Stories about television

What/If: Defying the norms of conventional television

It is no secret that modern day television has become more mainstream than it is creative. Unappealing stories, poor writing and constant recycling of antiquated ideas for TV have pushed away viewers who seek something unique and out of the blue for their entertainment. This is where the new Netflix neo-noir thriller What/If comes in, for it defies the norms of conventional television. Based on what I believe to be the concept of opportunity cost – something to lose, something to gain – the premise centres on the notion of power used by the privileged as an effective tool to manipulate the disadvantaged. Academy-award ...

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Dead to Me is not as novel as Big Little Lies yet it’s hard to resist its charm

Tinged with flavours of crime and mystery, the female-led comedy-drama has risen triumphantly and blessed us with some very intriguing television series over the last few years. With fierce women in the driving seat, shows like Killing Eve, Big Little Lies and Good Girls have captivated viewers with their fascinating characters, interesting twists and dark wit. Joining the list is the new Netflix series, Dead to Me, another dark comedy with a mystery woven into its fabric. Created by Liz Feldman, the show arrived on the streaming giant earlier this month. The terrific Christina Applegate and Linda Cardellini lead the cast, telling the ...

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To binge-watch or not to binge-watch – The highs and lows of TV in 2018

There is no doubt that we are living in the golden age of television. With loads of new enticing televisions shows being produced every year and keeping us hooked throughout, there is no doubt that we are witnessing ‘peak TV’. Every year countless television networks and streaming services produce their own TV shows to attract as much audience as possible. The competition amongst them gets tougher by the second and we the audience, couldn’t be happier as we are treated with more and more entertaining content with each passing day. To mark the end of the year, below is a ...

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Bristol Hotel: A haunting remnant of the old, glittering Karachi

The building in this picture was the setting for most of the horror stories in my seven-year-old mind. It was also the view from my room in my grandparents’ house. I would listen in awe as my friend talked about the ghosts that she had seen lurking there in the dark of the night. At night, I would draw the curtains together so I wouldn’t have to stare at that abandoned dwelling. I didn’t know much about it back then. My dada (paternal grandfather) told me it was called Bristol Hotel and that it was constructed pre-partition. My imagination added another detail; I assumed ...

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Why should Abbasi apologise for standing up for minorities?

The Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority’s (PEMRA) latest directive – asking Aaj News to apologise for airing ‘controversial’ and ‘sectarian’ views during a Ramazan transmission reeks of nothing but double standards. Many have argued that Hamza Ali Abbasi’s bold step towards stirring, much needed, dialogue regarding the plight of Ahmadis and the demagogic blasphemy laws was bound to have serious repercussions. And they weren’t wrong. Mere hours later, Shabbir Abu Talib and Kokab Noorani openly declared Abbasi’s discussion an act of ‘treason’. On national television. Consequently, PEMRA, believing itself to be the sacrosanct upholder of morals banned both shows for indulging in provocative, non-serious and irresponsible conversations on television during the ...

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Hail Caesar!: A tribute to the golden age of Hollywood

From the tragic to the absurd, the Coen brothers’ names have become synonymous with dark comedy, snappy dialogue and an unprecedented love for filmmaking. With Hail Caesar! (2016), the Coen brothers pay tribute to the golden age of Hollywood but the story takes place when the studio system is at the brink of a downfall; television was introduced to mass audience and threatened the very existence of cinema and filmmaking. The film portrays the life of a studio fixer who is caught in major production of film, Hail Caesar!, celebrity gossip, a foreign plot to overthrow the Hollywood establishment and his ...

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Five anti-Pakistan Arnab Goswami moments that prove he needs to visit Pakistan first!

There is no doubt that he is flamboyant and aggressive to a fault. That is indeed what draws the viewers in. It’s not his fault. It is how the world of television news operates. He is merely the personification of ‘the good, the bad, and the ugly’ of news channels or perhaps the manifestation of television news at its best. For what else is news media about if not an indulgence in hyperbole, an engagement with trifle, and the desire to project whatever that is being shown as meaningful. Many have fallen victim to the Arnab Goswami attack; a barrage of verbosity. When ...

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Do you know How To Get Away With Murder?

Murders are easy to commit but hard to cover up these days. That’s what I thought until I started watching the new mystery-thriller drama, How to Get Away with Murder. This new thriller has not only revolutionised the television landscape but contradicts my humble statement completely.

The series is about five freshman college students and their mysterious criminal law professor who get embroiled in a dangerous murder plot. The show stars Academy award nominee, Viola Davis, as Professor Annalise Keating, a sophisticated defence attorney who runs her own law firm. The series also stars Alfred Enoch, Jack Falahee, Aja Naomi King and Karla Souza. [caption id="" ...

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Help your child deal with the trauma of #PeshawarSchoolAttack

What started as a usual day for many school-going children – with the routine hustle bustle of school life, class work, worries about upcoming exams, excitement about the winter holidays and carefree play and discussion with friends – sadly turned into a series of incomprehensible and barbaric acts of terrorism with chaos, injury and death all around. When we, as adults, are still grappling with how and why someone would take young and innocent lives, the shock, insecurity and trauma the children will be experiencing may be manifold. The acts of terrorism are random, beyond comprehension, a deliberate attempt to harm and leave both ...

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Why can’t we buckle up?

Pakistan’s television industry has seen from amazing times – when classics such as Dhoop Kinarey charmed viewers all around the country as well as across the border – to the not-so-amazing times, when aunties gathered around television screens for nothing better than ‘saas-bahu’ soaps. Fortunately, the growth in television productions has recently been phenomenal, with dozens of serials airing on the ever growing number of television channels in the country. As the entertainment industry expands, its impact on society surpasses the mere purpose of entertaining. It begins to highlight social issues and influences thinking and behaviour among the population. A ton of storytelling on Pakistani ...

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