The unprecedented success of Suno Chanda opened new doors for TV channels giving them an insight into the sort of content people like to watch during the holy month of Ramzan. This year several new Ramzan shows have popped up on different channels and while most of them follow the same formula, Taana Baana on Hum TV comes as a breath of fresh air.
Warning: This piece contains spoilers
On the surface, Taana Baana appears to be a typical romantic comedy but when you start watching it you are immediately pulled into it due to a variety of reasons ranging from the script to the cast and their performances. In fact, the OST of the drama which has been sung by Amanat Ali is enough for you to fall in love with it.
Featuring Danyal Zafar (Zain), Alizeh Shah (Zoya), Javeria Abbasi (Fozia), Aamir Qureshi (Zain’s Father), Ismat Zaidi (Zain’s Dadi ), Komal Rizvi (Zebunnisa) and Hassan Noman(Shahid, Zebnunnisa’s husband), Taana Baana revolves around the newly married couple of Zain and Zoya and the challenges they face.
The drama began with Zain and Zoya meeting in a typical arranged marriage setup with Zain falling in love with Zoya at first sight. The first conflict emerges when Zoya rejects Zain’s rishta saying she does not want to get married because she wants to pursue higher studies.
Zoya, who is shown as a headstrong and ambitious girl, initially refuses Zain’s proposal but when she sees Zain’s dedication towards her, decides to take the plunge but with strings attached. Zoya gives Zain a list of conditions in form of a contract which Zain has to follow in order to marry her. In an unusual turn of events, Zain signs the contract without reading the conditions, and fast forward they get engaged and then get married in a matter of days.
As expected as in every traditional household, the new bahu (daughter-in-law) of the house is expected to take up certain roles, which Zoya refuses to take and the conditions of the contract start to unfold with Zoya going to university to pursue her MBA degree instead of looking after the family and the house.
While Zoya is shown as sweet and kind, at the same time she is also very unapologetic about her career ambitions and does not give up on her dreams because of the pressure she faces from certain members of the family.
Meanwhile, Zain is shown as a loving husband who supports his wife in all circumstances, without feeling any threat towards his masculinity. From picking and dropping his wife from university to helping in the kitchen, Zain does not hesitate from anything.
There are several instances throughout the drama which give you feel good vibes but my favourite scene so far has to be the one in which all the men of the house are shown working in the kitchen. They are shown cooking, cutting vegetables and preparing the salad. With this scene, the drama aims to break the stereotype that men cannot help in house chores or that they are not made to work in the house. Zain’s phuppa Shahid is also shown as a ghar damad and one who is respected and loved by all members of the family.
However, what does not work in the favour of drama is that it does not show the romance between Zain and Zoya, leaving the audiences wanting more. Danyal and Alizeh have great chemistry and one wants to see them light up the screen more often with sweet nothings.
Meanwhile, my favourite character of the drama has to be Bilal (Billu), who unlike similar characters is not too loud and is a very well-behaved child. He adds some much-needed cuteness to the drama, without being annoying or too over the top.
Penned by Hassaan Imam and directed by Saife Hassan, Taana Baana is breath of fresh air among dramas that continue to reinforce patriarchal values. It attempts to challenge the toxic side of our traditions in a very light and humorous way. And the best part is that each episode is not more than 20-25 minutes making it a very short and sweet watch.