“Raqs E Bismil” is one of a few quality shows currently on air, though it is now nearing its conclusion with a handful of episodes left. Imran Ashraf and Sarah Khan play Musa and Zohra, two star-crossed lovers kept apart by their familial differences. These two lead actors are doing a brilliant job, with a talented supporting cast including Momin Saqib, Anoushay Abbasi, Furqan Qureshi, Zara Sheikh, Saleem Mairaj, Mehmood Aslam, Javeria Abbasi, Nida Mumtaz, Gul E Rana and others. Written by Hashim Nadeem and directed by Wajahat Rauf, “Raqs E Bismil” has been delivering admirable content, but unfortunately, has hit a rough patch in the last two episodes.
As predicted, the storyline with Zohra (Sarah Khan) being “hidden” by Faizi, essentially held hostage against her will, is potentially the most cliched turn this story could have taken. Faizi is out for financial gain, so both he and his wife are keeping Zoya under their roof while she remains in and out of consciousness. She’s not alert enough to understand what’s happening with her, but Faizi pays Tauqeer a visit and informs him of this latest development. The icing on the cake is that now with Tauqeer aware that his troubles in jail are due to Musa (Imran Ashraf), he now has a legitimate way to hurt Musa. Quite honestly, this entire situation is far-fetched. Musa isn’t the reason for Tauqeer’s miseries, Tauqeer attempted to murder his wife and he’s the only one responsible for his miseries. Who cares about Tauqeer? As an audience, we barely even care about Laila (Zara Sheikh), who is now buying into Faizi’s sob story and now believes Tauqeer is an innocent of sorts. This sort of character, who has been shown as strong and willing to put her ugly past behind her, is falling into a tried-and-tested mold of a damsel in distress, which is completely unnecessary. Meanwhile, Faizi’s wife begins her task of brainwashing Zohra against Shehryar (Furqan Qureshi), making her believe he was behind her accident.
In a story about two lovers kept apart, these random animosities and “business rivalries” feel forced and out of place. If a story does not require 25 episodes, is it necessary to drag it out for 25 episodes? Entertainment channels must understand that the audience would much rather have 18 or 19 strong, solid, well-written episodes than 25-30 episodes with five to ten episodes lacking any value. Zohra and Musa’s love story has already been well-established in our minds and both have gone through their own share of intense pain and regret. Imran Ashraf and Sarah Khan have given their characters their all, truly allowing the audience to root for Zohra and Musa. Does either character still need to travel any further in grief before the two can be united? It’s unfortunate that two complete episodes have now focused on this angle, bringing down the quality of an otherwise excellent show.