One of the greatest strengths of “Muhabbat Gumshuda Meri” for young, educated viewers of Pakistani dramas has been one that was obviously but not overtly addressed – toxic parenting. An innocent love story between Saim (Khushhal Khan) and Zobia (Dananeer Mobeen), the show depicted the differences in how Saim and Zobia were parented and how, when the two reacted in desperation and took a hasty decision, how the two bore different consequences of that action. At every turn, Zobia’s family – from her parents to her sister to her obsessive brother-in-law Daniyal – took wrong steps, acting in a volatile manner, abusing her both physically and verbally and, in the end, disowning her entirely. Meanwhile, Ibrahim and Faiqa, wonderfully played by Omair Rana and Ayesha Toor, handled Saim with love, nurturing him back to health and encouraging his career aspirations – while also not writing off the idea of a reunion with Zobia. The toxicity of Zobia’s parents should have been a prominent messaging point of the finale, behavior which many in the young generation would label as cause to remove them from Zobia’s life entirely – but alas, the finale takes a tried and tested, dated approach, allowing her family to get off almost blame-free. Starring Khushhal Khan and Dananeer Mobeen in lead roles, the show also stars Omair Rana, Ayesha Toor, Farah Sadia, Ali Tahir, Laila Zuberi, Naureen Gulwani, and Ali Raza, the story has been written by Rahat Jabeen and directed by Shahid Shafaat.
In the finale, Saim and his parents continue to strengthen their bond, Saim proving to be an exceptional, honest product of his parents upbringing, acknowledging his childish mistakes, apologizing to his parents and expressing his love for them. They, in turn, have always wanted the best for Saim – and that includes moving forward to arrange a reunion with Zobia. Meanwhile, the curtain of mistrust has begun to lift for Zobia and she begins to wonder – why can’t she simply be with Saim? However, fear of her family’s reaction keeps her silent, bowing her head in shame and agreeing to their decisions regarding her future. While it’s understandable that Zobia would be hesitant to fight for herself, considering she already did that and it backfired on her, we do wish there was serious acknowledgement – at least in her head – of the atrocities she endured at the hands of her family. Fortunately, it’s Nana who comes to the rescue by sitting the families together and having a heartfelt discussion. He points out exactly what the audience has been saying from the beginning – why couldn’t the families have gotten the two engaged and then encouraged them to study? This would have solved the entire problem, never leading to the kids eloping.
While it’s nice to see Zobia’s father (Ali Tahir) and Daniyal (Ali Raza) recognize the mistakes, they also make many statements that they reacted in anger and hot headedness, not realizing they kept their loved one banished for over 5 years for her mistake. This is not a small mistake on their part. It’s downright abuse. What Daniyal did almost killed Saim and he verbally abused and taunted his own wife. He did not deserve forgiveness from Zobia or Saim – and got it too easily. Sure, it’s nice to see that having a daughter of his own made him realize his unfair behavior, but as we’ve discussed often in the past….forgiveness does not equate to reacceptance into one’s life. Quite honestly, it would have been excellent to see Zobia choose to reunite with Saim on her own accord, be accepted by Ibrahim and Faiqa and while forgiving her family, keeping them at an arm’s length. Sometimes distance is healthy and in this scenario, one can’t even imagine Zobia not harboring intense feelings of resentment after all these years.
The wrap-up with Khala and Seemi is also not satisfying, only because of the way it was handled. Yes, Khala is right in telling Seemi that her behavior goes against her upbringing. Khala raised Seemi to be a strong woman, a woman who did not need others to be internally fulfilled – and yet, Seemi latched on to Saim and allowed his rejection to shape her entire personality. This part is fine, this needed to be said. Unfortunately, Khala refuses to say what actually needed to be said, which is that Saim never belonged to her and was already Zobia’s husband when Seemi met him. Her animosity towards Zobia should have only been restricted to her lying and concealing the truth instead of being honest and truly protecting her. What Zobia did was dishonest and Seemi had every right to be angry for that reason – and that reason alone. Her anger toward Zobia for stealing Saim away from her was never logical and uncalled for and Khala’s attitude towards the situation was also unacceptable.
In the end, it’s beautiful to see Zobia and Saim finally reunited without any barriers between them. Dananeer Mobeen and Khushhal Khan have been the soul of “Muhabbat Gumshuda Meri,” their chemistry truly uplifting this sweet romance and making us root for this pair. Even when Zobia was at her worst, we still hoped Saim could get through to her. Khushhal Khan has been an incredibly lovable hero as Saim, a child who evolves into a man while Dananeer Mobeen has played Zobia with just the right amount of vulnerability. The wedding scenes are beautiful, but we deserved a big event with the presence of their entire family (on-screen). The wind-up scene with Seemi is also great, showing how she has forgiven, moved on and is happy in life….and indicates her upcoming romance. In the end, we are left with a smile on our faces for the happy final episode we are presented with. And yet, there’s still a dissatisfaction towards the treatment of Zobia’s family and how they were turned from villains to heroes unnecessarily. Sometimes showing a more realistic aspect of relationships is preferable to sugar-coating them. Still, “Muhabbat Gumshuda Meri” will be remembered for giving us a sweet romance with layers and realistic ups and downs.