Jhanak the new Star Plus show is produced and written by Leena Gangopadhyay, who has given the TV world many gems in the Bengali circuit. This happens to be the production’s first original Hindi TV show. Jhanak focuses on the rise of a very normal girl from the lowest ebb possible, just like a phoenix. If you look at this broad outline of the story, there is nothing new to look forward to in Jhanak. It looks similar to many shows and concepts. It addresses the social divide that people make, based on class and lifestyle. It has a girl who is illegitimately born, facing the harsh realities and taunts from society over her identity. We see a brooding mother who strives hard to give some semblance to her daughter’s future. Above all, we also see a love triangle happening in the show.
The show has been set up on a grand scale with a lot of characters and families in it. There is this male protagonist’s family in Kolkata. There is also a family in Kashmir, which is of the female protagonist’s. In addition to this, there is yet another family, that of the daughter from the Kashmir household. Frankly speaking, a lot many characters were introduced in the first episode. We did not see it coming for sure!! It was a bit unnerving to understand and process the identity and lineage of every character. Guess the makers could have been a bit more considerate of the audience for getting the best impression in their introductory episode.
Aniruddha the male protagonist is slated to marry Arshi, who is the daughter of Srishti, who in turn is the daughter of the Kashmir family. Srishti is a great dancer, very sophisticated and a person who believes in good lineage, and societal image. She is the arc competitor for Urvashi, her cousin sister, who has erred probably at a young age, and got into a failed relationship which ended with the birth of her daughter Jhanak.
Urvashi is condemned, criticized and put down by her own people, who are her distant relatives. Wonder what makes the mother stick on to this ever-biting family, is what we ask. Urvashi not only goes through the ridicule but also forces her daughter to be like her, the one who feels defeated all the time.
The character of Jhanak though, is refreshing amidst a set of narrow-minded people. She is confident in her skills, passionate about dance and dares to do something different when compared to her mother.
The character of Arshi is again, a good one. She is a confident dancer, and loves her man passionately. We saw her compassionate self when she went all the way out to help Jhanak. But little does the girl know that this was her biggest undoing, probably something that she will regret for the rest of her life. We now believe that this interesting positive character will take the same route of envy and wickedness, that we usually see.
Jhanak and Aniruddha look to be a good pair. Their scenes together have created a spark already. But it will be interesting to see what prompts Ani to not marry Arshi, and look for love in Jhanak.
The cinematography and direction have been top-notch. The diya puja at the lake remains the best-captured sequence in the initial week. However, not all the visuals described as Kashmir have been shot in Kashmir. The makers can be careful about these nuances. We are looking forward to some more great scenic locales in Kashmir.
Coming to the cast, the most impressive of the lot have been Dolly Sohi, Chandni Sharma, and Krushal Ahuja. Dolly’s Srishti is a challenging personality and she is doing really well in the role. Chandni Sharma is in great form in the role of Arshi. Krushal Ahuja is carrying out his role of Aniruddha very well. Hiba Nawab has been good in the titular role of Jhanak.
Shilpa Tulaskar has not yet got enough scope to perform and is the mother who is at the receiving end. All the ladies in the show – Patrali Chattopadhyay, Ekta Sharma, Kajal Pisal and others look good. There are many other male actors like Rishi Kaushik, Bharat Kaul, Sachin Verma, Sunny Sachdeva, Ajoy Chakraborty, Anand Sharma and others. Every character has been described decently well, but as said earlier, one needs to understand who is who, to maintain a regular watch. Sanjay Gandhi has a prized role, after Yeh Rishta Kya Kehlata Hai as the Guruji who is probably the father of Jhanak.
The makers can concentrate on depicting some of the sequences more realistically. For example, Jhanak got beaten black and blue by her mother on the leg, so much so that she was limping. And when she played the radio, she got into a very fluent rhythm of dance. And when the dance was over, she started to limp again. Yes, the makers tried conveying that Jhanak forgets all her pain when she starts to dance. But this one was a little too hard to digest!!
The costumes and makeup sense are very good. The story has been moving at a very good pace. We look forward to more of the Ani-Jhanak scenes. They are shaping up really well!! We hope this family drama provides something other than the usual stuff!!
We at IWMBuzz.com credit Jhanak with 2.5 stars out of 5.