Mann Mayal: An absolute waste of TV space
Of all the useless things to have been unleashed over Pakistanis as a nation, the drama serial Mann Mayal is by far the worst. A classic sob-fest with glaring story problems, Mann Mayal decidedly became the most mocked show in broadcast history.
Though the cast was star-studded with seasoned actors like Saba Hameed, Naeem Tahir, Mehmood Aslam etc. the obvious shortcomings of the plot held them back. Mannu and Salahuddin, did manage to become household names but for mocking purposes rather than being inspirational characters.
As the country remained glued to their television sets on September 5th, the air was thick with anticipation. The last episode was about to air and people couldn’t wait for more instances from the show to make fun of. The level of exasperation after watching the drama was only matched by the number of ‘memes’ that each dialogue provided. For those who followed all episodes (and my condolences for that) will understand the following ‘meme’ perfectly. It sums up nine months of overly dramatised story telling.
“Jithoun di khoti…uthay aan khalot.” (What could have happened in the first two episodes, just happened nine months later, with lots of unnecessary characters that just added to the futility of the entire venture.)
In terms of containing any real substance, Mann Mayal contains such little matter to be worthwhile that all 33 episodes could be reviewed right here. But putting an end to your misery, let us review only the last episode. It started with Mannu’s mother trying to talk to Salahuddin to besiege Mannu to abandon plans of pursuing her studies and marry him instead. While Salahuddin was scratching his thick head to recall why Mannu could be refusing his proposal, Mannu overheard the conversation but decided to turn a blind eye. Salahuddin kept pondering. After all, he was asking her to marry him after three kids from a hellish marriage to a good-for-nothing gambler who she married in the first place because Sallu (Salahuddin) refused to do so.
Mannu convinced her father to let her stay at a hostel and continue her studies. The entire episode was all about Salahuddin trying to locate her while the directors of the drama apparently thought that viewers would ignore the fact that Sallu could have simply asked her parents for her whereabouts.
All of Mannu’s family members wanted these two to get married; he could have coaxed information about her, out of them in no time. Yet, he chose to take to the streets, trying to find her so that the audience could sympathise with a love-struck man turning over every brick and stone to get to his girl. He found her after two scenes and then they went on to reminisce about how they parted ways when Sallu didn’t open the door for Mannu. The obvious purpose behind this recreation was to bring back the bittersweet memories in the background of their ultimate union. And that was all.
The only thing interesting in mann mayal was it's OST
The only part that was good in the last ep of #MannMayal
Like this was what we waited 33 weeks for
I watched every single episode of #MannMayal.
Will the society accept me?
— Ayesha (@ayesha_fatyma) September 7, 2016
Mann Mayal should be a lesson to all these production houses who believe that an OST sung by Quratulain Balouch combined with the on-screen couple of Maya Ali and Hamza Ali Abbasi does not guarantee quality or success. It is high time that our channels try to screen stories and plots that are not wasting the prime time TV hour for thousands of viewers. It is not only wasteful, it is frankly insulting that people running these channels believe that the Pakistani society is so dim-witted and intellectually inferior that they’ll enjoy such a ridiculous story portraying women as sacrificial lambs. It is time for our media houses to either step up or roll over for someone who will.
The views expressed by the writer and the reader comments do not necessarily reflect the views and policies of The Express Tribune.