‘Mata-e-jaan hai tu’ is telecast on Pakistan’s channel Hum tv 8pm every Friday. First episode was aired on 2nd March 2012.
Five Reasons why ‘Mata-e-jaan hai tu’ is a must watch
1) Story/Script: Humsafar has familiarized us with Farhat Ishtiaq’s intense story telling and I expect no less in ‘Mata e Jaan’, which is based on one of her famous novels. It is primarily a love story of Haniya and Ibad. Considering the fact that she has added/developed a parallel track of Adam and Yamina especially for the show, the script is sure to have different layers to it.
The story so far (episodes 1&2): Haniya is a cheerful carefree girl who does not get up from the bed till its time to rush to college. She has a doting father, a mother who wishes Hani was a bit organized and serious and sister Yamina who is married to a materialistic snob whose favorite pastime is to pick on Haniya’s views on her culture, roots, and values. She doesn’t see eye to eye with her brother in law and considers him and her sister to have sold out to the western ways of leading their lives.
It is revealed that her grandmother whom she adores and considers being the only person who truly understands her has brought up Haniya, during the initial years. Haniya and Yamina plan a surprise party for their parents wedding anniversary and invite their grandmother from New York to join them in their celebrations. What starts out as a day for celebrations ends with their parent’s demise in an accident leaving the three bereft and grieving.
Not wanting to leave Haniya all by herself in their parent’s home, Yamina goes against Adam’s wish, and brings Hani along to stay with her. Haniya soon realizes that her brother in law does not want her there and decides to move to New York to live with her grandmother. The last straw that breaks Haniya’s heart is when Yamina matter of factly states that they had decided to sell their parents house to aid Adam’s project.
In the meanwhile, Ibad Uzair is preparing to leave for Columbia University in New York along with his friend Adeel to pursue his higher studies following the footsteps of his father. He is shown as the perfect son who adores his parents. Unknown to him, his match is being fixed with his childhood friend Anoushi to keep her grandmother’s wish that they get married when they grow up. His mother though is not too keen to go ahead with the match without her son’s approval.
At this point in the story, towards the end of the second episode, Haniya is shown to enter the classroom late and sit down beside Ibad who is entranced by her.
2) The Characters: There are multiple characters in this drama, which keeps it from having a linear story line. Haniya Sajjad is a spirited happy-go-lucky girl with her heart in the right place, who is a breath of fresh air and is the heart of the drama. She is endearing, lively, and feels like that one person who could light up your day. Ibad Uzair lovingly called Aabi by his loved ones, is a principled and model son, student and by the second episode you get the feeling here is a boy every girl would love to take home to her parents.
Haniya’s older sister Yamina is a woman who has lost her individuality in the course of her marriage and has reluctantly adapted to her husband’s ways in the hopes of keeping their marriage intact. She is shown as a character that is torn between her love for her sister and her duty towards her narcissistic husband and their marriage. Yamina’s husband Adam is a domineering, materialistic and self-absorbed man who cannot for the life of him, look beyond his nose.
Ibad’s parents offer a loving and stable home to their son, a dream family brimming with love for one and another. By the second episode, Haniya loses her parents and has Yamina and her grandmother as her only family. Haniya’s grandmother, addressed as mama jaani by their granddaughters acts as a pillar of support to them, especially for Haniya.
3) The Cast: Talented actors Sarwat Gillani and Adeel Hussain play the lead roles of Haniya and Ibad. Sarwat has an expressive face and portrays a gamut of emotions effortlessly. She is an absolute delight to watch as she plays a custom fit role of Haniya. Adeel as Ibad is apt for the role, seamlessly slipping into it right from the word go. The character so far, has been quite single-faceted and am sure it will evolve as the story moves along.
Sanam Saeed and Junaid Khan play the mismatched couple Yamina and Adam. Junaid has nailed it as the self-absorbed and insensitive Adam while Sanam gives an understated performance as a woman who is neither here nor there when it comes to her values pitted against the wishes of her husband. Veteran actress Sajida Syed plays Haniya and Yamina’s grandmother. Hina Bayat (Sara’s mother in humsafar) and Jawaid Sheikh play Ibad’s loving parents.
4) Direction: One of the noted and award winning film makers of Pakistan, Mehreen Jabbar is at the helm of ‘Mata e jaan’ and the results are evident even in the two episodes aired so far. The execution of the scenes is smooth, like the slides that effortlessly slip into place to form a beautiful portrait. That brings us to another reason why this drama is a must watch.
5) Cinematography: Gripping story, strong characters, excellent direction, and talented cast, when supported by an able cinematographer takes the entire drama to a different level. Shahzad Kashmiri, one of the ace cinematographers of Pakistan has literally ‘written the scenes in motion’ through a series of breathtaking visuals dipped in myriad colors, which makes watching Mata e jaan a sensory delight.
Precap for episode 3: Ibad tries his level best to capture Haniya’s attention. Will he succeed? Watch the next episode to see how he does it.
Kind Request to everyone who has read the novel: Please do not give out the story in your comments. There are several, including me, who do not know how the story is going to pan out and would love to keep it that way. Do respect our sentiments. Thank you!