Adrishyam—The Invisible Heroes marked by amateur treatment

Eijaz Khan in Adrishyam—The Invisible Heroes. Photo: Trailer Video Grab

I refuse to be taken in again: this is yet another ‘web series’ in name that is being released at the rate of two episodes a week and that too with a time-slot mentioned: Thursdays and Fridays 8 p.m. (Indian Standard Time).Hallo, isn’t a web series meant to also be binge-watched in more than one corner of the world?

Adrishyam—The Invisible Heroes (we all know what has inspired the first word, don’t we?!) is another in the long line of espionage thrillers on the web since inception, but joins the ranks of the mediocre ones thanks to the script and direction, which are amateurish to the extreme.

The film is about undercover agents Ravi Verma (Eijaz Khan) and Parvati Sehgal (Divyanka Tripathi) and their personal and professional lives. Obviously, their families (Ravi’s wife, played by Shriya Jha, and Parvati’s daughter, played by Zara Khan and mother-in-law) do not know what they actually do, as they have told them that they work for other companies. Parvati’s husband is in jail and has committed an unforgivable harm to his wife as well that will be revealed, as we guess, in future episodes! There is an emphasis on the double lives (as in the film Baby and The Family Man) but at times, I feel that it is too intrusive upon the plot in the way it is shown to generate compassion and empathy for our agents, whose real stories may be far more poignant.

There is a stern-looking but mild (!!!) boss, (Swaroopa Ghosh) and a cantankerous official, Nadkarni (Tarun Anand), a bad actor who neither looks like a Maharashtrian nor has the deportment and authority of an Intelligence officer. The agents are on the lookout for a master terrorist, code-name Begum, and for some critical RDX, which is being smuggled into India for a series of explosions.

Nothing new in this, but nothing wrong either. Every such terror plotline is a part of such a template. But where Adrishyam drifts off is in its loose narrative and flawed detailing, apart from some needless and silly level of so-called ‘humor’:  a key example are the ludicrous goings-on and sillier dialogues in the surveillance van. And for the content shown on the show, the duration is too long. The railway tracks sequence too is absolutely ridiculous. A clever touch is of a Muslim agent, Sayra (unknown actress) who ties a rakhi on Ravi (played by a Muslim actor!), but that would be called a typical film and TV emotional cliche.

The last ‘nail in the coffin’ is the way the episodes are structured. So I have decided not to watch beyond episode 2 (of six, until now, with the trailer of Episode 7 out!). After being inflicted with Raisinghani Vs. Raisinghani (on Sony LIV again) and Lootere (on Disney+Hotstar) and their unending sagas, I have decided not to take it anymore. And the makers should be prepared for part-reviews that may not be totally fair, for who will wait weeks and months to evaluate the entire show?

In this particular case, Eijaz Khan is cool and Divyanka Tripathi efficient, but for me, it is Shriya Jha who steals the show as Eijaz’s cute wife who wants to believe that he works for the Weather Department but does not because of his erratic behavior. The actress playing Sayra is the most expressive of the lot but her name is missing from the credits!

And as for the episodes to come, I wonder when and how this one will end. And how much more of trite, puerile, childish or infantile ‘humor’ will ’embellish’ an espionage drama where the humor must be a subtly delightful part of the show, if at all present.

Sony LIV presents Bombay Show Studios’ Adrishyam—The Invisible Heroes  Showrunners: Anshuman Sinha & Kumar Chanakya  Produced by: Sachin Pandey & Aditi Pandey  Directed by: Anshuman Kishore Singh  Written by: Anshuman Sinha & Amit Aaryan  Music: Sanjay Wandrekar Starring: Eijaz Khan, Divyanka Tripathi, Shriya Jha, Swaroopa Ghosh, Mir Sarwar, Parag Chadha, Tarun Anand, Zara Khan, Roshnee Rai & others



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