I had hope, hope that “Jalan” would be different. Would this finally be the story that would shed some light on the mental instability behind the conniving characters we often see on our television screens? Would we finally stop calling characters like Saman from “Maat” manipulative and acknowledge them as the sociopaths they are? Would Minal Khan’s character be presented as unstable and would she turn stalker in pursuit of her sister’s husband? The premise seemed interesting, a young girl smitten by her sister’s spouse and nurturing an unethical, unstable obsession that turns sinister. That would have been a great story right? Sometimes I wonder why I’m not writing these dramas. These stories are not that unique or original that drama writers cannot write them and these are stories viewers may actually want to see. Instead, we are being given old wine in a new bottle – “Jalan,” the typical story of a sister having an affair with her sister’s husband. Of course the husband will have the affair, leave his wife and then regret it later on. How many times have we seen this? Remember “Maat,” “Yahan Pyar Nahin Hai,” or “Madiha Aur Maliha”?
Episode 7 sets the show on this same stereotypical path. Nisha (Minal Khan) has now actively begun pitting Asfandyar (Emmad Irfani) and Misha (Areeba Habib) against each other. Again, I will reiterate that Asfandyar has been suspicious of Nisha from the beginning and has realized her sinister intentions from the moment he met her – and he did not like what he saw. Why then has he been so easily convinced by her lies? Misha is another character, allowing her openly manipulative sister (who has ALWAYS taken her things from her) to stay in her home without any rhyme or reason. The episode is not action-packed, it’s simply manipulation packed. The scenes between Asfandyar and Nisha are almost nausea-inducing with how illogical the scenarios are. Why would Asfandyar take Nisha out in the middle of the night while his wife is sleeping? Is this a normal situation? It’s difficult to feel anything but irritation at Asfandyar, a character who is turning out to be as bad as Nisha. It has taken a matter of two days for him to turn away from his (obviously pregnant) wife and begin an illicit relationship with her sister.
This is not against the performances, because everyone is performing well. There aren’t any complaints on that end and Minal Khan is performing particularly well, as well as Fahad Sheikh as Ahmer. More than anything, as a viewer, I find myself rooting for the potential romance between Hajra Yamin and Fahad Sheikh’s characters. Of course, we can already see where the story is headed – a man cannot be married to two sisters and he cannot divorce his wife if she’s pregnant. Oh what a problem Asfandyar has found himself in. I feel so terrible for him – except I do not and neither does anyone else. Fahad Sheikh’s angle is the strong point of this show, otherwise there’s nothing new here – unless the show manages to prove me wrong in upcoming episodes.