The Married Woman Web Series: If you are an Indian woman, there are chances you’ve been lectured or ‘guided’ to sacrifice for the family, to keep your husband happy while putting your own dreams on the backburner and, no matter what, to prioritize your children before you.
The theme of the bored Indian housewife, either being neglected by her husband or losing the spark in her marriage or falling out of love, has been attempted a couple of times before in Bollywood. For the first time, the theme is being explored — at least with depth and empathy — in a web series.
‘The Married Woman’ Producer and Cast
The Married Woman is produced by Ekta Kapoor and Samar Khan, and starring Ridhi Dogra, Monica Dogra, Suhaas Ahuja and Imaad Shah.
The plot of the show ‘The Married Woman’
Aastha (Ridhi Dogra) doesn’t feel the love or attention any more from her husband, Hemant (Suhaas Ahuja), and to make matters worse, her routine existence coupled with the causal patriarchy of her home has begun suffocating her. In this scenario, she finds that missing spark with her new colleague, Eijaz (Imaad Shah) at the college she teaches, but after he doesn’t reciprocate her feelings, circumstances ensue such that she and Eijaz’s wife, Piplika (Monica Dogra), grow close to each other.
Where to watch ‘The Married Woman?’
To observe Aastha’s full story, you can watch it on ALT Balaji and Zee5 if you have a subscription. If you don’t have one, you can purchase it anytime and check out The Married Woman internet collection and also various web series accessible on the respective platform.
‘The Married Woman’ Trailer
The trailer of The Married Woman intrigued me to learn how the lives of two love-starved women, starkly different from each other, will intertwine. How will they break out from the traditional gender-defined roles assigned to them by society and find solace in each other? Will their clandestine love ever find acceptance in a society where ‘sabhyata’ and ‘maryada’ mean everything?
Writers Jaya Misra and Surabhi Saral, fail in turning the beautiful theme of ‘love-beyond-gender’ into an engaging tale of two women finding solace in each other.
Check out the trailer below:
‘The Married Woman’ Review
What makes it worse are the overstretched episodes. The Married Woman forces you to sit through episode after episode of non-development. The subplot of an inter-caste marriage annoys you further since it adds nothing to the central narrative. The second half of the show, which brings Astha and Peeplika together and tests the strength of their bond, are much better than the early episodes simply because both characters deal with their emotional turmoil. While Peeplika wants Astha to choose between her and her family, Astha is torn between her happiness and her children’s future.
The show is set in 1992, when the country witnessed communal riots. That, however, remains just a backdrop and never blends with the narrative.
Also, it is difficult to fathom why a free-spirited and independent woman has to be shown as an alcoholic and promiscuous. Peeplika is shown to be an independent, confident woman who mourns by sipping wine for breakfast, lunch and dinner, and has casual affairs till she finds love with Astha. When will such cliched depiction of an ‘independent’ woman change?
Still, if you prefer to watch The Married Woman, do it for its cast. Ridhi Dogra, Monica Dogra, Suhaas Ahuja and Imaad Shah, have all given well-contained performances. Special mention for Ayesha Raza for being a much-relatable interfering relative who has an issue with everything that her sister-in-law does.
Watch The Married Woman for its ensemble acting and savour some of the well-conceived dialogues, which give this old wine a taste delectable enough to make you want to consume it. I’m going with 3.5 out of 5 stars, of which 1 star is purely for how producer Ekta Kapoor never succumbs to any sort of pressure, big or small, no matter from where it comes, and keeps dishing out such unapologetically bold, provocative content that’ll make a thinking individual actually think.
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