To be honest, I was a bit apprehensive before watching Episode 2 of Khaani simply because a huge tragedy had struck and the mourning that would inevitably follow was not my idea of entertainment. We see enough death, disease, and disaster on news channels all day and one looks for a little bit of relief on entertainment channels. Incessant wailing can be quite traumatic. So it really was a relief when, while the family naturally does mourn the callous murder of their son and brother Saarim, it is treated more as an injustice than a tragedy.
Moreover, the episode does deal with the aftermath of the cold-blooded murder of the young Saarim but it more strongly throws light on the character development of Mir Hadi and Khaani.
Sana Javed, one has to say, delivers a very strong performance as a mourning sister. One notices how her grief is a notch higher than everyone else, maybe because Saarim was her twin, and she cries but she’s not overwhelmed by the situation. She is strong enough to offer a supportive shoulder to her father. This points at some hidden strength that will allow her to take Mir Hadi head-on in the upcoming episodes.
Feroze Khan, once again, delivers a stellar performance and the fact that Mir Hadi comes across as an absolutely abhorrent and repulsive character is Khan’s success. There is not a dash of regret or remorse and he is obstinate in his actions and decisions. He holds a hand up to stop his mother from whining when the police are taking him away. He snubs his best friend when he comes to visit him and he tells his parents that he will not apologize to the family, under any condition. In the Episode 3 promo we see an even uglier side of Mir Hadi when Khaani visits him in jail and he threatens her and her sisters. So this is a man who has a sense of complete entitlement and believes himself to be invincibly powerful.
The media plays an important role in the story of Khaani, as the establishment takes action only when they believe “things have gotten out of hand,” as in the media trial on Mir Hadi has begun. If his father, Mir Shah is to safeguard his political career then he must watch his every step and action. And while Khaani’s family mourns the death of their son, the Mir family conspires on how to manage the damage that the hot-headed Hadi has done. Their first decision is to publicly acknowledge Mir Hadi’s crime and openly claim that he must be punished. This is the only way they will get public sympathy, if at all.
Khaani has taken an extremely promising start, and one looks forward to the next episode when the leading couple will come face to face, but the success of the story will depend on its progression. Too many recent plays, like O Rangreza for example, took a great start but then lost the plot. We hope that Anjum Shahzad can keep us as riveted throughout as we are now.