The web space is teeming with a gazillion shows, each more compelling than the next. Most web series, however, are chockfull with content bordering on the dark and the dangerous. Twisted plots with murky undertones sit cheek-by-jowl with crime thrillers, hefty on sex. Occasionally, you have imbecile comedies with mindless humour, jostling for space with the usual suspects.
Amidst the cacophony, hides this incandescent gem, shining like a beacon of all that’s right with the Indian web space. We’re talking about Adulting– the latest jewel from the stables of Dice Media, and the web series IWMBuzz has taken upon itself to review, for you, our dear readers.
Adulting is like a breath of fresh air that manages to diffuse the suffocating air of sex, crime and gore, permeating the web scene. It portrays the sweet world of two wet-behind-the-ears girls, Nikhat and Ray, who have just stepped out of their cocooned existence, to find their place under the sun in big, bad Mumbai. Nikhat and Ray are best friends, confidantes, and yes, flatmates in Mumbai.
And Adulting is all about their attempts at transitioning into responsible, earning adults, away from the safe haven of home and parental support. Hence, Adulting- get it? In fact, methinks, the Oxford Dictionary guys really ought to make ‘adulting’ the official verb form of ‘adult’; what say, guys?
Anyway, coming back to the series, Season 1 comprises of five episodes, each more captivating than the other. The goings-on in every episode are eminently relatable and realistic– if you’ve ever had the fortune (or misfortune, whichever way you look at it) of working away from home and sharing a flat with like-minded individuals, you’ll know what we’re talking about. We can bet you’ll identify with some, if not all, of the high jinks that take place in the lives of these two adorable girls.
If they’ve spent all their monthly allowance on a Justin Beiber concert and soare flat broke in one episode, they’ve got to contend with life’s bumps and hurdles in another. An impending visit by Nikhat’s mom leads to a cleaning spree, hiding of ashtrays and liquor bottles out of sight, and the like. Nosy neighbours, a boorish boss, even internet trolls– the bane of social media– all make interesting appearances in the series. Adulting skilfully dissects the lives of today’s youngsters and lays them bare on the web petri-dish, for us to reflect, reminisce and ruminate upon.
FilterCopy regular, Aisha Ahmed, is absolutely fabulous as Nikhat, rendering her role with an innocent charm, young-adult chutzpah and alluring vulnerability. Yashaswini Dayama, as Ray, simply steals our hearts away with her defining act. Cute as a button, she carries her emotions on her sleeve, as also her face, for all to see. Her singularly unique dialogue delivery, adorable performance, elfin charm– in fact everything about her– has us hooked. Yashaswini made us sit up and take notice of her as Alia Bhatt’s cute friend in Dear Zindagi; in Adulting, we fall for her turn as Ray like a ton of bricks.
The series brims with profound moments, coaxing us to ponder on the vagaries of life. The scene, when Nikhat’s mom asks her if everything is fine with her and Nikhat aches to tell her about all that’s not so fine in her life, but ultimately doesn’t, was so poignant that it made our throats close up with emotion. The girls’ taxi ride, with the over-smart taxi driver spewing gyaan at every turn of the road, was another sparkling sequence that had us enthralled. All five episodes are peppered with similarly glittering nuggets of astute profundity.
This review will be incomplete without a special mention of Sheeba Chaddha, who plays Nikhat’s mom, and Ravi Gossain, who plays the smartypants taxi-driver. Ms Sheeba brings oomph and class to her role as the oh-so-cool mom who shares a nonchalant drinking session with the girls, diffuses a potentially explosive confrontation with Nikhat’s nosy neighbour with delightful ease, and discusses safe sex with Nikhat with quiet candour. Oh, if all of us had moms like that!
Ravi Gossain sparkles as the taxi-driver bestowing unsolicited truisms on a dumbfounded Nikhat and Ray. He seems creepy as hell at first, but then worms his way into our affections with his amiable, gyaan-giving ways. A remarkable act, that!
Adulting is touted as India’s first web-series to have a mostly-female team, right from the director, writers, editor, principal cast, assistant director team, line producer, and several other key positions– quite a commendable achievement. Although, in today’s equality-oriented times, when females have stormed every bastion known to mankind, should the makers really harp on that fact? Not so, in our opinion. But then, to each his own…
If there’s one grouse we hold against Adulting, it’s that the endings are quite abrupt. We would love the writers to give us endings akin to those of Friends or How I Met your Mother, where we are left with a distinct message to chew on. Also, a little more depth in every episode would do them no harm. The writing is just a wee bit superficial, if we may say so.
Notwithstanding that, Adulting ingratiates itself into our hearts and gets under our skin with consummate dexterity. In the Pinterest-pressured, Instagram-influenced world of today, Adulting is one web series that is guaranteed to bring a smile on your face, even when you are in the grouchiest of moods. It makes you feel all the feels and is an instant perk-me-up when you are down in the dumps. It warms the cockles of your heart, whatever cocklessupposedly are.
Enough said! Go watch it for yourself, people, and tell us how you liked it, in the comments below. Waiting to hear from you guys!
Meanwhile, Adulting definitely deserves a 4/5 from us, at IWMBuzz!
(Written By Rashmi Paharia)