Some shows start off with incredibly interesting, refreshingly different themes and “Chalawa” is a show that falls in that category. Airing at a time when the “supernatural” slot remained empty, this drama managed to pull in viewers not only through its eerie premise, but also with its cast, featuring stellar performers like Naveen Waqar and Samina Ahmed. Unfortunately, while the early 7-8 episodes were gripping, fear-inducing and intelligently written while ensuring the audience felt spooked, the episodes following have not been able to maintain that sort of interest. With the introduction of Noor Khan, Ali Ansari and Usama Khan to the story, the show has taken off on a different tangent with the new generation.
Daadi’s (Samina Ahmed) death has affected Savera (Noor Khan) heavily as she’s aware a “chalawa” is responsible for her sudden passing. However, as much as Mahnoor (Naveen Waqar) warns her to attempt to live a normal life and stay away from digging around with the supernatural, Savera has revenge on her mind, wanting to avenge her grandmother’s death. Episode 16 is chock-full of blazing stares, glares and a “moody” attitude, but all without any effect. Sarosh (Usama Khan) is now being used as a vessel by another chalawa, ordered by Professor Hamdani (Adnan Jaffar). Hamdani has used Sarosh to murder Sarosh’s own grandmother and his next target is Mahnoor, as he wants Savera to be left completely alone and defenseless. But again, this episode has little of consequence or substance. Sarosh visits Mahnoor to murder her, but realizes – after drawn out, lengthy scenes of the two exchanging abnormal, intense glances – that Savera has protected Mahnoor from harm through a taveez, so he cannot harm her. Hearing this, Hamdani decides he will have to get to Savera through another route.
As has been said in previous reviews, Samina Ahmed and Naveen Waqar are the two actresses who elevated the show and it has been their acting prowess that has held viewer interest. However, now with Samina Ahmed’s character written off and Mahnoor only being seen here and there, the show has nosedived into boredom. With the exception of Ali Ansari, who is doing a good job, the rest of the cast seems bored with their own work – probably because nothing is actually happening. The next episode does look interesting though with the chalawa possessing Sarosh turning on Sarosh’s mother, who has grown increasingly scared and suspicious of Sarosh. Will he succeed in his plans and murder Sarosh’s parents? Overall, “Chalawa” is a show that was once interesting, but has lost its aim along the way. What was the point of this story again?