Bad Cop is another Disney+Hotstar serial, not series!

Gulshan Devaiah plays a dual role in Bad Cop. Photo: Trailer Video Grab

Ouch! Here we go again!

Bad Cop follows the unholy current Disney+Hotstar ‘tradition’ of converting web series into a TV serial! “Binge watch” is a term that is “in” since web series began, but no chance here of that!

They are “issuing” a new episode every Thursday (Or is it Friday? It really doesn’t matter!). Ads, mostly repeated, appear every five or ten minutes, occupying a total of something like 10 minutes or more all told. It all began with a D+H series sometime last year, and in many cases, even ZEE5 and SonyLIV have fallen prey to this odious and obnoxious habit of issuing episodes of web series like TV shows.

In such a case, it would be futile to wait for the story (or season, if so) to write a review, and obviously no one has the patience. A wag once said that one does not have to eat the whole egg to know if it is bad, but here we have not even consumed the whole egg. So egg-xactly, we have to pre-judge, and producers Fremantle India and director Aditya Datt have to take this review of an adaptation of a German TV series, Bad Cop: Kriminell Gut, with a pinch of salt, maybe.

But we have to take the yarn with a barrel of Sodium Chloride. Yes, we have been having this “exchange of twins” idea since Ram Aur Shyam and  Seeta Aur Geeta ad infinitum, but in those movies, the people around a Ram or a Geeta were unaware of the existence of the twin.

This time, everyone is aware of them! Karan and Arjun (both played by Gulshan Devaiah, and Rakesh Roshan-sir, please note the names!) are again opposite in nature—Karan’s a cop and Arjun a small-time thief/con-man/ what-have-you. When Arjun takes the missing Karan’s place at his home, we are led to believe that Devika (Harleen Sethi), as well as their moppet daughter, Rhea (Keya Ingle), cannot make out the all-too obvious differences between a husband and a stranger. Hello, what about moles, small marks, nuances, way of speaking et al?).

We have shades of the 2023 Gumraah here, which in turn was based on the Tamil film, Thadam. But that was a crisp film that still went nowhere.

In this case, Arjun is in trouble and being framed for a murder and wants help from Karan. Karan is having a bad time in their marriage because Devika has been promoted and is his superior at work and both think that each other has changed.

When Karan and his deputy Rehan get information about a gangster’s son, Raghav, they rush to the spot without any backup, and realize too late that it is a trap.

Arjun, who is following Karan to meet him and ask for assistance, gets involved in  the ensuing exchange of fire, Arjun is injured and Karan goes missing in the sea. Arjun is taken to be Karan, recovers in hospital, and must go home…to Karan’s house, naturally!

From here, things take a turn. Arjun’s accomplice-cum-girl, Kirki (Aishwarya Sushmita) wants them both to escape to Gujarat as the cops are after them, but now, Arjun must know what happened to his brother and why. They were separated by circumstances, but still love each other.

In the episode I watched, Raghav shoots Arjun in another encounter, as the latter obviously is being Karan, the cop. And then there is the dead man’s loyal friend and ace cop, ACP Arif Khan (Saurabh Sachdeva), who is suspicious of Karan and his wife as Arjun’s trail leads to their home…

And here is where one’s desire to continue (or binge-watch) is sabotaged for good.

Gulshan Devaiah is convincing as Karan and Arjun, while Saurabh Sachdeva plays to the gallery. Harleen Sethi is good as the no-nonsense tough yet vulnerable Devika, while Aishwarya Sushmita impresses as Kirki.

Anurag Kashyap as the brutal Kabze, gets a role that is right up his cinematic sensibility. He is therefore effective, but then, as I have always maintained, he is a far superior actor than a writer-director.

Three episodes (out of who knows how many!) are too less to judge the rest of the aspects, but I guess that the direction is okay. And but for that implausible idea of a man impersonating his police officer twin, the writing is okay. Remember that the original of this series is not Indian…

P.S.: I waited for three episodes to watch this show.

Disney+Hotstar presents Fremantle Media’s Bad Cop  Produced by: Leena Tandon Directed by: Aditya Datt  Written by: Rensil D’Silva, Rehan Khan, Sameer Arora, Srinita Bhoumick, Hussain Dalal & Venika Mitra Music: Vikram Montrose & Taliz  Starring: Gulshan Devaiah, Harleen Sethi, Aishwarya Sushmita, Saurabh Sachdeva, Keya Ingle, Amol Khatnani, Alok Khatnani, Anurag Kashyap, Deepak Kamboj & others



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