NEW DELHI: Typical saas-bahu sagas and run-of-the-mill concepts outlived their popularity on the small screen. This was evident from the success of finite series like Zindagi Gulzar Hai and Humsafar, which not only captivated Indian audiences but also topped their charts.
The year saw megastar Amitabh Bachchan making his debut in fiction space on TV with Yudh. Co-produced by Amitabh’s production company, Saraswati Creations, the show was appreciated for its concept but failed to make it big. Many new Indian shows were launched, but hardly any one of them recieved viewership.
Below is a list of shows that clicked with the Indian audiences this year.
Zindagi Gulzar Hai
The local show struck a chord with its zeal and youthful romance between the lead characters — Zaroon Junaid and Kashaf Murtaza — who hate each other but eventually fall in love. A heart-warming story, it highlighted the intricacies of life. The show was instantly appreciated for its realistic approach and finite number of episodes. The show was launched in June and summed up on a happy note in July. Fawad Khan, who played the male lead, was also seen making his Bollywood debut with Khoobsurat.
Another Pakistani wonder became a huge hit across the border was surely Humsafar. Again starring Fawad Khan along with Mahira Khan in the lead roles, the play was about a couple who were forced into marriage. It’s not a love story where the eyes meet and the wind blows, but a gradual and slow building-up of emotions. The show started October 14 and concluded November 7. Now, Mahira is all set to enter Bollywood with Raees, a film that stars Bollywood superstar Shahrukh Khan.
Yeh Hai Mohabbatein
The show is a perfect embodiment of Ekta Kapoor’s success formula with the right amount of love, drama and comedy. The story of a couple who come together for the sake of a child has been appreciated. With the main plot, the show also highlights intermingling of two cultures — South Indian and Punjabi in a humorous way. The show was launched in December 2013.
Ajeeb Daastaan Hain Ye
The love traingle launched actor Sonali Bendre in the fiction genre on television. She has hosted shows, but this was her first stint with the soap and the story has so far managed to entertain the audience. With Apoorva Agnihotri and Harsh Chhaya in the male leads, it was touted to be a finite series.
Another local show that captured the neighbouring country. Aunn Zara was comical in nature, and appealed greatly to the masses. What happens when a guy, spoiled by his mother, grandmother and aunts, gets married to a tomboy.
Published in The Express Tribune, December 25th, 2014.