, stating that he will only accept Fajr as his wife. It’s also beautiful to see how confident Fajr has become not only with Saim’s support, which has been the greatest strength for her, coming at a time when she most needed it, but also with Safiya’s (Javeria Abbasi) newfound support. There’s a particularly beautiful moment where Safiya, Noor and Fajr are seen playing in the rain, the three enjoying a happiness and freedom that they were never allotted previously. There’s a freedom they now have in their own home, the freedom to live as they want without fear.
Safiya is a new person now, standing strong not only for her daughters, but even for her husband. She does not allow anyone in the family to fill Ehtisham’s (Shahood Alvi) ears against her or her daughters, both Safiya and Noor doing their best to be honest with Ehtisham, building their own relationship with him – something they were never given a chance to do when he was well. Javeria Abbasi shines as Safiya lashes out against Basam and his family, kicking them out of the house after Basam attempts to assault Fajr, not realizing it’s Safiya in the room. What’s wonderful is that, in his helpless state, Ehtisham is now appearing to be softening towards his nuclear family, realizing how he has mistreated his wife and daughters all these years – and how they’ve been mistreated by his family. Shahood Alvi deserves a round of applause for his performance, because it’s very difficult to express this as a character who can neither move nor speak – but we hear Ehtisham. We can understand his emotions and exactly what he is thinking and credit for that goes to Shahood Alvi’s performance.
Noor’s (Ushna Shah) relationship with her father is gradually turning into one of trust and understanding, something Noor never could have imagined sharing with Ehtisham. She is honest and this is something Ehtisham is beginning to see in his daughter, something he’s beginning to understand – and this is ultimately going to be the thing that wins him over and keeps him strictly by her side. The young girl he has been overlooking for so many years is now the backbone of his family and that is beautiful, not only for Ehtisham and Noor’s relationship, but most importantly for Noor, getting non-verbal appreciation from her father that she has never seen before.
Of course, we come to the highlight of the episode, which is the Nasir (Adeel Hussain) and Noor relationship. Adeel Hussain has finally been given a role worthy of his talent and how! Nasir is refreshingly different from other heroes. He’s not only there to stand with Noor and “protect her” (not that she needs protecting), but he is also crooked in the most human way. This is a man who is scheming and manipulating his way into Noor’s heart and it’s not because he’s a bad person, but because that’s all he knows how to do. That is who he is. Will this eventually come back to bite him when Noor finds out (next week) about all his manipulations? Definitely. But are we enjoying the sweet moments and the genuine fondness the two have for each other regardless? Definitely.
It’s become difficult to sing the praises of “Aakhir Kab Tak,” because other than Neelo’s slightly stereotypical character, it’s honestly getting everything right. From seriously highlighting assault and the way that such individuals should be dealt with to lightening the mood with Nasir’s “methods” for dealing with Basam and Taufiq, each scene has something new to offer. And of course, we can’t overlook the real heroes of the show, which are the females. A round of applause must be given to Ushna Shah, Srha Asghar and Javeria Abbasi, who are the stars of the show, playing some truly complex, lovable characters. With what appears to be less than 10 episodes to go, “Aakhir Kab Tak” only gets better with each episode.