Cast: Vaibhav Tatwawaadi, Akash Makhija, Alka Amin, Garima Vikrant Singh, Ishita Ganguly, and ensemble.
Creator: Rahul Pandey
Director: Rahul Pandey
Streaming On: Sony LIV
Runtime: 5 Episode Around 45 Minutes Each.
Nirmal Pathak Ki Ghar Wapsi Review: What’s It About:
Nirmal Pathak has had the biggest revelation of his life and that has made him travel far away to his real family. When he reaches a village named Buxer, he realises that there is a whole world that he was deprived from for the past 24 years. He meets his real mother, and kits which leaves him with the question of why was he kept away in the first place. Ghar Wapsi is the exploration of that same question.
Nirmal Pathak Ki Ghar Wapsi Review: What Works:
The best part about the evolution of the OTT space is the fact that filmmakers and writers are now able to tell stories dug deep in their personal space, and they have an audience. Unlike the big screen where the Friday numbers and their estimation would decide things. Language is no more a barrier (remember how too much of Bundelkhandi was a “problem” for some in the amazing Sonchirya?) Exactly that, it’s no more a “problem”.
Nirmal Pathak Ki Ghar Wapsi is an earnest step in the same direction. The show unapologetically explores a landscape that is niche and might even turn some off. Of course there is an abundance of heartland content and that some are just surface level. But, this Vaibhav Tatwawaadi digs a bit deeper. It is a universal story about a family that once was glorious but is now partially nuclear. The coming home and realising there is a family that was waiting, is an emotion Indian cinema has used for years. The Song LIV show adds much authenticity and a subtle humour to it.
So here is a man broken in many ways after learning the reality. The challenge is not just to collect the broken pieces and mend it by accepting the reality, but to also adapt to a new surroundings. He is also holding a big secret close to his heart. Then we meet his mother who has waited 24 years to see her son. She was abandoned and left to suffer in longing for 2 decades. The trauma has only made her more depressed, and add to that the curse of being a woman in the orthodox set up.
In the backdrop of this is the class divide. The show manages to highlight it at micro level. You could call one from a different caste your friend but not allow him on the same table. Kids are deprived from basic needs, if that isn’t enough they are beaten if they even ask for equality. There is a lot and you should explore it yourself.
And there are many of these people who feel real and ones like we have met in some points of our lives. What helps more is the relatability factor here. Nothing looks made up or forced. There is a feeling of belonging and that is lovely. Thank DOP Girish Kant for capturing the hallways, the terrace and the cracks between the walls that have lived it all so beautifully. His one take shots without any cuts create an impact that makes you stay. So does Rohit Sharma’s music.
Nirmal Pathak Ki Ghar Wapsi Review: Star Performance:
Alka Amin is the star of the show. No single second where it seems like she is playing a character written by someone. It looks like the pain, the longing and every other emotion has been lived by her. It is her and her contemporaries who have worked without garnering deserved validation who need to be celebrated. So does Garima Vikrant Singh.
Vaibhav Tatwawaadi is the one learning everything here. While the command is his, he is also the one who needs to be on the receiving end. While emotional scenes do look like they could have been better, the actor excels otherwise. He plays a man of few words and it does take efforts to shape a character like this.
Akash Makhija deserves a big share of appreciation too. He plays a character that in a way brings drama to this universe and he is amazing as Aatish. I would love to see more of him.
Nirmal Pathak Ki Ghar Wapsi Review: What Doesn’t Work:
The transition from family drama to a social drama isn’t subtle. Yes, it does feel organic when there are hints, but ends up being a bit of a tumultuous ride when it entirely enters the caste politics angle of it.
Nirmal Pathak Ki Ghar Wapsi Review: Last Words:
This could just shape up to be another Panchayat if it continues to only get better. Give it a chance and let the emotions take over. There is enough heart, soul and awareness in here to make you feel warm and aware at the same time. Binge it!
Did you watch Sony LIV’s Saie Tamhankar starrer? Read our Pet Puraan Review here!