It cannot be argued that “Hum Kahan Kay Sachay Thay” is a show of powerhouse performances. The cast, featuring Mahira Khan, Kubra Khan, Usman Mukhtar, Huma Nawab, Laila Wasti, Shamim Hilaly, Ali Tahir, Zainab Qayyum and Haroon Shahid in prominent roles, has been written by the beloved Umera Ahmed and directed by the talented Farooq Rind. The performances are what keep the audience gripped and intrigued each week, along with an interesting story and incredible direction. And yet, as of late, the show has begun to raise questions amongst viewers – aren’t there simply too many loopholes? Why are the characters so weak? Why don’t they question occurrences and use common sense? It’s these faults and flaws in the story/characters that is taking “Hum Kahan Kay Sachay Thay” from a stellar product to one that isn’t quite meeting expectations at this point.
In episode 12, Mehreen (Mahira Khan) and Safaan (Haroon Shahid) are now getting married, Mehreen finally putting all the negativity behind her. She is seen smiling, happy with moving forward out of her toxic environment – and is happily supported by Saleha (Huma Nawab). Through all this, it’s evident that Aswad (Usman Mukhtar) is up to something, but what that something is isn’t clear until Safaan and his mother arrive at the house. With wedding talks being carried out happily, Aswad barges in and declares that he is Mehreen’s fiancé. One thing leads to another and Mehreen finds herself engaged to Aswad once again. There’s a lot to unpack here, so let’s take this step by step.
First, Aswad is the absolute worst. He is a villain, so please, let’s treat him like a villain. This is a man who is now in full-revenge mode after determining that Mehreen “killed” Mashal. He is now ready to torture and carry out a vendetta against Mehreen, making her life miserable- as if it weren’t already miserable enough. How soon after his torturous behavior will his whitewashing begin? And is it even warranted, considering the extent of his brainwashing has not even been seen by the audience? Those who have read the novel are aware that Aswad has been heavily under Mashal’s influence, brainwashed against Mehreen for years. However, we did not get a sense of how extreme it is while watching this show. That is lacking – and though it is never going to be an excuse, it would certainly add more layers to Aswad and allow the audience to at least understand what he is doing.
Second, the murder mystery being carried out here is illogical. Sleeping pills in this day and age are not lethal unless taken in an extreme amount. Mehreen would have had to dissolve an entire bottle of sleeping pills to even (potentially) have that sort of effect. That amount of pills would not dissolve easily in a cup of tea and it would also taste incredibly bitter – meaning Mashal would not have been able to take more than one sip before throwing it out – regardless of how much sugar Mehreen put in it. The “murder” method should have at least been plausible. This scenario just leaves the audience exasperated, wondering why this could not have been better etched?
And last, is anyone truly rooting for Mehreen at this point? Mahira Khan’s acting surely allows us to sympathize with Mehreen, but to see Mehreen continuing to think about Aswad after everything he has done makes Mehreen unlikable. On one end, she has the doting Safaan and on the other, she’s still thinking of Aswad. Then, after everything Safaan has done for her, Mehreen doesn’t even apologize to Safaan. She does not stand up and defend herself. She does not stop his mother. She does not give Aswad a shut up call. She allows Safaan to be humiliated, allows herself to be treated like property and allows Aswad to get his way – knowing that he despises her. Why? For what reason? Should I feel sorry for a character who is creating her own misery when she has a clear way out of it?
Quite honestly, the amount of screen time given to Shabo unnecessarily is also a problem. If she knows something, what does she know? And why won’t she speak up? It’s irritating to see her running back and forth aimlessly in a daze when the scenes do not lead anywhere. Overall, the performances are not the problem at this point. Everyone is doing a wonderful job. But what about logical storytelling? Not everything can rely on artistic shots and cinematography – we need a solid story that we, as audiences, can grasp and get on board with. One can only hope “Hum Kahan Kay Sachay Thay” gets back on track soon……as in, immediately.