Green Entertainment continues to roll out new launches with “Fatima Feng” starting this week. Airing Monday through Friday, adding this show to the watch list will be time consuming and daily shows tend to come with that risk. However, the concept of “Fatima Feng” is immediately intriguing with the promos, showing the journey of a young woman from disdain towards religion finding her way towards Islam. Sure, the show is religiously driven with a spiritual, potentially preachy message, but after watching the first two episodes, the story has social relevance considering the world events currently taking place around us. Written by Asma Wazir Gul and directed by Fahim Burney, “Fatima Feng” stars Howarah Batool, Usama Khan, Mehar Bano, Babar Ali, Munazzah Arif and Noman Kahout in prominent roles.
In the first two episodes, we’re introduced to Jia, a girl from a Chinese family settled in Pakistan. While she is a successful, independent woman with a good career, she is lonely without her parents. While her mother passed away due to illness, she is haunted by her father’s death in a blast at the hands of terrorists. She is unable to come out of this trauma, dreaming about it at night and the anger towards her father’s untimely, tragic death coming out towards religion – specifically Islam. This is why the topic feels relevant, especially with the anger felt around the world due to tragedies experienced at the hands of terrorists which puts Islam under a less-than-ideal microscope.
Jia has been supported by her father’s friend Jahangir (Babar Ali), who is now her boss. Jahangir has his own struggles at home with his son, Ammar (Usama Khan), who wants to create his own name for himself and refuses to join the family business. He wants his father’s support, but wants to move into an entirely different path which will allow him to help other people. This is the constant discussion at home, though the relationship both Ammar and Jahangir share with the rest of the family, Jahangir’s wife (Tara Mehmood) and daughter (Rimha Ahmed), is really very sweet. This family unit feels very natural, the love along with the bickering and Jia seems to enjoy being around them as well.
Unfortunately, Jia’s constant questions surrounding Islam and her place in Pakistan refuse to allow her to rest. Jia’s banter with her colleague Raheel (Noman Kahout) is interesting to watch as Raheel is religious, but also understands where Jia’s hesitation and bias comes from. Upon his suggestion, Jia decides to go back to China for a while to clear her head and discover who she truly is. Unfortunately, at the end of episode two, it seems that her plans will change due to some sort of tragedy.
Howarah Batool is an interesting new find and is playing the role of Jia convincingly. Her interactions with those around her are nice to watch, whether it’s with Raheel or even with her lonely next door neighbor. Here’s hoping Jia’s journey to becoming Fatima is a believable, natural one. Usama Khan is incredibly likable as Ammar and it’s great to see him playing a genuinely good guy this time around instead of the usual “villain” roles he gets saddled with. Babar Ali is always a joy to watch and Tara Mehmood and Rimha Ahmed are sweet in their roles. As of episode 2, “Fatima Feng” is an enjoyable watch and seems to have a strong underlying message of empathy, understanding and acceptance. If it has been well-written and executed well without too many lectures (which could very much be possible), “Fatima Feng” could be a new age “Main Abdul Qadir Hoon” – but would that be getting our hopes up? Regardless, this is off to a good start!