TV series

Mr. Khan’s Review on Raqeeb Se – Episode III (2021)

A review on Pakistani drama TV series, Raqeeb Se – Episode 3 (2021). The new TV series is directed by Kashif Nisar and is a production of Momina Duraid Productions. Raqeeb Se is a HUM TV Production.

(Note: If you’ve already read the review of the previous episode, you can skip directly ahead to the High points section).

+ Crew

  • Directed by Kashif Nisar
  • Written by Beegul
  • DOP by Hassam Mairaj
  • Music Composed by Hadiqa Kiani
  • Produced by Momina Duraid Productions

+ Note

Raqeeb Se is the newest HUM TV Production and is once again the collaboration of the award winning Writer/ Director duo of Bee Gul and Kashif Nisar. 

The title of the show is heavily inspired by a poem from the legendary poet Faiz Ahmed Faiz when the young poet fell in love with a girl next door in Sialkot. But alas, as luck would have it, she one day unexpectedly left the city, only to be reunited years later when Faiz was already an established poet in the circles of Urdu literature. This encounter inspired Faiz to write a poem “Raqib Se!”. The backstory of this poem plays a crucial role in the premise of the show.

 + Main Cast

  1. Haidqa Kiani as Sakina
  2. Noman Ijaz as Maqsood
  3. Sania Saeed as Hajra
  4. Faryal Mehmood as Insha
  5. Iqra Aziz as Ameera
  6. Saqib Sameer as Rafiq

+ Plot

Raqeeb Se is a call of Maqsood’s dark past that could potentially destroy his present life. In order to escape her abusive husband, Sakina, along with her daughter Ameera, flees from her village to find shelter at her former lover’s place, Maqsood. Unfortunately Maqsood, who still holds a grudge against Sakina’s past actions, refuses to aid her in her most dire situation. But his wife, Hajra, seems much more sympathetic to the situation and lets Sakina stay at their home till things are figured out for the future.

But can Sakina be trusted to stay out of Maqsood’s life or will they be tempted to rekindle their lost love and in the process, destroy what Maqsood and his wife Hajra have built together?

+ High Points

i – This episode was the debut of Saqib Sameer as Raqib Ali who is quite entertaining as the husband of Sakina from the village. His thick Punjabi accent and over the top performance is enjoyable and most certainly the key highlight of the episode.

ii – Most of the episode’s runtime takes place in the countryside where the gorgeous view of the fields and grass was a much needed change of scenery from the constant claustrophobia of the bungalow back in the city. 

iii – Since the last episode, Ameera’s character has been much more fleshed out and compassionate. Iqra Aziz’s performance is consistent and is always the bright side of each scene.

 + Low Points

i – Repetition is the name of the game. And certainly, also for this TV series. The recyclable themes and dialogue of why Sakina should’ve been thrown out the moment she arrived at Maqsood’s house is becoming fast tiresome and cumbersome.

ii – While episode 3 took a further leap into the storyline in comparison to the last episode, Raqeeb Se is still lingering and stretching its plotlines to its limit. Not necessarily bad but many viewers can grow tired of this slow approach and perhaps this long burn needs a spark somewhere to wake its audience up a bit.

iii – There seems to be major conflict between the dialogues and the music accompanying the scene. Each scene starts with a flow of dialogue that indicates the viewer to take it seriously but then light hearted strings play in the background to make you think otherwise and vice versa. The tone of the dialogue and the music seems to be at complete odds with one another. Should I sense the vibe of the scene by listening to the dialogue or the music? This seems to be a recurring problem that doesn’t seem to fix itself in the foreseeable episodes.

iv – Faryal Mehmood’s scenes outside her family STILL serve no purpose to the overall plot of the drama. Why should we be emotionally invested in her love life when no stakes are even introduced up till now to the plot?

v – Sania Saeed’s character seems less and less believable with each passing episode. She seems a bit too generous in providing sympathy for Sakina’s character. Not giving any spoilers away, there was a throwaway dialogue which hinted at why Hajira is so much in Maqsood’s debt. Perhaps it will be more clear in the next few episodes and her characterization will make more sense.

 + Overall

While the introduction of Saqib Sameer’s character brings something new to the table and Iqra Aziz’s performance shines throughout the series, Raqeeb Se is still struggling to keep its viewer’s attention because of the lethargic plotting, slow burn drama. Will it pay off in the end? One cannot assume anything at the moment but with all its interesting characters, Raqeeb Se can be a whole lot more engaging than it currently is.

 Rate: 2.5 out of 5 stars

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