SonyLIV, the OTT arm of Sony Pictures, is one of the players which is churning out original content at regular intervals, which is helpful in creating a recall value among audiences, a till date Achilles Heel for the platform. An early bloomer in the space, SonyLIV and its shows have been mostly a blink and miss, entering the realm of oblivion soon after its launch.
However, its endeavour to push out newer content reflects faith & commitment in the cause, which eventually will find connect with the target audience.
Love Bytes, one of its early beamers, is back with season 2. This Kushal Punjabi (Abhi) and Sukhmani Sadana (Ananya) starrer traces the lives of commitment phobic gen next, a relatable urbane topic.
The latest franchise takes the story forward after Ananya and Abhi break up as the latter shies away from committing. The narrative is weaved well and is easy to the eye. Although Ananya is pregnant, she is ready to be a single mother and does not really blame Abhi for her fate. She has accepted the situation and is ready to move on.
Abhi on his part has also moved on and is in a relationship with Sonia (Manasi Scott), but he has not been able to forget his past love. This time, he is not even ready to move in with his new girl. This situation brings out the irony of life, wherein in a desire to achieve something else, you lose what is dear to you.
The scale of the show has been made bigger with introduction of other well-known actors like Manish Goel (Varun) and Shweta Gulati (Gunjan), who are friends of Abhi and Anand and might act as a catalyst for them to get back together.
Kushal as Abhi has indeed evolved as an actor and he brings out the flaws in the character naturally. Sukhmani adds value to the plot with her nuanced controlled performance. The best part is that Love Bytes shows romance and its myriad hues coated in warmth and substance. The characters are like you and me, many of us have been in their place at one time or the another.
The main casting is complete with Ananya’s friend Vikram (Ayaz Khan) who loves her, thus the love quadrilateral.
Abhi represents the modern man who thinks that while he can move on, expects the partner to wait on. Things reach a crescendo at a party where Abhi insults Ananya and Vikram.
The narrative has enough drama to hold you for all the seven episodes.
SonyLIV has taken a big risk of keeping just the first episode free and one has to subscribe to the channel to watch more. Will Indians, used to free content, pay? And now with large number of OTT players following subscription models, entertainment bills will rise. Ideally, you should pay for a show and not a channel. We would rate Love Bytes 3 out of 5 stars. Watch it for the performances more than the plot. Let us know your thoughts on the same.