“Shehnai” started off with much promise, an interesting, light-hearted story with a fun, talented ensemble cast; however, in recent weeks, the story has forced the audience to suspend reality and watch an unbelievable tale play out. Written by Radain Shah and directed by Ahmed Bhatti, “Shehnai” has a stellar star cast including Affan Waheed, Ramsha Khan, Javed Sheikh, Nida Mumtaz, Saleem Mairaj, Salma Hassan, Zainab Qayyum, Behroze Sabzwari, Shehryar Zaidi, Javeria Abbasi and many others.
In episode 22, Hunain (Hammad Shoaib) has wormed his way into Bakht’s (Ramsha Khan) household and has successfully won over the family. He has effectively pulled the wool over Bakht’s eyes, Bakht now not only blind in his love, but also refusing to even use her own brain to see what’s in front of her. Not only has Hunain entered the household, but his father, who is supposedly dying of cancer, has also joined the party. Meerab (Affan Waheed) has now realized that it was Hunain behind the robbery and it was Hunain himself who held Bakht at gunpoint – however, Bakht simply refuses to believe anything Meerab says. Fortunately, Kifayat (Saleem Mairaj) has now seen Hunain’s true face and, after being threatened by Hunain, he now realizes that his plotting has gone too far and Hunain is dangerous.
While it will be great to see Kifayat and Meerab work together now to expose Hunain, it’s incredibly frustrating to watch this story play out. There isn’t any excuse for Bakht to believe in Hunain so blindly – he has let her down in the past and his excuses really did not explain anything. And yet, she not only believes Hunain over Meerab, but she also allows Hunain and his father to enter her home and mingle with her family while she’s set to marry Meerab. This entire scenario has now entered “eye rolling” territory. While Samreen was an unlikable character, her presence made sense and Meerab’s loyalty to her made sense. Meerab never deceived Bakht and was always upfront with her. Bakht never had a reason to be angry with Meerab and Bakht’s loyalty to Hunain does not make sense – and to top it off, she is deceiving her entire family for him. At this point, even when Bakht snaps out of it and realizes that she was wrong, will she ever deserve Meerab? The answer is no. Meerab deserves much better than Bakht, a girl who is not only untrue to those around her, but isn’t even capable of being true to herself. Both Affan Waheed and Ramsha Khan are doing a wonderful job in their roles, along with the entire supporting cast (particularly Saleem Mairaj). It’s unfortunate that Ramsha Khan’s Bakht has become so unlikable while Affan Waheed’s Meerab has been more consistent in his likability. Will the remaining episodes manage to push the show into a digestible realm?