Cast: Bobby Deol, Chandan Roy Sanyal, Aaditi Pohankar, Darshan Kumar, Tridha Chaudhary, Adhyayan Suman, Rajeev Siddhartha, Anupriya Goenka, Esha Gupta
Creator: Prakash Jha
Director: Prakash Jha
Streaming On: MX Player
Language: Hindi (with subtitles)
Runtime: 45-50 minutes/episode (Total: 10 episodes)
Aashram Season 3 Review: What’s It About:
In 2020, Prakash Jha envisioned about this charismatic godman who’ll charm his way through many outside-the-law things, treating women with only one thing (his prashad – those who’ve read my Aashram Review & Aashram: Season 2 Review will get this joke) and then he roped in Bobby Deol to play the role. It’s 2022 and with the blessings of Jio, we’re ready to welcome Baba Nirale with his ‘nirale kaarname’ for the third time.
The show was titled Ashram for the first 2 seasons and after facing the Controversy of targeting Hindus, the makers are now calling it ‘Ek Badnaam Aashram: Season 3’ (Oh! The irony). Baba Nirala is still lusting for power, so much so that he promotes himself to be ‘bhagwan’ this time. Yep, Bobby’s baba turns into ‘bhagwan’ not by doing virtuous deeds for his followers but through a ‘brand building’ plan.
Aashram Season 3 Review: What Works:
Continuing the tradition of ‘biting more than it can chew’, the season starts with Aaditi Pohankar’s Pammi on the run from Baba Nirala as she wants to expose his truth to the world. The issue with this series is it has already shown its best in season 1 which I found average at best, hence it’s been a sloppy slope from there. Things that the viewers must’ve found sensational in season 1 are reduced to mere repetition in this one. In my Aashram: Season 2’s review, I had said that it feels like I’m reviewing season 1 all over again. And, here we go again! The antiques of Bhopa remain to be the most entertaining highlight of the show & that’s been the case since season 1.
Aashram Season 3 Review: Star Performance:
Bobby Deol is Bobby Deol! The same he was in seasons 1 and 2. Nothing different he does to be analysed and mentioned about. Chandan Roy Sanyal still remains to be the soul of the show & I feel Prakash Jha should seriously think about a spin-off instead of bringing Aashram back.
Aaditi Pohankar & Rajeev Siddhartha’s characters are grilled down to worse than supporting actors as their story arc shows zero growth since episode 1. Season 4 is all about Aaditi and that’s why it seems she was asked to sit out in this one. Darshan Kumar & Anupriya Goenka’s track is also trimmed down to almost nothing. Esha Gupta was supposed to be this sensual addition for the TG of this show, but that doesn’t really gel well with the storyline. Tridha Chaudhary & Adhyayan Suman’s characters are also sidelined in this one.
Aashram Season 3 Review: What Doesn’t Work:
The monotonous treatment of a subject that’s been dragged for 2 seasons is the major issue with the story writers at the PJP team aren’t able to solve yet. Though there’s a ray of hope for Aashram: Season 4 because as per tradition we not only get to see the trailer in the end, it now actually seems the show is at least going somewhere. Though my hopes will be burdened by the disappointment of the last 2 seasons.
Yes, I know I didn’t even like Aashram (2020) as well but after the last two attempts, I now realise how the debut season was actually better than its dragged impotent clones. The line which I used in my Aashram: Season 2 review still stands the test of time, “The makers pack 20 minutes worth of content into the 45 minutes of episodes.” This season provokes too my dumb questions like “Why a smart journalist (as shown in the first 2 seasons) will switch on his phone when he knows he’s been tracked by Baba Nirala’s powerful contacts?” or “If you’re looking for 2 people on the run, why do you’ve to post just one person’s photo to reach till them?” or “Why, when Baba wants to sleep with a new girl, is he said “Aapko milega purane pain ka naya painkiller?” or “Why all of this even exists?” Well, meet you all in the review of Aashram: Season 4 in 2023, because I don’t know about y’all but I still love my job.
Aashram Season 3 Review: Last Words:
All said and done, the third instalment of this Bobby Deol show is as insignificant as its 2nd season. But let’s brace ourselves for the number of views it’s going to get on a free streaming platform because that’s lately been a bar to touch and not the quality of the making.
Not into dramas? Check out our Modern Love: Mumbai review!