Stories published in May, 2018

Deadpool 2: One of the best sequels that outshines the original

When Deadpool went on to become the highest grossing R-rated movie of all time back in 2016, it was quite evident the audience would be treated to a sequel, and that we would be seeing a lot more of Ryan Reynolds as Wade Wilson in the future. A sequel was confirmed, but Tim Miller, the director of the original, did not continue, and was replaced with David Lietch (Atomic Blonde). However, a majority of the cast members from the original reprised their roles in the sequel, which meant fan favourites like Dopinder (Karan Soni), Weasel (TJ Miller), Colossus (Stefan Kapičić), ...

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Why is the Wagah border ceremony a competition of nationalism?

It has been 70 years since India and Pakistan emerged from a single, coherent geographical unit as two sovereign nations, and both states do their best to remember and reaffirm this. Every day at around 4:30pm, the Wagah border prepares for a unique ceremony, wherein the soldiers stationed at and near the border gates on both sides re-state the identity of India and Pakistan as sovereign nations, while their people cheer for them. As the dusk sets in, it is time to lower their respective flags, but both countries do so by giving a warning to each other. The gates ...

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In a country of abysmal women rights, will the Transgender Protection Act prove to be fruitful?

Last week, the National Assembly (NA) enacted a law to protect the rights of the transgender community. Called the Transgender Persons (Protection of Rights) Act 2018, its main provisions validate transgender identity and expression and seek to provide transgender men and women the rights they had under the country’s Constitution but never enjoyed. The act spells these rights out explicitly so there remains no doubt of their full citizenship. The definition of “transgender persons” is thoughtfully crafted to include intersex, eunuch or a “transgender man or woman, khawaja sira or any person whose gender identity and/or gender expression differs from ...

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I was not just a Pakistani visiting India; I was travelling back in history

Several years ago, I chanced to visit India for a conference. Our immediate destination after crossing the Wagah-Attari border was the Jallianwala Bagh, followed by the Golden Temple – the two famous destinations that appear when you Google “sites to visit in Punjab”. For those living in Lahore today, touring these sites, which are located at a mere 50-kilometre distance, is next to impossible given the visa restrictions. Crossing the border I was excited of course, but at the same time, I was lost in my thoughts. In their teen years, my grandparents had made the decision of ...

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Is Priyanka Chopra the ideal choice for Pakistani-Muslim teenage superhero Ms Marvel?

Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) will be entering phase four of its production post Avengers 4, which releases in 2019. Only two movies, a Spider-man sequel and Guardians of the Galaxy Vol III, had been announced for phase four, but recently, Kevin Fiege, president of Marvel Studios, while talking to BBC said that the studio was planning to introduce Ms Marvel to the MCU as well, and that the plans to do so were in the works. Ms Marvel aka Kamala Khan is a teenage Pakistani-American superhero. She was first introduced in 2013 as a young girl, who was inspired by ...

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5 reasons why every Pakistani family will love and relate to ‘Aangan’

Pakistan’s flourishing drama industry is touching on a lot of stereotypical and taboo topics lately, proving that it is making strides in the right direction. We have produced dramas such as Kankar, Udaari, Zindagi Gulzar Hai, Khaani and Baaghi to give centre stage to issues that remain hidden behind closed doors. However, stories depicting traditional joint family system were missing from our TV screens for quite some time. Writer Faiza Iftekhar noticed this fact and tried to fill the void by scripting the drama serial Aangan. Though Aangan is just an ordinary story of a traditional joint family, but the way it is portrayed is what gives it ...

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Is Trump pulling out of the Iran deal a blessing in disguise for Pakistan?

US President Donald Trump’s announcement to withdraw from the Iran nuclear deal – also known as the 2015 Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) – did not surprise many. However, the way in which this announcement was made was more dramatic than expected; especially how Trump simply announced the date of the decision in a tweet, creating suspense and leaving behind an air of doubt. I will be announcing my decision on the Iran Deal tomorrow from the White House at 2:00pm. — Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 7, 2018 The Iran Deal is defective at its core. If we do nothing, ...

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‘Terminal’ fails to grab our attention, but will Margot Robbie save the day?

Hot on the heels of an Oscar nomination for her incredible performance as Tonya Harding in I, Tonya, actress Margot Robbie is slowly taking Hollywood by storm. Her stock rose considerably due to the immense commercial success of Suicide Squad in 2016 and her performance as Harley Quinn was one of the few things about the movie that was lauded by critics and fans alike. However, the mark of an actor or actress is often determined by the types of roles they play, compounded by their own penchant to experiment and do something that would otherwise be considered outside their comfort zone. So ...

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The corrupt, disgraced and disqualified prime minister who cried wolf

A while ago, Nawaz Sharif suggested that if things kept going the way they were, he would also, in retaliation, reveal the many secrets and insider information he was privy to. This was a veiled threat, but the implication was clear: Nawaz would not go down quietly, and if the attack on him did not abate, he would most likely disclose state secrets. Now, Nawaz seems to have made good on his threat, for in a recent interview to controversial journalist Cyril Almeida, he acknowledged that the terrorists behind the 26/11 Mumbai attacks were non-state actors sent by Pakistan, and ...

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Why limiting players’ league participation is an essential move by the PCB

Once in a blue moon, I find myself agreeing with the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB). The decision to limit the participation of centrally-contracted players in franchise cricket around the globe is one of those odd instances. The cap placed by PCB was writing on the wall, it was only a matter of time for them to step in. When the players choose to participate in every tom, dick and harry league around the world, it comes at a price. A human body is not immortal. Even if the player is at his peak, in terms of his fitness at least, there is ...

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