“Mushk” continues to live up to expectations even as it moves beyond 23 episodes. This is a rare feat for Pakistani drama viewers to remain glued to a show, awaiting each episode with anticipation week after week, but “Mushk” has managed to keep its audience hooked with a layered, multi-track story. Starring Imran Ashraf, Urwa Hocane, Momal Sheikh, Osama Tahir, Zara Tareen, Aehsun Talish and many others, the story has been written by Imran Ashraf and directed by Aehsun Talish. Last we saw, Chotay Malik (Hassan Ahmed) has remerged onto the scene as a now-healthy, on-his-feet man, which has set several problems into motion.
In episode 23, Chotay Malik has decided to take revenge not only against Zulekha (Zara Tareen), but also Dr. Rana (Raja Haider). Locking Zulekha in a room with coal, rope and fire (clearly not a good combination), Chotay Malik sets out to “take care of” Dr. Rana. However, Guddi (Urwa Hocane) sets out to save the day. With Chotay Malik interested in Guddi, he makes it clear that he will get rid of anyone who gets in their way. This visibly shakes Guddi and she quickly places a call to Adam (Imran Ashraf) to warn Dr. Rana. However, Dr. Rana is a cunning man himself and sets up in anticipation for Chotay Malik, despite Adam’s warnings.
Back at the house, Munna, Guddi, Roshni, Mehek and the other girls desperately try to find the keys to release Zulekha. Zulekha has certainly learned to fend for herself over the years and does not sit like an idle duck. By the time the girls burst into the room, there is no sign of Zulekha and the window is open, indicating that she has escaped. Unfortunately for Zulekha, she runs to Dr Rana, who instructs his office help to lock her out. This will leave Zulekha to fend for herself. How will she manage? That remains to be seen, but one thing is for certain – Zulekha has been through hell and back at the hands of her husband and so, regardless of whether her husband and father-in-law are out for revenge, one hopes she will find some way to get out of this. Guddi is also a character doing her best to change her ways, trying now to help the entire household out of the mess she helped create. It was great to see her come clean to Adam, though it’s not clear how much she told him. She will definitely need his help to get out of Chotay Malik’s clutches.
Shayaan, for his part, has become a rebel, realizing that he now wields power in his situation. Muqaddar Khan (Aehsun Talish) is now helpless in front of his daughter’s love and several moments of weakness are seen in his armor, particularly when little Masooma is seen crying because she now faces isolation from her other young friends. Child marriage is a problem in itself (aside from being illegal), but the social isolation is an entirely different dilemma. Mothers would obviously not want their children to play with a young girl who has been married for a variety of reasons – but how does that affect this young child who is going through so many changes? The highlight of this episode is the moment when Adam visits Shayaan (Osama Tahir) at his house. First spotting Masooma and mistaking her for Shayaan’s sister, he’s shocked when he hears her say she’s his wife. Adam is left in shock, but is even more taken aback when Shayaan bursts into the room and hugs her, quietly asking if Mehek sent him and then asking him to stay quiet on that subject in front of Muqaddar Khan. Shayaan has been waiting for a moment to establish contact with Mehek and meeting Adam is just the opportunity he has been waiting for. But will things go as planned considering Adam now sees Shayaan through a different lens (having married a child)? Despite this scene being only 3-4 minutes long, it’s the one scene that stands out – in an episode full of great scenes.
This episode of “Mushk” came across like a game of chess with each player trying to do their best to outwit the other. While each episode of “Mushk” has been strong, this episode in particular has been very well-written, keeping the audience on their toes as to what will happen next. The highlight of the episode are the scenes with Adam and Shayaan, along with Guddi, Munna and the team trying to save Zulekha. Epsiode 24 of “Mushk” seems promising as well, but it must be said that the Imran Ashraf – Aehsun Talish duo are doing a great job with keeping pace.