“Neeli Zinda Hai” is one of the more promising new shows at present. With its unique “horror” style storyline plus its interesting cast, there’s a freshness to it which is pulling the Pakistani drama audience in. Written by Adeel Razaq and directed by Qasim Ali Mureed, this drama stars Mohib Mirza, Sonia Mishal and Urwa Hocane in lead roles, supported by Shabbir Jan, Mohammad Ahmed, Kinza Malik and others. In episode one, we were introduced to Aman and Sumbal, a young couple with a marriage falling apart due to familial interference and distance.
In episode 2, the story continues to build now that Aman (Mohib Mirza) and Sumbal (Sonia Mishal) have moved into their new place. Upon arrival, their electricity is knocked out, forcing Aman to call an electrician. Meanwhile, the family goes out to dinner, but upon their return home, they discover the lights have been turned back on, but the electrician is missing in action – and continues to remain missing the next day. While Aman and Sumbal may be unaware, the audience is immediately clued in that “something” has attacked the electrician.
However, Sumbal’s intuition kicks in rather quickly and she is not unaware for long. Many small things happen almost instantly with a glass shattering, a mysterious trunk appearing in the store room that reappears after being thrown out (courtesy their daughter) and objects appearing and disappearing in places they previously were not (the doll, the picture). While many could call these jump scares, it’s also a successful attempt for a spirit to make their presence known. Of course, “Neeli” has decided to befriend the young child, which only adds to the creepiness quotient.
In upcoming episodes, we will now see Neeli and Sumbal’s daughter becoming “friends.” There’s also an interesting angle with Aman’s mother, who is unbearingly possessive of Aman. What’s irritating about this track is that while Aman’s mother (who is being brilliantly played by Kinza Malik) is consistently harping on how Sumbal has taken her son away from her, one has to pause to recognize that Aman has been living in Australia for years now and his mother earlier was heard saying that she can’t wait for him to go back. One then has to realize that his mother’s problem is not with her son living far away from her, as this time he actually lives in the same city, rather her problem is simply with Aman being close to his wife. There will definitely be an aspect of black magic thrown in here as this character has begun to visit a “Baba.” But how will this angle factor in considering the home Aman and Sumbal live in is already haunted?
The premise of the show is very interesting and the way it has been presented is slick. It’s also something to note that all the actors tend to wear different colors of blue, creating a striking canvas on-screen. Kinza Malik’s performance is really standing out, particularly because she usually plays these soft, quiet characters. Mohib Mirza and Sonia Mishal are a very attractive-looking couple and their characters are also very likable so far. How will this love story play out? Who is Neeli and what does she want exactly? We will have to wait and see, but this drama is certainly off to an intriguing start. Let’s hope it does not go the “Chalawa” way.