Seventeen episodes into the drama serial, Khaani has gradually shifted towards the titular character and her life, which now includes resettlement in a new city and the possibility of love and a happily ever after with Arham, her boss’s grandson who is in love with her.
The previously married Arham is a widower with a six-year-old daughter named Rahima, who has taken to Khaani exceptionally well. He is projected as the ideal candidate for Khaani, at least that’s how their families feel. Arham’s mother isn’t too selective though and confesses that she’d happily accept any girl her son wants to marry, as it seemed he would never get over his wife who died in an accident. Arham’s daughter has taken to Khaani and has even dreamt of her real mother saying her father should marry her; how absolutely idyllic is that? Khaani’s family really, really like Arham and therefore the stage is set for the perfect wedding or rishta for now.
And then we have Arham’s arch nemesis, Mir Hadi, who is as flawed as Arham is seemingly perfect, and who the world is in love with. Let’s compare the two.
Arham is Mr Nice Guy while Mir Hadi is dangerously volatile
It seems like nothing can unruffle the calm and collected Arham (Mohammad Mubarak Ali), who wears a perpetual smile and appears like an overgrown teddy bear. He’s the epitome of a comfort zone. Mir Hadi (Feroze Khan), on the other hand, is just as unstable and volatile. There is very little that can calm him down. He’s obsessive, self-destructive and dangerously unstable when it comes to emotions. He’s also been consistently drunk for the last two episodes and lashes out at everything that moves. Just the kind of man most women are attracted to.
Arham is the older widower while Mir Hadi is young and restless
Age is just a number but Arham must be considerably older than Khaani, he is a widower and he has a young daughter. Mir Hadi, on the other hand, is young and restless and while he must be in his twenties, he behaves like an entitled teenager. Arham is like Islamabad as compared to Karachi; he’s the green, post-retirement space versus the bustling yet grossly unkempt and dangerous metropolis.
Arham is the caregiver while all Mir Hadi does is take
Arham is the ideal father, son, grandson and boss. He’s presented as a very one-dimensional character with no flaws at all, which is annoying. Mir Hadi, similarly, is presented as all grey, with very little goodness to him. He is the black to Arham’s white, which one feels is a flaw in characterization. Some balance, somewhere, would have been welcome.
Arham and Mir Hadi’s love for Khaani
Mir Hadi’s love is an obsession, he admits. He perhaps doesn’t even know what real love is or how to express it. Khaani is his junoon, his passion. Arham, on the other hand, has slipped into love as easily as a duck slides into the water. And his love is real as he has loved before but his love is also dependent on the fact that his daughter like Khaani. Arham would make a better husband but Mir Hadi would definitely make for a more exciting love story.
The looks department
Arham is conventionally good looking, at least that’s what Khaani’s sisters think, even though he dresses like a fifty-year-old and wears his hair, beard and smile consistently plastered. Mir Hadi, on the other hand, is roguish and unkempt. The only thing consistent about Mir Hadi is his drunken state and bad behavior.
Arham is the ideal husband for Khaani (Sana Javed), who truth be told, is just as boring and monotone as he is. But bad boys make for better characters and Mir Hadi is the quintessential bad ass, unafraid of offending anyone and thus offending everyone, including his powerful father. We would wish Khaani and Arham a happily ever after but we wouldn’t want to be subjected to their placid romance. Mir Hadi is the still the one character who fires things up. It also has to be said that Arham’s character should have been more attractive, and we’re not implying physically. He’s a dull man. Think back to films with similar stories and love triangles – Woh Saat Din, Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam, even Kabhi Alvidaa Naa Kehna – and while the heroine is in love with another man, the husband is an equally attractive man, if not more than the volatile tragic hero, and has the public’s vote of approval. We loved Naseeruddin Shah, Ajay Devgn and Abhishek Bachchan in these films. Arham should have been a character/actor just as strong as Mir Hadi to put up a fair match.
Do you agree?