Cast: Kunal Kemmu, Nupur Sanon, Johny Lever, Rajpal Yadav, Saurabh Shukla, Satish Kaushik, and ensemble.
Creator: Farhad Samji.
Director: Farhad Samji.
Streaming On: disney+ Hotstar.
Language: Hindi (with subtitles).
Runtime: 6 Episodes, Around 40 Minutes Each.
Pop Kaun Review: What’s It About:
A rich man-child falls in love with a woman who is nothing more than comic relief and decides to convince her father. But the father is so obsessed with lineage and bloodlines that he makes the guy find his because he has multiple fathers. Does the boy find His original pop, or we lose our brain cells is the show.
Pop Kaun Review: What Works:
The comedy genre for years in Hindi cinema has not garnered the respect it should have long ago. The genre with classic filmmakers like Hrishikesh Mukherjee, Priyadarshan, and a few more have created characters that made us laugh our hearts out even on the 10th watch. And then Farhad Samji happened to the genre, and his filmography is what the genre exactly shouldn’t be. Oh, sorry, we are supposed to talk about what works in this section.
The best part is that Farhad decides to make only six episodes with a very decent runtime, so we don’t have to spend much time with his content; that is a compilation of forwards we receive on WhatsApp, and we earnestly want to block the ones sending us those. The exploration in Pop Kaun? Isn’t about finding the laughing nerve of the audience to keep tickling it till the point they end up in tears, but it is the reverse. You cry at your choice and laugh at the fact that someone invested their money. Sorry, good things now, for sure.
Some jokes in the show that houses some of the giants of the comedy scene in India do land because of the sheet mastery at what they do. The jokes we cracked as children and then continued until we exhausted people to crack them in front of make a comeback. But the cast that is so immaculate manages to make some even sound hilarious.
Pop Kaun Review: Star Performance:
Casting gems of actors and giving them parts that, in a way, do no good to their filmography should be announced as a crime now; high time. Pop Kaun? In its idea tries to bring back every possible stalwart of the comedy genre from India. Name them, and they are here. From Saurabh Shukla to Jamie Lever, that’s the range. We don’t consider Nupur Sanon in them as of yet. But even if you do, Pop Kaun? Is a sheer waste of the massive talent it has got on board.
The fact that the show only becomes a bit watchable because of its cast, the majority of whom have unknowingly made some of weakest scripts work in the past without being celebrated. So when in 2023, and the entire show acts as a ceremony that is orchestrated only to give them a red carpet, they still can make these mundane words sound funny.
Be it Johny Lever, Saurabh Shukla, Satish Kaushik, and Rajpal Yadav; their performances were more about the dramatics. They bring the same troop here, and while it is fun, there is only a limited time you can continuously consume it. Even Hera Pheri had to add Tabu’s doomed story to add some breather from the continuous laughing. (What did I end up mentioning, are we ready to address the fact yet, the threequel? Wait). They are brilliant but not served well.
Kunal Kemmu is earnest in what he does, and the actor deserves so much more. The world realised his worth in a movie that was doomed, but he shined (Kalank). This might just become yet another project. How many more wrong choices? Nupur Sanon gets to only be the motivation and is borderline dumb like you would guess a woman in Samji universe is.
Somebody, please explain to me what crime did Jamie Lever commit in her past multiple lives to deserve this? What exactly is she playing? Was she wandering around the set when Samji said let’s make her fill the voids in a frame, so make her dress like as many side characters as possible? She is told to be the Instagram version of herself and doesn’t have a part in the narrative that makes any sense or is of any consequence.
Pop Kaun Review: What Doesn’t Work:
Oh, please grab your pop ‘corn’ at this point. First of all, a part of any kind of income this project manages to make should be publically gifted to Mark Zuckerberg. Written by Farhad Samji with his long-time collaborators Tasha Bhambra and Sparsh Khetarpal, almost every second line in this show is a WhatsApp forward that you were irritated by in 2013; we are in 2023! This trip in the past has served us some gems of films like Bachchhan Paandey, Laxmii, Housefull 4, and Baaghi 3. So while I was supremely wrong in keeping any hopes from an entire show coming out from this mill, I invested couple of hours of my life; some days, I hate my job.
There is an attempt to show smartness if you observe. The movie repeatedly tried to be a spoof of Anurag Kashyap’s Gangs Of Wasseypur. It names a pivotal part of Sultan Qureshi, makes a character say Faisal’s iconic dialogue. But it is also naive to cancel the same with yet another below-the-belt joke, which have now stopped churning out giggles or a forward.
Also, if Farhad thought he would change the grammar of the OTT shows and add lip-synching songs in every possible episode, that is not how it is done; good sir. Also, was Milap Zaveri a consultant on this show because nothing else explains the forceful ‘we are Indians and diversity is our specialty’ while Muslim, Hindu, Sikh, and Catholic men stand side by side in the end. Kunal is given an entire monologue as a conclusion of a show that was brainless and storyless until this very point.
That brings me to the fact that we were afraid to address like four paragraphs ago. Samji now is all set to shape Hera Pheri 3. Yes, if you are new to the party, ping me on Instagram, and let’s cry together. If this is how he prepares us to have bare minimum expectations, all we can do then is to assume it never happened. All the best, fam; we shall conquer!
Pop Kaun Review: Last Words:
Pop Kaun? Ends all its finesse in the title’s wordplay. What is left is a product that will make you feel bad for the legends it houses while it is made to derive precisely the opposite. We miss you, Satish Kaushik; you will always be our Calender!
For more recommendations, red our The Night Manager Part 1 Review here!
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