Sonya Hussyn and Sami Khan have been making waves with their on-screen chemistry ever since they starred in Kaisi Hai Tanhai. The duo is back on screen for the third time in Saraab. The drama, which deals with the sensitive topic of schizophrenia, had a very intriguing first episode that lay the foundation of what we hope is going to be nuanced handling of a sensitive topic.
A brief recap
The first episode introduced us to two families. The first family consisted of sisters Hoorain (Sonya Hussyn), Namal (Nazish Jehangir), Wardah (Ghana Ali), and their parents. Hoorain and Namal live with their parents while Wardah is married and lives with her in-laws. Then there’s Asfandyar’s (Sami Khan) family. Hoorain’s mother is Asfandyar’s phuppho as well as his maami because their parents got married by Watta Satta (exchange marriage). Asfandyar lives with his parents and has a sister.
The viewers also got to see the mother-in-law of Wardah though, at this point, it is hard to say whether she is a part of the family or not. Wardah has a brother in law who wants to marry Hoorain. It wouldn’t have been easy showing the relationship of the main characters – that too in just a single episode but the audience would not have a hard time connecting them with each other, thanks to the writer’s simple approach.
A compelling performance
For a drama that is dealing with a unique topic, the first episode focused more on the stock characters. From the typical phuphho who has immense hate for her sister-in-law to a woman falling for a guy who loves her sister – the first episode revealed a lot about the characters. Fortunately, Sonya’s acting balanced it all out.
It might be the first episode but Sonya did a good job of showing the viewers that there is something wrong with her character; she cannot do house chores properly and she feels afraid all the time. Sonya captured the confused and reserved personality of Hoorain perfectly. Her controlled performance as Hoorain instantly has the audience’s attention as the mystery around what is real and what is part of Hoorain’s imagination is introduced. The last scene of the episode was especially chilling where, what started as a conversation between Hoorain and Asfandyar, is revealed to be just a part of Hoorain’s hallucination. If the drama continues to retain its mystery, then the audience is going to have a great time, no doubt.
Pakistani dramas, for most of the time, have steered away from mental health topics. The few dramas that did touch the topic didn’t handle it effectively. Here’s to hoping that Saraab does a good job of spreading awareness about schizophrenia.