All that’s left unsaid

June 4, 2023

A feel-good romantic comedy series tackles a lot of property-related issues

All that’s left unsaid


nuanced understanding of the issues related to property claims and its comic depiction make Kuch Ankahi, written by Muhammad Ahmed worth watching. Directed by Nadeem Baig, the serial takes on a lot of social ills one by one and deals with them in a funny way.

Kuch Ankahi is the story of three sisters in a household where the father Agha Jan, played by Muhammad Ahmad, is a reasonable parent. He communicates decently with his children who do not hesitate to share their problems with him. However, the mother, Shammo Begum, played by Irsa Ghazal is a matriarch with a Type A personality.

The contradictions between the personalities of the parents and their different takes on parenting make the plot interesting. Agha Jan fears the loss of his only property, his parents’ house, to his siblings. Because he does not have a male heir, Agha Jan fears that his relatives will sue him for it.

On one hand, Jan is trying to keep the property himself and divide it among his daughters. On the other hand, he worries that his only sister Sofia, played by Vaneeza Ahmad, is visiting the house to claim her right to the property.

Meanwhile, Shammo Beghum is more interested in getting all her daughters married as soon as possible. She maintains the demeanour of a humble bride’s mother. She marries her eldest and the most conformist daughter in a toxic household. This is accomplished by pressuring Samia, played by Mira Sethi, into marrying her cousin Saif who has a miserly mother and a narcissistic girlfriend he continues seeing after his marriage.

Sofia, the paternal aunt to the three sisters - Samia, Aaliya, played by Sajal Aly and Tania, played by Qudsia Ali - has an interesting backstory. She had run away on her wedding day with Thanvi, played by Babar Ali, only to leave him behind.

Sofia is visiting her brother’s house for Tania’s wedding. For their own reasons, her brother and sister-in-law want her to get married to Thanvi.

The writer has depicted the shaming many children face on a regular basis. It is exemplified in the continuous scolding that Samiya gets from her mother. However, the director has overdone it by accompanying Samiya with food items in all the indoor scenes.

Samia’s character gets interesting when one of her university friends goes missing and she is anxious about it, talking to her elders for a piece of advice on the matter.

The dialogues delivered by actors, especially senior members of the cast, show a commitment to the word and the relevance of language in designing a brilliant comic plot.

Comic relief is provided by the suggestion of marriage or its prospects between mostly cousins and second cousins. Another anchor for comic relief in the plot is the obsession that Agha Jan has with his inherited house.

Shakeel is another character who enters the story late with a claim to the house. His entry becomes a consistent cause of pent-up tension between the two teams; Agha Jan and the Shakeel-Sofia duo. The actor Adnan Samad has given a marvellous performance with the timings and intonations of his jokes.

The romantic sub-plot between Aaliya and Salman, played by Bilal Abbas, is shown in a non-traditional way. The two characters are competitors in the real estate business. Their characters keep on crossing paths with each other as they work in the same vicinity for more or less the same clients. The love-hate relationship between the two is interrupted by Aaliya’s boss Asfar, played by Shehryar Munawar. The story then takes some petty-love-triangle-turns which seem a little unnecessary.

Asfar’s backstory is quite sad. When he was young, he was abandoned by his father and his mother passed away shortly afterwards.

The writer sticks to the property theme by tackling inheritance issues across different classes, portrayed through the property feud between Asfar, his father, played by Yousif Bashir, and his sister Sehrish, played by Alina Abbas.

However, the way Aaliya, Asfar, Sehrish and Salman work seems a little unrealistic.

The relationship between Salman and his mother, Almaas, played by Ainnie Zaidi, is one of the best things about this play. The two enjoy a real companionship, helping each other out through thick and thin, and listening to and understanding each other. Such depictions of a healthy mother-son relationship are a treat.

Another sub-plot includes the story of the maid Mina, played by Moona Shah, who has two children and is an integral member of the household. Through one of her children’s characters, the writer shows the traumatic impact that child labour can have. Even though the topic is touched briefly, Shah’s character, thanks in part to her wonderful acting skills, brought to the forefront some pertinent social issues such as the normalisation of domestic violence and its rampant prevalence in the society.

All the dialogues delivered by actors, especially senior members of the cast, show a commitment to the word and the relevance of language in designing a brilliant comic plot.

The writer is a theatre pratitioner and a drama critic

All that’s left unsaid